Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Cast Hope's Big Night Out

Hey Nor Cal mark your calendar! Cast Hopes annual fall fund raiser the BIG NIGHT OUT is coming up Sept 12 in Chico, CA at the Womens Center. Food Trucks (included in ticket price), Auction, Sierra Nevada Beer, and Live Muisc!

Location: Chico Women's Center (592 E. 3rd St., Chico, CA)
Date: June 2 - 5
Time: 5:30 - 8:30pm
Cost: $30/person, Kids (ages 5-10) are $10, age 4 and under are free (Includes dinner) 

Friday, August 7, 2015

Its been a long time...

Man …. I want to apologize for complete lack of posts…summer has been busy with guiding, traveling, and family. Not that that is any excuse as EVERYONE is busy I have just had a really hard time with everything going on to justify spending any more time then absolutely necessary in-front of a computer screen. I will carve out a few hours while watching the giants tonight and killing time in between some other tasks tomorrow to update the blog…here goes.

I have done very little trout fishing this summer spending almost all my time on the Lower Sac fishing for stripers. It has been an incredibly good striper year on the Lower Sac and really seems like it will last well into October this year. In June we saw good numbers of trophy fish some up to 50lbs. July saw the arrival of one of the latest and largest runs of shad I have seen in years. Huge schools of fish showed up eating dry flies and hanging up on the surface in the deeper pools. These fish have sense moved up river now and seem to be around Red Bluff. For about 3 weeks we worked our tails off to get a fish over 20” while we would catch huge numbers of 17-18” fish the bigger fish say over 5lbs was nearly impossible to come by. In the last 2 weeks the shad have moved on and the bigger fish are starting to show themselves. In the last few days we have had good numbers of fish from 6-10lbs and a few up to 20lbs. There are nearly no salmon to speak of from Butte City up to the Capay area so the river is nearly empty, but this also changes fishing as there are not salmon and boats to push the fish around.

Fishing should continue to remain good through early October, August and September are going to be great months for big fish. I have only a few days open left through early October and am already taking bookings for next summer if anyone is interested.

Open Dates: Sept 12th, Oct 3rd

Printed Word – Check out the Current August issue of California Fly Fishermen and read my article (if you like fine literature and insight on fish it will change your life):  The Other Lower Sacramento: Striper Fishing from Red Bluff to Butte City: The Sacramento River is about more than trout.

Music News –
There has been so much good new music over the last month. The Jason Isbell CD is great with typical awesome songs about life, work, and living…some sad, some insightful, and some just rocking. The new Wilco CD is growing on me…it was free so no money lost but I have had a tough time with the last two Wilco CD’s, just couldn’t get into them.

My wife and I got out to see Built to Spill down in Sac in Late June at Harlows…so cool seeing one of my favorite bands up close and personal in such a small venue. I was right up front and it was a true treat to watch all 3 guitar players play. I have not bought their new CD but I am sure I will very soon ounce I need some new music.

It is that time of year again where all the new gear comes out. Simms Fall 2016 line is now up on the Simms website and the biggest news is the NEW Pro Dry Suit, but the new wading jackets are also really cool. The Scott Meridian Rod won best of show overall at the ICAST show a few weeks ago. It is Scotts new high end salt rod replacing the S4S. I should have new 9wt Meridian in my boat very shortly for everyone to try. I have yet to see the new Montana Fly Co. line up for 2016 but I know the patterns of mine that will be coming out will be good and I expect nothing less from the rest of the crew. 

Sports Report
Giants are playing well, I have to say I have enjoyed the July into August Giants. I don’t feel like we are going to make a world series run but I think there will be some interesting September baseball. In the end all I ask for as a fan is that all the games mean something through the end of the season. A tough schedule for the month of August (no team under .500 on the schedule) will determine a whole log how September will look.

Notre Dame…Getting ready for spring practice and opening with Texas. The QB controversy is over and now it is Zaires team…we will see how he does soon.

Cast Hope has had an incredibly busy summer…along with our normal array of guide trips we have taken two groups through paces and travel to earn their heritage trout certificates, we have taken a group of Cast Hope veterans on their first “destination” trip to the Umpqua River for smallmouth bass fishing, we are in the middle of our salmon and steelhead project, we have run 2 bass clinics, run two fish fests, and are working on all our fall and winter fundraising as well as guide dates. BUSY BUSY BUSY….

