July 10, 2020

Mammoth Lakes Area

Weather Report

Don't forget your water bottles and sunscreen as you hit the lakes, rivers and creeks. The water's reflection seems to like to help the sun in its constant attempts to turn us all bright red and leave us sadly remembering the trip. Don't forget life jackets for the kids if you are fishing from a boat!

REPORT AS OF 7/9/2020

Fishing season is open for bait and catch-and-release fishing with general statewide regulations in force the same as previous summers during June.

Retail businesses and restaurants in Mammoth Lakes are open for walk-in customers with masks and social distancing rules in effect. The Troutfitter is open from 7 am to 7 pm daily.

Guiding is permitted with social distancing rules in effect and we are taking reservations 760 934-2517

The popular waters are getting crowded so try the smaller streams while the flows are good.

Mammoth Lakes Basin

Water Conditions: Warming

Fishing Conditions and Hatches:

The road just opened so no report yet.

Recommended Flies:

Nothing yet.

Guide's Hint:

Hot Creek

Water Conditions: Fair to Good, showing 9 cfs as of 7/9

Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Good

Nothing's really changed except the crowds are getting bigger and the Trico's are getting stronger. Maybe it's the pressure or the flows dropping but it's getting a little tougher. Same hatches but the late morning PMD hatches are starting to slow down and the Hoppers are everywhere. First thing it's Midges and Caddis followed by PMDs. Early afternoon has been the slowest with it picking up late afternoon into evening especially if the wind stays down. The Caddis can range from a #14 to a #22 so don't be afraid to experiment, including "skating" the bigger ones.

Recommended Flies:

DRIES: Stimulators #16-18 | R.P. Emerger #22 | Real Midge #24 | Stillborn Midge #20-22 | Extended Body PMD #16-18 | Para Caddis #16-22 |Mini Hot Garcia #14-16 | Elk hair Caddis #14-!8 | Spring Creek Hopper #14-16

NYMPHS: Bottom Roller Phsyco Rycho #10-14 | T Midge #24 | Zebra Midge #18-22 | Grey/Olive Scud #16-18 | Translucent Pupa #16-18 | Harroups Surface Emerger Brown/Olive #16-18 | Nori Caddis #18-20 | Tailwater Scud Tungsten #14-18

STREAMERS: BH Bopp Leech Olive & Brown #12-10 | Wooly Bugger Olive & Brown #12-10 | Baby Fat Minnow #8

Guide's Hint:

San Joaquin River

Water Conditions:

Flows are at 67 cfs as of 7/9

Fishing Conditions and Hatches:

The road just opened and the flows continue to drop. Water's cold early so the best fishing is about 10 am on. PMDs,Green Drakes, Caddis and a few Grasshoppers are the main fare, I haven't heard of any evening reports but if they're seeing the Drakes the evening could be spectacular.

Recommended Flies:

Dries: Sparkle Dun Foam Back PMD #16-18 | CDC Flavilinea Dun #12-16 | Parachute Hopper #12-16 Parachute Caddis #16-22

Nymphs: B/H Flash Back Pheasant Tail #14-16 | Poxy Back Green Drake #10-12 | B/H Prince #10-20

Guide's Hint:

Crowley Lake

Water Conditions: Poor to Fair

Algae is getting thick

Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Fair to Good

Perch fry are starting to show!!! Not quite big enough to be noticed, but soon.We're switching back to a summer pattern of warm days and midday winds. Between that and the stream flows dropping the fish should start migrating towards the stream channels soon. You can still find them in 25' to 35' but they're now showing in 18' to 22' and they aren't glued to the bottom so make sure you fish several depths. McGee Bay, Layton Springs, Alligator Point, Big Hilton Bay and the west side of Pelican Point are still good bets. Sandy Point and Green Banks are wild cards, I haven't heard anything new. The perch have moved to the outside of the weeds. There are fish in Crooked Creek but haven't heard anything positive. Fly wise black and less flashy are starting to work.

