Truckee River Report- Best in the west? Maybe.

Before I get ahead of myself with the headline, let’s talk about what we have going on with conditions right now locally. The Truckee and Little Truckee are experiencing  the biggest, most consistent runoff conditions in nearly a century.  Both rivers have been 5-10x flows for months and that’s only going to go up over the next 4-6 weeks. Current spring projections are big, really big. Can you imagine if Stampeede really releases 2,500 cfs into the Little Truckee in preparation for the runoff that’s about to happen? Did Squaw Valley really just hint they might stay open ALL Year?! There’s 15-35 feet of snow left at high elevations? This is what we’re dealing with, and it’s not going to change anytime soon.

High water is the new norm around here and if you don’t adjust to the conditions, you’ll be telling “fish stories” at Bar of America every evening while sipping an Old Fashioned or PBR, angler’s choice. Here are a few things you have to consider this season when you’re fishing the ‘new Truckee’.

  • Be careful when wading. The water is high and fast and banks have eroded everywhere. You can go from 6 inches to 4 feet in one step.
  • Thankfully you don’t’ have to wade much, fish close to the bank and look for slow water. The fish are under your rod tip!
  • We’ve been fishing 3x-1x all spring. The fish are not at all leader shy, go heavy or go home. It will also help when snagging all the wood that’s accumulated on the bottom this winter. There are snags everywhere. You just gotta deal with it.
  • If you’re fishing two flies, go with one big and one small. Classic example, rubberlegs and a mayfly. There are bugs around, but the dry fly fishing hasn’t really happened at all. That said if you put your time if you will see a few noses eating baetis.

The big boys have come out to play in the high water.

Now, it isn’t all doom and gloom for the Truckee and LT. If you’ve followed us at all on social media the last few months you’ve probably noticed a huge influx of huge browns taking over your feeds. It really is incredible what’s happened with our browns and the high water. They’ve let their guard down, moved into feeding lanes and have been chowing like crazy. Although the Truckee is famous for putting out big browns from time to time, the rate we’ve been getting them recently has been off the charts. The Truckee has always been a size, not numbers game. This has never been truer than right now. I just spent almost two weeks in Montana and on my first guide trip back every fish we landed was bigger than any fish from my road trip.

As challenging as the fishing has been, a two footer is a possibility in these flows.

That said it’s still the Truckee and we are absolutely working our asses off for fish in these conditions. The river is big, it’s intimidating, has color, and is absolutely ripping. But if you’re willing to put the time in you might just find yourself hooked into one of the biggest browns in the west and won’t have to tell a fish story after all.

Matt Heron

Jim had one request this week, to try and catch a brown. To say the least, he succeeded with flying colors!

One more gator nose for good luck.

Truckee River Guide School 2017

Host- Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters and Matt Heron Fly Fishing

When- May 1-6

Where- North and South Shore of Lake Tahoe, Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters (shop)

Cost- $1,600/pp

Sponsors- Sage, Rio, Simms, Umpqua

As a student you will be taught by some of the Sierra’s best fly fishing guides and instructors. It is this staff that characterizes the quality of instruction that you will receive as a student in our guide school. Take a look at our instructor biography page to gain further insight into the teachers, guides, and instructors that will be working with you.

Your guide school experience will include 6 days of outside and on the water instruction. This will include a half day classroom session and a full drift boat day. We feel that being outside instead in a classroom is the best environment to learn how to be a successful guide.  Also included is the opportunity for every student to spend two full days with one of our guides as a shadow in an actual guiding situation.  That comes out to eight full days of guiding instruction to give you the most comprehensive guide school experience in the industry.

School curriculum includes: teaching fly casting with an FFF Certified Casting Instructor, entomology and fly selection, guest services, guiding & teaching the beginner to the expert, local waters, risk management, fish and game laws, public service, marketing strategies, and many other topics designed to help you become the best fly fishing guide possible.

Our generous sponsors also provide all students with some of their products as gifts for their involvement in our school.  With all of that, the choice is simple when you choosing a fly fishing guide school as you pursue your dream.  Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters is the one!