For our Chico people we have our “Big Night Out” coming up September 12. Going to be a great event for local nor cal people to come out celebrate what Cast Hope does, eat, drink, and have fun! Lots of great auction and raffle items as well as live music, beer, food trucks, and desert! I will post up some more information as it gets closer but in the mean time here if the flier.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Cool Event: Sacramento Spey Day Information

Here is more info on this exciting inaugural event, Sacramento Spey Day co sponsored by Kiene's American Fly Fishing Company, and Fly Fishing Specialties:
1. Below is info on where the event will be held, Sacramento Bar, north side of the American River.  At the time of deadline to California Fly Fisher, the exact location was not decided upon for many reasons.
2. The event is for people of all levels of spey casting ability, complete novice to advanced, all free of charge except fee entry of $5 for parking.  Donuts, bagels, fruit, yogurt and drinks are provided free of charge 
3. Hours, 9 AM to 2 PM
4. Everything Spey will be here, leading rod/reel/line MFG companies and owners
5. RSVP's are required to either store, please, for many reasons, so get your names on the list -

Kiene's American Fly Fishing - 916.486.9958, or 916.483.1222

Fly Fishing Specialties - 916.722.1055

If you ever had an interest, question or wish to ask a rod maker a question about a rod you own of his, this is a great opportunity to do just that.

Thank you, and call either shop for more questions.

Tim Au-Young

Monday, July 6, 2015

Last Minute Striper Dates Open

Last minute striper dates 

July 8, 14-16

*These dates are first come first serve so call 530-514-2453 or email hoganbrown@hotmail.com. 
Until just today I was completely booked up for striper season through mid September but with a cancelation and a personal trip falling through I have 4 dates open over the next two weeks. There are plenty of smaller schoolie fish around with all the big boys starting to show themselves as well.  Just last week we landed 2 fish over 20lbs and saw big fish every day we were out. Great time to get out and the weather has COOLED down dramatically! Weather forecast is showing low 90s and high 80s for Chico, CA over the next week.

If Striper fishing isn't your thing Trout fishing on the LOWER SAC has been great down from Barge hole down with plenty of trout nymphing with stoneflies and caddis patterns. 

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

A bit delayed but never stale...

So I have been a bit lax on my blog posts…I apologize…but I jumped right into the month of June with no desire to stair at a screen anymore then I absolutely had. That said I have been overwhelmed with guilt and am going to hammer out a blog post.

Summer so far has been great. While the drought is becoming a reality there is still fishing to be had and places to escape the reality that will I am sure hit everyone come late July/August…That said there has been some good news with regards to a possible El Nino year coming…A few of my good friends that spend countless hours guiding and fishing the Southern California Salt have been seeing signs of El Nino like they have never seen before over the last few months. Pelagic fish species that usually follow warm water currents well off shore are within yards of the coast and warm water currents are pushing up against the beaches and coast lines. While I understand very little about any of this people that I respect and who do KNOW about this have been telling me El Nino is coming…I hope they are right.

Rivers like the Truckee and smaller streams are in big trouble. It is truelly saddening to see such a California Fly Fishing staple like the Truckee River essentially slowly die. I am not sure really what can be done or said then repsecting the fishery while it struggles and supporting the organizations that are tasked with protecting the fishery and who will be asked to rebuild it when the time comes.

All this said there is plenty of fishing to be had my lack of blog posts is due to guiding and fishing so let me get to the reports…

Lower Sac Striper Fishing – There is a TON of young stripers in the river right now. Lots of shaker size fish and 17-20” fish. The big fish seem to be slowly coming out of their shad coma and getting on the feed. I have had clients land and loose a few nice 20+ pound fish and have seen some pics from friends of bigger ones caught but I still think the big ones are yet to get going really well as the shad are just thinning out. Late June –September is prime time and things are shaping up for a great striper year on the Lower Sac.
typical lower sac line side

Nice fish my friend sent me that his buddy caught...they are out there

Not a bad schoolie fish...fun fish!

Lower Yuba River Trout – Flows on the Lower Yuba are at a really good level hovering around 1000cfs. I had high hopes for the fishing to improve as flows were raised to protect the king salmon moving up river but have yet to see the fishing really improve. I guided out there 2 days over the last week and fishing was fair at best. Morning was best and the bite seemed to get pretty tight midday. Hatches are minimal if non-existent from what I could see. That said there is a TON of caddis on the rocks and I have not been staying until dark when the caddis and PED hatches usually come off. I have been throwing some golden stone dries and hopper patterns in likely holding water as with the higher flows fish have been moving along the bank for shade and cover but had no luck. Most of my fish are coming on rubber legs and various caddis patterns. Not sure what to expect over the next few weeks to be honest on the Lower Yuba.

Lower Sac Trout – spent a day or two floating from Jellys to Bend and summer fishing in that area is in full swing. Trout are in the rocks and swirls eating rubber legs, small stones, and caddis patterns. If you can stand the heat floating down low on the sac during the summer is a great option and should remain good through August.

