Thursday, December 17, 2009

Thawing out in Truckee

With today's high in the 40's(last week was -15 in Hirschdale) rising barometer and slightly overcast skies, I figured it would be a good day to hit the river. Winter fishing can sometimes be a drag staring at your indicator for the slightest twitch, but today I saw steady action with occasional rainbows to lots of the dreaded white fish. All of the river is in good shape below Boca with most of the anchor ice gone. Their was a nice Baetis hatch in the afternoon, but no fish on the surface. All fish today took either a Midge Pupae, Baetis Nymph, or Baetis Emerger in sz#18.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Winter Fishing

A lot of people have never fished for Trout during the Winter months. The Truckee (Ca), and Little Truckee have been opened year round for three years now. I first seriously started Winter fishing when we move down to Reno about six years ago. The Truckee River in Nevada is a great Winter fishery. I have learned a lot since then and spend most of my fishing time in Winter mostly because I am to busy in the Summer and because I love the solitude. Be prepared to get skunked at first, but the fish you do catch in Winter are usually much bigger than the ones in Summer. Here's five simple rules.

#1 Do not fish the same type water you would in the Summer. Winter fish are lethargic, they will not move far to chase a fly.
#2 Do not start at the break of dawn. Water temps are cold in the morning and fish will not get active until the sun penetrates the water and warms the temp some. Winter fish like areas with little current. Look for current that moves like a slow walking pace.
#3 Patience is key. It might take a ton of drifts to get that fish to move on your fly. Instead of changing your flies all the time, work on getting good drifts. Same rule actually applies in the Summer also.
#4 Have a midge box. Winter trout eat midges, period.
#5 Fish during warm fronts. The Sierras are blessed with bright sunny days and high pressure even in Winter. Fish on days that are the warmest and get out a few days after a big storm when the water clears.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

On that Sunday Morning Sidewalk...

and Sunday morning coming down. After a great Thanksgiving weekend with lots of cocktails with friends at our new house, Scott and I woke up and had a nice little Winter Session on the Truckee this morning. Hopefully everyone had a great Thanksgiving with their family and friends as well.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Lower Yuba a great tail water out of Grass Valley. It has Steelhead, Chinook Salmon, and Rainbows all of witch are wild. It reminds of smaller sized Yellowstone River. Of course a select few would like to limit our pubic access by putting in a cable fence along almost the entire lenght of the river and then charging to launch a boat. The Yuba is a great public resource and the closest wild trout water for those living in the greater Sacramento, and Bay Area. I have had many a fine day there including a nice session on Friday with the boys. I'm sure Western Aregates is pumping Huey Lewis and the News on their radios in there office right now.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

November the forgotten month

November is a real sleeper of a month for trout fishing. Crowds are almost nonexistent and fish are getting fat for winter. Their are BWO's, and smaller Baetis hatching on most western trout rivers now, especially the T. Hooked seven nice fish in just a few hours up from my house mostly on dries today. Get out there before it gets to cold...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

3 rivers in 3 days

I headed up with "Feet" Keith to the Trinity to fish for a few days and meet his buddie Josh. We fished Three rivers in three days. One day on the Trinity and two on other rivers I would rather not mention. The Trinity sucked. Every man and his uncle and trust fund kid form S.F. out fishing. If I was a Steelhead I'd swim up the Klamath instead, poor guys. The next day we meet up with Dirty Ernie from the Fly Shop and he took us to a really cool spot and some nice fish were caught by the whole crew. The last day Keith and I fished solo and both got a couple nice Rainbows along with a few other takers. All in all, a good trip.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

In need of some rain and snow...

We need some rain and snow to fill our reservoirs. The Truckee is flowing at 74 cfs in front of my house. The dry fly fishing is great if you like to go head hunting looking for risers. BWO's and small Baetis are hatching mid day. Don't be afraid to throw a big ugly dry fly as most fish are looking up. Pray that we get some snow this winter.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Low water and great dry fly fishing

The Truckee is as low as I've seen it since '04. That being said the dry fly fishing is insane. BWO's and small Baetis are hatching mid-day, every day and sight fishing is superb. Downstream drifts and quality tied patterns are a must. I'm sure the nymph fishing is great as well if you need to fish with a bobber.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Low and cold, burrrrrr...

