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I ask the question what is a normal weather year? Is it the drought we have endured the last four years? Is it the wet winter we are experiencing this winter? I’ve lived here long enough to know that every year is different and it’s hard to predict what winter will yield.

What I do know is that we need to learn to adapt to the changing conditions that we are presented with. I have the experience to know how and where to fish in drought conditions and in heavy run off conditions.

Last Fall was the worst stream fishing I’ve encountered in my 35 years of living in the Eastern Sierra. The streams were shrunk to the point they were no longer recognizable.

I was not surprised. I fished hard all spring and early summer knowing full well that Fall would not be productive for stream fishing. I adapted to the conditions at hand by taking advantage of the early season stream fishing and lake fishing all season. I fished streams in the Fall and early winter knowing that the fishing would be tough.

This year with the big water year at hand I’ve got a plan. Right now, there are two places that are offering fishing.

Hot Creek is one of the waters that I thought the drought had decimated. Thanks to a plant of diploid trout in the Fall this water is making a comeback. It is still a fragile fishery and needs to be fished gently. It can handle fishing pressure, but not abuse. This water requires some effort to fish, as there is still a sizeable snowpack to deal with. For the hardy sole looking for an adventure, hiking in on the snow for over a mile, there are wild trout that are willing to take dries and nymphs. Hot Creek is open to year around fishing with flies and is a catch and release water.

The upper Owens River has been producing spawning rainbow trout from Crowley Lake. This water requires a lot of effort to fish it. It is a minimum walk of a mile over the snow pack just to get to decent areas of fishing and most anglers are going up to two miles to access the best fishing areas. A snowmobile is the best way to access the area with minimum effort. This has been and should continue to offer the best fishing opportunities in the Eastern Sierra. The fish have been in the system for a while and are not taking lures and flies as readily as they had been.

The lower Owens River on Tuesday was at 550 cfs and is expected to go as high as 700 cfs by this weekend. Lower Owens River flows of 500 cfs and higher are hard to fish and should be considered dangerous to wade. The middle gorge to Pleasant Valley Reservoir is expected to be running at over 300 cfs and should be considered unfishable.

These heavy flows are considered flushing flows. The short-term consequences of flushing flows make the waters unfishable and possibly unsafe. The long-term effects of flushing flows are to redistribute sediments and riparian vegetation. This will improve spawning habitat and increase insect populations. Personally, I hope it removes the stinging nettles from the Owens River gorge.

My game plan is to fish Hot Creek and the upper Owens River from now to the start of the runoff. I’ll continue to fish both waters during the run off as I know a few tricks to take trout. My biggest brown trout from Hot Creek came during spring runoff when most anglers were not fishing Hot Creek.

I will be focusing most of my attention during the run off on the still waters. While not trout fishing one of my go to adaptations is to fish the still waters of the Owens Valley for bass and bluegill. This is always a treat for me. I love to fish surface poppers as the take is incredible.

While late winter and spring conditions will not be optimum, the angler willing to adapt will find fishing opportunities.

STAY TUNED for the best fall fishing season we’ve seen in years…

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7 days ago

We are buried in smoke again today, so we thought it would be fun to share a little about how the names of some of the towns in the Eastern Sierra came about. Thank you, California High Sierra for the article!
californiahighsierra.com/trips/california-high-sierra-towns-the-origin-of-their-names/
Photo by Amy Leist
... See MoreSee Less

We are buried in smoke again today, so we thought it would be fun to share a little about how the names of some of the towns in the Eastern Sierra came about. Thank you, California High Sierra for the article!
https://californiahighsierra.com/trips/california-high-sierra-towns-the-origin-of-their-names/
Photo by Amy Leist

Comment on Facebook

Wow... been a good long while since I’ve been to Bishop. Their high school team was in our league (I went to Tehachapi High) and we traveled there for some football games — something like a 5-6 hour drive each way if I recall correctly. A tough team to beat also. I’m betting it hasn’t changed all that much over all these years (circa late ‘60s).