Pit River – Spent two days up on the Pit River floating Pit 1 and walk and wading Pit 3 for Clear Water Lodge last week. Both fished well and were a ton of fun. I love the Pit River and while fishing was a bit tough midday with the heat it was a pretty good. I think the Pit will be turning into a morning evening deal, like it usually does this time of year, pretty quick. One thing I do on the Pit when the bite gets tough is go down to a lighter tippet, makes it tough in the pocket water with a nice fish on but I’d rather have them on and loose them then not.

Music Report – So I have been listening to a few older albums…Dave Hause’s Resolutions album a TON. This was released in 2013 but is one of my all time favorites. Just great Rock and Roll about life. Also I am digging the new Lucero song “Went Looking for Warren Zevons Los Angeles” they released off their new album coming out Sept 18 called All a Man Can Do”. The song reminds of older Lucero…That much Farther West era. The next release I am salivating over is Jason Isbell’s album coming out July 17th…Something More then Free. The two songs he has up on I Tunes so far are as good as anything he has ever released which to be honest is some of the best music out there I think.

In my own music news my new project Royal Oaks is up and live on Facebook. We recorded 3 songs a few weekends ago and played our first show…we are now official. Check us out. https://www.facebook.com/RoyalOaksBand?ref=hl

Sports Report – Giants are doing it man keeping in the hunt with realisticly pretty limited tools….2 starting pitchers down and Hunter Pence down and hanging a game or two out of first place in the West. In reality we seem to have no problem beating the dodgers what we need to work on is beating the rest of the division…getting swept at home by AZ and then taking 2/3 from the dodgers in LA is a bit weird but who knows. All I ask for is interesting and meaningful baseball through mid September and I am getting that.

Monday, June 1, 2015

June 1st - Official start of summer....in my world.

Love fishing the flats...
Summer is here. In my mind June 1 is the official end of spring and beginning of summer. That said the weather is still spring like as is the fishing…Lots of mid to high 80s and Low 90s in the forecast for the next few weeks fishing all over the place should keep plugging away…Here are some reports and what is coming up.

Lower Sac outside of Chico:
Shad fishing remains fair to good. There are still plenty of fish around and    while numbers    caught each night have taken a bit of a dip the size of fish has    increased with some nice females in the mix on most nights. I would imagine that shad fishing should remain fair to good over the next few weeks and began to tapper off the 2nd or 3rd week of June.
Hooked up on a nice Shad
Hooked up on a nice Shad...again

            Striper fishing is starting to pick up as some smaller keeper fish and shaker size are starting to be caught. I imagine fishing will get good over the next few weeks as the shad thin out and fish began to go on the feed. Best time of year for striper is June-September. There are still some prime dates open in June-August.

Love these guys
        Large and Small Mouth Bass fishing remains good. We are starting to see some smallies up in the shallows and catching a few large females full of eggs as well as some smaller fish in the creek mouths and shallows. Sight fishing   for largemouth and top water fishing for largemouth continues to be a great option on most evenings as well.

Small Jaw from the Lower Sac.
Nice top water slough Largmouth on the Lower Sac
Lower Sacramento Trout: fishing has been fair to good. Pretty standard numbers of trout being caught on most floats. Options for numbers and size of fish right now just depends on how one floats and fishes the river. The Lower Floats are a great place to fish June-August. I look forward to getting out of the motor boat mid summer and floating Jelly’s to Bend each year and fishing for trout.

Clearwater Lodge Water: Pit River, Fall River, and Hat Creek are all fishing well from what I have heard. I will be up there guiding a few days in June and look forward to getting my feet wet and running my raft down the Pit. All these rivers are such a treat to go fish as they are one of few places I get to go “close by” that feel like I have traveled “far away”.
Love floating the Pit

NF Feather River and NF Yuba River from what I have heard are both fishing well. Both fisheries will be in trouble this summer with the low water so get your licks in over the next month as I imagine these will get tough come July/August.

Time to get out on the NF Feather!

Lower Yuba River is fishing fair to good depending on the day from what I have heard. I have not been over there lately but flows are hanging around 850cfs which is low but not “I wouldn’t go” low. June is usually a GREAT month on the Yuba as it gets very little pressure as people are fishing on all the mountain trout rivers and pass right by the Lower Yuba. There is plenty of hatches and opportunity to fish some great Caddis hatches in the evening.

Sports News: The Giants are playing great baseball even though they split a 4 game series with the Braves over the weekend. They had the shot to win Sunday but an bad error by Ryan Crawford cost them the game as well as the fact Sergio was not able to pitch left Casilla in some unfavorable matuch ups. Not a problem though they are .5 out of first and have been looking really good through the month of May. Curious to see how 3rd base shakes out now that Casey is down in Sacramento and how Cain comes along. Overall when I look at the pitching rotation they have been rolling out and the line up they post every night I am pretty stoked to be only .5 out of first place.

