Lower Owens River Fly Fishing Report : Bishop, CA – 1.19.21

Last weeks weather casted some lovely weather on the Lower Owens River in the shadow of Mt. Tom, right outside of Bishop, CA. This week we see more typical seasonal style weather with the fish continuing to fill their pretty little stomachs with the local menu ; Midges, Caddis, and Mayflies. The flows are still low and river access is at an all time high. The Brown Trout are as healthy and beautiful as you can find along the 41th parallel. Dry fly action is noted when the sun is highest in the Eastern Sierra sky, although not river-wide, look to the larger and deeper pools to spot some noses piercing the surface as they consume small mayflies and midge adults.

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Fly fishing the Lower Owens River

Lower Owens River Fly Fishing Report : Bishop, CA – 1.16.21

The Lower Owens remains a dreamy fly fishing destination for the special few who enter her waters. Flows are still typical, low winter flows. This allows for good wading access to most parts of this fertile stream with a very casual approach when the water is read correctly. The usual suspects ; Caddis, Midges, and Mayflies are all still taking the most beautiful brown trout a fly angler can find. Look for the river to give you clues to which one of those they are eating while you are on the water. The entire river from the dam face down as far as you want to explore seems to hold fish. On the Lower Owens, if the water looks fishy, it holds them as fish population here is still very high. Don’t let that fool you though! The fish are highly selective and the reward they provide is great!

Upper Owens River Fly Fishing Report : Mammoth Lakes, CA – 1.13.21

This amazing trout stream, the main artey of Crowley, just below Mammoth Lakes, known as the Upper Owens remains a puzzle of an amazing trophy trout fishery. Concealing her prizes to only the most persistent and faithful fly anglers. With flows low and clear one day, while off colour the next, depending on what nature throws the previous days, this river is an absolute pleasure to explore and her rewards are great! Not much has changed since my last report ; the snow has come and gone, one day fish are out, another you may question if they inhabit the river. Streamers and Nymphs are the offerings that will bring you success. Small, exact imitation patterns, as well as attractor almost steelhead style underwater flies will get you something unforgettable to the net.

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beautiful Lower Owens Brown trout held by one hand above a net over the water

Lower Owens River Fly Fishing Report : Bishop, CA – 10.15.20

The infamous Fly Fishing in Lower Owens River just outside of Bishop, CA has began and is as good as we imagined! Flows are down to a perfect 180cfs of perfectly balanced, and nutrient rich sierra water. Trout are very abundant and are being found and caught in their usual hangouts. Weeds are not an issue and the entire river is accessible on foot by wading. Around 12:30 some small mayflies can be seen exiting the waters surface. In some of the slower, foam line areas surface action is noted. The entire river is fishing well from the dam to as far down as you would wish to go. Nymphs and streamers will take fish all day long. Stoneflies patterns are now a thing of this summer past. Fish Caddis, Mayflies, and Midges for success here on California’s premiere Wild Brown Trout River, The Lower Owens.

Father and daughter standing in the lower owens river while daughter holds up a 14" brown trout. Mountains in the background

Lower Owens River Fly Fishing Report : Bishop, CA – 10.2.20

The Lower Owens River Fly Fishing near Bishop is within reach as the river hits 345cfs! The river held steady at a rate of around 380cfs for a few days and recently has fallen down to its recent flows. Cooler nights will drop temps and drive the wild brown trout to continue feed into this upcoming season. Once the river hits the 280cfs and below mark, it will be time to to start thinking about visiting California’s premiere wild brown trout fishery, the Lower Owens.

happy lady holds a good sized brown trout above the upper owens river

Upper Owens River Fly Fishing Report : Mammoth Lakes, California – 7.29.20

Hoppers! Do I really need to say anything else on this report!? The grassy fields of the Upper Owens River near Mammoth Lakes, California have been full of the leaping insects, and the resident Trout have been taking full advantage of the situation. No doubt putting on some serious yearly mass for the seasons ahead. Windy days? Yes! We love them! In this case many hoppers are blown into the water this making themselves available to feeding trout. All sections of the river have been fishing well. Flows are clear and cool and very manageable at around 65cfs. Normal bug activity is also noted in seams and foam lines. Nymphing various attractor nymphs as usual is very effective. Crowds have been here and there but usually one can find a place to call their own for the time they are on the edge of the unique Upper Owens River just down from Mammoth Lakes.

red beard holds a nice rainbow trout above the water of the Lower Owens River near Bishop, CA

Lower Owens River Fly Fishing : Bishop CA – 2.26.20

The Lower Owens, continues to flow, right outside of Bishop California, at a perfect rate of 15Ocfs. This promotes very healthy fly fishing conditions making the entire system accessible and fishable. Nymphs, of course, and even some streamers have been absolutely killing it since my last report. More and more dry flies are being seen on top of the water every day. Fish have been looking up frequently, feeding heavily in some areas, and not surfacing at at all in others. As the new weather rolls in we will see more and more waves of insects coming off the surface of the water. Which will drive the surface activity heating up to an unforgettable climax of dry fly action. Mayflies, Caddis, Stoneflies, and Midges are all playing a vital part in the protein requirements of the Brown and Rainbow Trout of the Lower Owens. Now is time to get up here!

Upper Owens River Fly Fishing : Mammoth Lakes CA – 1.3.19

The Upper Owens has been a consistent Big Trout Factory for the last couple of months! Awesomely wild and perfectly finned Rainbows, Cutt Bows, and Brown Trout will continue to be roaming the waters of the Upper Owens River for the next few months. The snow level has pretty much vanished at this point and needs no further attention. Of course upon arriving in the morning hours it is well below freezing on most days, this, of course adds to the experience as you take in the surroundings and realize what are special place you are able to visit to sample her amazing Trout. The same techniques and strategies hold as in my December post. Deep holes and riffly water erase the view from the surface which keeps these oversized beasts of the river hidden, feeling comfortable and safe, and ready to eat! All sorts of Tubifex worm patterns, Tung Jigs, and various attractor patterns in larger sizes will give you a shot at these unforgettable fish. Streamers are always an option here as well. This will keep you casting and strategizing all day on how to get one of these trophy Trout into your hands for just a moment….