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Tuesday, August 4, 2020

A Missed Opportunity in Truckee Area



  excerpt from Sierra Fisherman magazine...Spring 2009:

"Looking down from the high bluff I saw the bright, white mouth of an 18”-plus rainbow inhale a bug at the surface.  I then observed several mayflies flying above the stream. I thought, “Right on time!” I hastened my pace down the trail, crossed the stream and got into position for my first cast to one of the rising trout. This occurred during what is now known as the “hatch of ’96”; six weeks of a prolonged and consistent 11AM- 4PM, Pale Morning Dun hatch…and rising trout.

This event occurred on the Little Truckee River, below Stampede dam. The “hatch of 1996” is considered the one important event that propelled the Little Truckee River to its status as one of California’s premiere fly fishing venues. At that time, it was still a “secret”; and the locals wanted to keep it that way.  But, the word spread out of the area and a lobbying campaign started for “catch & release” regulations.”

A "610" RB duped at the surface by a "DILLON" 
Well the 2020, late-June through July’s, high flows during and the PMD/Green Drake may now become as legendary as the “hatch of ‘96”.  As the illustrious Tahoe-Truckee Fly Fishers president, Trevor Fagerskog recently hinted at the end of July16 BOD meeting;  "Dillon is ‘wackin’em’ on the LT”. Yes indeed, and he’s graciously shared it with a TTFF member or two.
John Marcacci with a "fatty" from Papa's Pool
The images of Paul Dillon and John Marcacci occurred during a mid-morning to mid-afternoon session on July 26. They netted a dozen quality Rainbows via dry flies, indo and Euro-nymphing. The Rainbows ranged from 16” to the 22” buck Rainbow first imaged....plus a smallish 14” Brown.  The trophy Rainbow ate a “Dillon”; an emerger pattern that Paul has been fine-tuning during the last six weeks.
What’s unusual about this year’s fishing on the LT is that the flows were as high as 600 cfs as of June 30, the ramp-downs commenced July 1st and are currently at 175 cfs. Not a lot of anglers were on the water because the BT had been fishing well and the LT water was unusably “big” for this time of year.
Big LT Flows of 500 cfs for early July
Unbelievably, during these unusual high flows, dry fly fishing was by far the most productive method during the period; if one could find the soft-water, shallow feeding-riffles and slicks during the late-morning to mid- afternoon PMD hatch.  Head-hunting became the game.

So, by the time you read this, you’ve missed the event.
da Shadow knows...

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

e-Quicky #23...Truckee Summertime

Let'em Breathe!

This is likely my shortest ever e-Quicky. The Big Toughy is warming and the Little Tricky is slippery.

I believe my longest and most varied e-Quicky ever is last August 29, 2019 
https://flyfishingcalifornia.blogspot.com/2019/08/e-quicky-22mid-july-late-august.html

Thursday, July 9, 2020

Throw-Back Truckee River History

*translation below


Above is an image of a rare, still posted, washed-out Truckee River regulation sign; circa 1985 or 1986.  It was a "second-generation" Truckee regulation sign graciously produced and posted by Ralph & Lisa Cutter; during their early, active days of their well-known  California School of FlyFishing.


The first special regulations on the Truckee were instituted, I believe in 1982. A couple of years later, 1984, the first BT regulations were printed and posted by members of newly the formed Tahoe-Truckee Fly Fishers. They were printed, laminated, stapled on ply-wood, and then encased in chicken-wire. Then we heavily screwed them in, high-up via ladders, into the trunks of the local evergreens along the river. Us TTFF members attempted to make the signs as "bomb-proof" as possible since there was resistance locally for these "elitist",  C & R regulations. A couple of the first-generation reg signs are still present along the river...washed-out and illegible...similar to Ralph and Lisa's signs.


*FISHING REGULATIONS
TRUCKEE RIVER

TROUT CREEK TO GLENSHIRE BRIDGE
and
100 YARDS UPSTREAM OF HWY 80 AT UNION MILLS TO BOCA BRIDGE

1-BARLESS ARTIFICIALS ONLY
2-BAG LIMIT: TWO
3-MINIMUM SIZE 15 INCHES

Here, I can't read it either!...If you insist, PM me and I'll go to sign and re-read it!

WILD TROUT WATER
 practice
CATCH & RELEASE

REPORT POACHERS
1-800-952-5400

CALIFORNIA SCHOOL OF FLY FISHING
PO 8212, TRUCKEE CA 96162
916-587-2005

Thursday, July 2, 2020

Throw-Back Thursday Thought


Let'em Breathe!

