Truckee River and Pyramid Lake Fly Fishing Report April 15, 2022
by Miles Zimmerman
A late spring storm made its way through the area this week and with it dropped around 6-8 inches of snow here in town and an estimated 2 feet along some of our peaks. As the brunt of the storm has now pushed through, the storm window remains open over the next week with some smaller squalls in the forecast. We couldn’t be happier to see some more precipitation and cooler weather patterns to keep conditions on our rivers viable for longer, even if it’s only adding a few more days of fishable temps, we’ll take it! We strongly encourage you to take advantage of the spring and early summer here in our area as we will once again see warm and low water conditions later in the summer, this is pretty much a guarantee as we are sitting at only 30% of normal for the middle of April. Luckily with the number of excellent still water fishing opportunities in our area, a savvy angler can always find good fishing in the Sierra all year long.
Winter fishing on the big Truckee from Jason Shields
Truckee River Fly Fishing Report and Forecast
Snowy weather and cooler temps have helped slow the early runoff on the Truckee from its highest point of flows in the canyon, dropping from over 1,000 CFS to around 850 now. This would have been a greater decrease, but we’ve seen the Water Master now let more water out of Lake Tahoe increasing from 70 CFS to 200, creating more consistent flows along the entire river. We hope to see this push some fish up along the higher stretches of the Truckee along 89 South, as thus far this spring that stretch has been fishing poorly due to low flows and likely also in part to it going dry in the fall causing not only a possible loss of fish populations but also bug life.
With the tapering off of snowmelt and the increase of the notoriously clear water out of Lake Tahoe, we anticipate that the smaller bugs will become increasingly effective once again, especially from Tahoe City to Glenshire Drive. Make sure you have a good selection of baetis nymphs in sizes 16-20 and midge larvae in an 18-22 in addition to your larger attractors such as brown stoneflies in 8-10 for a Skwala imitation, worm patterns, eggs and crawdads when nymphing. With the larger flows we are seeing right now also make sure you have ample split shot on your line to get your flies in front of the fish and slow down your drifts, this is probably the single most common mistake we see from anglers when fishing this river.
Kimmel with a sweet birthday treat
The streamer bite remains steady during this time and larger olive sculpin patterns remain king, but expect only a handful of grabs over the day and be on it when they happen as it will likely be a bruiser, and for god’s sake don’t fish anything below a 2x! As days get longer and temps begin to warm back up next week, look for the morning bite to get better as an earlier start can be advantageous to ensure you’re the first one presenting flies to any given fish that day. In case you haven’t heard we have now shifted to our summer hours, and we are now open from 7-7 daily, so grab a coffee next door stop on in and get the latest before you head out for the day.
A shot from our Provo trip last week
Little Truckee Fly Fishing Report and Forecast
The Little Truckee has seen another bump in flows and is up from 100 CFS last week to 150 CFS today. This is great news for the rainbow trout spawn and let’s keep our finger crossed that these flows remain consistent for another month or greater to give these fish ample areas to do the deed and we don’t see a drastic drop in flows to leave any spawning beds high and dry. As expected with the increase to 100 CFS last week we have heard many reports of fish starting their spawn up here and during this time we highly encourage you to fish elsewhere to give these fish space. If you are still opting to fish here, please do your part to familiarize yourself with the behavior of spawning trout and be sure to avoid these fish at all costs to ensure future populations of wild trout in our beloved waters.
When you see this sign on the LT, please give the fish a break!
While we feel the best policy is to stay off the river during this time, it is not technically illegal and there are still ethical ways to fish here over the next month. If you have any questions on this please don’t hesitate to ask, we are happy to help as we feel we have a unique opportunity in the education of stewardship in our community.
Pyramid Lake Fly Fishing Report and Forecast
With last week’s cold front moving through the area, the bite at Pyramid seemed to slow initially due to the drastic temperature change, but as the weather begins to warm back up and the barometric pressure remains low, we expect some good days out here this week. While you may initially think that Pyramid always fishes well during stormy weather, this time of year can be different and these big shifts in weather patterns can throw the fish off for a few days, but once settled in the bite will resume as normal. We are also in the spawning time out here and the fishing will typically slow for the month of April, but there are certainly still fish to be had and with the thinning crowds this is a great time to get a little breathing room while still finding some decent fishing. Although it’s rare to see larger fish this time of year, the numbers can still be there and with pleasant weather and light crowds, this is actually one of our favorite times to camp out here even if we aren’t catching the show-stoppers seen on Instagram during the winter. Stripping streamers will become very effective over the next month as well as using midges under an indicator in 3-8 feet of water depending on the drop off you are fishing.
If you haven’t heard, we will be moving the shop one door down to a larger space. It will be some time before we technically make the move – but we’re working on plans and adding to our orders to fill the space for the summer. We will have room for more events too, so keep your calendar open! Thanks for supporting your dedicated local fly shop.
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