Sunday, September 7, 2014

September Striper fishing on the Lower Sacramento

September striper fishing on the Lower Sac can be some of the best of the year. While numbers are not huge it is when we get the most shots throughout the day at "Big Fish". Fish seem to concentrate and school up and while the bigger 20lb fish may follow your fly inevitably a nice 8-10lber will rush out and grab it. That happen to me today over and over and over...while I am not complaining every time I had a big fish in my sights a "smaller" fish would rush out and grab the fly away from it. Only a matter of time before one of the big hogs eats the fly though...Here are some pics and if anyone wants to get out fishing should be good through september.

Open dates September 13, 14, 20, 21, 27

Monday, September 1, 2014

Reports, Tunes, Sports...all the things we labor for.

So I am going to try to up date my blog a bit more often here…So fall is definitely on its way. Dove season opens today, deer season is open in some places, people are salmon fishing, and I even pegged my first bead this weekend. Here is what is happening and what I see coming up… 
Lower Yuba River – Remember The upper river above the highway 20 bridged is closed until dec.1. The flows have dropped down to 747cfs and are still dropping, not sure what the final flow is for this “Fall Drop” but I would imagine 700cfs is most likely. The river through Marysville is 533cfs. This is kind of a double edge sword…the fish that have not moved up river yet will struggle coming up the river at 533cfs but the ones that are up in the river and will be spawning here very shortly and will not see their beds de-watered and left high and dry with a flow drop. Bottom line, hope for a big winter and some early rain. The fishing should get REALLY good here over the next few weeks. The Lower Yuba sees the fall egg bit first, usually the last two weeks of September first week of October and this flow drop will really get things going on the Yuba with regards to the egg bite.
Lower Sacramento Trout – Trout fishing on the L. Sac has been fair to good. Being on the “right float on the right day” is key but there is no control over that. I floated a few different stretches lately and had fair to good fishing on all of them…some days are better “big fish days” others are better  “number days” just depends. Salmon seem to be MIA as salmon fishing pressure up through the barge area is pretty light. I did see a full parking lot at Woodson Bridge though on the way up river the other day so maybe the bulk of fish is down lower still. The word on the street is that the river should be dropping to 3200cfs by Oct 1, this is crazy low but again very similar to the Yuba in that atleast the spawning salmon won’t get their beds left high and dry. Look for the egg bit to get going mid to late October and the steelhead fishing to get going in the lower river around the same time.
Lower Sac Striper – Striper fishing remains pretty good. Getting away from the salmon anglers is key but there some really big fish around. Striper fishing can remain good through October or until the river blows out. Just seems that most people loose interest or focus on the fall trout and steelhead fishing or turn to the delta for stripers.
Sept 7, 13, 14, 20, 21, 27
Oct 19, 25
Nov 22, 24-26, 30
Dec 20, 21, 27-31
Jan 2, 4-10, 17-19, 24, 25
Feather River – Most of the salmon guides I know have been over on the Feather leading me to believe there is some good numbers moving up river. The Flows remain at 1150 in the low flow,  600cfs coming out of the afterbay, 1750cfs total high flow. Good flows for moving fish up river. I would imagine that steelhead fishing should start picking up here mid sept with the prime time being mid October through November. Key to fishing early is staying below the salmon and looking for the steelhead below the riffles that are kegged up with salmon.
 Sports Report – Gotta love the start of college football season, fantasy season, and the fact that the giants are playing SOLID! Coming off of a sweep of the Brewers and heading into a week where they play the Rockies 4 times and then off to Detroit which will be a real test. Notre Dame looked great in their opener against Rice and it is fun to watch the spread offense with a QB that actually poses a run threat…sorry Tommy I love ya but you are not a run threat. Next weeks Michigan game is a huge game for the Irish and one that is always a huge event at the Brown house. Fantasy season…year 3 of the fly guides fantasy league draft is in the books and I am going to try to not come in second to last this year.
Beer News…the fall sampler is out from Sierra Nevada and the Octoberfest is so good…I have had this beer plenty of times at Octoberfest and around town on tap but I can’t remember a time they bottled it. The other beers in the pack are the Tumber Autumn Brown which is a good and some Viena beer that is OK…the Octoberfest over shadow all of them. I also had the Anchorsteam IPA in bottle recently, I reall really thought this was a great beer…Nice classic anchorsteam flavor with an IPA. Good stuff. 
Tunes – The new Gas Light Anthem CD is GREAT! I love this band and this album is a real departure from their last few but also has so much of their classic sound tied in. A real evolution I think for them. To be honest I am still really digesting it all as it is a beast at 16 tracks and has a lot of different types of songs and sounds…Also picked up the new Chuck Ragan CD “Till Midnight”, Chuck is the long time front man for Hot Water Music who if you great up listening to punk, emo, hardcore in the late ‘90s to early ‘00s need no explanation. His solo stuff is different but the same heart felt, chest pulling tunes you come to expect.

