Trip Report Eastern Sierras day 3- dry fly debauchery

Discussion in 'Trip Reports with Pics' started by stilly stalker, Sep 28, 2017.

  1. stilly stalker

    stilly stalker Tuna sniffer

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    IMG_4367.JPG IMG_4360.JPG IMG_4357.JPG For the last day of fishing I hit the San Joaquin river in devils post pile national monument....

    Woah, what an amazing place. The hiking and scenery were jaw dropping, and the dry fly fishing was phenomenal - my best day of dry fly fishing ever. They weren't big- 10" browns and 8-10" bows, but they were rising like mad and targeting different hatches which made things very fun.
    I'd fish a run with a larger pale mayfly dry - size 12- and pick off the browns, then switch over to a size 16 Adams and catch the bows.
    I am a steelheader and saltwater fisher primarily and have never seen a scenario like this before.
    I fished a single 50 yard section of river and caught maybe 13 or 14 trout- mostly browns. Never experienced trout fishing like this before. I was bridge spotting risers and then picking them off - but the meadow section above the bridge was by far the best, most amazing trout creek fishing I've ever seen.
    So so so happy with my Sage SLT 389 - the perfect small trout dry fly rod. Paired with the Rio Grand 3 wt line it's the most effortless rod I own now and it's definitely my new go to trout rod.

    My Sierras trip is come to an end but I will be back many many times. Sorry for the lack of pics here, I was too busy CRUSHING it.
     
  2. yellowlab03

    yellowlab03 Active Member

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    I grew up on the lower San Joaquin. We would hit the mountains 4 or 5 times a year when I was a kid and fish the Tuolumne, Stanislaus, Merced, San Joaquin and Clavey. Man I miss that area!
     
  3. 4sallypat

    4sallypat Active Member

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    Beautiful !
    Great report.

    Never been to the Devil's Postpile NM yet...

    Sounds like the smaller fish were really hungry as the river is in the headwaters where food sources are not as abundant as the Owens where you really have to match the feeding of the bigger fish....
     
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  4. stilly stalker

    stilly stalker Tuna sniffer

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    There were actually at least 3 hatches going on simultaneously while I was there. A large pale mayfly, a BWO or similar, and midges sporadically and goddard caddis.
    The browns were taking the larger mayflies, the bows the BWO, and perhaps the midges. The bows proved to be very finicky about presentation, drift and fly choice, despite being small. Caddis hatch was sporadic, and I wasnt using a caddis pattern, but the browns probably would have played along.

    I was actually planning to fish the upper Owens the day I fished the San Joaquin, but my guide from the day before convinced me to go elsewhere. None of the larger migratory fish from Crowley were up yet, and although people had SOME success recently on the UO, the fishing was inconsistent.
    Ill be heading back to the UO in a month or so to try and get the bruiser lahontans, and browns that should be in there. Bows come up later in the winter and Ill likely be back for them then as well since its not THAT bad of a drive for me to get there.
     
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  5. Gyrfalcon2015

    Gyrfalcon2015 Wild Trout forever

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    Great report!
     
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  6. 4sallypat

    4sallypat Active Member

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    The dry fly fishing was definitely very new for me this year - first time to try it out after years of subsurface fishing.

    I can now see why anglers can get addicted to dry fly fishing and only do dries.

    Like you as well, I am a salmon and steelheader but with the recent slump in anadromous fishing in the PNW, I have switched over from tight line, dredging and swinging big flies subsurface to floating small flies, skating dries, drifting, and hopper fishing on the top water.

    I'll be on the Owens for winter fishing in a few months when my club switches over to nymph fishing on tiny #18 zebra midges.

    But before that, I get to try dry fly fishing out next week on the Mo river in MT. That will be a a new experience - fall fishing on dries using a spey rod.... Just not looking forward to fishing from a drift boat.
    I'm a wade type angler so trout spey on dries will be a new style....
    Will report back on the trip...
     
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  7. stilly stalker

    stilly stalker Tuna sniffer

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    If you time the Owens right, you can get all 3 of the migrations at once apparently. Sounds like you might be timed perfectly.
     
  8. caljah

    caljah Member

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    Awesome report

    Thank you
     
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  9. PV_Premier

    PV_Premier Member

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    welcome to the mountains. when you time it right, and are on the right stretch of water, you can really pile on the numbers. i've had 100 fish days on certain rivers when things are really popping in spring. they aren't big, but they sure are beautiful, and the scenery doesn't hurt either.