August…..the dog days.

It is blindingly blue skies here. Too hot to fish……..A friend was feeling bad about fishing evenings due to the temps, and he was jonesing to fish.. I suggested we clip the bends off the hook and go say high to those finny buggers. We had a great time practicing our drifts…I did a couple trips during the cool spell we had. Been declining trips lately. There is always a guide who will take a person to fish a hot trickle….but not me. When it’s 65 degrees out of the water, and you put your hand in, and it feels the same. That’s when you go fish Smallmouth, or Carp. Flows dropped below 200cfs today….going fast now. Be well……

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August-5

Very fishy feeling this morning. Grey monsoon influence clouds, and pleasant air temps of 60deg. Raining now. Water is 62-63 at dawn. Flows are 240cfs in town, and starting to look a bit bony. Almost 500cfs in the canyon. There is about a two hour window first thing…. Food-wise…..PMDs are early risers. And early finishers as well. If you look closely at the top of a tall pine tree at about 8am, you may see a whirling cloud of mating bugs…. returning to the water well before noon. Little bug life in peak of summer at high noon. That is why a hopper is a good call this time of year, before lunch. No birds flying/feeding. After noon, is hoot owl time, go find some shade for a nap. Gonna be a tough month…..pray for more clouds.

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August + one……

Hey all!!!! We have air temps in the 90s, and more tourists than I can shake a fly rod at…… Water is 63 at dawn, and 68 at dusk. I suggest fishing before the sun hits the water, because it slows noticeably after that. The bugs leave the water and fish seek shade. Turned a nice brown on a hopper finally before noon a couple days ago……So, they are on the menu now. Any number of fishers use a chubby, but I find I do better if I try and match my fly to the local bugs. Fish a chubby in MT. and fish a Burk’s spent Hopper on the Truckee….it’s what Andy tyed it for! Other bugs….Golden stones, Lil Yellow Sallies, Glossasoma Caddis, and as always, if some clouds pass over a few BWOs pop. We get clouds as long as we have a monsoon effect coming up from the gulf. Fish the clouds, or the shade if the sun is blazing for best results. Water flows are coming down fast as predicted……Started the week at 370cfs. Now we are at 260cfs. Going down in the canyon is an idea, for cooler and bigger water. Forget going fishing at high-noon like a universal fisher, odds are much lower. After 50 years of watching fishers, you begin to see patterns in behavior. The majority are just going through the motions….”fly wishing” Let me know if you want to do more than that……..enjoy the warmth of summer, winter is coming.

BTW…..after 10:00am there will be a people hatch. Lots of “innert-tubes” etc. It also let’s you know it’s too warm to fish…in case you don’t own a thermometer. Over 65deg is tough on fish. Go below Farad for some quieter water. One could fish streamers if a gambler…..

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July…..water

I have been posting all winter and Spring to fish now. The reason I say that, is we should always feel free to go fishing. But, the main reason I say it, is I can tell without going to the crest to measure the snow, that we don’t have enough. The USGS flow report on the Truckee is very close to 300cfs. It will drop below this level in another day or so. Shallow water warms more quickly, so we can expect hot water from here on out. I’m a guy who likes larger fish, but I also know that larger fish struggle more to extract oxygen from warmer water. Fished a large combined hatch a while ago. Big stones, lil stones…..gangbusters! The only fish that were interested were about 6-7 inches. That is my indicator that it’s time to stop fishing in the evenings. I always say, the better you fish, the more responsible you are for the fishery. I hate finding dead fish in the shallows in the morning. Many of these were caught on too light a tippet, and overplayed the evening before. Please show respect and love for our fish, and refrain from fishing the evening shift till the temps start dropping in Sept. I know we live in a country that prefers immediate gratification……but try delayed gratification for a change….it’ll be good for you, and our fish.

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July….what’s left.

Wanted to thank the follower that put me over the top!!!! 222 in 2022….it is still 2022 right? I lose track of time here in Truckee. One glorious day on the water after another…..Great clients too! The youngest was 9.5 and oldest was 75…..this last week. No swimmers and no broken rods…that’s our motto. The fishing has gotten harder with the warm water flowing from Lake Tahoe, into the T. The tributaries are quiet with little cooling effect on the main stem. Seeing 68 degree water temps at evening. Only guiding AM trips now. The river is full of raft/floaties hatches all day this time of year. My advice is fish early, before they appear. Smaller fish are happy to eat a dry, but bigger fish are hunkering down. Still seeing large Golden stones, smaller Sallies, several sz Caddis, PMDs, and Crawfish are on the menu now. Farther down the canyon we have slightly cooler water temps. Bottom release dams help keep it cooler.