I have been so busy I haven't fished the Truckee since the flows have come down. We bought a house up the street(Still in Hirschdale) and I've been putting in a hardwood floor. Elliot loves the new house, but is a little bummed her fishing time is getting cut into. I took a little break today and we walked down to the river. It feels like Winter up here with this cold front, needless to say fish are in slower deeper water, and heads of runs. Should be easy for folks as it's not hard to distinguish such water now.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Micheal's nice Brown

Sometimes you can meet some great people in fly fishing especially being a guide where you meet a lot of the fly fishing public. Today I took out Micheal. Micheal has fought big corporations from logging sensitive areas, mines, natural gas developments, you name it, he is the guy who has done it. Today the river re payed such a cool guy with a nice Brown and many, many smaller fish. Thanks Micheal...

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Why go to Montana? Part Two...

We have these fish right here in our backyard. Truckee has big fish(please no one take this the wrong way)it just takes skill and patience to catch and land them. This guy did not eat a streamer, but my Baetis emerger on 5X tippet. Like Gary Lafontain said "Not all big fish eat big meals most all fish eat little insects."

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Some days are better than others.

Being a guide, some days are better than others. This week was one of those. The Truckee River has to be one of the toughest rivers in the West to consistently catch fish, but somehow I chose to make a living on it. This river makes you tie better flies, try different rigs and keep exploring new water. Yesterday I took out the ZXL, my favorite rod, a couple dries and some droppers. I was suppose to fish with Larry, but just wanted to be by myself. I did well and got stoked again.

Monday, October 5, 2009


A recent cold front has come through and the fishing is good. We caught most fish today on Baetis emergers under an indo. This photo is of Larry from Napa putting some wood to a Truckee River fish. Get on up here and enjoy the show.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Damn it got cold up here..

Fall fishing is officially here. We had are first cold front of the year hit the Truckee area last night leaving a dusting of snow on the peaks and very cool daytime temps. The last few days out the fish have been responding well to a Cased Caddis imitation, in fact all the fish I caught as of late have been on that fly. Bill's Stick Caddis is by far the best one out there. Learn how to tie it, it will serve you well on the Truckee. They should be on the Pupae real soon. This is the only fish I could get a photo of witch is a more fair representation of a wild Truckee River fish.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

George's big brown

Big fish don't always eat big flies like this brown George from Santa Clarita caught today. This fish ate a sz#18 Baetis Nymph in shallow riffle type water. George commented on how these fish fight like Bighorn River fish, yes George, maybe harder. Looks to be a great Fall.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The old man and the L.T.

Today was Joe Cerniglia's birthday so a little outing on the Little Truckee was in order. When Joe ain't up running his lake at Northstar you can bet he's out on the L.T. Joe brought Cooper and when my dog and his get together not a lot of fishing gets done. The water is low and it was hot out. The day before was rough on me being out in the sun all day splitting wood. I just wasn't down for the desert like atmosphere. I lasted all of two hours. Joe is the man on the Little Truckee. He knows where every damn fish in that river hold. Joe will take you to school on that river period.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Why go to Montana...

I'm often asked by clients, what is your favorite river you ever fished? I always reply the Truckee River. Now don't get me wrong, Montana has more fish able blue ribbon water than any other state and the scenery is unreal. There are Grizzles, Rocky Mountain Elk, Moose, and Cutthroats, but for me the Truckee River in the Fall is the place to be. It's my country. This is a view from today up from the historic lumber town of Floriston.

Monday, September 14, 2009

The pull...

It's all about the big pull. Getting that grab on a streamer is the shit. We had nice overcast skies today, perfect streamer weather. Fall overcast days means streamer time. I hit some runs down deep in the canyon and bam, big pull on a big streamer, never even saw the fish. The fish ripped line off down the tail out into another rapid heading towards the next run, gone. Oh well....

Friday, September 11, 2009

They're here....

