Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Martis Lake And Broken Memories Of The Good Ole Days


Martis Lake is a small 70 acre lake that resides just outside of Truckee. It was known as California's first reservoir to be designated as wild trout water and is one of the few lakes that is only open to fishing during general trout season from the last Saturday of April until the 15th of November. Like many of California's famous fly fishing destinations, Martis Lake was in its prime during the 80's. The lake was well-known for it's trophy brown trout along with its famous blood midge hatch. Since the lake's decline due to over-development, invasive species, milfoil, algae blooms, failed Lahontan cutthroat introduction, and drought damage, Martis is now just a memory of the good ole days.

I have a thing about fishing famous California fly fishing locales; it gives me a lesson in fly fishing history and broken memories that the generation before me experienced while fishing those waters. Martis Lake was one of those places I had to check out.


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Hat Creek Trout Bumming Trip


The last time I was on Hat Creek was about two years ago during a day trip to fish both Hat Creek and the Pit River. As I stalked the banks I found fish but wasn't able to convince any to take my flies. The creek was in rough shape due to it's decline from the invasion of nonnative plants, muskrats, sediment slugs, and erosion. It is a sad tale of a great fishery that is now gone.

Although I've heard stories of how great Hat Creek was back in the 70s I never lived to see those days. Caltrout is working hard to restore Hat to its former glory but until that day comes this is the only Hat Creek I know.

Fly fishing a spring creek is something I don't get to do as often as I would like and though I was refused by Hat Creek last time, this time I came prepared with three days dedicated to fishing the most famous spring creek in Northern California.


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

May The Fish Be With You


May of 2017 has been quite the productive year for me. We have yet to get any rain this month and the weather seems to be holding nicely. Most of my favorite rivers and streams are still blown out but I've been able to find some productive water and catch some good ones. With all the great fishing lately I haven't been able to put down my rod... gotta feed the fever.


Friday, May 5, 2017

How Do I Fish This: Putah Creek



Putah Creek originates from springs high above Cobb Mountain and meanders downstream from Lake Berryessa to the valley floor. It is one of the few wild trout streams that is coming into its prime.
Putah Creek is a relatively short 4.5 mile tailwater fishery that runs below Monticello Dam. Famously named the "Green River" by the Clearwater Credence Revival, the nutrient rich waters of Lake Berryessa create a habitat for trout unlike any other within California.

Prior to 2010, Putah Creek was managed as a put-and-take fishery. Past pictures and stories of trophy brown trout continue to circulate the internet however, the fishery has drastically changed since its designation as a wild trout fishery in 2014. Instead of brown trout, which no longer occupy the creek, a self-sustaining population of wild rainbow trout have become the dominant fish in the Putah Creek system.

Putah Creek is well-known as a technical fishery. Fluctuating flows, submerged trees, weedy bottoms, overhanging branches, tight fishing quarters, deep runs, and thorny blackberry bushes are just a few of the many elements that contribute to the creek's notorious fishing difficulty. Although these elements create a great habitat for growing giant trout, they can puzzle inexperienced anglers who are not familiar with the creek.

Putah Creek is one of my favorite streams to fish because it is a high risk high reward fishery. Putah Creek is a jungle, welcome to the jungle.


Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Green Light On The Green River


Putah Creek is finally fishable! The creek dropped to 500 CFS a few days ago and is currently sitting at a stable 480 CFS. The flow trend shows the creek dropping but it may rise soon to meet its summer flows. The summer flows are tough but I'll take 600 CFS on Putah Creek over 900 CFS any day. The fishing was exceptional however it was very technical.