MONDAY 6/1/17

7:00 AM‐ MEET AND GREET AT SHOP

8:00 AM‐ 1:00 PM‐ CASTING CLINIC WITH JAIME LYLE @ PARADISE PARK or LTCC

1:00 PM‐ 2:00 PM‐ BBQ LUNCH AT PARK or SHOP( JAY)

3:00 PM‐ 7:00 PM‐ WEST CARSON RIVER

 

TUESDAY 6/2/17

6:30 AM- MEET AT SHOP, BREAKFAST AT RED HUT (JAY OR RICK)

8:00 AM- 12:00 PM- CLASSROOM SESSIONS @ CAL TROUT OFFICE

RICK MCGUIRE/MATT HERON- GUEST SERVICE 8:15-8:50 am

ERIK ELLIOT- CA FISH AND GAME: F&G AND GUIDE PARTNERSHIP 9-9:30 am

JORDAN ROMNEY- FLY FISH GUIDING IN ALASKA 9:30- 10 am

MICHELLE SANTOS- MARKETING STRATEGIES 10- 10:50 am

MIKE WEIR, CAL TROUT REPRESENTATIVE- SUSTAINABILITY 11:00 am-11:50 am

RICK- RISK MANAGEMENT 12:00 PM- 12:15 PM

MATT-INTRO TO ENTOMOLOGY 12:15 PM- 12:45 PM

12:45 PM- 1:30 PM- LUNCH (JAY/RICK)

1:30 – 5:30 PM- WEST CARSON, EAST CARSON, PLEASANT VALLEY

 

WEDNESDAY 6/3/17

7:00 AM‐ MEET AT SHOP (JAY OR RICK TRANSPORT)

8:00 AM‐ 5:00 PM‐ TRUCKEE/LITTLE TRUCKEE LUNCH‐ MATT/JORDAN

 

THURSDAY 6/4/17

7:00 AM‐ MEET AT SHOP (JAY OR RICK TRANSPORT)

8:00 AM – 11:00 PM‐ STILLWATER GUIDING ON SAWMILL LAKE

11:30-12:30- LUNCH‐ MATT/JORDAN

2:00 PM‐ 5:00 PM‐ TRUCKEE/LITTLE TRUCKEE

 

FRIDAY 6/5/17

7:00 AM‐ MEET AT SHOP

8:00 AM‐ 1:00 PM‐ EAST CARSON RIVER

2:00 PM‐ 3:30 PM‐ WRAP UP, INDIVIDUAL STUDENT EVALUATIONS, COURSE EVALUATIONS/GRADUATION

3:30 PM‐ 4:30 PM‐ CASTING COMPETITION

5:00 PM‐ 6:30 PM‐ GROUP DINNER @ JALISCOS LUNCH‐ JAY

 

SATURDAY 6/6/17

6:30 AM‐ MEET AT SHOP

7:00 AM‐ 8:30 AM‐ DRIVE TO SAILOR BAR, AMERICAN RIVER

8:30 AM‐ 4:00 PM‐ INTRODUCTION TO DRIFT BOAT GUIDING LUNCH‐ RICK

 

*LOCATIONS AND SCHEDULE MAY CHANGE DUE TO WEATHER OR RIVER CONDITIONS

A few snap shots of last years guide school…

Truckee River Fly Fishing Report 12.6.16

It’s been forever since my last report and I’m happy to say that the Truckee has been alive and well this fall. The rainbow fishing the last three weeks as been as good as I’ve ever seen it. With the end of fall nearing, we should be starting to see a few more browns post spawn appearing as well.

With winter weather here as of the last week, our fish should be starting to move to winter holding lies over the next month. Start thinking slower, deeper water as we get closer to the new year.

Fly selection is pretty normal for this time of year. For nymphing, we’ve been doing well on rubberlegs, worms, winter stones and birds nests as our attractor. Droppers have been a variation of all colors and sizes of baetis and midges.

If you’re lucky enough to hit a day in the 40s or higher with some crappy weather be ready to fish some dries. Have a wide range of baetis in 16-20s, duns and emergers. If they are being picky throw a 20-22 midge off the back.

The week before and after the holidays are always our busiest week of the winter. I would recommend booking sooner than later. We do still have a few guides open but they will go fast. If you can sneak up to Truckee in the next few weeks, plan on having the whole river to yourself!

To book call Matt at 518-225-6587 or email him at mattheronflyfishing@gmail.com visit. You can also check out recent catches at the bottom of our home page.

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A near perfect bow on a cold day.

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A huge male brown in all his spawning colors.

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Some purple rain on the Truckee!