The big browns of Fall are here. Get up here and fish the Truckee now. You got until mid November for excellent fishing. Went out with Giggles from Mountain Hardware and we both did well. I hooked the brown in the photo off a far bank with a dry dropper rig on my Switch, fish took a sz#10 red copper john. Giggles also hooked a very big brown and lost him about 50 yards up from where I hooked my fish. We both hooked and landed multiple fish today.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Switch Rods

I am a big proponent of the use of Switch Rods on the Truckee. It is a perfect rod to nymph with, streamer fish, and currently for using dry dropper rigs with. The Truckee has often difficult to reach holding water such as middle river seams, or places where making a back cast just ain't gonna happen. I use a Skagit short line by Rio for streamer fishing, and put my desired tip on the end. For nymphing you need to up line two line sizes. On my 5wt I use a 7wt Rio Atlantic Salmon Steelhead line. You can toss your nymph rig a country mile with minimal effort. I rock Sage Z-Axis Switch rods, 5, and 6wts. For folks with limited cash, Reddington's Switch's are great rods. I stuck five fish in that seam today in the photo. It would have been hard to fish that pocket with a single handed rod. I just wrote an article for Sierra Fisherman and that will give you a lot more info if your interested.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Holding water No#2

A lot of anglers that come and fish the Truckee fish the inside seam, or inside part of most runs. I find that most fish on the Truckee like to hold on the outside of runs. It takes a lot more work to make your way over the rip rap rocks, bushes, and snags from trees, but that my friends are where most of the fish are. This photo is of Gabe from this last weekend fishing the outside of a run lower down on the river. He had several takes, and missed a big brown.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Labor Day weekend report

Looks like things are shaping up for a nice Fall on the Truckee. Today felt like Fall was in the air. Despite very windy conditions down in the canyon Gabe had a good day on the Truckee. A Dry dropper rig seemed to be the most effective today as it put the flies in some difficult to reach holding water. Gabe had a taste of what the Truckee has to offer. At one point today he had a nice brown instantly break his tippet. Good job Gabe, you made the blog.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Holding water

This will be the first in a series of posts on holding water. It is so crucial to fish the right kind of water on the Truckee, or on any river for that matter. Theirs an old saying in fly fishing that 90% of fish hold in 10% of the river. You will have more success on the T if you fish the most likely holding water. In this photo you can see a patch of slow water created by a rock with two seams on each side. The water in that slow patch has a negative current flow meaning the water is actually circling around going upstream. Fish can sit in there and expend very little energy waiting for food to come by on both of those seams. Put on plenty of split shot to get to the bottom of that seam. Fish it hard, it might take a while for your flies to hit the right spot. I got two descent size Rainbows out of that spot this morning, but it took about 10 drifts and plenty of shot.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Some scenes from Falls past...

A few pics form past Falls on the Truckee. The leaves are starting to turn colors, my woods almost cut, and Fall will be here shortly. If you've never come and fished in the Truckee area in the Fall, it is the best time. Big Browns, hungry Rainbows, and less crowds. I could think of know other place I'd rather be than on the Truckee River in the Fall.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

I'm going to start talking a little more about techniques for the Truckee. I watch people off the back of my deck all summer long doing the wrong stuff. They are either casting line Lefty Kreh style half way across the damn river, or just fishing in frog water, water that's way to slow to hold summer time fish(like right now.) The Truckee is hard to fish. It ain't the Madison where your guide is going to slow the boat down for you to get a good drift and you catch 30 fish a day. This is a blue collar river. If this river was a rock band it would be from New Jersey. You have to pay your dues, learn the river. It might take a few years. Lately, I've been fishing big dries with a dropper off my Switch. I use a Skagit short line by Rio with a floating versi-leader cut back to 12 feet. You can throw that baby a country mile to the opposite bank. Most fish are along the banks. It's just damn hard setting the hook with all that line out. Don't be afraid to experiment.....

