Lower Feather River Steelhead
The Lower Feather River begins after the Oroville Dam, the tallest dam in the United States. Unfortunately this has halted steelhead and salmon form making it up the Feather River Canyon and to re-propagate near the natural springs where these fish used to annually visit for millions of years. The fish have somewhat adjusted, even though populations have drastically declined in the last 160 years since the gold rush period as 18 of the historic 21 annual salmon runs are now extinct. Of course the declines of salmon are solely affected because of the dam and its impact these days combined with the drought years. Aside from the struggle these fish have faced over the last 160 years, the Feather still manages to see good returns of wild steelhead at times.
We fish for steelhead in the Lower Feather River and we have found that Fall/Winter is when most of the larger fish can be caught. The river can see higher pressure during these months, however Spring and Summer can be very productive and under the radar of many anglers. The river can be pretty void of crowds during this time, with the nearby Yuba and Sac turning on, and the trout season opener. Fisherman will also head to the more well-known steelhead fisheries such as the Trinity and Upper Klamath. Located ten minutes from the river our guide is extremely knowledgeable about the fishery and he knows where to go depending on where the schools of fish are staging. Let us be your guide to some wonderful steelhead fly fishing on the Lower Feather River when the steelhead return on their annual migration up the Sacramento and it’s tributaries like the Feather River.
LIST OF FLIES FOR FLY FISHING LOWER FEATHER RIVER STEELHEAD
- Elk Hair Caddis – 14 & 16
- CDC Caddis 14 & 16
- Stimulator 8-12
- Parachute Adams 16
- Adams 16
- Para Extended Body-PMD 16
- Blue Wing Olive 18
- Bead Bugger (Black, Brown, Olive) 10 & 8
- Mohair Leech (Black, Brown, Olive) 10 & 8
- BH Hailbop Leech (Black, Brown, Olive, Wine) 10
- Pale Alevin 12 & 6
- Central Valley Alevin 12 & 6
- Soft Hackles (Tan, Brown, Olive) 14 & 16)
- General Baitfish Imitations Grey/White 8 & 10
- Fox Pupah Olive & Tan 14
- Z Wing Caddis Green 14
- Hotwire Caddis Olive & Tan 14
- G6 Caddis Pupa Olive & Tan 14
- Bird Nest Olive & Hares Ear 16 & 18
- Micro Mayfly 16 & 14
- Lances X-May Olive 16
- Hogan’s Little Amigo Brown & Olive 16
- Pheasant Tail 14 & 16
- WD-40 (Olive, Black, Grey, Brown) 16 & 18
- Glo Bug (Pink, Peach, & Orange) 6
- Microspawn (Pink, Cheese, Cheese/Flame, Steelhead Orange)
- Pettis’s Unreal Egg (Dark Roe, Light Roe, Bright Orange, Peachy King, Pink Champagne) 12
Kayla Katayama – Fly Fishing Guide Lower Feather & Lower Sacramento River.
GEAR RECOMMENDATIONS FOR LOWER FEATHER RIVER
- Fish species: Steelhead
- Fishing season: Open Year Round Below 162 Bridge, Above 162 bridge open Jan 1- July 15.
- Nearest airport: Sacramento
- Recommended fly fishing leader: 9 foot leader 2X-3X
- Recommended fly fishing tippet: 3X-5X for Nymphs, 2X or 3X for Eggs, 4X or 5X for Most Dries, 2X-3X for Streamers
- Best fly fishing rod: 9-10 foot – 6 or 7 weight (5 weight for dries only)
- Best floating fly line: Rio In Touch Salmo/Steelhead
- Best sinking fly line: 10 foot sink tip. Type 6. 150-200 grn.
- Fly lines: Floating & Sink Tip.
Reviewed August 28, 2016
Zachariah Stone Silver was an amazing fly fishing guide down in Graeagle!!! We met at the general store and then headed out for four hours of FUN and EXCITEMENT. My husband caught his first trout on a fly! Z did a super job making sure all people were having a good time and learning. He is very knowledgeable and funny. Wonderful experience.....book with Jack Trout Fly Fishing if you are looking for an awesome experience!!
Visited July 2016
Lower Feather River Oct 2016