Hot Creek is still being fish friendly by maintaining its stream bed covered with weeds! Things will start changing as the temps drop lower every night up here in the Eastern Sierra. Flows continue to be about the same as they have been this summer. Fish are still eating mostly caddis throughout the day .. I have recently seen active caddis in certain parts of the stream throughout the day and intensifying towards the evening and on into the night. Small mays can also be seen coming off in the morning with the fish giving them some attention.. Still a remarkable place to practice our art of fly fishing! For flies try small caddis dries off 6x; Elk Hair Caddis in #18-22, Hemmingway Caddis #18-20 and Partridge Caddis in #18-20 also.. #18-20 Adams, Sprout Baetis and Trico patterns are also good to have along. Hoppers and various attractors (ants and beetles) in #10-14 can also provide an accurate fly angler with action. Nymphs include #18-22 poxy back tricos, PT’s, Hares Ears, WD-40’s, furmiskys epoxy midge and various other similar patterns.. This is the true dream stream when fished properly!
The Lower Owens is still flowing at near 500 cfs which moves it to blown out status.. However, I did get reports in my shop that some fly anglers were taking the browns on large hoppers and streamers..And hitting hatches in the evening. Water is clean for these flows and fish can be caught if that is your only option for the moment..
The East Walker has been back to itself with decent trout friendly temps for some time now since the nights in Bridgeport have been getting a bit cooler than the Mammoth side.. The flows have been between 120 and 190 cfs and are currently at a very fishable 165 cfs. The 10-14″ fish are on the surface with the occasional larger fish coming up to sip. A Trico hatch comes off mid morning which adds to the excitement of the fish on the surface. The beasts lie down below waiting to inhale your Midges (Tiger or Zebra) in a light color #16-18, Disco and Pearl Midges #16-18, PT’s #16-20, Poxy Back Tricos #20-22… On the surface fish Elk Hair Caddis #16-20, Hemingway Caddis #16-18, Sprouts Trico #18-20 or a Gnat #18-20.. Streamers are starting to get the attention they did a few months back .. throw your favorite bunny streamer here at all water levels. These fish live to hit properly presented streamers right under the surface.
The Lower Owens has been flowing at an incredible 148 cfs until the last couple of days; it has now been cranked up to 216cfs as of 8/13. This is still a fishable flow and the Lower Owens has been on fire! A great amiocentrus caddis hatch has been getting the fish very excited in the early morning and evening making for some great dry action… during the day nymphing has been on fire! Nymph deep with caddis pupa and larva, all sorts of midge larva, Pheasant tails, Princes and WD’s… Flows at 216are still wade able and the water temps make for hungry fish… The wild trout section all the way down to Warm Springs road has had this caddis action. We will see where the flows go from here…
As usual for this time of year the weeds are getting thicker and longer requiring anglers to make more accurate and precise presentations and drifts. Flows are down to around 60 cfs of combined flows with some weeds up to the surface. Dry dropper combinations or just a dry are the best methods to hit Hot Creek this time of year. The evening caddis hatch is the best thing going here… Later in the evening the creek can boil with caddis eating activity. During the day fish a buoyant dry with a small WD-40, PT or a midge or black fly larva. Put on a single hopper and cast to the holding water in between the weeds or on the opposite shore and expect some fishy attention. In the evening use a partridge caddis or small EHC throughout the hatch. IF you are not catching fish here you are doing something wrong… Step back and rethink your strategy. Enjoy!
The cooler nights have dropped the East Walker water temps down to fish friendly levels for the time being. Flows are up and down this time of year but as of now 8/13they are flowing at 192 cfs… Fish are more educated this time of year with larger fish still being caught but just not at the rate they were earlier this year. Go under the water if you want to have to chance at a larger East Walker beast. Small midges, WD-40’s, SJ’s, caddis pupa and larva and micro mayfly imitations will find you success on this water… This is the time of year the EW water temps can be harmful to fish and we are privileged to just be able to fish the East Walker this time of year so watch the water temperatures… Smaller fish are coming up on dries in the early morning and evenings. Start early take a break and finish late.
The Upper Owens continues to be a popular fishing destination with a panoramic view that is as beautiful as any… Flows are still low and water temps are good… The fish are not as concentrated as years past so spend less time in a hole if you are not getting trout attention. Small fish are up on the surface eating small dries here and there all day long… Most of these fish seem to be small browns. In the larger holes fishing can be excellent if you can find pods of fish are residing there. Hoppers can be flopped down for a bit of attention, but move around a lot if you are fishing hoppers as the fish usually pound them on the first presentation if they are willing. Streamers are always getting attention on the Upper O… Cast these to the opposite bank and tug back quickly… The fish will also usually hit these on the first presentation if they are feeling carnivorous… Fish the larger pockets with quicker strips leading into slower strips for a deeper presentation. Nymphing your basics will get you into fish here… Hares Ears, Pheasant tails, Red Copper Bobs, and Prince nymphs will get bitten if presented properly… the best method for the Upper O right now is to move from hole to hole covering lots of water while spending more time in the deeper holes where larger populations of fish reside..
The Lower Owens flows are staying as low as most people have seen for this time of year! At 195cfs the fishing is as good as I have seen it on the Lower O! In the early mornings and evenings the Amiocentrus caddis are getting eaten all over the surface.. If you want dry fly action show up at these times..Use small Elk Hare Caddis and turkey wing caddis, Hot Creek style partridge caddis are also getting eaten if you can see them at a distance… In between hatches various caddis pupa patterns and standard mayfly patterns are getting chomped. Once again for nymphing use Tiger and Zebra midges in greens and darker colours.. Fox’s poopah and z-wing patterns are also taking fish all day long…Standard PT’s, Robos, and Prince nymphs are getting eaten regularly….. At these flows we have seen some really nice EW style fish coming out of the Lower O right here in BISHOP!!! A must to fish right now!!
Hot Creek is on fire! Flows are perfect at 41 cfs for fly fishers and the fish are responding to correctly fished patterns.. Caddis seem to be the flies of choice but other insects are making their presence known; Yellow Sallies, Tricos and PMD’s…. Tiger and Zebra midges in blacks and browns fished as a short dropper are taking all kinds of fish. PT’s and Robos are also good flies to put in your Hot Creek box. All in #’s 16-20…As for dries the amiocentrus caddis adults are what the fish are eating on the surface.. A small grey EHC or partridge caddis will do the trick here… Fishing is hot all day long just so you are fishing the correct pattern. Dont miss this one…
I continue to frequent this river a few times a week. Flows are cranked up to 254cfs and the water has taken on a clear tea reddish tint to it right now, which is very different from the light pea soup colour it usually flows. Caddis and Mayfly hatches come off strong in the morning and late evening, but as usual you will not land those East Walker brutes we all hunt in that river if you fish dries all day. Use small EHC and Parachute Adams style dries for the rising fish. Tiger and Disco midges in #’s 18-20 continue to pound larger fish…Down lower toward Nevada I have taken large fish on large Princes and tungsten stone patterns… San Juan worms also continue to be players here.. Streamers are not as much of a go to pattern these days but one can still have a great day with some stripping action. I still prefer something large and lighter in colour; greys,yellows and whites still trick large browns there..