Eastern Sierra Fish'N Conditions

Tom Robison managed to get this beautiful rainbow on a slow day of drifting. Cooler temps have slowed the bite down although flows have stabilized on the MO.

by Tom Loe

Fish’N Conditions 4/17/18

The weather will remain cooler than normal this week with another cold front passing through Thursday. Ron-off has slowed considerably, and flows have dropped slightly; or stabilized on the year around moving waters.

East Walker continues to fish well during good weather. Take advantage of the lower/stable flows while you can. BWO and midge hatches daily. Lots of eager chunky rainbows in the deeper riffles!

The Middle Owens has dropped below 300cfs. Wading can be difficult; but drift boat conditions have improved considerably with these stable levels. The “catching” is slow due to cooler weather.

Hot Creek can be a good option for moving water enthusiasts, thanks to a decrease in water levels. The windy weather has impacted hatches during the stormy periods; but solid BWO, & midge activity will give you dry fly opportunities afternoon during warmer/calm days.

Upper Owens has improved water conditions recently. Levels are on the high side; but nothing heavier weights can’t solve. A few large Crowley migrants are holding over, with decent numbers of smaller rainbows, & browns around as filler fish. Good BWO and midge pops on the nicer days. Cutty’s are still scarce due to cooler conditions. Roads are still muddy in some locations after the ground thaws.

Power generation will be sporadic at Pleasant Valley Reservoir making it tough to fish the river and transition section.  Tubing is your best shot at a good day using full sinks and streamers. Lake level has dropped this week allowing good access near the inlet section.

The general trout opener is on 4/28/18. Crowley Lake, Bridgeport Reservoir, Twin Lakes Bridgeport, Convict Lake, & the June Lake Loop will all have ice free conditions and good access. Road closures for locations above 8000 remain likely due to heavy March snows, and a wet April. 

We anticipate good early season “catching” on Crowley & Bridgeport Reservoirs. I have seen some large chironomids (midges) emerging already. The lakes have remained ice free for most of winter, & water levels are nearing capacity. With higher flows expected on most moving waters, the larger lakes will be the best option for early season success. The cutthroat trout migrations on the Upper Owens and McGee Creek have not begun yet in substantial numbers. This dynamic can change suddenly, especially under current conditions. 

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