August 31, 2018

Mammoth Lakes Area

Weather Report

Don't forget your water bottles and sunscreen as you hit the lakes, rivers and creeks. The water's reflection seems to like to help the sun in its constant attempts to turn us all bright red and leave us sadly remembering the trip. Don't forget life jackets for the kids if you are fishing from a boat!

REPORT AS OF 8/30/2018

Summer is in full swing, sunny days with the occasional rainstorm in the evenings, but that's not stopping the hoppers from going off daily!

We only report first-hand info from our 16 guides on the water daily, Bishop to Bridgeport.

Mammoth Lakes Basin

Water Conditions: Great

Fishing Conditions and Hatches:

Summer doldrums appear to have arrived and aside from the weekly plantings fishing has slowed down but there are opportunities to be had. The grasshoppers are in full swing so when the wind comes up stay on the water and start throwing hoppers and stimulators. Early and late with midge patterns is probably the most consistent but all of the lakes have Callibaetis and Damsel hatches with Twin Lakes having the best hatches of both but they're on the way out soon. Mayflies start emerging between 9:30am and 10:30am with the damsels starting an hour or two later. Don't forget that the mayfly's spinner fall coincides with the emergence so you'll have to figure out which of three stages they're keying on.

Lakes have been stocked again with larger fish.

Recommended Flies:

Streamers: Doc's Twin Lakes Sepcial #10-12, Crystal Bugger #10-12, Beldar Bugger #10-12, Pops Bugger #8-12

Nymphs: Barr's Copper John #12-18, Zebra Midge #14-18, Lightning Bug #16-18

Guide's Hint:

Hot Creek

Water Conditions: Fair

Despite recent rains the flows are still slowly dropping. Flows are at 9 cfs as of 8/30.

Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Good

Read all the way to the bottom , somethings new somethings never change. It's that time of the year with the flows getting low, the weeds are getting thick and the fish highly educated your presentation has to be on it's best behavior. Those long drifts are a thing of the past and if you wait for your indicator to go under the only fish you'll catch are foul hooked. Best fishing seems early to mid morning but there's something going on all day. Hoppers are everywhere but the fish have seen so many fakes they've gotten much more particular. The weeds are growing fast, combine that with fishing pressure and the fishing is getting a lot more technical. The Tricos are defying history by the longevity of their hatch cycle, although the hatch is better at the Interpretive Site. The caddis hatch now lasts all day with periods of massive activity.

Recommended Flies:

DRIES: Parachute Adams #16-20, Extended Body BWO #16-18, Elk Hair Caddis #16-18, Parachute Caddis, #16-18, Stonefly dries #14-16, trico and spinner patterns #18-20

NYMPHS: Leopard Midge #18-20, Tungsten Psycho #18-20,Split case PMD # 16, Bottom Roller Caddis #14-18, Nitro Caddis #16-18, Anderson's Bird of Prey #14-16,, trico nymphs #18-20

STREAMERS: Meat Whistle, Crystal Bugger and D's Hoover Mover.

Guide's Hint:

San Joaquin River - Road is open.

Water Conditions: Flows are at 22 cfs as of 8/30

Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Poor to fair

Haven't gotten any reports lately because the guides are doing trips elsewhere. HEADS UP, heard that the road will close for work projects Oct. 7th. Fishing is still inconsistent as are the hatches and the size of fish is down dramatically. Sadly without the stocking people continue to keep their limits, no matter what their size. Good casting and a 1-3 # rod will provide plenty of entertainment with an encounter with one of the big wild fish leaving your mind and equipment frazzled. Hiking away from the campgrounds is no guarantee of solitude. A surprise, nymphing has been more effective than dry. Zebras, # 16 bead pmd nymphs.

Recommended Flies:

#18-20 Zebra Midges, #16 Golden Stone, #16-18 Pheasant Tail, #16-20 Purple Prince Nymph

Dries: #16-18 Yellow or Tan Stimulator, #18 Elk hair Caddis, Ant and # 14-16 mayfly patterns

Guide's Hint:

Crowley Lake

Water Conditions:

Lake is now dropping about an inch a day but that may change soon as the flows on the Lower Owens are dropping fast.

Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Good to excellent

Typical Crowley, fishing is not consistent, but still good to excellent. The boats are starting to move out a little farther in the Mcgee channel but if you don't want to be part of the zoo there are fish all the way out to 20'. The fish are NOT glued to the channel but are also spread out over the flats feeding on midges, mayflies, damsels and....wait for it.....PERCH FRY! This applies to the whole lake, a lot of the fish are migrating all over the lake as they feed on perch. This is the time of year that the abundance and variety of food makes the fishing tougher, don't fall in love with one type of fly. Even if you're catching fish, always have a variety of patterns on at all times, you never know when they might switch. Evenings are a little easier to figure out but the wind can be problematic.

