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Fishing Reports for Lower Sac

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Great

I spent the last two days guiding longtime clients Frank & Doug in the 1st annual Cast Hope Gabe Duran Memorial Lower Sac fly fishing tournament.  The weather was hot and so was the fishing!  Competition was pretty fierce as there were 22 boats and a lot of very good anglers on the water.  To give you an idea of the quality of the fishing this weekend, our boat averaged about 19" for the ten fish we were able to record each day and we landed a 24" rainbow, but we still placed 4th and missed the big fish trophy by a half inch!

Fish are in their happy place right now with flows steady at 13,000cfs.  We did best on egg patterns, brown rubberlegs and also caught a few on caddis patterns size 14.  Look for fishing to improve and for the lower parts of the river to start fishing better over the next few weeks. 

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Great
The past five days has been very productive.  Most of our hook-ups have been above Bonnyview, but the water down to Anderson is starting to fish much better.  We're also starting to see a lot of PMD's, so the fish are really starting to eat the nymphs.  Weather has varied from hot, to mild - but it looks like we are in store for some hot weather beginning this weekend.  Here are some images from the past few days.
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Bob with a beautful rainbow!
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Cliff starting his day out right!
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Here's another beautiful fish for Jesse!
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Julian with another great fish!
View All Reports by Brian Kohlman    |    View Brian Kohlman's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
Great
The past couple days has continued to produce some REALLY nice fish!  The fish were super grabby this morning and fishing was "Red Hot."  Jesse and Julian had an absolute blast, but after lunch things slowed a bit as a front moved in.  We continued getting grabs and hooking fish, but we had to work pretty hard for them.  The flows appear to be stable at 13,000 CFS, so I expect the fishing to improve on a daily basis!
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Great
The Lower Sac is continuing to fish really well. Although it seems we went from spring to summer overnight, the past four days has been all about hooking big beautiful fish!  The flows will drop to 5,000 CFS by Cinco de Mayo, but will start coming back up to 13,000 cfs by early Sunday.
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Great
The Sac has continued to fish very well the past three days.  The fish are big, healthy and super grabby!  We landed at least one 20+ inch fish each of the last three days and most were in the 17-19 inch range.  The flows will continue to drop through Wednesday, but will likely come back up once the A.C.I.D. dam is in place.    
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Scott landed this beauty on Friday.
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Pat with one of many beautiful fish from today.
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Red Hot
Flows are dropping quickly on the Lower Sac and the fish are responding in a big way!  The river was around 15,000cfs yesterday and down to 13,500cfs today.  As the flows drop a lot more water becomes fishable for us.  We had excellent fishing the last two days for rainbows up to 20".  There were a few small fish in the mix, but most of the fish landed were between 15 and 17".  Rich and Kathleen from Amador had a blast.
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Rich with a nice rainbow trout
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Kathleen with a big one
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Good
I had the honor of guiding the Project Healing Waters group again this year.  I had Felix, a USMC veteran and Wayne, a member of the Diablo Valley Flyfishers in my boat and they both hooked a lot of fish, including multiple double-hookups!  The flows are beginning to drop and should be down to 7,000 cfs by May 3rd.
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Good
Winter just doesn't want to let go of the North State!  It rained off and on all day, but that didn't affect the fishing.  The fish seemed a bit more tight-lipped from the past few days, but we had a LOT of hook-ups throughout day and landed some beautiful fish!  The good news is there is no more rain in the extended forecast AND the flows will begin to slowly drop beginning tonight.  This is great news becase not only will we actually get to enjoy some beautiful spring weather, but it will also open more fishable water!  
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Rob from S. Carolina with a beautiful fish!
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Good
The flows were raised to 30,000 cfs last Monday and have held steady all week.  I did some scouting with fellow Confluence Outfitter guides Mike Wright and Peter Santley on Friday, and we managed to hook into some very nice fish.  I guided a 3-boat trip this weekend with some very good clients.  It seemed someone was always hooked-up all the time both days.  I don't think anyone hooked a fish smaller than 16 inches, and there were several double hook-ups both days!  They seem to be more interested in egg patterns, but they're starting to eat nymphs.  As long as the flows don't increase, fishing should only get better as the visiblity increases.  Go fish!
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Good
