Accurate. Up to Date. True Reports by Our Team

Real Stories and None of the Bull. Truths by the FishFHO Team. The California Report 1-16-2018.

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Lower American River: 2,980.00 CFS –  Our Team continues to crush the river’s bounty!

As of January 1, 2018 American River is open from Nimbus Dam and down through the confluence of the Sacramento River.

The Bureau of Reclamation has scheduled flow releases to 2,980 cfs, for Tuesday, January 16, 2018.

Recent rains have pushed a fresh run of bright chrome steelhead up and into the American River but with inconsistent weather many fisherman have chosen to stay off the river… We’re not complaining as it’s been particularly nice to have the river to ourselves. Fishing for some has been amazing and for others the river remains a ghost town. The most consistent fishing is happening between the Sailor Bar and Rossmoor Bar areas and has been the run our guides have been covering over the last week. Expect fishing to get better as predicted rains this week will promote steelhead to enter the American River.

The best fishing is happening under an indicator at about 5-6 feet in depth, indicator to split shot. Currently our team is using plenty of split shot to get those flies down; FishFHO Owner Phil White used 2x SSG with 18 inch’s between flies and has been changing indicator depth constantly to  be successful. The Upper and Lower Sunrise access has been a productive area for our guides over this last week, producing several adult steelhead. Another productive area that we’ve been poking around is the El Manto Recreational Area. This section of the river is littered with undulations, submerged clay formations hidden just beneath the waters surface and Chinook Salmon spawning beds which create perfect holding areas for steelhead migrating into the upper river. Fish will also hold in the channels created by the clay’s and though you may lose a few flies, it’s always a good idea to fish these channels. This has been an extremely productive area for us year round and is perfect for the walk and wade angler.

Guide Tip: High stick the shallow water. The biggest mistake we overly see anglers make is when entering the stream, as they walk out several feet into the riffles path of travel; often fish lay within these shallows, resting and holding. Invading the fishes area will surely spook him into another area of the river and your chance at catching that fish will be gone. Before walking into that knee deep and lightly flowing water take a few minutes to cover your basis; enter the water patiently working your way into the riffle. You might be surprised at what you’ll find hanging in the shallows, add this tip to your fishing arsenal and you’ll become more successful the next time you visit the water.

Feel free to drop by our shop anytime to talk about the Lower American River, it’s in our backyard literally and no one knows it better. We’re a bunch of local guides that have a lifetime of experience fishing these waters and are here to serve our local community. Local guides for local waters for local people. We call it local for local.

Nypmhs: Red Copper John 10-14, Bird’s Nest, Blk/Grn Caddis Poopah 14-18, Prince Nymph 14-16, Blk/Grn Micro May 14-18, Blk/Brn Rubberlegs 6-12, Eggs (Peachy King, Roe, Tangerine)
Swinging: Silver Hilton, October Hilton, Bunny leech, Woolly Bugger, Tiny Dancer, Hobo Spey, Intruder, Captain Crunch, Fish Taco

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Lower Yuba River: 1,078.00 CFS

Flows have stabilized on the Yuba River and fishing continues to be fair for our team. Water clarity is about 4 inch’s and anglers wanting to venture out to the river should carry plenty of San Juan Worms in floss brown. Needless to say the “Epic” Skawala stonefly hatch that other shops are claiming to have happened, hasn’t and in fact there isn’t much happening on the Yuba River in terms of dries right now. Nymphing under an indicator will produce the best opportunities for fish throughout the day. Look for visible drops between 2-4 feet in depth and the slower seems just on the inside of a riffle; make sure, to get your flies down, this will determine if you’re successful or not. Our teams most successful flies have been Brn Pat’s Rubberlegs 12, Blk-Grn Micro Mays 16-22 (glass bead on smaller sizes), Pettis Unreal Egg and Zebra Midges 18-22.

Dry Fly Fishing: On cold and cloudy days tiny Beatis flies can be the meal ticket here and we’ve been throwing flies from 16-22. Make sure you take the time to fish visible flats, drops and tail outs for success when hunting the river with dries. We’ve been using most 5x and 6x leader and tippet materials. We like to use a 5x – 12 foot leader and few feet of 5x tippet material, but often and depending on the flies will drop to a 6x tippet material.

Nymphs: Blk-Brn Rubberlegs 8-14, Olive Bird’s Nest 16-20, Brn-Grn BH Pheasant Tail 14-18, Blk-Grn Micro May 14-22, Pettis Unreal Egg, Fire Orange Glo Bug
Dries: Extended Body BWO 20-22, Hackle Dun Beatis 22, Loop Wing Midge 22
Swinging: Partridge Hackles, Natural/Olive Zonker, Woolly Bugger

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Feather River: – 1,705.00 CFS Feather River below Thermalito Diversion Dam

Fishing has tapered off and the crowds gone, but there’s still a few fish holding in the lower sections of the Low Flow and with no crowds the solitude is pretty special. Steelhead in the 2-6 pound range have been hooked daily, but on most days we’ve had to cover a lot of water to find fish. Best fishing is under an indicator with an egg and fished below an active salmon spawning bed or commonly known as “redds.” Targeting buckets below redds always produce steelhead, as they gorge on salmon eggs washed down-stream.

Guide Tip: High stick the shallow water. The biggest mistake we overly see anglers make is when entering the stream, as they walk out several feet into the riffles path of travel; often fish lay within these shallows, resting and holding. Invading the fishes area will surely spook him into another area of the river and your chance at catching that fish will be gone. Before walking into that knee deep and lightly flowing water take a few minutes to cover your basis; enter the water patiently working your way into the riffle. You might be surprised at what you’ll find hanging in the shallows, add this tip to your fishing arsenal and you’ll become more successful the next time you visit the water.