"The charm of fishing is that it is the pursuit of what is elusive, but attainable... A perpetual series of occasions for hope."

Anonymous

Hope'en
...and Wish'en
and Solitude

Monday, June 8, 2020

The Drakes!...The Drakes!...Truckee



Western Green Drake

The 2nd of Truckee's infamous BIG BUGS OF JUNE made an appearance yesterday, June 7 in the "middle" section of the Truckee River (BT). At 3:40 PM, amidst grey skies and light snow-flurries, I viewed the first of only two Drakes appear during a multiple mayfly emergence; PMD's, BWO's and a larger, unidentified up-wing (...late March Brown?).

The water temps were 54 degrees. A couple of upticks in the temps and it is "Game On!" for dry fly angling on the the BT; regardless of what section you fish. Do not forget an essential tool when fishing the big river; your THERMOMETER.

There was a pod of sporadic risers at the tail-out of a long pool.
'Cus Jeff' bent
The one beautifully-colored, 14 inch RainBow hooked/netted ate a #8 down-wing pattern; in the absence of an up-wing pattern... in a fly-box left in the SUV!`  My preferred pattern for the Drakes is a #8 Green Drake Quigley Cripple. As always be aware of classic "making hatches" during this period of increasing aquatic bug emergences.

Looking forward for you committed dry-fly purists; do not forget about the anticipated adults of the 3rd "Big Bug"...the Golden Stone Fly.
Let'em Breathe!



Thursday, May 28, 2020

The Ants!...The Ants!...Truckee

With this warming weather the Winged Black Ants have made an appearance in Truckee...in substantial numbers. How long they'll be here is anyone's guess; they're unpredictable. They can make an intense 2-3 day appearance and quickly fade. Or, not as intense, but spread-out over about 10 days...then gone.

These huge ants (#10-12's) are the first of the Truckee's "Big Bugs of June" to make an appearance locally. Now we're looking for the other two Big Bugs; Western Green Drakes and Golden Stoneflies. Both adults can be "phantoms"; most especially the Drakes.
June is an angler's first chance of "searching" the water and hooking a large trout at the surface.

All the stream occupants are aware of and on the look-out for the Big Bugs, and the opportunity to ambush such high-caloric meals. The Truckee's out-sized trout in the 18"-25" range, are known to leave the bottom and eat aggressively on top...most of the time. A client once had the rare exception of a subtle take; on the flat-water of the LT's Bluff Slick. A perfectly dead-drifted #8 Green Drake Quigley-Cripple simply disappeared, sucked-down and absolutely no water displacement.

Historically, the Ants always proceed the Drakes and the Goldens. The Green Drakes and Golden Stonefly adults are seldom observed in great numbers; but the trout are aware of their presence in the top-water-column where they haphazardly land on the water's surface.  Toss your big dries along cut-banks, under overhanging stream-side vegetation, in riffles and boulder fields. You are prospecting for an opportunistic feeder.

And since I've mentioned a "water-column", rest assured, dislodged large nymphs of both of the Golden and the  Drake are ALWAYS eaten. Remember the Goldens have a 2-3 life cycle; making them readily available during their progressive instar-growth up to a size 4. Fishing the Drake nymphs (#'s 6-10) are most productive prior to their emergence since most of them migrate towards the shallows and quiet water in lieu of clinging to the bottom in heavy water. As for the huge Black  ant (winged or wingless); fish it dry or sunk (HINT).

Attractor/impressionistic patterns of all three Big Bugs are sufficient to dupe the trout.


Monday, May 25, 2020

Honoring the Fallen in Truckee

     Honoring War Dead In Old Town Truckee. 

Less we forget, many have made the "ultimate sacrifice" with their lives; preserving the freedoms we have in the US.

I may have unintentionally ruffled some feathers today when I innocently made a comment on FaceBook to clarify who is honored on Memorial Day. Today is the day for  those who literally lost their lives while in foreign combat zones. This is a very special day for them and their families. It is not a "Happy Memorial Day!" salutation that our tone-deaf chief of state intoned today. All of us military veterans, some who lost friends and served "right or wrong" are honored on Veterans Day in November... not Memorial Day in late May.

Thursday, May 7, 2020

Guiding on Tahoe National Forest

AS OF May 7, 2020:

 NO GUIDING

ON THE TAHOE NATIONAL FOREST 

An e-note excerpt to Special Use Permit holders from the Truckee Ranger District:



"This message is to clarify that all outfitter guide and recreation event permits are still in non-use status.