Recommended Flies:

Nymphs: Shaft Emerger #14-16 | Albino Baron #14-16 | G/B Opti Tiger #16-18 | Optimidge Olive/Dun #16-18 | Double Bead Zebra slvr/blk small

Streamers: Crystal Bugger Black #8 | Marabou Leech Burgundy or Brown #12

Guide's Hint:

Upper Owens River

Water Conditions: Good

Flows are at 66 cfs as of 7/9

Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Good-Very Good

Crowded! Don't go out there and drive straight to your favorite "honey hole". Look for the open gates and talk to the people that are already out there. It's already happening, the fish are getting wise to hopper patterns so presentation and timing can be critical. With the increase of hoppers even the big fish are starting to look up so it's not just the Hoppers but also Caddis and PMD's for dry fly action. The bigger fish and migratory planters tend to hold in the deeper holes so attractor patterns such as Prince nymphs, San Juan worms and egg patterns are working best.

Recommended Flies:

DRIES: Stimulator #12-16 | Griffiths Gnat #20-24 | EC Caddis #16-18 | Baby Boy Hopper #12-16 | Para Ant #14-16 | Hatchmatcher PMD #16-18

NYMPHS: Prince Nymph #12-16 | Zebra Midge #18-22 | WD-40 black #18-24 | Prince Nymph #12-16 | Copper John #14-16 | San Juan Worm #12-14 | Egg Patterns #12-16 | Roza Pink Tag #16 Harrop's Surface Emerger #16

STREAMERS: Shock Collar Leech #10 | Woolly Bugger White, Olive & Brown #6-14

Guide's Hint:

Lower Owens River

Water Conditions: Good

Flows are at 249 cfs as of 7/9

Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Good

Evenings, the evening dry fly action is excellent, the hard part is figuring out what they're eating out of the 4 or 5 insects available. Went out Sunday morning for a couple of hours and the nymphing was very good but still not much surface activity. When I left, I drove from the campground down to 5 Bridges and counting myself there were 3 cars, that makes about 2 miles/car! Not a lot of reports but what we've gotten are still consistently good. Still fishing well and still no crowds. If you want to escape the crowds head down to the Lower Owens. It's been getting hot down there but luckily the best fishing is early morning until midday. No real strong hatches but midges all morning with Sallies and PMDs showing up late morning and now lots of caddis early and late. We're also starting to see Tricos, female emergence and spinner fall in the early morning and male emergence in the evening. The best dry fly action is in the evening.

There have been a few Rattlesnake sightings along the river recently, keep your eyes and ears open. This is between PVR campground and the dam.

Recommended Flies:

DRIES: Large dry with #22-26 midge emergers and adults | Hi Vis PMD #16-18 | Stimulator #12-16 | Spider Variant #18-20

NYMPH: Pheasant Tail #14-22 | Hares Ear #16-22 | Zebra Midge #18-22 | Olive Hot Spot Jig #18 |Micro Stone #14-16 | Jigged hares ear #12 | B/H Prince #10-14 | Drowned Trico #18-22

STREAMERS: Wooly Bugger Olive & Black #10-12 | Mini Sculpin Olive & Black #10-12

Guide's Hint:

East Walker River

Water Conditions: Fair

Flows have dropped to 81 cfs as of 7/9

Water temperatures mid to upper 60s midday

Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Fair

Definitely into summer mode with Tricos starting to happen. Unfortunately the flows have dropped and the water temperatures have gone up so take lots of temperature readings and be aware of the fish's speed of recovery. Also leave the fish in the water if you're taking pictures. The hatches have been sporadic with midges being the strongest but also some PMDs, Golden Stones and Caddis. Not a lot of surface activity, the best being the last couple of hours of light. I repeat the evenings are worth a try.

Recommended Flies:

DRIES: REALLY big Chernobylly Mousey looking stuff | Mother Shucker #22-24 | Brite Wing PMD #16-18 | E/C Caddis #14-18 | Sloan's Outrigger Caddis #14 | Sparkle Flag Black #20-22

NYMPHS: Prince Nymph #12-16| Dead Drift Crayfish #8 | Bottom Roller Psycho #10-12 | Copper Zebra #16-18 | T's Stone Drummond Light #8-10 | T J Hooker #6-10 | Newbury's Alt Rocker #16-18 | Flashback Barr's Emerger #16-18

STREAMERS: Meat Whistle | Sculpzilla | Hornberg #6-8 | Belly Scratcher Minnow Chub #2 | Bank Robber Sculpin #2 | Playbate Chartreuse #1/0

Guide's Hint:

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