 Fly news…I also saw the first page of the new Montana Fly Co. Catalog with my flies in it, new patterns and old patterns coming VERY soon so stay tuned for more…here is a sneak peak.

Monday, August 25, 2014


Lower Sac Summer Striper from last week

September is going to be a wild card this year as we are on the back end of the driest water year that I can remember and while drought/water shortage is a real issue there is still going to be some good fishing this september.

Sept. 6, 7, 13, 14, 20, 21, 27, 
Oct. 19, 25
Nov 1, 11, 22, 24-26, 29, 30, 
Dec 20, 21, 27-31
Jan 2, 4-10, 17-19, 24, 25, 

Stripers - Water temps remain in the mid 60's to Low 70's on the Lower Sac outside of chico and while flows are low fishing has remained fair to good on any given day. Lots of small fish with some nice mid size fish mixed in. On most days we are getting a shot at a "big" fish in the 10+lb category with a few in the 20+lb range. There is a healthy population of resident fish in the Sac and while numbers of fish are not always the reward there is a shot at some BIG fish. 

Lower Yuba River - Spent a day this weekend on the Lower Yuba and fishing was fair. Flows have dropped to 1200cfs and should drop again here shortly. I did see a pod of salmon moving up river in the lower river and a few stray fish shooting through the riffles in the upper river. We did catch a few nice fish in the 14-16" range on nymphs. Most of fish were caught on rubber legs, red copper johns, and birds nest. Nothing seemed to be the "hot fly" is seemed it was more about finding feeding fish. There were a few caddis fluttering around but only saw a few fish rise throughout the day and nothing constant, typical Yuba one and done fish. Fish seemed to be spread out in the shallows, holes, and runs...not much of a pattern as to where we caught fish. Seemed to be when the fish were hungary we caught them first pass through the run. Changing flies, weights, drops, etc didn't seem to matter. Traditionally the egg bite here starts the last week or two of september so plan accordingly. 

Lower Sac Trout and Steelhead - With warmer water temps in the Lower river the salmon are not holding up, they are shooting up river to find cooler water, moving what salmon are in the river into the upper reaches from Bend up. Trout fishing I have heard has been good and I imagine that with the warmer lower river water temps the steelhead are moving up river quickly as well. Late September and early October should be good this year but the word is the bulk of the salmon run is still hanging out in the ocean waiting for cooler water temps....maybe a two stage egg bite or just a late one this year. Flows are suppose to drop to 3500 as of Oct 1...this is really low but it is good that the flows are dropping early to avoid dewatering salmon reds like last year. 

Lower Feather River - Salmon are in and flows in the Low Flow are 1300cfs and the High Flow is 1700cfs...pretty skinny in the high flow but I think this is the new norm with low water in the lake and the busted up power house. September is a great time to catch a fresh king on the swing or look for some early steelhead. In the High Flow crowds can be an issue but there is plenty of room for everyone as many salmon anglers congregate in specific spots and with the increased flows in the Low Flow boats and wader fishermen have plenty of room.  I expect the steelhead fishing should start picking up the first week of October. f

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Fall and Winter Dates

Fall and Winter Dates

Summer is still going strong but it is time to plan for the fall. 

This fall I will guiding the Lower Yuba, Lower Feather, and Lower Sacramento Rivers, along with Butte Creek this winter given we get some rain. October - Jan offers great fall/winter trout and steelhead fishing on all the valley rivers. Available dates are listed below. Look them over and book early as dates are already filling up. 