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Truckee River- Lake Tahoe Area Fly Fishing Report 5.20.2016

 

The perils of spring runoff are upon us on the Truckee and that isn’t a bad thing. Runoff has been slow and steady and fishing conditions are near perfect for the big river. Water temps have been between 45 and 55 depending on weather and snow pack left above the smaller tribs.Although the water is out of its banks in parts, the water is clear and very fishable. The normal late spring bugs are around. We’re seeing baetis hatches mid day and into the afternoons. The spinner fall has been the following morning.

We’re still getting some march browns in our bug samples. Although we’re not seeing many adults around, brown nymphs around a sz 12-14 have been some of our top producers. We’ve also been seeing all sizes of caddis throughout the day. Maybe time to get that summer box out?

Temps are getting better for streamer fish by the day. We’re getting a good number of follows and a bunch of eats. If you’re getting refusals by the bank, change colors and slow your retrieve a bit.

Sawmill Lake has been on fire for us this season so far. It’s been numbers and size, especially with the rainbows. This will book up fast this summer so call us with questions!

If you haven’t booked your Truckee trip for this season, I might want to get on it. Check out our recent “Top 10” and you’ll know why this will be our biggest year ever!

TOP TEN

Contact us anytime at Mattheronflyfishing@gmail.com or 518-225-6587 to get one the water with one of our guides. We’d love to show you around.

grassy bow

The water is high, but the fish don’t mind!

bead brown

A nice Sawmill brown that took a bead head PT.

A near perfect brown.

A near perfect brown.

What is the Truckee famous for? This!

What is the Truckee famous for? This!


Please visit our Trip Advisor page to find out what people are saying about Matt Heron Fly Fishing.

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Top 10 Reasons to Book Your Summer Truckee Fly Fishing Trip Now!

As we near the start of our 10th summer in Tahoe, we felt inclined to give you all a generous heads up as to why you should start planning your summer now! After what was hopefully the worst drought we’ll ever experience in Nor Cal, we can at least for now take a deep breath around the Truckee region. This list should give a very realistic, and honest update of what we’re expecting on the north shore this season from a fishing perspective.

10. 2015-16′ Was an Amazing Winter Season.

winter lookout

This was by far one of the best winter seasons on the river in recent memory. It’s amazing what a little water can do, right? I can’t remember a time when we had good fishing in the winter, and it was bad in the summer. A sign of things to come…

9. Our ponds will be full!

perfect squaw tag

Although we’ve made it through the last few summers on our ponds, water conditions at the end each summer were less than ideal. With the snow pack still left above 7,000′, we should have plenty of water in Squaw well into late summer.

8. No Fish Kills on the Truckee!

IMG_5722

When our beloved Truckee River re-opened last fall we didn’t know what to expect. Turns out, our fish did just fine. If we did loose any fish on the CA side, it was so insignificant we haven’t yet noticed from a guiding perspective. Here is chunky, clean bow from a recent trip.

7. Fishing Dries

green drake tag

As early summer approaches, that can only mean on thing…Green Drakes! No explanation needed.

6. Our Fish are Bigger, Stronger.

Nick brown tag

After last summers Hoot Owl river closer was lifted, not only did we realize that our fish survived, but many thrived. Many of the fish are looking bigger, and healthier than ever!

5. The Family that Fishes Together…

Truckee River Lake Tahoe Fly Fishing Kids 13

This one isn’t necessarily drought related, but it goes without saying. Year after year, our family options always seem to be at the top of our bookings. Did you know fishing is the number one activity to get kids involved in the outdoors? True story.

4. The Magic Hour

Truckee River Lake Tahoe Fly Fishing Kids 11

If you know the Truckee well, you know our mid-summer evening hatches can be off the charts! That said, if you’ve followed our closures the last few years, you know the Truckee hasn’t been open during summer evenings in almost three years. This will be the year to get back at it the last 45 min before dark! Caddis, stones, mays….reason enough.

3. Water is Flowing out of Lake Tahoe!

Tahoe trickle

Pic- April 11th 2016. It might not look like much, but water has only flowed out of the lake a few times the last three years. As we near summer, flows will increase substantially and current projections show flow out the lake through July. This is huge for our Truckee trout. With all the other tribs dumping water in, anything from Tahoe is icing on the cake. Photo- Mr. Truckee (Facebook)

2. The Truckee is Ripping!

Hirshdale

Flows from Truckee to NV have been from 400-1200 Cfs. for nearly a month now and continue to rise on the warmer days. This is the kind of run off we’ve been waiting years for. The fish are absolutely loving life and fishing will only get better as we get closer to summer. The water will drop, the water temps will rise and the bugs and fish will respond. Life. Is. Good.