Nypmhs: Red Copper John 10-14, Bird’s Nest, Blk/Grn Caddis Poopah 14-18, Prince Nymph 14-16, Blk/Grn Micro May 14-18, Blk/Brn Rubberlegs 6-12, Eggs (Peachy King, Roe, Tangerine)
Swinging: Silver Hilton, October Hilton, Bunny leech, Woolly Bugger, Tiny Dancer, Hobo Spey, Intruder, Captain Crunch, Fish Taco


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Putah Creek: 112.0 CFS – Fish are spawning. See you next year.

Due to the annual trout spawn throughout much of the upper section of the creek, our team doesn’t fish Putah Creek at this time of year and will remain off the water until January 2018. If you do choose to fish the creek, please stay away from spawning trout and be respectful of your surroundings.

Guide Tip: Stay off spawning beds, also known as “redds.” The locals will not only respect you for this but the fish will to. Pretty much there’s someone always keeping an eye on things around here.


Lower Sacramento River: 4,090.0 CFS – Large fish – small flies.

Fishing remains good depending on the day you fish. With the lower flows, much of the upper river has become accessible to wading and has produced more manageable runs for boat anglers. It’s the time of year where our team frequents the water hunting larger fish on smaller flies. This is not the time for numbers as we have been spending much of our days throwing flies in the 16-22 range. The fish have been on a extremely light bite which can make things tougher with the size of the flies we’ve been using. Our team has been up and down the river and it seems that there is not one section that is fishing better than the other, although the best walk and wading opportunities are in the upper stretch of the river and through the Turtle Bay Exploration Park area. Many of our team members have been targeting this area and have had more success fishing bugs under an indicator than eggs. We’ve only been running 5 feet between the indicator and split shot (AAA Dinsmore).

Guide Tip: The Lower Sacramento Rivers trout are skilled tricksters and will lightly bite at your flies making you think it’s just the bottom… wrong. Our suggestion is to set on everything, as hook sets are free and most of the time it’s the largest fish in the river having a nibble at you flies… Bring your hook set, watch for those subtle bites and Set!

Nymphs: Blk-Brn Pat’s Rubberlegs 6-12, Blk-Red Copper John 16-18, Olive BH Pheasant Tail 14-18, Olive S&M Nymph 16-20, Brn-Grn X-May 14-18, Amber Wing Prince 16, Iron Lotus 16-18, Blk-Red Zebra Midge 18-22, Eggs (Peachy King, Tangerine, Peach Pearl) and Glo Bugs (Fire Orange-Oregon Cheese)
Dries: Missing Link Caddis 16-18, Loop Wing Midge 18, Hackle Stacker BWO 18, Hackle Dun Beatis 18-22

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Trinity River: Lewiston: 310.0 CFS

The Trinity River continues to fish fair to well for most. The Trinity is a pretty popular place to be this time of year and those willing to brave the cold could be rewarded with huge pay-offs.

Guide Tip: Steelhead dislike a falling barometer, AKA the rolling in “cold front.” This doesn’t mean fishing is at a loss and our suggestion is to cover water on these days as fish become inactive during this time. In turn, after the cold front has settled and fish accumulate to the conditions, dark and rainy weather will make fish migrate further up the river and again you may have to cover water to be successful.

Nymphing: Blk-Brw Pat’s Rubberlegs 6-10, Poxyback Golden Stone 6-8, Blk-Red Copper John 12-14, Red-Blk Micro Mays 14, Prple Psycho Prince 14, Oct. Pupa
Eggs: Glo Bug (Peachy King, Tangerine, Peach Pearl, Roe) Redd Reaper, Veil Egg, Nuke Egg, Beads
Swinging: Slump Buster, Brett’s Klamath Intruder, October Hilton, After dinner

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Klamath River: Iron Gate: 954.0 CFS – Should continue to fish well through New Years.

The Klamath River continues to fish well for our team. The best fishing has been under an indicator, using dark stoneflies, black copper johns, micro mays and egg patterns. Currently our guides are running about 5-6 feet in depth from indicator to a AAA Dinesmore split shot and are mainly focusing on the stretch between Iron Gate Dam down-stream to I-5. The Klamath has been the place to be for continuous and decent steelhead fishing in the north state area.

Guide Tip: Steelhead dislike a falling barometer, AKA the rolling in “cold front.” This doesn’t mean fishing is at a loss and our suggestion is to cover water on these days as fish become inactive during this time. In turn, after the cold front has settled and fish accumulate to the conditions, dark and rainy weather will make fish migrate further up the river and again you may have to cover water to be successful.

Nymphing: Blk-Brw Pat’s Rubberlegs 6-10, Solitude Stone 6-8, Blk/Red Copper John 12-14, Blk Micro Mays 14, Prple Psycho Prince 14, Oct. Pupa
Eggs: Glo Bug (Peachy King, Tangerine, Peach Pearl, Roe) Redd Reaper, Veil Egg, Nuke Egg, Beads
Swinging: Slump Buster, Brett’s Klamath Intruder, October Hilton, After dinner


California Delta

Fish Habit Outfitters guides have been out on the water on finding fish. Guides are finding a mix of schoolie striped bass (1-6 pound range) and large adults. These fish are here to eat and any cast can turn into a fish of a lifetime. Availability for the California Delta is extremely limited and reservations often have to be made at least 5 weeks in advance.

Streamers: Clouser, Flash Tail Whistler, Deceiver, Bait Buster, DB Flashtail, Toby Teaser

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