Oct: 4, 5, 18, 19, 25, 26
Nov: 22-26, 29, 30
Dec: 20-23, 27-31
Jan: 2-11, 17-19, 24, 25, 31
* Blog Post full of reports and normal ramblings coming soon...

Friday, August 1, 2014

Summer Heat...

So it is HOT out…like really hot out and there is no relief in sight. I personally don’t mind the heat but it does affect the fish that I like to chase at times. I apologize for the lack of posts but between fishing, guiding, and vacationing time has been thin…So here is a catch up.

Most of my time has been spent guiding on the Lower Sac for Stripers…Fishing has been hit and miss as the bigger fish seem to have gotten a bit lethargic with the heat. The last few days it has been tough to get the big fish to eat. I have seen them and found them up on the flats but getting them to eat has been tough. Earlier this week we hooked a few big fish and lost them but the last few days have been mainly shaker and small schoolie fish and the only thing different is the heat…that said stripers are weird and can shut down and turn on day to day. Boat traffic has been pretty minimal as salmon fishing from what I have seen and heard is TERRIBLE outside of chico, ca as most fish are just blasting up river to find cooler water. Hopefully we will get some relief from the heat soon and fishing will pick up again.

Lower Yuba River – I guided the Lower Yuba river one day this last week and fishing was fair. We got smaller fish in the morning around the top of the float and found some bigger fish mid float to lower in the float. Most fish came on rubber legs and small mayfly nymphs. I didn’t see one fish rise or any hoppers around either. I imagine if one is willing to stay out past sunset there might be a caddis hatch or small PED hatch. The flows are good around 1500cfs and should remain this way until September. 

Lower Sacramento Trout – I guided Barge to Bend one day as well this last week and fishing was good in the morning but the bite got tough during the heat of the day. Most fish came on rubber legs and natural birds nests along with a new caddis pattern I am working on. Tried fishing Fox Poopa, Amber wing Princes, and a few smaller stone fly patterns with no luck.

BEER Report…
So, I totally dropped the ball on taking notes on every time I drank one of the beers from the Beer Camp Sampler…Bottom line on this was that most every beer in the 12 beer sampler was good…some were really good but none of them were beers I wouldn’t at least buy a 6 pack of. The newest beer outside of the beer camp 12 pack I have had is the Harvest Ale Single Hop IPA  - Equinox Hops, the 3rd beer in the Harvest Ale Series…pretty good beer not my favorite so far of the Harvest Series but pretty good. Also in other beer news the Flipside Red IPA is out but I have not had this years batch yet. Next stop at the store and I will pick some up.

The Giants… So they have won two in row after today…they got swept by the dodgers and played terrible against the Pirates. We are struggling, Cain needs surgery, we need a second basemen, we can’t hit…you name it. That said I am a fan and we are still a contender at this point.

Cool Experience...
I got to get on some private property on Butte Creek with my buddy John Sherman to help him photograph some of the rarest salmon around...Spring Run Salmon enter Butte Creek in March/April and spend all summer up in the Butte Creek Canyon without eating and then spawn in October/November. Pretty amazing to see these BIG fish up in tiny Butte Creek in July and know they have been in there sense the spring and they are still clean and healthy looking. Here are some pics John took...

Sunday, July 13, 2014

stripers, Trout, baseball, and beer...knowledge

It is the heart of summer here in Chico, CA…with weather to prove it. It has been a hot few weeks up here. Weather in the triple digits and high 90s have been the norm. With that comes good striper fishing, the opening of salmon season, and exoduses to the mountains or coast to escape the heat for most people….myself I embrace the heat and go striper fishing.

Striper fishing – Mid summer is prime striper time! I try to spend most of July –September chasing stripers on the Lower Sac from Butte City up through Los Molinos. Fishing so far has been good. There are plenty of “shakers” and “keeper” size fish with most days an angler on the boat will get a shot at a 10-20lb fish whether that is getting the fish to chase the fly to the boat, pull the fly out of the fisheses mouth right at the boat, hook and loose the fish, or if we are lucky land one. It just depends on the day it seems as to how the big fish behave.

