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Lower Sac Fishing Reports

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Another annual "girls trip" is in the books.  The Sac has fished tough this summer, but I expect fishing to improve as the days continue to cool.  Fishing was fairly consistent all the way to Anderson.  Both hooked into some really large fish, as well as a number of "cookie cutter" fish.  The flows have been at 9,000 CFS for a few weeks now, but I expect them to start dropping again very soon.  We are closing in on October and that means the "egg bite" is right around the corner.  My schedule is filling fast, so now is the time to book your fall float on the Sac.   
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View All Reports by Brian Kohlman    |    View Brian Kohlman's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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I had the opportunity to guide Carl and Buck from Ventura today.  They began their road trip fishing the famed Green River for two days, and decided to finish it off floating the Lower Sac.  The fish were not super grabby, but both managed to hook fish pretty consistently throughout the day.  The good news is the egg bite is right around the corner AND these crazy hot temps we've been dealing with all summer should start to drop this week!
View All Reports by Brian Kohlman    |    View Brian Kohlman's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
Check out Ashland Fly Shop's new "Spey Fishing with Jon" video installment https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJf74AnyYAs. Jon Hazlett and Andrew Harris swing for trout on the Lower Sac and talk trout spey gear and technique.  If you're interested in trout spey on the Lower Sac, this video will answer a lot of questions you may have.
View All Reports by Andrew Harris    |    View Andrew Harris's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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What does a professional drone pilot do on his day off you might ask? Go fishing of course! Matt came up from Santa Barbara to help map the Lower Sac for salmon habitat (and a lot of other cool scientific that will help our local fisheries). 
We had pretty good luck working the side channels throwing small nymphs. Temps under 100° always help too! 



View All Reports by Sam Robinett    |    View Sam Robinett's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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I did a morning half-day on the Lower Sac today and fishing was good.  There were some very small mayflies around in the morning, but most of our fish were landed on stonefly nymphs.  Fishing pressure is pretty light below Anderson.  My client Dave landed a few nice fish in the 12-15" range and we had a lot of action on small fish, too.  I talked to some salmon fishermen who limited out today, so that was encouraging.
View All Reports by Andrew Harris    |    View Andrew Harris's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
Okay

Steve and I had an awesome time fishing two days together on the Lower Sac.   The first day we fished from Anderson River Park and took out at the Barge Hole down low.   The river fished good to great all day with constant action and no other boats on the river.   Steve caught a beauty below Cottonwood Creek in the clays.   On the second day, I made the mistake of taking us up top - fishing from Posse to Anderson.    I got my butt kicked but Steve did great - maximizing his opportunities and laughing the entire time.  

The lower Sac cookie-cutter (12 inch fish) all seem healthy but some of the larger trout (18-22 inches) can be pretty skinny probably due to last winter's floods that cleared-out a lot of the aquatic bug life in and around Redding.   If you catch a big one and want a photo opt, keep 'em wet as long as you can and be sure to revive 'em after!    

Thanks, Steve, for a great couple of days!     

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View All Reports by Tyler Lee    |    View Tyler Lee's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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I had the opportunity to take my jet boat out today with my very good client Dick.  Instead of fishing an indicator rig, he wanted to use his two-handed rod to swing for trout.  Other than the two salmon boats we saw this morning, we had the river to ourselves and were able to methodically fish some great runs.  We wet waded all day, so we were very comforatable as the temps reached 107 this afternoon.  The fish weren't super grabby, but Dick had some bumps and landed a nice Lower Sac rainbow on the swing!  Booking a Lower Sac Spey trip is a great way to spend the day on the river and refamiliarize yourself with your two-handed rod!  Fall is just around the corner - and so is steelhead season! 
View All Reports by Brian Kohlman    |    View Brian Kohlman's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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The good news is there didn't seem to be as many boats out today compared to Tuesday and Wednesday and the fish were much grabbier for us today. We had consistent hook-ups all day and both landed some really quality fish! We're in store for a slight cooling trend and the really hot weather will be ending soon and the egg bite will be here before we know! 
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Eric with his best of the day
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Sam with was pretty psyched to land this beauty!
View All Reports by Brian Kohlman    |    View Brian Kohlman's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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I was looking forward to fishing Greg and Drew on the newly reopened upper section - but it didn't fish as well as it had the past two years.  Typically, more fish are hooked above the Hwy-44 Bridge than below, but we actully hooked more below Hwy-44.  Greg and Drew landed some very nice fish and hooked several others, but I was disapointed.  The river was crowded, and I expect that to last for another week or two.  I'm not really sure why the fish are so tight-lipped - but I'm looking forward to giving it another try on Friday! 
View All Reports by Brian Kohlman    |    View Brian Kohlman's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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Today was the big "Re-Opener" on the Lower Sac, when the top 5 miles of river from Keswick Dam to the Highway 44 Bridge re-opens.  There is now an annual closure from April 1 to July 31 to protect spawning winter-run Chinook salmon on this short stretch of water.  The fish in this stretch are some of the biggest in the river and they usually get pretty fat and forget some of their wily habits during this break in fishing pressure. 

I'm not sure what happened today, but the fishing was not very impressive.  There wasn't really a noticeable difference above or below Highway 44.  Fishing was about average at best, plus there were about 50 boats on the water.  Flows came up 500cfs last night, and that might have put the fish off a little.  We're going to give it another shot tomorrow and I expect fishing to be better.  We did hook some quality fish today, including one huge one that we couldn't land. 