1. Bookings are Exceeding Projections!

dec and dad bow

(Insert cute kid pic for sentimental reaction to help pay for his college fund) On a serious note, our pre-season bookings are way ahead of schedule with all of our guides. We would highly recommend booking sooner than later to get first dibs on the class or guide trip option of your choice!

I would like to personally thank everyone who participated in the voluntary Hoot Owl closures the past few summers. Without your dedication to conserving and protecting our wild trout, there is a good chance this list could have had a whole different look to it.

-The team at Matt Heron Fly Fishing

518-225-6587 | mattheronflyfishing@gmail.com


 

Please visit our Trip Advisor page to find out what people are saying about Matt Heron Fly Fishing.

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Truckee River- Lake Tahoe Area Fly Fishing Report 3.24.16

The Truckee continues to hover around 900-1000cfs for the second straight week in a row near Boca and in the canyon. I wouldn’t say this is unusual, but it sure doesn’t happen very often. The drop in flows has been very slow this week and that’s not a bad thing. These are the flows we’ve been waiting five years for!

Now to the fishing…Although the water is high, it’s surprisingly clear and fishing has been good. We’ve been getting into a fair share of good, quality adult fish this past week and all of our spring bugs are around. The go-to’s this week have been baetis, skwala nymphs, worms, march browns and generic dark mayflies under an indicator have been producing fish.

If you’re looking to throw dries, I would throw skwala’s with a baetis emerger as your dropper. This can be a very reliable set up this time of year across the west as our first round of big stoneflies start to hatch. You might also try some march browns, there aren’t a lot around, but enough to give it a shot. If you’re seeing tiny sips and not many bugs, go with a good old midge. It’s hard to beat this time of year.

With the river being as high as it is, try to concentrate on the softer edges and seams. The last thing the fish are doing right now is holding in fast water, wasting energy with cold water temps.

The Little Truckee has been hovering around 50cfs for some time now. Not much has changed over there, small baetis, winter stones and midges have been working well. A few rainbows have started to spawn, so be careful were you walk and give them some space.

Our spring bookings are looking really good this year with all the water. That said, we still have plenty of guide days open and the guys are all itching to get you on the water!

IMG_5722

A Truckee rainbow, looking good as ever.

A beautiful winter brown on the Truckee.

A beautiful winter brown on the Truckee.

2016 Guide School

Truckee River Lake Tahoe Fly Fishing Clinics

Host- Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters and Matt Heron Fly Fishing

When- May 9-15

Where- North and South Shore of Lake Tahoe, Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters (shop)

Cost- $1,500/pp

Sponsors- Sage, Rio, Simms, Umpqua

As a student you will be taught by some of the Sierra’s best fly fishing guides and instructors. It is this staff that characterizes the quality of instruction that you will receive as a student in our guide school. Take a look at our instructor biography page to gain further insight into the teachers, guides, and instructors that will be working with you.

Your guide school experience will include 6 days of outside and on the water instruction. This will include a half day classroom session and a full drift boat day.  We feel that being outside instead in a classroom is the best environment to learn how to be a successful guide.  Also included is the opportunity for every student to spend one full day with one of our guides as a shadow in an actual guiding situation.  That comes out to seven full days of guiding instruction to give you the most comprehensive guide school experience in the industry.

School curriculum includes: teaching fly casting with an FFF certified Master Casting Instructor, entomology and fly selection, guest services, guiding & teaching the beginner to the expert, local waters, risk management, fish and game laws, public service, marketing strategies, and many other topics designed to help you become the best fly fishing guide possible.

Our generous sponsors also provide all students with some of their products as gifts for their involvement in our school.  With all of that, the choice is simple when you choosing a fly fishing guide school as you pursue your dream.  Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters is the one!


