The heavy snow run off has tapered down. The lake is full and close to capacity. It is great to see! I am calling this the "2017 Phenomenon." It has changed the water conditions and weed bed growth. The water clarity is very good currently. Fish are staying around the cooler water areas which means fresh flowing water from all the creeks, tributaries, and springs that feed into Crowley Lake. The fishing zones of choice have been McGee Bay, Little Hilton and Crooked Creek.
The fish bite in past couple weeks overall was challenging. Flat out slow on some days, and a good bite on others. You really have to key in on what the fish are eating. Currently, it is perch fry and damsel nymphs in the shallows primarily. The same applies in the deeper water but you will also get them with midges. The blood midge patterns along with copper tigers are very good producers currently. There are little to no midge hatches these days.
You need to try different fly patterns and more importantly, your rig set-ups to figure out how to get more grabs. In the shallows, your perch and damsel imitation are a great choice. Along with the hare's ear or bird's nest patterns. I like the Sierra Drifter's Assassin pattern as part of my offering when it comes to these type of imitations. Stripping these imitations has been very effective for anglers on float tubes and even from a boat. It has been many (drought) years since we have seen such a very good to great bite on the "strip".
We have several fishing options these days. If you fish deep waters you need a long leader with some type of sliding indicator to fish up to 25 feet. Fish in shallow water (four to ten feet) your leaders of course, will be much shorter and more manageable. Fish in the middle zone (11 to 16 feet) and you may or may not require a sliding indicator.
The weather is cooler in the morning possibly requiring a light jacket and then heats up by mid- day. Winds have been consistent most days kicking up noon time. Monsoonal conditions are currently upon us.
BE AWARE! The fishing regulation restrictions have kicked in at Crowley Lake starting August 1st. No more bait is allowed, only artificial, your hooks MUST be barbless and if you keep a fish it must be minimum 18 inches. There is two fish limit ONLY, must be minimum 18 inches in length! Your two rod stamp is no longer valid also. Catch and release is encouraged. BE AWARE, the Department of Fish and Wildlife has been actively on the water since August 1st, checking anglers for compliance with the current fishing regulations. Anglers are being cited for not having a current fishing license in possession, barbs present on hooks, or failure to completely crimp a barb. On August 9th, the Trucha Fly Fishing Machine was covertly approached by a Game Warden on a kayak. Licenses in possession and properly crimped barbs met the Warden's compliance inspection. Game Wardens have a difficult job, and I for one, completely support all they do to enforce compliance of the current fishing regulations in effect.
Last Saturday, the annual Stillwater Classic fly fishing tournament took place here at Crowley Lake. As always, it was a fun, friendly, and competitive contest. Check the Crowley Lake website for the winner results.
We are beyond midway of the 2017 trout season. We have about two months and two weeks remaining. Hope you are able to make it up here to Crowley and experience the excitement of catching hard fighting athletic trout.
On a side fishing note, there are other outdoor activities and events taking place here in the Eastern Sierra. Hiking, biking, sight-seeing, etc. One of my favorites are the summer concerts at the Mammoth Village. I have attached a couple of pics of a concert we attended last weekend.
Stan Yu and his son Nate, on the fly for their first time ever at Crowley. Here is one that Nate brought the net.First time experience for Jennifer Aery thanks to her Bo Kevin T. Here is a nice Bow Jennifer landed.Margarita, Trucha Fly Fishing Girl, with a nice 22 inch brown. One of many brought to the net on an afternoon session.Family time for Tyler Snyder and his sons. Trophy size fish was landed by Tyler's four year old son. A sweet 23 inch bow landed by Mrs. Margarita!Check out this healthy Rainbow trout hen.Mr. Billy Greenwell on board the Trucha Fly Fishing Machine for his first time ever fly fishing experience. Billy and good buddy Gary Fishell, aka Fish, both caught on quick and had double digit numbers to the net.
Michael McKindley holding a 20 inch brown he brought to the net. This was his first time ever on Crowley.TFFGS enjoying another live concert at the Mammoth Village.Pic moment with band members of Caravanserai, and special guest Tony Lindsay, 11 time Grammy award winner, and Lead Singer for the Carlos Santana band!.......CHEERS! TFFGS, always keepin it reel!
Posted on Sat, August 19, 2017
by David Carranza