The summer heat is finally upon us. After a long cool beginning to summer, the heat has caught up to us. Flows on the Truckee River are holding strong at 250 cfs through the downtown gauge, but water temps are rising above 70 degrees consistently at the Sparks gauge (the only gauge with a thermometer). We have started fishing earlier in the morning or further up the river system where morning temps are a cooler 61-64 degrees. We suggest keeping a thermometer with you and testing the water before, during, and after fishing and once the water hits 68 degrees consider fishing elsewhere.
The Truckee River does not have Hoot owl closures in Nevada or California. We suggest, if you are practicing catch and release, that you consider water temps when making your decision to fish. On a side note, the daily temps are forecasted to drop significantly next week with highs only in the upper 80s for Reno. This should get things back in great shape throughout the day. Until then bring a thermometer.
That being said, the fishing has been good during the early morning. The trout are feeding well, moving between fast shallow riffles and deeper moving water that may have a fast seam nearby. Takes have been quick and easy to miss in the fast moving water as trout dart side to side to grab prey items. The Hopper/Dropper style has been an effective way to target this shallow water with a few takes on the Hopper dry. Fly selection for the dropper is small size 16-14 mayflies nymphs and caddis pupa. Golden stones are beginning to show up in California, but I have yet to see one on the Nevada side.
Truckee River Flies We Suggest: Fire Starter, Panty Dropper Hopper, Spring Creek Hopper, Mini Crayfish, Hot Cheek, G6, Mini Jig Leech, French Nymph, Bead Head Hares Ear, TJ Hooker, Truckee River Dozen
Truckee River and Urban Ponds
Carp fishing is an underutilized and exciting way to beat the heat. Carp will feed in the morning until the sun gets high and hot. We are fortunate to have Carp in the Truckee River, but also in local urban ponds and lakes making them a super fun target. Carp are a tricky fish to catch as they are extremely spooky and cannot usually be coaxed into eating. They are a blast and rewarding fish to catch with several reel spooling runs before they give up.
Here are a few tips to catch your first carp!
- Consider booking a guide trip focusing on Carp. There is a lot of nuance to catching these fish.
- Target only fish that are in shallow water, feeding with their nose down and tail up.
- Fly presentation is key. Carp like the fly to drop vertically from the surface to the ground less than a foot in front of one of their eyes.
- Watch the fish to know when they have eaten your fly. They should swim over to a well presented fly and “wiggle” that’s a sign that they may have sucked in your fly.
Interested in more info on Carp? Check out the Reno Fly Shop Podcast Episode #55 with John Bartlett dedicated to nothing but carp!