 Regarding Governor Newsom’s press conference today:

Governor Newsom announced that county officials can decide the pace of moving into Stage 2 of reopening. The Truckee/Sierraville Ranger Districts will be relying on updates from State/County Officials to determine when guiding and recreation event permits can re-enter use status.  

The expectation is that when the permits re-enter use status, there will be operating restrictions such as social distancing measures and the use of PPE. In the meantime you can start to develop a modified operating plan that will describe how you will employ these operating restrictions..."


Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Fish "The Drop" in Truckee

Let'em Breathe!
I've been reviewing the flow charts as they pertain to the Truckee watershed.  The peak snow-melt and corresponding run-off is subsiding. There is a downward trend-line in the peaks of the  "peaks & troughs" on the water flow charts. As I mentioned in my last post "...fish the drop" in the smaller streams and progressively the larger rivers...AND do not dismiss the stream inflows into the local still-waters. IMO, we're still about 3 weeks plus/minus from the start of the optimum conditions at moving waters in the region.

Unquestionably until that time, the most productive method will be sub-surface fishing. So now is the time to continue probing the depths with big/little searching rigs. As of yesterday there are few consistent bug emergences and their corresponding top-water, feeding
 Wet flies displayed at last season's Devin Olsen's Euro-Nymphing clinic

Thus far there has not been a profusion of wildflowers; even those ubiquitous ones imaged below have not yet made a noticeable appearance. I've been reminded of a small hard-bound book in my fly fishing library which is about "a method of meeting and matching the super hatches of the West" This 1995 book is entitled  THE PHENOLOGICAL FLY
 
Our state flower...sparse here but dense on the Sierra west-slope hills & valleys
The Mule Ear, at this elevation it is as prolific as the California Poppy found on the lower
 elevations 
Camus Lily...profuse in the "wet lands"



Thursday, April 30, 2020

In Melt in Truckee

Let'em Breathe!

Snow is melting quickly in Truckee at the mid-6000' elevations. It is now melt-and-rising-rivers-time. I'm still "sheltering-in-place" with an occasional venture into town for mail and needed supplies...wearing my Buff and gloves. I'm waiting for a gradual lightening of Pandemics behavior from the responsible agencies.

I haven't done much angling recently; but have been reviewing/purging my image files of such. I've had nice recollections of past early seasons' fly angling within range of town.

Now is the time to explore many of the local Small Waters
If there is water...there are trout
"...melt and rising waters"

Small Waters are most productive on the "drop"
...look for low-gradient flows
Some isolated Small Waters remain productive into early summer

Stream inlets produce well during  run-off conditions; regardless of water clarity. Find the biggest entry channel and then locate both "...feeding & sheltering troughs".

Solitude

...Social-Distancing?
Boatial Distancing
You 'old-timers'...Remember Martis Lake during '80's?


Thursday, April 9, 2020

Truckee Area MOODS...Pre-Melt Throw-Back


One thing about sheltering in place is that you start reminiscing about past, early-spring, pre-melt, fly fishing sessions in the Truckee region. My climatic preference is sun, sparse cloud-cover and minimal wind; mid-days. Access points are still few.

When this Pandemic subsides I'm in an anxious MOOD to breathe fresh air while tramping through snow to a favored holding water, with my dry fly rod in hand (...see NOTE); looking for snouts at the surface... sipping first-brood BWO emergers and fully-developed duns. Well, OK, if I'm really anxious for the tug; I'd carry a second rod, set-up for a more consistent method that will produce "da throb of the rod".

IMAGES from the past follow editorializing...

NOTE: Selected excerpt from MOODS article in Sierra Fisherman, July 2014
"Moods take many forms...

Head-Hunting: There are times when I've walked a river for three hours, without casting once. I did not see a single trout rise. We are entitled to being a "purist" whenever we wish.
We all experience fishing moods; whether seasonally, day-to-day or spur of the moment. Each mood fits a current mind-set. Yes, moods can be fickle, prolonged, short-lived and will draw us to different types of water...these moods can overshadow what may be a more pragmatic approach that will produce more hook-ups, but there is no way we will be moved away from that mood...
We fly anglers are of myriad personality types. Some of us are loners, at all-costs-crowd-avoiders; essentially anti-social (editor: appropriate for these times!). Some of us not; savoring interaction, "fish gossiping" and seeking out communal group angling (...a GroupFish!); camaraderie is what it is all about. Regardless of where you are "button-holed" within the two extremes; each mood fits our psyche's current 'state of mind'.

