The Upper Owens River below Mammoth Lakes is at its prime time of the year! Water continues to flow clear and cold as the very large fish continue to inhabit the amazing holes, runs, and deep riffles of the Upper Owens this January. Small dustings of snow have been seen upon early arrival in the morning on the river which melts away as the sun rises leaving a completely changed landscape from just moments before. The fish have continued to infiltrate the river system with seemingly new members showing up on each visit. Fish the patterns that I have mentioned in my last post. Do not be afraid to try your own new patterns though, it just may be what these unbelievable fish want in that moment. Upon hooking up be ready for the possibility of a screaming run, just when you think they are done they give that last unexpected run leaving you without a fly and speechless all at the same time.
The majestically formed bends of the Upper Owens River near Mammoth Lakes are absolutely filled with fish right now. The river is flowing around 70 cfs and is as clear as it gets. All deep holes hold a good population of fish thst can been seen upon peering down into the clear waters. Be careful though, fish you can see usually have already seen you! Hoppers are still being eaten during the warmer parts of the day! Before the hopper weather one can fish many of your favorite nymph and streamer patters through the riffles, bends, runs and deepest darkest holes of the Upper Owens for satisfying success.
The Lower Owens River Fly Fishing near Bishop could be happening soon! The river is getting some positive signals that it may be returning to fishable levels in the near future. it is now down to 470cfs, A few days ago she was flowing 600+cfs. We will closely watch this amazing fishery as the water drops and she reveals what lies below.
Crowley Lake Fly Fishing near Mammoth Lakes has been as good as we can remember. Never the exact same, but great. Size and variety of fish are unmatched. Lahonton Cutthroats, masculine Browns, and absolute HOG Rainbows are what you can expect here. Fish are now being located and caught in anywhere from 6′ to 30′ of water. Most anglers appreciate the shallower depths for casting, some have been rewarded for going deeper. Perch Fry, Damsels and Chironomids have been on our lines taking fish recently. Some algae is forming in some areas of the lake and changes daily due to wind and weather. The lake continues to drop slowly as the LADWP flows water down the hill. We imagine this should come to an end relatively soon. All spots seem to have their moments from the North Arm, around to Macgee, back to Hilton and even Crooked. Well defined weed lines are great places to get started and possibly hook the trout of a lifetime!
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The Upper Owens River Fly Fishing near Mammoth Lakes, CA has changed a bit since the Canadian cold sweep earlier this week. The river still flows at a late summer subtle level. Water clarity is as usual always fishable, and water temps remain within healthy levels. The Hoppers are still there but they struggle to get moving until the sun warms them at a later time depending on the day. Before that anxiously awaited moment we end up going down under the water with all sorts of attractor nymphs and streamers. The entire river holds fish, read the water to appropriate your time wisely and spend it in the fishiest looking holding water. As we feel the cooler mornings rolling in we look forward to the fish of the Fall that come up river.
The current news on the East Walker River flowing out of Bridgeport California, is that the flows are now a decent 50cfs, this is up from slightly less that half of this current number to put it into perspective. The current flow rate is definitely still low but render the East Walker morally fishable. Water temperatures hover in the low to mid 40’s. Sporadic trout rising to Midges in very slow water during the warmer parts of the day can get the fly angler into some sketchy surface action. These fish are usually smaller, but the bigger varieties have been seen making an appearance occasionally when it suits them on the surface. All sorts of Midge Larvae, and Midge Adult patterns have been taking fish. Caddis Worms, Baetis patterns, and Streamers lightly weighted can provide for the best action on certain days. Lightweight indicator and and dry -dropper set-ups can be successfully used on the East Walker at these flows as well. Stay tuned for these flows to eventually be bumped up to the next level very soon.
The Lower Owens is more than heating up, we are now seeing some amazing Fly Fishing here in Bishop with dry fly action on the surface as well as great nymphing and streamer fishing. A long time awaited, this weekend we saw the trout of the Lower looking up and keying in on insects on top of the water for a good part of the mid-day hatch. If you are not in the section of the Lower Owens where they are looking up your nymphs will give you success when dropped in appropriate parts of the river. Squallas! Squallas, an inch long emergent bug, the first big meat hatch of the spring were spotted this weekend. All these factors combined with the warmer weather is all adding up for some great fly fishing, now and this entire year.
The Upper Owens has undergone a few changes since my last report. Weather has changed in the direction of winter, dropping the temperatures around the Mammoth Lakes area extending down to the grassy plains of the Upper Owens River. Hoppers can still be seen, but numbers are diminishing during the coldness of the nights. However, after eating the leggy creatures for a solid few months it seems that they still hold some residual memory of the big insects. The Upper Owens trout will still come up and eat a hopper for the time being, during the warmer parts of the day. Some of the anticipated big boys coming out of the lake have been spotted in the deeper holes of the river. We will have to see what this year holds as these this spectacular run of fish swims up the Upper Owens from Crowley Lake from now and forward. Stay tuned!
The Upper Owens River seasonal large Trout continue to haunt its darkest areas is full post spawn mode. Making them back in to aquatic bug eaters! The river remains in about the same condition as my last report although, either good or bad, we have seen clearer water conditions due to the lack of precipitation these last couple of weeks. Fish continue to haunt the deepest and darkest portions of the Upper. Cast out similar patterns as mentioned in my previous few reports. With Mammoth in the distance and the snow almost gone on Long Valley Floor, you could say the Upper Owens is pretty close to paradise for most of us. It will be interesting to see what is going to occur in the next few weeks as it warms up and cool water flows heavier from up high…..
Storms has given the Owens Valley a good amount of precipitation the last couple of days. Upon arriving at the river today we were delighted to find it flowing low and clear with very happy fish. Click the link below for a sample recorded tonight of the rivers condition. Low flows with great clarity and a great Mayfly hatch around 1:00pm today.