Truckee River and Pyramid Lake Fly Fishing Report for March 25, 2022
by Miles Zimmerman
As the days get longer and we begin to see temperatures stay above freezing, we have seen the river begin to swell with the early stages of spring runoff this week. The small storm expected early next week will only slightly delay this and around the middle of the week we will be right back to warmer weather which should continue this trend.
What does this mean for the fishing? Well, at first you might think it would make fishing the rivers more difficult, and in some ways it does. But what runoff can also do is move the biggest fish out of their favorite lies as the water conditions change and the current increases. When this happens, these fish are forced to look for any suitable slow water where they aren’t working too hard to feed, often this suitable water will be close to the bank and out of the main current in the middle of the river. Another fun part about fishing during spring runoff is that you can now change your bug selection and try using attractor nymphs such as stoneflies, worms, eggs, crawdads or swinging streamers and leave the zebra midges and BWO emergers in the fly box, and don’t forget to upsize your tippet as well! We love spring fishing in the Sierra and we encourage you to put in a good effort of fishing this time of year as our low snowpack will likely limit fishing opportunities later in the season.
Truckee River Fly Fishing Report and Forecast
With the flows on the river in an upward trend, conditions are changing on a daily basis and adjusting tactics may be necessary from day to day or even over the course of your outing. Adding more and more split shot and fishing more attractors and less smaller bugs will be the name of the game over the coming weeks as both the water flows and the water temps rise, and the fish really begin to put on the feed bags. Look for areas of soft water where fish can sit out of the main current and feed without putting in too much effort. Walking or jogging pace water, and in particular behind boulders or drop offs where a cushion of slower water can be found.
The Glenshire stretch seems to be running mostly clear as of now and using small bugs up this way may remain necessary, but the lower river below the Boca confluence will be a different story. Attractors fished under an indicator or tight line set up well be a great way to find fish right now, and we expect the dry fly bite to get less productive as flows come up and the water gains some color, but the deep pools may still see some action on hatches of midges, Skwalas and BWO’s for the adamant dry fly angler, and a Skwala dry with a dropper can still be an excellent way to fish those soft edges during runoff.
Little Truckee Fly Fishing Report and Forecast
With patches of snow on Stampede Dam Rd. and continued low flows out of the reservoir, the Little Truckee has limited fishing right now. We have yet to see the typical springtime bump in flows out of Stampede as they continue to attempt to fill this large reservoir. We expect that when flows return to average (at least 60, but we like 100+) that the river will once again be fishing well, but as of now with limited drive-in access and low flows we are suggesting to fish elsewhere during this time.
Pyramid Lake Fly Fishing Report and Forecast
Pyramid saw an off week of fishing with warm days and little to no wind. In another few weeks as the fish get closer to their annual spawn, we should see the weather become less of a factor on the fishing but as of now the stormy, overcast days continue to be your best bet. With that said, this small storm expected on Sunday and Monday will almost certainly improve the bite and if you’re looking to get out here, these will be the days to make it happen. We’ve seen the indicator bite switch mostly to bugs at this point and having a good array of sizes, shapes, and colors of midges will be increasingly important as we come into spring. We do also catch them on other bugs such as Maholo Nymphs, Copper Johns dragonflies and even worms and eggs as we get further into spring, so don’t be afraid to mix it up if nothing seems to be working. The streamer bite seems to still be best during low light hours, as the trout are more willing to chase bigger offerings when the sun is off the water. This too will change as we get further into spring and site casting to fish using small, natural streamers can be a really fun way to fish for those seemingly tight-lipped fish cruising in the shallows. Most beaches have been fishing ok, and while it’s impossible to deny that the middle of the lake seems to be fishing the most consistently, big fish can still be found anywhere in this lake, and we encourage you to spread out and try some of the quieter beaches for a more enjoyable day as beaches like pelican and the nets have been shoulder to shoulder.
Thanks to Jason Shields for sharing some of his amazing photos with us again this year. We appreciate all the community support from our customers and guides. Stop by the shop and say hello anytime.