Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Deep Pocket Punching the North Fork of the Feather River


The North Fork of the Feather River that runs along HWY 70 often goes ignored throughout the season in favor of other streams, creeks, and rivers. The North Fork is most frequently fished during the spring and winter seasons.

On the drive back to the valley on Tuesday, I fished the North Fork.

The fishing on the North Fork has its good days and bad days. One day you'll be catching fish left and right, the next day your lucky if you get one take.
The trout on the North Fork like to hang out in very specific parts of the river making them somewhat of a challenge to catch. Fishing fast oxygenated water or walking pace runs between 5ft - 10ft are your best bets in finding a fish. Adding extra splitshots to ensure your flies are getting down is a common tactic when fishing the deep pocket pools of the North Fork.

White Water Is Good Here

The North Fork bows can be VERY strong due to their nature of holding in faster water. The bows in the Feather River canyon average anywhere from 8'' - 20". 2x and 3x tippet are the norm here. Fighting these bows can be pretty tough. Once you set the hook these fish will sprint towards boulders to try and break you off or run downstream where you'll have to chase them. While fighting the fish, plan on where you are going to try and land it; a lot of the water on the North Fork is too fast and deep to attempt a safe net dip. Keep safety first.

Deep Pocket Boulder Pools

This was my first time fishing the North Fork near Tobin and Storrie where the river is made up of deep pocket pools and giant boulders.
It was one of those tough days on the North Fork. Although the weather was ideal, cloudy and humid, I had a tough time finding fish. I managed to get four hook ups: two broke me off, one I set the hook too late, and one landed.

Although not a super productive day, the fish I was able to land was a great fighter. During the fight, I thought I had lost it several times when it cramped itself in between cover. The fish also ran downstream a few times causing me to chase it. Hopping from boulder to boulder as quickly as I could, I finally had it in an area where it was okay to attempt a net dip. Gotcha!

North Fork Bow


  1. Replies
    1. I tried using streamers but because the pools and runs the fish like to hold in are so fast and short I had a hard time getting my streamer down to where it needed to be. I got one smaller fish to chase though.
      The fish in the picture was literally holding a white water. All the hook ups were on an S&M nymph.