Seven Day Course Itinerary

MONDAY 5/11/15

7:00 AM‐ MEET AND GREET AT SHOP

8:00 AM‐ 1:00 PM‐ CASTING CLINIC WITH JAIME LYLE @ PARADISE PARK or LTCC

1:00 PM‐ 2:00 PM‐ BBQ LUNCH AT PARK or SHOP( JAY)

3:00 PM‐ 7:00 PM‐ WEST CARSON RIVER

 

TUESDAY 5/12/15

6:30 AM- MEET AT SHOP, BREAKFAST AT RED HUT (JAY OR RICK)

8:00 AM- 12:00 PM- CLASSROOM SESSIONS @ CAL TROUT OFFICE

RICK MCGUIRE/MATT HERON- GUEST SERVICE 8:15-8:50 am

ERIK ELLIOT- CA FISH AND GAME: F&G AND GUIDE PARTNERSHIP 9-9:30 am

JORDAN ROMNEY- FLY FISH GUIDING IN ALASKA 9:30- 10 am

MICHELLE SANTOS- MARKETING STRATEGIES 10- 10:50 am

MIKE WEIR, CAL TROUT REPRESENTATIVE- SUSTAINABILITY 11:00 am-11:50 am

RICK- RISK MANAGEMENT 12:00 PM- 12:15 PM

MATT-INTRO TO ENTOMOLOGY 12:15 PM- 12:45 PM

12:45 PM- 1:30 PM- LUNCH (JAY/RICK)

1:30 – 5:30 PM- WEST CARSON, EAST CARSON, PLEASANT VALLEY

 

WEDNESDAY 5/13/15

7:00 AM‐ MEET AT SHOP (JAY OR RICK TRANSPORT)

8:00 AM‐ 5:00 PM‐ TRUCKEE/LITTLE TRUCKEE LUNCH‐ MATT/JORDAN

 

THURSDAY 5/14/15

7:00 AM‐ MEET AT SHOP (JAY OR RICK TRANSPORT)

8:00 AM – 11:00 PM‐ STILLWATER GUIDING ON SAWMILL LAKE

11:30-12:30- LUNCH‐ MATT/JORDAN

2:00 PM‐ 5:00 PM‐ TRUCKEE/LITTLE TRUCKEE

 

FRIDAY 5/15/15

7:00 AM‐ MEET AT SHOP

8:00 AM‐ 1:00 PM‐ EAST CARSON RIVER

2:00 PM‐ 3:30 PM‐ WRAP UP, INDIVIDUAL STUDENT EVALUATIONS, COURSE EVALUATIONS/GRADUATION

3:30 PM‐ 4:30 PM‐ CASTING COMPETITION

5:00 PM‐ 6:30 PM‐ GROUP DINNER @ JALISCOS LUNCH‐ JAY

 

SATURDAY 5/16/15

6:30 AM‐ MEET AT SHOP

7:00 AM‐ 8:30 AM‐ DRIVE TO SAILOR BAR, AMERICAN RIVER

8:30 AM‐ 4:00 PM‐ INTRODUCTION TO DRIFT BOAT GUIDING LUNCH‐ RICK

 

*LOCATIONS AND SCHEDULE MAY CHANGE DUE TO WEATHER OR RIVER CONDITIONS

Truckee River Lake Tahoe Fly Fishing Classes 2

Aquatic Macro Sampling

 

Truckee River Lake Tahoe Fly Fishing Classes 4

Group Casting Lessons- Day 1

 

Truckee River- Lake Tahoe Area Fly Fishing Report 12/10/15

Some big news out of the Truckee/Tahoe area this morning. After over a year, there is finally water flowing out of Lake Tahoe again! Yes, it’s only 5 CFS but we’ll take all the help we can get.

With that said, the weather has been the talk of the down lately in the fishing world. With two small storms, and one big one under out belt already things are looking up. Couple that with the big storm starting as we speak, you can’t help  but get a little excited about this winter.
Things have stayed pretty much the same as far as our rivers go. Flows have stayed consistent on the Little Truckee and Big Truckee (below Boca) the last few weeks. As you might imagine with the colder weather, fish are finally transitioning to slower, deeper holding water. This is especially true on the Big T.
We’ve been getting most of our fish on the usual winter bugs, small baetis nymphs, olive and dark, black winter stones, worms and every variation of small midge you can imagine. If you’re looking to try and a get a fish on top, the LT is your best bet right now. Look for any warming trends for your best chances.
Our Christmas/New Yrs week is looking really busy as of right now but we do still have guide openings. If you find your self up this way and want a break from the crowds on the mountain, give us a call. http://mattheronflyfishing.com/
-Matt
LT witner bow

A really nice bow from a recent LT trip.

 

winter lookout

Although we might have a few wet trips this week, we should have the rivers all to ourselves!

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