Springtime fly fishing in Redding California can be an incredible season for trout fishing. While most of the country is fixated on college basketball’s “March Madness”, in Redding we shift our focus to an amazing caddis hatch that happens along the lower Sacramento River. This prolific hatch of insect life brings new understanding to the term “March Madness” to those of us who fly fish. While the weather and flows of the river can be unpredictable, the bug life along the water starts to heat up with the warming weather and the influx of cold water from the spring runoff. The March/April Brachycentrus caddis or Blanket Caddis Hatch can be stunning. As a fly fishing guide from Redding, California I have seen my share of amazing days on the water when this caddis hatch is in full effect. The bug life doesn’t immediately produce a dry fly panacea, but it does give us the chance at rising pods of fish along the water in a river that is usually fished with nymphs. Flows can be significantly challenging along this big water, especially with heavy snow pack inundating Shasta above the dam. An experienced fly fishing guide is really important to utilize during this season because of the changing dynamics of the river. The lower Sacramento River is a large fishery with flows that can approach 14,000 cubic feet per second during the spring. Having some experience to help read and understand the changing dynamics of the water can be really helpful to get the best fly fishing experience.
Fly Fishing in Redding California
The caddis hatches that are caused by this cold water infusion during runoff can make the rainbow trout fishing really produce. This year was no exception. Spending a few days at the peak of the caddis hatch, my clients experienced some incredible days of fishing. Here are just a few shots of this year’s best adventures:
Some of our best days during the caddis hatch are when the weather cooperates and we get the warmth of the spring sun on our faces and the water. The green of the hills that surround the river make for a picturesque trip and the trout fishing can be at its absolute best. The pressure is usually lighter and the fish are invigorated by the bug life. If you are in Redding California and looking for a fly fishing guide to help navigate the waters of the Lower Sacramento, I would be happy to help get you out on the water and onto fish!
If you want to read up on the Lower Sacramento Fly Fisherman magazine has a great overview of the fly fishing seasons along this magnificent river. And while the trout fishing is wonderful the other fish species that are found in the river are worth the effort to go after as well.