Crooked Creek now has lots of small fish (6-13") with a few bigger fish mixed in

DFW just stocked up to 50,000 small cutthroats a couple of weeks ago and they have spread throughout the south end of the lake

Some fish in north arm channel and off Green Banks Bay, some in 13 ft, but most out in 20+ft. Also in 2-7' feet along the shoreline but this is not consistent. ALERT !north end has picked up all along the river channel , but it's real streaky from day to day. If you don't like crowds remember the evening grab!

Recommended Flies:

Albino Barons, Red Barons early and later in the morning go to Copper Tigers, Red/Black dubbed head Optimidges, then Flashback Gray/Black Optimidges, Shaft Emergers when sun is overhead - all small. Callibaetis mid morning to early afternoon, Damsels late morning to mid afternoon depending on the wind and Perch Fry off and on throughout the day

Guide's Hint:

Upper Owens River

Water Conditions: Fair

Flows are 125 cfs as of 8/30.

Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Fair to good

Water is clean and the fishing is picking up, especially above the bridge and it's definitely hopper time but there are still days where you're wondering where the fish went. Older planters are starting to move upstream We are seeing, the first push of browns coming out of the lake. Tricos are still coming off but the surface activity doesn't really get going until after 8. Look out for fish keying in on specific hatches midday. If it's action you want the numbers of Tui Chub are growing but if that's not your style take solace in the fact that they help the browns and rainbows grow up big and strong. Early and late are good times to throw some big streamers. Below the bridge has been slow but I'm starting to hear some better reports.

Recommended Flies:

DRIES: Stimulator #16, Extended Body BWO #16, Elk Hair Caddis #16-18, Parachute Adams #16-20,HOPPERS!

NYMPHS: #12-16 Bead Head Prince Nymph, #16-18 Pheasant Tail, Flashback Hares Ear #14-16, Anderson's Bird of Prey #14-16

STREAMERS: Meat Whistle, D's Hoover Mover. Big and ugly. Dead drifted on stripped under the banks on a Type 3 sinking line.

Guide's Hint: Hoppers are here, try a foam hopper or even a Parachute Kicking Hopper.

Lower Owens River

Water Conditions: Fair

Gauge back up, YIPPEE flows are down to 233 cfs as of 8/23.

Fishing Conditions and Hatches:

SOON I will have a report. Water has cleared up but the hot temperatures and fluctuating flows have very few people fishing down there, try starting at 6am for the Trico and Caddis emergence. Tricos early and caddis late, you can find fish in the slower water feeding on the surface. Tricos are coming off very early, done with the fall by 9am,after that it's a veritable potpourri .

Recommended Flies:

DRIES: Griffith's Gnat #20, Extended Body BWO #20, Para Adams #18-20, Elk Hair Caddis #16-20, Parachute Caddis #16-18, Yellow and tan Stimulators #14-16

NYMPH: Zebra Midge #18-20, Baetis B/H $18-20, Barr's Uncased Caddis #14-16, Tungsten Caddis #14-18, Birds Nest Olive or Natural #12-16 Stonefly nymphs #14-16

STREAMERS: Big and ugly!

Guide's Hint:

East Walker River

Water Conditions: Fair

Flows are at 190 cfs as of 8/30.

Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Good+

Things are picking with the cooling water temps, mainly caddis and midges but don't forget attractors, crayfish and Tricos early and late. Cooler temps also mean greater range of optimal fishing so plan a day of it. Fishing had been good but water temperatures have gotten up to70 by midday, but with the longer nights the morning water temps are getting down to the mid 60's. Best reports are from 5:30 to 9 in the morning and again in the evening. The slime weeds seem to have run their course so it's safe to wander downstream. The bigger mayflies in the morning are a thing of the past but the Tricos are still going strong. Evenings have good mayfly hatches to go along with the caddis and male Tricos. The Daphnia invasion is going on up by the dam as they get flushed out of the reservoir.

Recommended Flies:

DRIES: Big flies to get fish to come up and eat them. Stimulator #8, Parawolf Purple #10, Chernobyl Ant #6-16, #16-18 light mayfly patterns

NYMPHS: Radiation Baetis #16, Copper Zebra #16, BH Prince Nymphs #12-14, Olive Birds Nest #10-14, Caddis Larva #10-16, Nitro Caddis #14-18, Stonefly Nymphs #6-10,Sparkle Pupa #18-20

STREAMERS: Meat Whistle #2, D's Hoover Mover Rust #4, Hornbergs #10-12

Guide's Hint: If you're up towards the dam look for some of Bridgeport reservoir's legendary monster midges that are getting flushed into the river.

Pyramid Lake, NV

Water Conditions:

Fishing Conditions and Hatches:

Still figuring "how to" on the reports but I will have Chris Wharton's pre season prognostications in the next couple of days.

Recommended Flies:

Guide's Hint:

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