I had the pleasure of guiding Dennis and George on the Lower Sac today.  The weather was ideal and the fish were super grabby!  The clarity seems to be getting better and I'm starting to see a lot more bugs every day.  Just as the conditions were starting to return to normal, we have another storm system headed our way this week - and the Bureau of Reclamation is raising the flows to 20,000 cfs on Wednesday.
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Okay
With all the rain we received on Thursday and Friday, the river colored-up a bit.  After finishing my yardwork, we went out for a half-day float this afternoon and the river fished better than expected.  Dava hooked several really nice fish with an indicator rig, and I had a couple grabs swinging flies.  And this was after the 20+ boat Project Healing Water armada had already fished in front of of us.  I'm starting to see more bugs and take that as a good sign.  I expect the fishing to start ramping up very soon.  There's nothing like fishing the Sac in the spring!
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Good
 Andrew, Peter, and I had the opportunity to guide a great group of guys!  My guys had a very productive day - landing several really nice fish!  It seemed like at least one of the guys in the group would be hooked up at any given time.  They're all headed to Eagle Canyon and the chance to hook some REALLY big fish. 
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Okay
I guided Allen and Jordan on a beautiful spring day.  The color and visibility seems to be improving every day.  They both hooked into several really nice fish and missed a lot of grabs.  The river is definitely getting there.  Conditions will continue to improve in the coming weeks, so now is the time to book your spring fishing trip!
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Okay
I went out and scouted the Sac again today.  The river is starting to transition from brown to green, but the visibility is still pretty limited.  We hooked six fish, all in the 16+ inch range on a combination of rubberlegs and egg patterns.  I had to really think outside the box to find where the fish are holding.  The extended forecast is showing at least another seven days of dry weather.  With that, conditions should continue to improve in the coming weeks, and it appears the upper portion (above the Hwy-44 Bridge) of the river will not be closing on April 1st!
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Slow
I decided to go out today and and see if the Sac is ready to go.  The visibility is still about two feet and I didn't see a single insect all day.  I did see a few fish rolling - so that was somewhat encouraging.  With the limited visibilty, the challenge is getting the fish to see the flies.  We spent some time runnning laps on all my favorite runs and only had one hook-up all day.  The good news is after tomorrow's rain, it looks like we have about 10 days of dry weather and that should help to improve conditions.
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Slow
Sam Robinett and I spent a few hours this morning scouting the Lower Sac.  It is still very muddy, with somewhere between 12 and 18 inches of visibility.  We floated Posse Grounds to Bonnyview and did not hook a single fish.  We did see fish jumping, though, so I think they're still in there!  We were also amazed by some of the changes to the river that resulted from the very high flows in the past two months.  There are some new gravel bars, some missing landmarks and a lot of devastation along the banks.  It will be fun to learn how to fish some of these new spots when the water clears up.  We'll keep you posted on conditions.
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A very lonely Posse Grounds boat ramp
View All Reports by Andrew Harris    |    View Andrew Harris's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
Slow
The flows are currently at 16,300 CFS and steadily decreasing to 8,500 CFS by the 15th.  The visibility is improving - I'd say it was approximately 12-18 inches.  As the flows drop, it is exposing quite a bit of silt on the boat ramps.  Be careful when launching.
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Slow
Now that the flows are at a fishable level, I wanted to check on the visibility.  I checked the Posse Grounds and Bonnyview boat ramps and would say the visibilty is 6-12 inches.  I'll report again in a couple days.
View All Reports by Brian Kohlman    |    View Brian Kohlman's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports
Flows on the Lower Sac are projected to drop down to 14,000cfs by this coming Saturday.  That's a great flow to fish (from a drift boat) and we're excited to get back out on the river soon.  Hopefully the clarity will improve as the river drops.  The fishing should be pretty awesome once the river drops into shape.  Stay tuned for an update on the water clarity later this week.
View All Reports by Andrew Harris    |    View Andrew Harris's Calendar    |    View All Lower Sac Reports

Here are some photos of the Sundial Bridge today.  Releases from Keswick Dam into the Lower Sac reached 79,000cfs the last few days.  To keep things in perspective, typical mid-winter flows are under 5,000cfs and our summer flows are aroun 15,000cfs in a wet year!  It was amazing to see the river rushing through the trees for 50 yards on either side of the main channel.

No one is really sure when the Sac will be fishable again.  It's looking iffy at best through mid-March.  If the rains stop soon we could possibly see a high yet fishable flow in a few weeks.  The big question is will the river clear up enough to fish even when it drops.  Stay tuned!

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