Truckee Tahoe Fly Fishing Report October 29, 2021
by Miles Zimmerman
The water has stabilized this week in our area and it’s definitely game-on on the Truckee! With some mild weather and beautiful fall colors, the next few weeks will likely be some of the best fishing of the year.
The Truckee River Fly Fishing Report and Forecast
After last week’s major storm system, the Truckee River and its tributaries got the recharge they severely needed and in turn we have seen some incredible fishing this week. The flows have begun to stabilize, and the Truckee is now right around its 100-year average, but a good winter will still be necessary to keep this river fishing well during the warmer months of the year so let continue to pray for snow.
The river continues to run off-color in most sections and in another week or so we should see it begin to run clear again, but until then we suggest using “grabbier” attractor nymphs such as stoneflies, October caddis, worms, eggs and larger baetis patterns in a sizes 14-16. We have also seen the best streamer fishing of the year this week as we have the combination of fall weather, a good tint to the water and eager fish after the low water conditions. We recommend using small sculpin patterns in the 2–4-inch range in olive, black, white, or natural using either a traditional steelhead type swing or dead drifting them on a tightline set up. We have been finding fish in surprisingly fast-moving water even though water temps are currently in the low 40’s so be sure to fish any riffles, seams off boulders or the heads of any pools as well as the typical bubble lines and tail-outs.
If you aren’t finding fish in one type of water, keep on adjusting where you’re fishing until you see a pattern and stick with it, chances are where you find one fish there will be others not only in the same type of water but often in the same exact run. With the low water clarity right now, the fish are less on edge, and you can more effectively fish one run for a longer period without putting them down. The other great thing about the off-color water is you can now get away with stouter tippet, and we recommend using 2x-3x tippet when nymphing or 12-15 pound test when chucking streamers, trust us, the fish won’t mind and you’ll lose a lot less flies and fish!
The Little Truckee Fly Fishing Report and Forecast
Access on the Little Truckee will be slightly limited this week as there are still some patches of snow and ice on the road, we recommend having a 4WD vehicle with moderate clearance if heading out here, but with warm weather this weekend and some warm storm systems expected next week we access to stay open here in the coming weeks. The water on the Little Truckee remains at 30 CFS and this low water will make the fish particularly picky, so having a good assortment of spring creek type flies and 6x tippet will be necessary for a successful day out here. The main bugs will be midges, BWO’s, artificial worms and eggs and having an accurate selection of midges and BWO’s in all life cycles is incredibly important when fishing here. Often times, using unweighted nymphs such as WD40’s, bubble back midges, or small pheasant tails (just to name a few!) and adding split shot to your line will far succeed using bead head nymphs. When dry fly fishing, focus on fishing emerger patterns instead of using adults. Lastly, always remain stealthy when approaching a new run, these fish heavily rely on their eyesight to avoid predation and staying low and moving slow is probably the single biggest factor to success here, especially given the current low water.
Pyramid Lake Fly Fishing Report and Forecast
The shore fishing at Pyramid continues to improve as water temps drop. Fish are being caught both on the indicator and on the strip from shore, but for now fast sinking lines seem to be king. On days with good weather we still recommend using a float tube or boat, but please be sure to keep an eye out on the forecast, watch for any changes in the weather when fishing and always wear a PFD!
The bait balls of tui-chub seem to be mostly done, but the tui-chub remains the main forage of fall and using heavy streamers in olive over white will still be best for the next few weeks. The go-to’s such as midnight cowboys, boobies and beetles will surely put fish in the next too, be sure to give them a long soak however, as fish are still in deep water. Try using a counting system when sinking your flies to get consistent results. With the amount of water coming into the lake from this last storm we expect to affect the near-by southern beaches, but one thing we’ve learned about Pyramid over the years is you can never know what to expect out here and it pays to be adaptive. Our instinct is this will improve fishing at beaches such as popcorn or wino, but it’s certainly a toss-up.
Finally, We only have a few spots left for our fly tying class on November 11th from 6-8pm, this will be a more a beginner oriented class for must have flies for Pyramid Lake, it will be $25 for all materials, and we can include a basic vise and tools for the day if you do not have any. Please feel free to call the shop with any questions and we look forward to seeing you!
- Miles, Trout Creek Outfitters