Temps have dropped yet a little more on the grassy banks of the Upper Owens River with the addition of more precipitation in the Mammoth Lakes area after some threatening storms. Some runoff flowed down Hot Creek making the water below the confluence cloudy for a couple of days. The water above the confluence area took on a tea stained red hue while remaining clear. This has now subsided and clearer flows have resumed. The river is now in perfect condition with flows as clear as any angler would desire. This, of course give the fish the advantage as they can see us coming a mile away on the treeless banks of the Upper Owens. The BIG Trout are indeed moving in! They have moved up and are peppered throughout the system. A Fly Angler only needs to take some time explore the deeper parts of the Upper O too find these world class Trout. Right now we are seeing mostly Rainbows as normal, but there is are more Brown Trout and we can see some Rainbows with Cutthroat trout genes as well. Fish the normal suggested flies; Large attractor Nymphs, Small Midges , Eggs, Worms ect.. Streamers always will take fish here but need to be fished in a proper manner in this spring creek type stream . Stay tuned for much more to come from the awesome waters of the Upper Owens River while Fly Fishing this winter.
The new news here on the fabulous Lower Owens River is that the flows are now on their way down! As you can see at the top of my website the levels are now down to 400 cfs instead of the whopping 550 cfs it had been maintaining. A little bit more and this place is going to be one of the next amazing fly fishing winter destinations you have to experience this winter of 2017/2018! Stay tuned for much more to come as we are fly fishing the Lower and Upper Owens daily!
The life giving flowing waters of the Upper Owens River are in amazing fishing condition! Flows are relatively above average and clear while weed growth is way down. In most dark and deep runs, holes, riffles, and pockets there is a likely chance of a large, or very large Trout with your name on it!! The flies are the same as my last report (SJ Worms Variations, Some Egg patterns, Soft Hackles, ect.)with emphasis on the anglers choice of waters to fish and how much time to spend and each piece he chooses. The Upper Owens is just starting to show Fly Fisherman the fantastic future it holds for us this winter…
The fabulous East Walker is showing signs of its glorious past as a massive flowing and fish producing piece of water. Currently running at an incredibly fishy flow of around 60-65cfs despite huge summer flows… water is clean and healthy! From the origin of the river at the spillway down to the Nevada line the East Walker is giving up some of its hefty specimens to the more advanced angler. Fishing the all classic SJ worm variations and well as a myriad of Midges, Baetis and Caddis has been working for different anglers on different days. Some dry fly action is noted but not consistent. Streamers fished correctly will almost certainly make your day with a hand jolting strike. Stay tuned for the East Walker Fly Fishing accelerate as Autumn and Winter take over the Eastern Slope of the Sierra.
The magnificent Lower Owens River just does not want to let go of its crisp, high flows! At a steady 547 cfs as of now we are happily anticipating the dropping of flow levels any day! That being said for those who know how to fish the river it is in amazing shape. The Trout of the Lower Owens have not seen, if ever, a sustained volume of this magnitude for such a long block of time. This gives the finned creatures of the river a lot of room to move around and take advantage of the food delivery system the river now offers to them. As far as they are concerned after the last five years of edge of drought situations the river is an entire new ecosystem, thriving with food and life on a constant delivery system. This makes for very healthy and happy fish of all sorts! Emerging Mayflies and Midges with some rogue Caddis are seen over the water inconsistently as the day warms. Emerger and Soft Hackle patterns have been very successful in #14-18. As well as various small streamers and seasonal dry fly patterns in slow moving foam lines during the warmer parts of the day.. As amazing as it is its very high and fast in most areas. Extreme caution at all times!
The Upper Owens River can be a bit of a fly fisherman’s paradise; dreamy grass meadow littered with various flowers surrounded by a ridge of majestic mountains. In Autumn these give way to cooler Temps and we see snow start to dot the mountains. This usually means the fishing is starting to change to larger offerings meaning…. BIG FISH. this is just starting to happen. The river is in perfect shape this year after a tremendous healthy water year. Stay tuned for another report very soon!
The Lower is making us wait a little longer for its flows to come down until the entire river is fishable. Currently fluctuating between 400-500 cfs of nutrient rich water with lots of aquatic insects making their appearance. Mayflies, Caddis, and Midges are around for most of the day with mid morning being the heaviest emergence. Fish are larger than we have seen and in fire once hooked!
Crowley Lake Fish are all about the perch fry at the moment!! Fishing from 4-10 ft near weedy patches where perch fry can hide makes complete sense right now. Orange blossoms, gray or shades of green buggers, and perch fry imitations are catching fish right now… Big time!
The local area small creeks and streams are at their most fishable levels we have seen all summer. Clear and beautiful the smaller flowing waters of the Eastern Sierra are full of happy fish right now. Some of these creeks have given us some great dry fly fishing the last couple weeks where no nymph is needed all day long. Classic fly patterns such as the Royal Wulff, Coachman, and other old school patterns come to use. Small streamers, and large nymphs come into play on these streams as well in the deeper holes where the big guy will not raise to dry!
The green summer grass and flowers of the Upper Owens are diminishing with the cooler high elevation nights. Flows are beautiful at 75-100cfs depending on the section you are fishing. Below and above Benton crossing fishing has been consistent and good! Fish throughout the Upper Owens river system are still looking up to Hoppers, Beetles and other well placed attractor patterns. Smaller fish are taking small Mayflies and Caddis patterns as you will see these trout rising but these guys don’t amount too much size when caught. Attractor nymphs leaning towards the larger sizes are working well. Fly Fishing the Upper Owens is picking up as we await the arrival of the Large Fish we have all been thinking about!