Kewsick Damn down to the Deschutes Bridge, the river is closed to all salmon fishing right now and for the forseeable future. But, you are able to fish for trout and keep one trout up to 16 inches long, either wild or a hatchery fish.
From the Deschutes Bridge down to Red Bluff Diversion Dam, the river also is closed to all salmon fishing until Oct. 9 through Oct. 31. After that, there is a limit of two salmon and two hatchery trout or steelhead. Note that on page 7 of the booklet there is a chart describing the differences between a plain rainbow resident trout and steelhead. The main difference is that the steelhead migrates to the sea and the resident trout sticks around in the river. If the resident trout gets to 16 inches, it is then classified as a steelhead no matter whether the trout migrates or stays at home.
***Make sure to inform your friends who are fishing for the salmon on the Sacramento of the changes that are going into effect. It is a hefty fine for anyone caught breaking the fishing rules and regulations whether intentionally or not intentionally***
Below the Red Bluff Diversion Dam there is an open season for salmon from Oct. 9 through Dec. 12, with the same limits as the upstream section of the river. This extends all the way down to Knights Landing.
From Knights Landing to the San Francisco Bay, there is an open period from Sept. 4 through Oct. 3. Again, the same limits apply as upstream.
The Stanislaus River appears to have a semi regular trout fish stocking schedule. You can view some of these details on the California Fish and Game site.
And now, in looking back at our horrible fishing expedition last week to the North Fork of the Stanislaus River, I am wondering just how much the fish stalking has to do with our horrible luck. Someone who we were camping with off the river made mention that if you go fishing right after the river has been stocked….the fish do not bite. Meaning that it is best to wait for several days after the fish have been stalked before you start fishing for them.
After looking at the fish planting on the Stanislaus, it doesn’t appear that there was any fish stocking or planting going on the week before or after we were fishing the river. So, now I am more confused than ever as to why we failed to really catch anything.
If you are an expert at fishing the North Fork of the Stanislaus river, please make some comments on what you think about fishing right after or during times when the river has been stocked, because so far, it seems quite a few people are confused as to how the fishing is after that happens.
Another trip to the Stanislaus River has just come to a close today, and here is how the fishing ended up:
For a total of three days spent fishing the river just above and below Boards Crossing near Sourgrass Day Use area on the North Fork of the Stanislaus, we caught a grand total of 1 6-7 inch trout. Not too great as you can understand.
We used all different types of lures and baits and flies as well. Compared to last year, the water was noticably higher and several degrees cooler too.
What was impressive was the amount of trout that could be seen breaking water and jumping into the air, but that is only fun for so long. When it gets to the point where you cast our line out and instantly two fish jump right next to it, but nothing hits your lures, then you start going crazy. That is where the funny guys come into play.
The one fish that was landed by Mr B Davis, was taken on a nightcrawler worm. There was one minor strike on the last day on a spinner. One bait that was night tried out were live crickets which seem to work relatively well on this river in the past. We were simply too lazy to go to Ebbets Pass Sporting goods and buy some, as the river is about a 30 minute or so drive to get there each way.
My suggestion to anyone who is headed up to the Stanislaus near Boards Crossing this July is to pick up some live crickets prior to making your way down to the river and seeing what type of luck you have on them. Or, figure out exactly what flies to use, as we surely did not have a clue this year.
Still, fish or no fish, the Stanislaus river is an excellent place to spend some time in the summer. Super nice swimming and beautiful scenery all around.
The Stanislaus is flowing quite heavily this week. This week may even be the highest volume of water flowing down the river so far this year. As there was snowfall all the way until the end of May, it appears as though there will be tons of water all summer long in 2010.
Finding some nice slower water is a bit of a challenge right now. There are several fly fisherman who are having some luck with dry Griffiths Gnat.
Right now, it seems that the fish counts from some of the other locals are less than usual for this time of year, but everyone is optomistic that it will turn into some much better fly fishing on the Stanislaus really soon, hopefully before the 4th of July.
If you get excited about spin fishing the Stanislaus, you will still have some great luck using live crickets with a bobber or some light weight on 6lb test in many parts of the river. The water is moving fast, so make sure to use propper hooks so the crickets stay on as best as you can, otherwise you will be casting out your bait all day long without any trout.
And of course, if you land a large trout from the Stanislaus, be sure to make a comment on this post and send the picture on over.