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Caught some nice fish like this today
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Jet Boil makes a great fly line spool!
View All Reports by Andrew Harris    |    View Andrew Harris's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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I had the pleasure of guiding Ted and his son-in-law Tommy today.  Yes, it was pretty hot - but the fishing was pretty good too!  The fish were pretty grabby during the morning - both had lots of hook-ups and both landed some really quality fish!  The fish seemed to be a bit more tight-lipped during the afternoon, but both worked hard and were rewarded by hooking into some really nice fish - too bad they couldn't bring them to net.  There's always next time!  
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View All Reports by Brian Kohlman    |    View Brian Kohlman's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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Fun day on the Lower Sac with Nate and his dad.   Nate was 8.   Nate was great.    He could barely see over the bow of the boat but he fished almost a complete day, learned to cast a 7 weight, mend, set the hook and strip in his first trout on a fly rod under some relatively slow fishing conditions.   His dad was teaching him, "an attitude of gratitude" and it was awesome to watch.  

The heat on the river isn't too bad and nobody is fishing the lower Sac right now out of Redding.   This father, son duo with the right combo of attitude and nobody on the river had an awesome day!  

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View All Reports by Tyler Lee    |    View Tyler Lee's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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I floated the Sac on Thursday and again today.  Fishing remains a little spotty - tough one day and good the next.  With the daytime temps beging well above 100 degrees, we've been starting early and it has been pretty comfortable.  The Sac fished very good today, Philip and Sam both hooked several nice fish - and missed some really big fish!  With the closure ending at the end of the month, I'm excepting the upper section to be in great shape in August.  Stripers are in the river as well.  I'm planning to do some scouting this week, so I'll post a report towards the end of the week.
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Philip with his biggest of the day.
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Sam with was pretty psyched to land this beauty!
View All Reports by Brian Kohlman    |    View Brian Kohlman's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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Here are some photos from Peter Santley's Lower Sac trip today.
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Nick with a nice one
View All Reports by Andrew Harris    |    View Andrew Harris's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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Brian Kohlman and I guided three great guys on the Lower Sac Tuesday and Wednesday.  The air temp was a little warm (one reading said 114), and the second day we had some strong morning winds which gave us a few challenges.  The guys did great and the fishing was really good.  Being on the water provides a nice breeze all day and plenty of cold water to cool off with.  Our group had lots of hook-ups both days and we put a lot of good, quality fish in the nets.  The fishing was consistant all day and the fish were grabbing a variety of nymphs.  Don't let the weather scare you, the Lower Sac is a great place this time of year.
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Dave with an 18" dandy. Wind took his hat. Small Sacrifice for the picture
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Mark keeping cool with a hot fish.
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Wally's hard work pays off!
View All Reports by Mike Wright    |    View Mike Wright's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
Good
Well...it was pretty darn hot today, but reasonably comfortable on the water.  Fishing has been up and down the past few weeks, but the fish were very grabby this morning, then it slowed down late-morning, but then picked back up this afternoon.  The key is to start early on these really hot days.  Everything landed today was over 16 inches!
View All Reports by Brian Kohlman    |    View Brian Kohlman's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
Good
The river has been fickle recently.  One day the fish are super grabby - and the next day you're working hard for every hook-up.  All and all, the river is fishing well!  With the closure of the upper section, I expect the fish to be in great shape and very willing to eat flies in August.  Today, we had the pleasure of guiding a Project Healing Waters group coordinated by the Golden Gate Angling and Casting Club.  Everyone in the group landed fish, and some landed quite few!  It was a positve experience for everyone and I look forward to working with them all again in the future.  All our area waters are fishable now, so let's get out and go fishing!
View All Reports by Brian Kohlman    |    View Brian Kohlman's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
Great
The Lower Sac fished great for us today.  I guided Tom from the Diablo Valley Fly Fishers club.  The nymphing was red-hot from the start and stayed that way most of the day.   We had good luck on a variety of patterns, including PMD nymphs, caddis pupas, rubberlegs, and egg patterns.  The average size fish was just under 18" today.  It seems like the bug life is getting better every day.  We had a front come in this afternoon and the PMDs started to hatch in good numbers.  We even saw a few rising fish.  The next 3 days are supposed to be cooler and rainy, so we might bring some good dry fly fishing...
View All Reports by Andrew Harris    |    View Andrew Harris's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
Good
I floated the Lower Sac today with Dan and Frank from the greater Sacramento area.  Fishing was good in the morning with a couple fish over 18" and decent numbers of normal-size fish.  The bite totally shut off around 2pm and we only hooked a couple more fish in the afternoon.  We saw some good bugs hatching including caddisflies and PMDs.  The river is around 9000cfs now and clarity is good.
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Dan's big fish of the day
View All Reports by Andrew Harris    |    View Andrew Harris's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
The Lower Sac above the Highway 44 Bridge is now officially closed.  The two-year emergency closure is now an annual 4-month closure each year from April 1st through July 31st.  According to our local game warden the closure went into effect on Friday but won't be enforced until tomorrow (Tuesday).  This closure doesn't affect our guide program very much.  I still enjoy launching at the Posse Grounds and floating the river for 15 minutes before getting down to the 44 Bridge.  Another popular option is to launch at the McConnell Ramp near Aqua Golf, which is right below the Highway 44 Bridge.
View All Reports by Andrew Harris    |    View Andrew Harris's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
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