Sierra Bright Dot Fly Fishing Report – May 27, 2022

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Wind continues to hamper Eastern Sierra fly fishing opportunities. I have had mornings blown out that have turned into a great afternoon. I have had great mornings where the wind has blown out the afternoon fly fishing opportunities. For the Owens Valley Memorial weekend is Mule days. The mule days people are here in full capacity. Lots of events taking place at the Tri County Fair Grounds this weekend. Hatches are just getting started. June is the biggest month of hatching aquatic insects. Look for hatches of pale morning dun mayflies, blue wing olive mayflies, caddis flies, and little yellow stone flies. Summer is starting and so is the heat!

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The cutthroat run has been good, but is coming to an end in the next week or two.

Lower Owens River:
Wild Trout Section:

Euro nymphing continues to be the most productive method of fishing the wild trout section of the lower Owens River. Pale morning dun mayflies, little yellow stones, and caddis are hatching. The trout are not coming to the surface to feed on these hatching insects. Nymphing is the best way to fool a trout right now with stoner nymphs, caddis nymphs, caddis emergers, and bead head flash back pheasant tail nymphs. Look for a size 20 blue wing olive mayfly hatch first thing in the morning. It has been done by 9:30 A.M.

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Euro nymphing the pools below a riffle is producing wild brown trout to 14 inches.

Hot Creek:
Interpretive Site:

Fishing is tough at the interpretive site as there are not a lot of insects hatching. There are a few caddis and a few blue wing olive mayflies hatching. A few trout are feeding on these hatching adults, but the majority of trout are feeding on nymphs in the bottoms of the deeper holes. Gray caddis nymphs, olive scuds, and bead head flash back pheasant tail nymphs are producing a few trout. Windy days makes it hard to cast and hard to get a drag free drift. The creek fishes best on windless days!

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The steeper gradient of Hot Creek Canyon makes it ideal for fishing nymphs like a size 20 bead head flash back pheasant tail nymph.

Hot Creek:
Canyon Section:

This is your best bet for catching trout in Hot Creek right now. Nymphing under a dry fly is the best way to go. I’m using Chernobyl ants, Adams parachutes, and hoppers for the dry fly. Twenty four to 36 inches of 5X fluorocarbon tippet tied to the hook of the dry fly with a bead head flash back pheasant tail nymph in size 20, an olive scud in size 12, and a gray caddis emerger in size 20 are fooling the trout. I’m done fishing Hot Creek by 2:00 in the afternoon and am off looking for lunch or another fly fishing spot. If the wind’s not up I’m heading to the upper Owens.

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First time fly fishers Lori Tardiff from Oceanside hooked up to a cutthroat on the upper Owens River in the afternoon wind.

Upper Owens River:
Above Benton Crossing Bridge:

The cutthroat spawn is in full swing with a lot of the fish showing signs of the rigors of spawning. A lot of the fish have white spots on them which is caused from rubbing against the rocky bottom to make redds. A high percentage of the spawning cutthroats do not make it back to the lake. I’m continuing to fish the deep holes, runs and cutbanks for the resting-feeding trout. I’m trying not to target the spawning fish on redds. The fish are taking size 12 stoner nymphs, size 12 green/gold Prince nymphs, and size 12 bead head flash back gold ribbed hare’s ears.

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Hooked up with a tiger midges in the north corner of McGee Bay in 15 feet of water on a cold windy morning.

Crowley Lake:

Wind is the issue on the lake. Some mornings are windy and some afternoons are windy. You just have to hit the right time on the lake. The north side of McGee Bay, Sandy Point, Sometimes Bay, and Crooked Creek Arm are productive spots. The guide boats are moving around trying to find spots with lots of fish taking the midges. Albino Barons, grey midges, tiger midges, and zebra midges fished in 14 to 17 feet of water are fooling rainbows, browns, and cutthroats. I’m fishing my flies 12 to 18 inches off the bottom.

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When the winds not blowing the canal has a size 20 blue wing olive hatch happening early in the morning.

Bishop Creek Canal:
Behind the Ford Dealer:

For those that can get out to the water early the blue wing olive hatch has been good for an hour or an hour and half starting at 8:30 A.M. I’m using a size 20 blue wing olive midge. Once the hatch is over, I’m fishing an indicator with a size 16 bead head flash back gold ribbed hare’s ear, or a size 18 or 20 bead head flash back pheasant tail nymph. This area is prone to afternoon winds.

(From Fred Rowe at Sierra Bright Dot Fly Fishing Guide Service)

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