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by Miles Zimmerman

Big Truckee Fishing Report and Forecast

The flows on the Truckee continue to come up this week – and with warm weather in the forecast – it doesn’t look like its going to let up any time soon. Usually during times of run-off on the Truckee, fishing larger bugs will be best. Using Skwala patterns to imitate both the nymphs and adults will continue to be a great option in coming weeks. These early season stoneflies are the first big bug of the spring and tend to hatch off steadily over a month or longer instead of coming off heavily for a few weeks like other hatches. We recommend using them as your “attractor nymph” when hatches aren’t present. When you observe fish taking them off the top, try switching over to and adult dry Skwala pattern with a midge or BWO nymph dropper. If you see fish taking dries and are unsure if it’s a Skwala they’re after, a good way to tell would be if the rise was splashy and aggressive it was likely a Skwala. They tend to sip mayflys and midges much more leisurely, whereas these stoneflies are not a meal they wish to pass up and they are usually willing to put in the extra bit of energy to secure this large snack. 

skwala stone dry flies

Other good go-to’s during spring runoff will be worms and eggs as well as general purpose nymphs such as copper johns, prince nymphs, bird’s nests and hare’s ears to name a few. Keep in mind that these fish are really looking for profile of the bug and a good drift first with size, color and tippet diameter being less important this time of year due to the turbidity of the water. Streamer fishing is a great way to move some of the larger fish as well and going big this time of year will be best. When streamer fishing, be prepared to cover a lot of water for fewer grabs but never let your guard down and stay attentive for when lightning strikes! Don’t forget to carry split shot and stouter tippet this time of year to get it down and be able to turn large fish before they get into that fast water. Use this off-color water to your advantage, 3x and 4x tippets will be perfect for your larger bugs and 1x or 2x is the way to go for your streamers.

Recommended Flies for the Truckee River

Pat’s rubberlegs in brown or olive #8-#10, Gilligan’s skipper stone skwala #10, tungsten trout retrievers in chocolate or black #8, Jigged Biot Poxy Back Stone in Dark #8, T’s Stone in Light #8, T.J. Hookers in brown #6, San Juan Worms in red or pink #12, Flexy Floss Worms in red or pink #12, Gummy Worms in red or pink #12, Globugs in orange, peach or pink #12-#14, Unreal Eggs in pink or orange #12, Zebra Midges in red or black #16-#18, Prince Nymphs #12-#16, Copper Johns in black or red #16, Bird’s Nest in olive #14-#16, Hare’s Ear in natural or olive #14-#16, Pheasant Tails in #14-#16, Madam X’s in black or olive #8-#10, Stimulators in black #8-#10, Flush Floater Stones in skwala #8, Double Dutch Bugs in peacock #8, Para BWO’s #16-#18, Griffith’s Gnats #16-#18.

Little Truckee River Fly Fishing Report and Forecast

The Upper Section of the Little Truckee still seems to be slow with hatches of BWO’s and midges being inconsistent. Those euro nymphing are finding decent action using midges, BWO’s, worms and some Skwala nymphs. Even with the sporadic top-water bite we still recommend taking the time to set up your dry fly rod at the car and carry both with you so you’re not kicking yourself if and when the hatches start. As usual, fish are sitting in a variety of water here so fish it all. If it looks like it could hold a fish, it probably does. Even with the increase in flows a few weeks back we still suggest using 6x tippet here, fluorocarbon when nymphing and monofilament when throwing dries. Fishing at the Boca inlet remains steady for indicator fishing or using BWO and midge dries when hatches are present. As the lake continues to rise these conditions can change quickly, so feel free to call the shop for the latest info for here. Access here is mostly open at this point but still use caution when traveling back here as the road can be icy with patches of snow and keep in mind there is limited cell reception back here.

Recommended Flies For The Little Truckee

Zebra Midges in red or black #18-#22, BH Wing Midges in gray or black #20-#22, Split Case BWO’s #18-#20, Juju Baetis in baetis, purple or camo #18-#20, Olive Mic Drops #18-#20, Jigged Baetis #18, Flexy Floss Worms in red or pink #12, San Juan Worms in red or pink #12, Rio’s Worm Farms in red or pink #12-#14, Pat’s Rubberlegs in brown or olive #10-#12, Jigged Poxy Back Stone Dark #8, T’s Stone Light #8, Pheasant Tails #18-#20, Copper johns in black or red #18, Prince Nymphs #18, Para BWO’s #18-#20, Mole Flies in BWO #18-#20, Hackle Stackers in BWO #18-#20, RS2’s in olive or gray #18-#20, Palomino Midges in black or red #18-#20, Griffith’s Gnats in #18-#22, dandelion Emergers in RS2 #20-#22, stimulators in black #10

Pyramid Lake Fly Fishing Report and Forecast

It seems like the anglers having the most consistent success out here are opting to fish with midges under an indicator. Often resorting to using sizes #10-#14, much smaller sizes than would be typical for out here. When fishing such small flies for such large fish it can be quite the recipe for disaster as hooks in this size simply won’t have the same holding power and you are also forced to lighten up your tippet to properly present them as well. If you are a fly tyer, one trick to help with this is to tie your size 12 or 14 midges on a larger hook (#8-#10) and yet another way to go is to skip the indicator all together and stick with stripping streamers! While the indicator bite may be more consistent the streamer bite has still been pretty fair and the grab on the streamer can be very satisfying. Using the bugger beetle combo or mixing it up with a booby fly has been working quite well and larger sculpin or trout patterns are definitely putting fish in the net as well. If it’s your first time visiting this lake please feel free to stop in or give us a call for any further questions concerning the gear, fly selection and approach for out here and don’t forget to read our extensive write up on Pyramid on our website.

Recommended Flies for Pyramid Lake

Albino Winos #10, Cutbait Midges #8-#12, Ice Cream Cone Midges in red or black #10-#12, Moo Midges in Wine #8, Midnight Cowboys #6, Estaz Woolly Worms in Pearl or chartreuse #6, Pyramid Beetles in Chartreuse/White or Black #8, Booby Flies in Chartreuse/White #8, BH Woolly Buggers in olive, white or black #8, Conehead Ziwi’s in olive or white #6, Mini Loop Sculpins in natural #8, Swim Coaches in gray #2x#4   

If you haven't had a chance to read our 4-part series about fishing at Pyramid Lake, check out the page on the website for the when, what, where and how. 

Thanks again for reading our report and supporting our little shop. Spring is here and the weather change is going to make things very exciting out there. Keep on posting your shots and tagging us too.

Oh yah - one more thing. We will be starting a Fly Tying series on April 8th. This first one will be a getting started class for those new to fly tying. We'll be going over the basics and doing a couple of popular Truckee river patterns. Call the shop to reserve your space!


Tight lines! - Miles

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