Starting at the dam at Englebright Lake, the Lower Yuba River is the combined flows of the North, Middle, and South Yuba Rivers. From Englebright Lake, the Lower Yuba River flows 20 miles to the Feather River near Yuba City. It is a tailwater fishery notorious for large and elusive rainbow trout that are known to fight like steelhead. Although the Yuba River isn’t California’s most well-known fly fishing destination, it does offer some reliably great streams to hook trout using dry flies, making it a great destination for beginner fly fishing as well as experienced fly fishing.

Because the Yuba River flows through California’s gold country, it’s the perfect place for a fly fishing trip if you are visiting San Francisco, Sacramento, or the Napa Valley. Learn more about Fish Habit Outfitters guided fishing trips! Contact us today to reserve your spot!


Originally one of the most densely populated Native American areas in California, the Yuba River area was also at the heart of the California Gold Rush. This surge of new settlers also brought the spread of disease, which wiped out most the native population. During the 20th century, the Yuba was dammed at many different points, and in 1941, the Englebright Dam was built. The river is home to highly valued populations of steelhead trout, rainbow trout, fall-run Chinook salmon, as well as mule deer, coyote, raccoons, bobcats, black bear, and more. 

Lower Yuba River Seasons

The Lower Yuba River is a year-round fishing location. This is something we are extremely grateful for. Although the river sees some definite changes throughout the year, each season offers a unique California fly fishing opportunity. Below is a general description of what you can expect on the Lower Yuba River during each season.

  • Winter—As the weather begins to cool down, the fishing on the Lower Yuba begins to heat up, which is why this is one of our favorites times to fish the Yuba—what beats cool weather and catching a plethora of trout using dries? Starting in January, there are some great opportunities to fish with dries, and after the Skwala Stonefly hatch, March browns begin to appear, which is followed by some notoriously hard-fighting rainbows.
  • Spring—As the days start to get warmer, so does the fishing. After the prolific hatching of March Browns, a feeding frenzy breaks out and you can easily snag rainbows using dries. This is also when the American shad begin to make their presence known below the dam.
  • Summer—Summer days on the Yuba are hot, hot, hot. Not only is the weather scorching, but so is the fishing. Early summer fishing is the perfect time to hook shad using swinging shad darts. Superb trout fishing can be found above the dam, especially during the evenings and afternoons.  
  • Fall—Fall on the Lower Yuba River is an ideal time to hook steelhead and trout. During this time, they are hot in pursuit of salmon spawning areas. It is quite common to see reds gorging on salmon eggs. It is also during this time when you are more likely to snag a monster fish.

How Can I Book a Trip?

At Fish Habit Outfitters, we take pride in being able to tailor our guided fishing trip to the needs of beginners and seasoned anglers alike. We offer a number of guided fishing trips to Northern California’s Lower Yuba River. From half-day to full-day guided charters, we have something for everyone.

Our fishing guides are incredibly patient and knowledgeable and passionate about sharing their love for fly fishing. They can assist with learning the sport, teaching more advanced techniques, and making your trip a blast. Not only will you walk away with long-lasting fishing memories, but you will also definitely pick up on a few fly fishing tips and tricks, regardless of your level of expertise.

The Lower Yuba River Fishing Report

It’s a given that wild rainbow trout can be found in the river all year round. Similarly, steelhead and salmon are sure to make their way up the river during the fall spawn. However, if you want to get a regular Yuba river fishing report, check our California Fishing Report regularly! We strive to provide accurate, up-to-date, reports on a regular basis.

Contact us today with questions or to book your guided fishing trip to the Lower Yuba River.