Friday, January 23, 2009

Steelhead Conditions

Well, it should be time for steelhead. But, this '09 season finds us with very low and clear water conditions. Low flows have closed the north coast rivers and creeks to angling. The only river opoen to steelhead angling is the Russian River in Sonoma County. The Smith and Eel river systems are under separate low flow regulations.

The amount of steelhead in the Russian river has been low and we are not seeing a large migration at this time, unlike 2007 when we had very similar conditions, but the river had thousands of steelhead coming in. So, what is happening?

I'm not sure, but feel it's a combination of things that may have occured. We still have fish, but we need to use low water tactics, such as longer and lighter leaders, smaller flies and lures, and a really stealthy approach.

As this is being posted, rain is falling and the forcast looks good for more. This could open the other castal rivers by next week (1/28). You can always check the DFG fishphone for flows at 707-944-5533.

The best advice for this week is "Don't Give Up!" Every steelhead year is different and conditions can change overnight

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