Well here we are, what a wild ride the last few months have been. Just thinking back, we couldn't wait to get out of 2020, then 2021 said "here hold my beer". A lot has changed here in Plumas County near Lake Almanor in the last few months, I will spare you the gory details as most of you know of, and have heard about the devastation brought on by the Dixie Fire. One thing that hasn't changed is that Lake Almanor is one of, if not the finest, trout fishing and trophy trout destinations in the Sierras. Following my 8 week "vacation" courtesy of fire evacuations and road closures, I was finally able to resume operations on Almanor. A huge thanks goes out to the good people at Plumas Pines Resort, Todd, Jacob, Stephanie and Dave for working to get me a place for the "Mobile Command" and boat and helping me get settled. They also were fantastic in shuffling things to ensure customers of mine could get accommodations at the resort. So upon returning to the water what did I find? Well simply put, the trout of Lake Almanor really didn't seem to be affected by all the goings on. The fish were pretty much in their typical patterns transitioning from the aquatic insects to pond smelt as their primary food source moving into the fall season. The Fall bite has been un-phased by all the unusual circumstances the lake has endured such as low, warm water, and a certain amount of ash and other fire fallout in the lake. Currently the area, as well as most of northern California, is experiencing some much needed record precipitation which will boost water levels and continue to cool the water temps which have been falling over the last several weeks. Recent trips have been producing pretty solid results for a catch made up of mostly Rainbows with a few Browns in the mix and an occasional King Salmon. The fish have been running 2- 8 pounds in size and are spread throughout the water column hammering our gear from the surface all the way down to just over 30 feet in some cases while they chase the schools of pond smelt and feed up for winter. Locations all over the lake are producing fish, top spots include the east shore, both sides of the peninsula, and even up north. The fish are moving around working the bait so it can take a minute to find them. A wide array of gear is currently working, crawlers to spoons to trolling flies and soft plastics are all hooking up. I will continue running trips here the rest of this week before moving the boat to Eagle Lake full time for the month of November. Following Thanksgiving I would resume trips on Almanor, conditions and weather depending, so stay tuned.
Finally to answer a couple questions on conditions at the lake and the status of certain facilities. Canyon Dam boat launch as well as the Forest Service west shore boat ramp are closed. There was a large amount of timber work happening at Canyon Dam this week as there are many hazard trees that need to be removed. As it stands now Canyon Dam would be closed through November 30th on current forest orders following the fire. That could be modified or extended but at this point it is anybody's guess. Launching is available at Plumas Pines for a $10 fee, envelopes and pay box are at the top of the ramp. Please park across the street from the marina with the other trailers. The water is low so if you are out use caution as there are some new hazards showing due to the water level.
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Tight Lines and I hope to see you on the water.
Capt. Bryan Roccucci
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