Eastern Sierra: Fall Trout Fishing Starts To Sizzle!

We are fully into fall fishing now with mixed sizes of fish and really great midge fishing on our local lakes. Nighttime temperatures have now dipped into the cooler sides with some mornings in the 30’s, which quickly warm up by mid-morning to the 70’s. Fall is a special time in the eastern sierra as the aspen trees turn from green to yellow and the color contrast is spectacular. Most of the trees have turned now and it is a nice mix of green and yellow against the mountains and in the canyons.
Since there is no aquatic insect activity until the frost melts off in the mornings, we have been starting later on Crowley Lake and have been finding the fish more active in the late morning hours and into the warmer parts of the day. It can be a game of patience and timing this time of year, as sometimes the fishing slows towards the afternoon, but ends up picking up again an hour later as new fish begin to move into shallow water from the deeper areas.
Fish can be found at various depths now, and 6 – 16 feet of water have been very productive. The river channels are starting to see more fish staging up at the mouths as they prepare to move into the rivers and creeks for the fall spawn. Larger streamer patterns can get you into fish right now, but midges have been a strong producer these last few weeks. Varying your depth is important this time of year to stay on the fish.
The Upper Owens River and Hot Creek have been fishing well for these fall fish with egg patterns, small midges, October caddis, and pheasant tails. The Lower Owens River drifting has been fun as the water has now come down to great levels for fishing by boat and some areas along the Wild Trout section have been very wadable now.- Doug Rodricks, Sierra Drifter Guide Service.

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