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Thread: American around Coloma

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Location
    Folsom
    Posts
    34

    Default American around Coloma

    I always thought this area was closed but I met someone on the lower AR around this time last year and he showed me some pictures of some beautiful trout. After reading the regs it appears the river is open and barbless / C&R only which is good with me. Has anyone been in the area? Is the water fishable or is it blown out right now with all the rain we received earlier this week. I want to head out tomorrow and wondering if I should stick to the lower AR and chase steelies or head up the hill a little and try around Coloma for trout. What would you do?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Garden Valley
    Posts
    908

    Default

    I am living in Coloma right now, but if I had the choice right now I would fish the lower for steelhead personally. As far as conditions go, that’s a complex situation on the South Fork. These rains haven’t really made any affect yet, but the dam releases are what you need to learn.

    Check out the schedule for a very rough idea: http://www.dreamflows.com/Pages/ChiliBarSchedule.php

    Unfortunately, that’s just the tip of the iceberg to understanding flows here. All that said, there are trout to be caught and there is some fishy water at a very wide range of flows if you are adaptable. It is not a high numbers fishery, so for me I’d rather swing for steelhead and hope for the best.
    Good luck either way,
    JB
    "Lord help me to be the person my dog thinks I am"
    - unknown

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Davis, CA, USA, Earth
    Posts
    19,008

    Default

    One problem is the flow use to go from 500 to 1500 daily which kills the aquatic insect life.

    Stripping buggers, streamers or leeches can be effective.

    If you float it you can hit lots of good looking runs.

    _______________________________________

    Middle Fork of the American River is much better but less accessible.

    Robby Hogg guides it with rafts in the summer.

    These guys were white water rafting commandos first then got wild about fly fishing.

    http://class5flyfishing.com/

    Video.....

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PgcPMpAhJww
    Bill Kiene

    Fly fishing travel consultant
    Certified FFF Casting Instructor
    Email: billkiene63@gmail.com
    Cell: 530/753-5267
    Web: www.billkiene.com

    Contact me for any reason........
    ______________________________________

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Location
    Folsom
    Posts
    34

    Default

    Thanks all. I hear they increase the flows on the weekend for the kayackers so weekdays are the beat bet. Guess I need to stop by the shop and pick up a few flies this morning. I think I will hit the lower AR today and Coloma this evening.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Garden Valley
    Posts
    908

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by KSB209 View Post
    Thanks all. I hear they increase the flows on the weekend for the kyackers so weekdays are the beat bet. Guess I need to stop by the shop and pick up a few flies this morning. I think I will hit the lower AR today and Coloma this evening.
    If only it were that simple, HA! In certain times, certain years, the flows might follow that pattern, roughly. There are many, many factors affecting flows up here though so you really need to:
    -develop a good understanding of likely scenarios
    -possess a good crystal ball
    -be quick and flexible, watching the real-time flow data
    -cross your fingers and take a chance
    -learn how to fish different spots at different flows

    Trying to hit the river at any given time of any given day in the hopes of a particular flow will frustrate, often. For at least the short term, I would say that the flows won’t come close to blowing out even at the upper release levels. The higher flows can make some spots pretty much impossible to fish though, and (easy) access is somewhat limited. The suggestion about switch rods is good, as there is some decent opportunities for that, but if you really want some better odds ... go with Robby or Grady in a raft! They guide both the south and middle fork, and they know their stuff!
    JB
    "Lord help me to be the person my dog thinks I am"
    - unknown

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    PNW
    Posts
    1,098

    Default

    I grew up fishing the south fork and its tribs. Pretty good rule of thumb is if the access is easy dont have high Hope's. If it's less than a mile walk or 500 foot drop and climb many of the fish are taken.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Davis, CA, USA, Earth
    Posts
    19,008

    Default

    Many years ago friends like Mike Ziem, Bob Giannoni and I would fish around Chili Bar on the South Fork of the American River.

    We could park near the George Town Road / Hwy 193 bridge and fish a few hundred yards upstream to the Chili Bar dam or walk and

    fish down stream for miles back then.

    In the evening we would leave the shop and drive to Chili Bar and fish the evening dry fly activity with a #16 Light Cahill.

    Back then in the 1970s there were some little cabins below the Chili Bar Dam and above the 193 hwy bridge that you could rent.

    Mike Ziem rented one for a week and we went up in the afternoon / evenings to fish with him.

    ______________________________

    Some years ago Mike McIntyre was a white water rafting guy who fly fished and worked for the State of California.

    He took people down the South Fork of the American River and the Deshutes river.

    I went with him and he fished a single hand rod with a sink-tip line and a black wooley bugger.

    We caught a few nice wild Rainbow trout with one about 18 inches.

    .
    Bill Kiene

    Fly fishing travel consultant
    Certified FFF Casting Instructor
    Email: billkiene63@gmail.com
    Cell: 530/753-5267
    Web: www.billkiene.com

    Contact me for any reason........
    ______________________________________

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