In other sports news this last weekend was one of the best for college baseball, the Regional Round of the NCAA Div 1 College tournament. I would say it rivals the basketball tourney in my book…even may be cooler sense I am not as big a basketball fan. The college game of baseball is so much fun to watch as it is so fast passed compared to pro ball. The aluminum bat changes the game in huge ways for the hitters and pitchers. I watched a lot of innings of college ball over the last 4 days, even a 14 inning Cal Bears WIN over Texas A&M at Texas A&M.

Music News: So, Summer is concert season right…so I have already bought some tickets to see Built to Spill in Sacramento in July and put a Rocky Votalato and Dave Hause concert in SF on the calendar for August. Jason Isbell is also playing in Reno August 9th and I haven’t got tickets yet but I am sure I will.…I also put a bunch of local chico bands that I like on the calendar for local shows. Also my new band Royal Oaks is recording in June and should start playing some shows in June/July around chico…so lots of music over the next few months.

Also some new albums coming out I am fired up about. Jason Isbell has a new album “Something more then Free” coming out July 17. Great summer driving music, The Chris Robinson Brotherhood has a new album coming out tomorrow June 2, just in time for long summer road trips.

Friday, May 15, 2015

All the things I write about...fishing, sports, music.

One of my favorite times of year is May…Shad fishing, top water bass fishing, smallmouth fishing, carp come off the spawn at the end of the month…Trout fishing on the North Fork Feather is prime and the weather is AMAZING. Warm days, cool evenings and nights…just perfect. All that said I have been spending lots of time on the water guiding and with my kids fishing and enjoying May…Good news is it is not even half over yet.

If you would like me to take you fishing, share knowledge about fishing/rivers/and how to catch them with fur and feather along with hearing my opinions on baseball and music here are my available dates…

Open Dates:
June: 10-12, 17, 18, 22, 29, 30
July: 6, 9, 10, 12, 14, 17, 19-23
August: 5, 6, 8, 9, 22, 23
September: 5-7, 19, 26, 


I have been spending all my time on the Lower Sacramento outside of Chico. This is prime Shad, Largemouth, and Smallmouth time on the Lower Sac. Shad fishing has been good to great some nights. It definitely has gotten going early this year by about a week or two. Water temps are mid to high 60’s already and flows are around 5500cfs. Best bit has been about 5pm to 7pm on most nights and on most nights by 730pm it is nearly impossible to get a grab. Most of the shad are medium to larger males. I have yet see what I would call a “big” female.
lots of shad around on the Lower Sac lately 
Most evenings with clients we have been fishing for shad from about 5-7pm and then throwing top water for bass from about 7pm-8pm. Topwater bass fishing has been exceptionally good with good numbers of fish in the 1-5lbs range. The sloughs have a bit of color in them and weeds are not up yet so fishing tight to the banks and timber has been best. As usual big frog patterns striped aggressively is catching the most fish. Some just crush it and some come up and inspect and count legs and then turn or sip…had a few monster come and inspect and turn away already this year.

Even smaller bass eat frogs..s

Nice Sac Slough bass on top

Eat your meat TINA!!! 
This guy beat out a MONSTER for the frog...fun when two fish compete of your fly
Stripers, Smallmouth, and Carp have been hard to come by. I am having trouble finding the smallmouth…still might be a bit early but not sure. Midmay is usually go time for smallie fishing. The Stripers I think are fat and happy digesting small male shad so tough to get a grab on a clouser. Carp are rolling in the sloughs and back waters which usually means they are spawning and not interested in eating. Prime Striper Time is mid June - September

No Trout reports as I have not been on a piece of trout water in a few weeks.

Still rocking the new, yet to be released, Chuck Ragan Album, and the new Red City Radio CD…I did listen to a bit of the new Mumford and Son Cd on You tube and I was totally bummed….no bueno. Seems like a commercial sellout but who am I to judge.

The giants are playing well. Yes they are in 3rd place in the West, one game under .500, and 5 games back but they are playing good baseball. Their starting pitching has improved, situational hitting has been better – though the last week they have left A LOT of runs on the bases, runs they needed to win games, and Pence should get back soon providing a shot in the arm. The questions continue to rise about McGehee, how long is the leash with a .187 average after 27 games that and Duffy is hitting .297 with 25 games played and lately has been clutch.
The news of Everet Golson transferring came as a bit of surprise but not really I guess after the bowl game against LSU last year and Kelly not naming a starter yet. I am a bit bummed as he seemed to have potential but I have to remind myself of sitting in the bleachers at last years ASU game, watching the turn overs ALL season, and wanting kill him on many Saturdays.  Zaire is a good QB and with Golson transferring now Zaire will get all the work from here on out. Plus he will be with us for 2-3 more years. I respect Golson for graduating from ND and coming back after the academic suspension…anyone that gets a degree from ND and manages to play sports has my respect. He was a good player and helped turn ND back into a national power so good luck to him.