Moods allow us to fly fish in many ways. All provide a certain pleasure."
...Trek cautiously...avoid "post-holing"
Searching...
...a bit too fast
Looking...
ah, heads!
Hook'em in the soft riffle and net them below in the pool
An early spring, dry-fly double...JR and Pancho
Get back before the sun sets...gets really cold!


Sunday, April 5, 2020

A Modern-Day Evolution of Fly Fishing Gear


A Yuba Rocket....or "1/2pounder"?

Does the hackneyed "back-in-the-day" refer to pre-2000 or post 2000?

Today I read a blog post by fellow angling friend/guide; Jon Baiocchi. It was a thoroughly informative post on new-age and old-day fly rods relative to their dynamics, preferred selection and  methods used. 

In the intro Jon recollects his early days of fly fishing with his dad and the gear they used. It reminded me of an article I'd written for the Spring 2012 issue of the now-defunct Sierra Fisherman magazine. Some of you "old-timers" will relate.  Here is the article; sprinkled with attempts at humor...sans images:

A Time Perspective on Fly Fishing

 For those of us who have been fly fishing for a few decades, there is a point in time when we realize we are of the “older generation”. Our fly angling psyche has changed; influenced by the introduction of modern methods, concepts and gear. With the mid-90’s advent of the Internet, the learning curve for those of us very experienced or novice is now quicker and steeper. We grizzled fly anglers accept this …maybe reluctantly…and recognize that our passion has been and will continue to be a dynamic sport; although some things may remain constant in our minds.

 During the ‘70’s there were few concerted attempts to tweak or enhance what was learned when we initially entered the sport; the exception being some classic, fly fishing books. The ‘80’s provided an up-tempo in the print media, and the increased use of the Internet during the late-90’s and into the first decade of the 21st century provided us with limitless, easily accessed information and purchase opportunities. As a consequence, there has been a decline in fly fishing specialty-shops. There are now only a few small, “brick and mortar” fly shops, those survivors able to compete with the on-line and huge mega-sports stores.

 Below, hoping to provide a brief historical perspective on the evolving changes that have occurred during the last few decades, are some general comments of our mutually-shared sport.  “New school” participants….and this is a relative moniker…may appreciate what we “old-schoolers” or “booth-strappers” have witnessed over the years.

My first waders had attached boots and were both bulky and clumsy. “Stocking-foot” waders made an appearance during the mid-‘70’s. They were either seamless, solid rubber or seamed, water-proofed nylon; weighing mere ounces. With the former we experienced sweaty walks and wades, most especially during the heat of the summer…they did not breathe! I had a rubber pair with many repairs; I looked  like a walking, worn-out and heavily patched inner-tube.  The seams separated on the nylon ones after only 4-5 outings. There were few wading shoes available. They had felt-soles and were made of leather which became very rigid when dry; making it difficult to put-on for your next outing. Now we can select boots made by numerous manufacturers; they are synthetic, light-weight and durable to withstand boulder-scrabbling in freestone rivers. Modern-day brogues have various types of tightening features utilizing wheels, wires, zippers and speed-lacing gadgets.

 Common use of bamboo fly rods was a bit ahead of my time. I’ve experienced the progression of fiberglass and the present-day graphite or graphite/boron composites. My first fly rod was a 6-weight, “glass” 8-footer. Then I was gifted the first production graphite rod, which hardly bent being as stiff as a broomstick. You will notice I’ve intentionally avoided discussing two-handed rods.

Fortunately the rod designers became more sophisticated. We then could select a “taper” that fit our casting style and preferred type of fishing. Simply, the “action” indicated where the rod bent, as in fast (…at the tip), medium (…at the middle, the term used was “parabolic”) , and slow ( …at the butt). Currently, I see no need to decipher all the marketing and engineering jargon such as “torsional stability”, “damping” with “nano-sized silica”, all encased in an “advanced modulus positioning system”  Geez, I merely want to fish and not launch a fly to the moon. Our prime concern, simply, is how the rod flexes, loads or bends to accurately and efficiently cast the line and fly.

It seems like fishing vests are no longer de-rigueur. At times I feel like a Neanderthal when I put on my “guiding” vest…it easily weighs 20+ pounds! The trend is obviously towards being a minimalist. We now can use devices such as slings, chest-packs, waist-pouches and lanyards.  They are ergonomically designed and may include water devices, D-rings, clips, Velcro fasteners, loops, straps, and in-built nooks and crannies.

