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Trinity River

Guide Dax Messett with a huge Trinity River steelhead
Guided Float Trips
$575 for 1-2 Anglers
  • Year-round
  • Drift Boat Trips

The Trinity River is one of the most popular steelhead destinations in California. One reason for this status is that the Trinity rarely "blows out" due to high water. High flows from winter storms are absorbed by Trinity Lake, so even during large storms it's common for the uppermost floats to remain fishable. For the majority of the steelhead season, flows remain stable and conducive to wading and drift boat fishing. The Trinity River is also popular with anglers due to its proximity to highways and easy access. Highway 299 runs right along much of the river and side roads provide access to other areas. The river has excellent public access for wade fishing and plenty of put-ins for fishing from rafts and drift boats. The biggest reason that the Trinity River is held in high esteem by fly anglers is the numbers of fish. Every year thousands of steelhead return to the Trinity River. It is not at all uncommon for a single angler to hook multiple adult steelhead in a day of fishing on the Trinity. Most steelhead on the Trinity River are 4-10 pounds.

Fishing for adult steelhead can be very good as early as mid-September and as late as mid-April. The early fall is known for hot acrobatic fish. The fish typically aren't spread out in every hole, but when you find one it's common to find several more in the same spot. Prime-time on the Trinity River is November, December and January. November is the favorite month for anglers that want a great shot at good numbers of fish AND nicer weather. December and January are more likely to be cold and rainy (or even snowy!), but there are typically more fish in the river at this point. February, March and April are interesting months on the Trinity. We sometimes see greater numbers of fresh "winter-run" fish at this time. It's also common to hook some "down-streamers" that have already spawned and are headed back to the ocean. The river also sees hatches of march browns and green drakes that can get brown trout and the occasional adult steelhead to come to the surface.

Trinity River Guide Team

Our Trinity River guide team includes Andrew Harris, Gino Bernero, Brian Kohlman, Kevin Kay, Peter Santley, Luke Geraty, Mike Wright, Tom Mahan, Josh James, Colin Coogan, Andreas Fuhrmann and Drew Griffith. Gino Bernero, Andreas Fuhrmann, Josh James, Tom Mahan and Drew Griffith exclusively fish Spey Techniques on the Trinity.

Recent Trinity River Fishing Reports

Trinity River Fishing Image
August 2, 2022
Trinity River Report by Luke Geraty

Andreas and I jumped over to explore the Trinity and swing some flies for steelhead. Let me just say that the river looks AWESOME and was running around 1,000 cfs. I don’t think one could ask for a better looking river right now. There wasn’t much smoke from those fires that have been burning either, so that was a welcome sight. We caught some half pounders on a variety of flies and one small and skinny adult that looked like it needed to eat some bugs to bulk up for the fall. The fish are definitely moving around and it would be a great time to book a trip on the Trinity.

Trinity River Fishing Image
February 23, 2022
Trinity River Report by Peter Santley

Trinity steelhead fishing remains good to great depending on day. We are getting fresh winter fish on the right floats .These winter fish are moving fast and you locate them one day and they have moved the next. I have been getting clients into is both nymphing and swinging with clear water tactics. A shot of rain could give us another push of fish. River has been less crowded lately and shoul have fishing through March and into April. This is agood time of year to do combo trips on multiple day bookings fishing both Trinity and Lower Sac. I am also doing znymph and swing combos on both Trinity and Lower Sac. We nymphing between the good swing runs. I have all rods etc for clients to use. Come and get a little piece of what's left of the best season in years on the Trinity Early March is a good time and dates are available. Let us show you a good time.A photo of client Nancy hooked up with her first steelhead.Get on the books and let's go!Good fishing,Peter Santley

Trinity River Fishing Image
February 17, 2022
Trinity River Report by Luke Geraty

Chuck and Mark are long time Confluence guests and I've had the pleasure of guiding them before on the Sac... so we figured why not try the Trinity. If you've been following things related to steelhead world, you know that all we talk about is how badly we need rain, blah blah blah. It's obviously our default setting these days. But the day was booked and when you are chasing a fish of a thousand casts, you just have to go and pay your dues. Well by 11am we had hooked four adults... note that I said HOOKED, not landed. Two of them decided to "peace out" before we could put them in the net, but that's steelheading. It's what both drives you crazy and keeps you coming back. But what REALLY keeps you coming back are when you hook and land 30 inch steelhead on size 18 flies! And Mark did just that. The stars aligned and after a really long fight, we put that fish in the net. Chuck crushed it too because not only did he land a nice wild steelhead, he managed to get a beautiful brown trout on "Last Chance Riffle." It was a great day... hard to top considering what one should reasonably expect given the water clarity, lack of rain, and difficulty related to steelheading. Tomorrow we're gonna go check out the Sac, so hopefully our luck continues!

Trinity River Hatch Chart

Green Drakes
March Browns
October Caddis
Golden Stones
Giant Stoneflies
Little Yellow Stones
Salmon Eggs
Steelhead Eggs
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Lodging Recommendations

Weaverville and Lewiston are the closest options for anglers fishing the Trinity River. Please visit our Weaverville/Lewiston Info Page for ideas on lodging, logistics, and other activities in the area. Many of our guests also base their Trinity River trip out of Redding.

Trinity River Photo Gallery

A happy angler with a nice wild Trinity River steelhead
A large Trinity River steelhead
A colorful Trinity River steelhead
Wade fishing the Trinity River
A large steelhead from the Trinity River
Fishing some slower water on the Trinity River
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