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

It would be nice if Larry came by and split some wood for me. This is the time of year to get your wood cut. It would be nice to go fish and throw hoppers, but when winter will be here in a couple months you need to get your chores done. Hirschdale is a very cold place in the winter. They used to have an ice factory up the way at Boca. They also used to brew world famous beer up the way until the place burnt down. My woods almost all cut and soon tangerine caddis will be flying around and big browns will be chasing streamers and everyone will still be out fishing the inlet of the L.T.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

It's still hopper time

Fish are still eating hoppers on the Truckee. Had a few fish come up on my hopper today, but missed them. Find a nice grassy bank with a little current flow and toss 'em in there. Hang a micro may on the back for a little more excitement.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Dry fly eating Brown

Finally had a chance to do a little fishing this evening. Headed out with a large Snowshoe Caddis dry and P.T. soft hackle dropper. After making a few casts I then put one out in front of a rock where I have stuck fish before, and wham. The larger Snowshoe Caddis has been a great pattern for me this summer, bringing trout up in the evening when there is no visible hatch coming off.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Bent rods for all my friends

Just another day at the office. Rainbows eating Crayfish and nice cool water temps for August. The old man Joe and I had a group of first time fly fishers from Texas today. All of them hooked, or caught fish. This photo is of Joe trying to net a nice Rainbow.

Monday, August 10, 2009

More bent rods on the Truckee

It's really been a great August up here. Fish are still eating Crays and Micro Mays. Hopper dropper rigs have also been very effective. The top photo is of John from L.A. with a nice Rainbow on from the lower river. Elliots in the bottom photo making sure John was getting a good drift.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Another bent rod on the Truckee

The Truckee has been fishing very well for this time of year thanks to the rescent cold front we had move in this week. August is usually real tough on the Truckee, but this year has been better that most. Good flows, cool weather, and Hoppers and Crayfish. This photo is of Casey on vacation from France with a bent rod in Franks Flat.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Oops, lost the camera

I would have a nice photo to post, but droped my camera netting a very nice brown well over 20" for a client today. Damn fish also broke the net. My camera got taken down river in heavy current and is a gone forever. They are on Cray's and Micro Mays....This will be my last post until I can get a new camera.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Nunya Business

For the first time in a long time I got up and went fishing. After guiding nearly everyday in near 90 degree heat fishing is not what you think I would do on a day off, wrong. I headed out to a spot called nunya, because it's nunya damn business. My buddie Chris and I discovered this spot, many, many years ago. A lot of other people now know about it also, but today it was just me and Elliot. Fired out the Jesus Was a Carpentar Ant along with a glass bead PMD dropper. Lost two, landed two. One hell of a day

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

7/29 Champ and a nice bow

Looks like things are turning around a bit on the T. After a very, very hot couple weeks up here we finally got some cooler weather and the fish really responded today. Hot flies were the Pat's Rubberleggs, and Clouser Crayfish. It's nice when you hook fish in all the fishy spots. I'm also sick of seeing dead fish in the river. Release your fish fast, do not fish in the afternoons. If you can't photograph your fish fast, then don't, or don't fish at all.

Monday, July 20, 2009


After two weeks of guiding and teaching classes almost every day, I finally got a chance to do a little fishing. The Bass Fishing around here at out local lakes has been going off (at least that's what everyone tells me.) Yesterday evening I went out to Prosser with a few friends and caught a few Smallies. It's not the same as a Brown sipping emergers, but it's pretty damn fun.

Friday, July 3, 2009

John crushing it on the Truckee

I've had two epic days of guiding, two mediocre days, and one horrible day this last week. When they release water out of Tahoe the fishing sucks, as it is all warm surface water flowing down for the damn booze cruise rafters between Tahoe City and River Ranch. When flows are stable this time of year the fishing can be off the hook. Green Caddis Pupae's specifically mine that I tie, are the way to go. Mercers Z-wing is a very good commercially tied fly as well as Lafontains Sparkle Caddis. Put one off the back of anything, it doesn't matter....I hate to say this, but you really have to fish the "Tom water," that is the fast pocket type water. Find the seams and you will catch fish. These photos show John with two separate Browns. He also farmed two 'Bows that were bigger. We lost count of all the smaller fish, but too were wild.