Long-time fly anglers remember most fly reels being from three producers. For trout angling we either had a proletariat’s Pheluger 1494 Medalist or Scientific Angler System One. Having the money we could splurge for an English-made Hardy Princess or Perfect.

Currently there must be close to 100 reel makers at all price-points. Some salt-water reels cost as much as my first VW “Bug”.

Flies, hooks and fly tying have evolved. In the past there were few synthetics; mostly natural feathers, hairs, furs and wool yarns. The current plethora of non-natural ingredients used at our vises and in patterns commercially produced are endless. There was one major hook producer, providing a limited style of hooks. We now have the privilege of selecting from several firms with an endless array of hook designs; weights, bends, points, thickness and gaps…for both freshwater, saltwater flats, estuaries and deep sea. Depending on a fly tier’s temperament, fly designs can be simple and quick to tricky and time-consuming.

I recall two basic fly line shapes:  a double-taper or a weight-forward. They were full-length at 90’ or 30’ shooting-heads. The line floated or sunk, the latter having 3-4 sink rates.  Now there is a bewildering amount of different fly lines that are available in a  kaleidoscope of colors…some of them blinding. They are designed for very specific angling situations, whether used in fresh or salt environments. Advertising, packaging and catalogue descriptions can be so esoteric that one almost needs computer analytics before making a choice.

 A last category of fly angling needs is an all inclusive group that is marketed as accessories. It sort of sounds like high-end jewelry, but; I call them extraneous paraphernalia or “danglies”. My first “nippers” were essentially finger-nail clippers, which hung on my vest by a string (…flashing brightly in announcing my presence to every trout in the immediate area) or placed-in an often-forgotten-pocket. Attachment devices have evolved into an array of retractable “zingers”; some of which are inconspicuously built into our outer-wear and gear packs. Some of us carried heavy needle-nose pliers or surgical hemostats for de-barbing hooks. We now have many choices which incorporate multi-function features:  hook-eye clearing , cramping-on weight, and scissors for cutting hackle, hair or leader materials.

The list of gadgets continues and entails paste and powdered floatants, indicators, weights, hook-hones, thermometers, knot-tying aids, nets, tippet dispensers and fly boxes. The common denominator is that now there are many options; most of which were unavailable decades back.

My intent here is to not create “revisionist” history. This very loose chronology of fly angling developments are my recollections only, I’m sure I’ve missed some. If so, please drop me a note to refresh my memory.………..Frank R. Pisciotta
A  Yuba "Drip & Grip" Spotted RainBow

Friday, March 27, 2020

Truckee Area...Winter To Spring Transition

Let'em Breathe!

AS OF MARCH 26-APRIL 30, 2020:
 NO GUIDING*
ON THE TAHOE NATIONAL FOREST 
Report violators (aka Scammers) to
the Truckee Ranger District
* E-note excerpt from the Truckee Ranger District on 3/26/2020:
"On the Truckee Ranger District we expect that all outfitting and guiding and rec event operations are suspended until the State shelter in place order is lifted"


Yes indeed we'll  take it!...sort  of a minor Miracle March

The recent snow-storms have been most welcomed.  Prior to, we were at 50% of historical average snow-pack to date; as of today it's been bumped-up to 63% of normal and at 67% water-content (was 43% on March 13th!).  Still low but an improvement. The storm-door seems to be open until the end of the month... Maybe we'll break the 70% mark.
front door...end of storm

During the first "good dump" two weeks ago I got  4' of new snow at my place at 6500'. I'm guessing there had to be a minimum of 6'-7' of new "white gold" at the higher peaks. Wonderful for the forest and fisheries...not to mention skiing. Unfortunately for the latter, whether skiing or gliding, the north Tahoe resorts  are all closed...da VIRUS thing; of which I 'm not going to dwell upon here, remaining up-beat,  because I'm sure we're all pretty much  inundated with info with this troubling pandemic. Personally, I've been "self-isolating" and this has been my 15th straight day doing so; except for a couple of quick grocery and mail runs in town.

the calm AFTER the first good storm

So, I haven't been fishing recently. Prior to the snows, local intel had Skwalas present on the BT; Trout Creek to CA/NV state-line. There, be prepared for increased activity of  March Browns; sub-surface only. Because of the recent snows, access to the LT below the dam is improbable. If so, the angler will see some first-brood BWO emergences during mid-day; not to mention Midges in all life-cycles. Nevertheless, I'm not predicting you'll see a lot of surface-snouts.