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JULY!!!

Over half a year already…….and definitely summer. We have started seeking shade while on the way to the water, and even on the water. I suggest you stay hydrated for best results. The best fishing is early and late right now. High-noon is a really good time for lunching and naps. No bugs much during the day for the most part. The main players are Golden stone’s, lil yellow sallies, a few Caddis, A few Flavelina’s, and my favorite….PMDs. Hoppers are out but are not on the menu apparently yet. The flows are holding for the moment 360+cfs and green/clear near town…perfect wading. 500 cfs down in the canyon. The water temp is pushing mid 60s, and a lot of floaties and floaters are out from about 11:00 AM till it gets chilly and shadows return to the water.

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June…A fine time.

I enjoy watching the bug menu expand every June. Our month of big bugs…. Big Green Drakes, Gray Drakes, Caddis 3sizes..Hoppers have appeared…My personal favorite! The flows are nearing perfect for most fishers. Holding for the moment at 450cfs and a sweet fishy blue/green. 60deg. You can connect with a fish now on a dry, nymph, or a streamer. Not to say it’s an “easy time” to catch a Truckee fish, just more likely with the bugs out in force. Remember that we fishers outnumber the fish here, and the pressure is unrelenting year-round. Be sneaky for best results….In my experience the fisher, male or female who gets the best drift wins. If you want to perfect your drift, give me a shout, it’s my job to create dangerous fishers. Today I share secrets with a 9.5 year old…..start them early I say! Fly fishing is a life sport, that means the sooner we get started the better.

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June finally,,,,

If you have been watching the USGS flows for the Truckee river, you know we are getting close to perfect…….528cfs now, and a beautiful green/blue, but coming down rapidly to Summer levels at 300cfs. But I don’t think it will hold long at that level. My advice is get your game on now, and fish hard the next 2-3 weeks, it will get bony/rocky soon. I was out of town for a few days, and a “bulge of bugs” went through a couple days ago. A bunch of night hawks were feeding in a concentrated way near dark. Yesterday with the weather coming through, it was a ghost town. No bugs/birds to speak of. The time to fish is early and late right now, unless we get a dose of clouds mid-day. A spinner fall in the evening may cause a few noses to appear. The fish are eating a variety of yummy bits…..We have a few Caddis on the menu. Glossasoma, and a Green rock worm. Not the big super green flies sold for other waters. Ours are smaller and more grey/green. Saw some Golden stones emerge this week. Also, caught a pretty olive (including wing) mayfly last night. Still a few March browns happening..? Forget the hatch guide, bring your bug net and tune in. Flying Ants seem to be waning….. Gray Drakes and Green Drakes are on deck. Starting to see some PMDs in the bug net. After this week, I’ll bet we start seeing Hoppers. Some of the fish have had quite a bit of pressure already, so they are hunkering down under bushes….way under the bushes. Bring a good drift.

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May….for fun!

The flows are coming down…….694cfs today, a beautiful green color. The water temp is coming up, 49deg. and “nearly” wet wade-able. We shouldn’t have more seasonal flow peaks after this week. The majority of the snow pack is gone for another year. The feeder creeks are running, but are quieter than they were a couple weeks ago. Those that have small creek fever, it’s about time to fish. I focus on the main stem because it’s the hardest water to fish well. Hard is good! The bugs are really getting going! Golden stones are now on the menu. A dry fly stone is worth a try, but with these flows it will be less likely to work. Fish a nymph for better odds. It is the month of big bugs….we are waiting on the Green Drakes now.We’ve had numbers of fishers on the water, so I can say we are clearly entering the sneaky season. Rule #1 is don’t tell the fish you are coming…rule #2, don’t fish like the other guy. About half of my three hundred days on the water I spend watching people fish….I say you can’t learn to fish while fishing. Only when you watch how the average guy fishes, do you see the gaps in your own game. Having spent thirty years watching, I can say “hi, I’m Jim, I’m a universal fisherman”. My only advantage is that I know it, and might possibly avoid the normal fishing faux pas, like…..walking near the water, wading like a buffalo, and then flogging the water with two hundred casts. Avoid this “normal approach”, and I’ll bet money you get better results. I’ve helped create several dangerous fishers already this year. Let me know if you burn to learn as well……..

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They’re here…….

The Carpenter Ants are flying! They are here for two weeks or so. Get after those fish with a dry fly, or a drowned one……fish love them. My indicator for this food form is a Stellar Jay. Very few times do you see them feed on the wing like a perch feeder. Flying up from a branch and back for a bite. They do this behavior for a Termite emergence as well.

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