Salmon season opens this coming week and that should change a few things on the river. From what I have heard the salmon run is going to be late this year with the low water which means warmer water, which from what some the guides I know have said will be a later run as the fish wait for colder water temps to move out of the day and up the river.  I am going to be taking the next week off and heading to Santa Cruz with the family as no matter how the fishing is or what the predictions are the river will be CROWDED for a few days until people realize there are no fish in the river yet. I will be back on the river on July 23 to see what is happening out there. As the salmon show up though most years we began to get more and more shots at bigger fish so if the beginning of the season is any indicator it should be a good year.

Trout Fishing…Lower Yuba: I did spend a day on the Lower Yuba this last week and it was a nice change of pace to get out and trout fish for a day. I would say the fishing was fair. The hooking of fish seemed to be fairly spaced out as we hooked fish in most runs. Seemed to hook smaller fish in the morning in the top part of the float and bigger fish during the afternoon lower in the float, I got no idea why. Fish seemed to be in the riffles and shallower water, we didn’t have much luck in the flats, most fish were up in the riffles or in some of the deeper slots. All our fish came on nymphs, S&M PMD nymphs, Brown and Coffee/black rubber legs, Hunch Back Flashback PT’s, and Olive Birds nest. I did have my clients throw some hoppers in a few of the best “hopper runs” I know of on the river and didn’t rise anyone. River is just about high enough to possibly move some fish into typical hopper water but I didn’t see one hopper. I also got out of the boat in a few spots I usually see hoppers most years and didn’t see any…I am not really sure how the whole hopper life cycle thing goes to be honest I just know that some years are really good hopper years on the Yuba some are terrible. Feast or famine for both the fly fishermen and trout.

Beer Report – I have been busy with the Sierra Nevada Beer Camp 12 back. Full of 12 different beers brewed in conjuncture with 12 different breweries. 12 different brewers came to Sierra Nevada and brewed these 12 different beers….I have been trying to drink 2 a night and take some notes on them…here is here I am so far.
Myron’s Walk a Belgian Style Pale Ale brewed with Corriander brewed with Allagash Brewing Company – This is the first beer I tried and I won’t lie…it didn’t do much for me. Tast like the title…like someone mixed a pale ale with a Belgian ale. Had a nice fruity after tast but I though there might be a bit more furit flavor to it. On first taste it is nearly impossible to detect. Makes me wonder what those east coaster are doing and what they consider a good beer.

Yvan the Great a Belgian Style Blonde brewed with Russian River Brewing Company Now this saved the first tasting from mediocrity. This thing is good. Nice Belgian style fruitieness but not enough to linger and a nice hoppie finish. Pretty obvious these guys have the IPA American Grown Hop brew down to a science. 2 beers in to the 12 pack this thing is going to be hard to beat. I would buy a 12 pack of this and could drink this session style or with a meal.

Chico King Pale brewed with 3 Floyds Brewery – Not bad…tastes like a milder Sierra Pale Ale with a little more fruity finish instead of the hoppy finish of Sierra Pale Ale…I would buy a 6 pack…maybe not a 12 pack. It doesn’t seem to have a lasting taste, good but not great.

Torpedo Pilsner Hoppy Pilsner brewed with Firestone Walker Brewing Co. – This one is a hoppy kinda fruity lager with a nice malt body to it. I really liked this one. The big deal on the label says that it uses New Zealand hops…not sure those taste but I like the beer. I could drink these a few in a row. Good beer.

Baseball – Yes I know the giants are struggling but they finished strong today by taking 2-3 from the AZ D-Backs. I could go on about all the giants problems but lets just keep it real and say on most nights they are down right terrible…like I can’t make it past 4 innings. The real thing that blows my mind that now ones talks about is that as bad as the giants are right now they are still holding pace with the Dodgers, only one game back from them in the NL West and tied in the National league wild card race with 3 other teams. Lets have a good All Star Break, get healthy, and make a run here July-Sept!

As always check HGB Fly Fishing out on all forms of social media


Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Last Minute Open dates July 11-13

Had this weekend open up last minute….

half day $325
Full day $425

Striper fishing on the Sac has been good. Trout fishing on the Yuba or Sac has been good as well. Dates are first come first serve. Email or call. 530-514-2453

….Normal Blog post full of useful information coming with in 48hours