Wintertime angling on the aforementioned waters has been allowed only since the 2008. Hence, both jaded "regulars" and Newbie/younger Truckee fly anglers are still leaning the nuances of the previously "closed season"; mid-November to end of April. Suffice it to say, the savvy anglers appear astream mid-day when the water is warmest; assuming there is decent solar-heating...say 11AM-4PM.

The amount of existing snow determines accessibility; for parking and trekking to the water, respectively. Some of us still strap-on snow-shoes, wanting to avoid a hyper-extension of the knee via unforeseen "post-holing". I lieu of felt-bottomed wading shoes, use plastic or rubber-soled wading shoes; the latter eliminates the nuisance of "snow-clumping".
Thy Rod & Staff...Snow-Shoes & Old-School Vest

Early spring trout remain in the winter's low-flow holding lies...until the snow-melt commences. Prior to, fish the slow flow runs and the deep pools. There limited times for a chance of angling a surface fly.

For this transitional winter/spring period until the melt, the most productive ploy remains probing sub-surface; methodically, "low & slow". The trout will not move much to intercept your offering. Whichever "load &amp lob" method you use; be it high-sticking, indo-nymphing or "Euro" nymphing...get it  down! Our quarry are resting in bottom water-column, again, where you must naturally, drift your flies. I practice searching rigs; employing suggestive fly patterns; adjusting weight whether incorporated in the fly or on your terminal leader. If specifically targeting apex-predator trout; streamers are advised...the proverbial "Size-versus-Numbers" conundrum.

April, May and the start of June offer only "iffy" prime, fly fishing. Conditions are wholly dependent on what remains of the winter snow-pack, its  percentage of water content, and resulting melt and runoff during this period. Be aware the melt is unpredictable; being erratic or gradual; we never know. The most productive angling methods continue to be those of the winter months; present flies at the river's bottom, where the trout are.


Although we're 4 weeks away from the serious snow-melt; initially anticipate roily, high water and cold water temps. The largest trout caught in the Truckee area are in early spring and fall.

Lots of fly anglers prefer not fishing during this '"flush" period because there is limited holding water.  Flip it...to your advantage; the trout are isolated in fewer prime lies...target those areas! With high spring flows think...edges as in bank-side edges, slow, deep runs and quiet pools.  The trout will concentrate there. These trout are less pressured there, hence concentrated, because there are very few strategically-thinking anglers astream. 

Here's another afer-thought for springtime from an October 3, 2012 blog entry. "Fly anglers and trout love weather & clouds". Although the thought was written relative fall-time angling it most certainly applies to early spring-time fly angling. Another recurring theme for me when guiding/instructing (...one of  my FRANKISMS) is "Fall and Spring are mirror images of each other relative to best time of day to fish" Over my many years plying the Truckee area water, I have fond recollections of fishing over rising trout ingesting BWO's or early PMD  hatches...when it was drizzly and overcast. 

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Truckee Area...Late Winter

Let'em Breathe!

My wish is a March Miracle (...not Miracle March!). It has been 3-4 weeks since we received any significant precipitation that deposited snow on the ground that didn't melt-off in a day or two.
Back-yard forest...Normal snow amount in late February...Ain't happening!



Right now, my prognosis is the fishing will start in earnest 4-5 weeks ahead of normal...assuming we don't experience my above wish. I'm thinking...hoping...we're currently experiencing a "false spring".

Truckee's watershed's eight (8) monitoring sites are cumulatively measuring 60% of average snow-water content. Total seasonal precipitation is also not spectacular at 56% of historical average to date.
My unscientific snow-melt calculation .60 x .56 equates to 34% of normal melt.  Yikes!! Fortunately, we've had two of three "good water" years.
My preferred "early-season" flies...
via "old-school" High-Sticking"

There's been no dramatic change in the fly angling since my last post of 1/31/20. There are less Little Black Winter Stoneflies flitting about and a slight up-tick in sightings of its larger relative, the Skwala Stonefly. BWO's are a good choice to imitate; either on the surface; during the sparse hatch/rise activity you can encounter, or, trailing a large Stonefly nymph or Flesh Juan Worms when dead-drifting "Low & Slow"; probing the bottom on the stream...where the  trout are. Sleep-in, simply fish the most pleasant time of day, 11AM-4PM when you'll find the progressively, warmest water of the day.

 Don't forget streamers now, they are always a good choice in early season for out-sized river trout.