I'm so sorry the smoke is bad there still. I missed my annual visit this year. It's on my to do list for next year.

We can see it over the Spring Mountains to the West/NW here in Las Vegas. Fortunately, not much of it made it into the LV valley.

Would LOVE to move there if my hubby can find a job nearby!

We left this morning. Not only is it very smokey the smell of smoke is incredible. I don't smoke and I was ready to light up.

Nice photo. That's the real West.

Miss Bishop, Lone Pine, Big Pine, Tinnamaha campground!!!!

No, that is where the theater and Joseph’s used to be. Joseph’s has been gone for some time now. Penny’s is now Dollar General. Unfortunately a lot of vacant stores. Hi Kent!❤️

Hello and good morning. I am planning to drive up to Bishop from Southern California. The main purpose is to see fall colors. May I know if the fall colors are still at peak this coming next two weeks or is it past peak? Thank you for your advice/suggestions.

We were just there.😔

We have to leave too, I almost threw up it was so bad, got to Lee Vining and blue fresh air..take care of yourselves

so sorry for the smoke crazy time for all this year.

I spent a week here and didn't get to see the beauty through the smoke 😏

When was this picture taken, Sunday at 6 am ? never seen it this quiet.

Awesome pic! I wish a Main Street business had a rooftop deck so you can eat with that exact same view!

No smoke in the photo. ??

Is this an old photo? Joseph’s market was the only market back when we lived in Bishop in 1969.

It’s still Smokey? Where is the smoke coming from ?

Beautiful town

I always love to go threw Bishop.

Went thru Bishop yesterday, it was terribly Smokey 😪💚

I wish it was still small !

Does bishop still have a jack in the box

My favorite place ❤️

Isnt that the Old JC Penney store?

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1 week ago

Wonder if this little sheep was as grateful as we were for a view of the mountains this morning??!! Happy Friday! From Bishop, with love ❤️
#keepbishopsafe #mttom
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Wonder if this little sheep was as grateful as we were for a view of the mountains this morning??!! Happy Friday! From Bishop, with love ❤️
#keepbishopsafe #mttom

Comment on Facebook

Wonderful vacation destination

And a free thinker! This is Good!

🙏praying that it stays like this 💖

I miss Bishop so much and living there too 😢😉❤️

This is one of my favorite places to take pictures when I lived in Bishop. There’s many more.

Sigh. Bishop. Love it.

See you next week little sheep

We loved our visit to Bishop

Miss bishop fun times there

Nice!!!

Oh how I love that view

It was beautiful

Love Bishop

👍

Need snow on them things!

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2 weeks ago

In case you are wondering what roads and campgrounds are open, here is the latest, as of yesterday, October 14th:
www.sierrawave.net/state-of-inyo-roads-and-campgrounds-whats-open-closed-oct-14
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In case you are wondering what roads and campgrounds are open, here is the latest, as of yesterday, October 14th:
https://www.sierrawave.net/state-of-inyo-roads-and-campgrounds-whats-open-closed-oct-14

Comment on Facebook

I've been on that same road every year at this time...

It sure was smoky today.

Still hazy there.😥

I love the West.

Beautiful picture thanks for sharing 🙂🙂❤❤

We always used to stay at Brown’s Millpond Campground just north of Bishop. Very nice private campground with a stream running through it. So many wonderful memories from Mule Days!

Up her for 4 day little smoke but really nice trees turning colors

It's the hunting and fishing Road 🏞️🎣🏕️🌌🤠🥰

Love Bishop and the surrounding mountains !!!

Hwy 168 going to Lake Sabrina, North and South lakes?

With I was there.

maybe next weekend any hotel suggestions?

Johanna Atwell

GOD HOW I WISH I WAS ON THAT ROAD... CAREFREE HIWAY...

Lots of nice smoke.....

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2 weeks ago

The Eastern Sierra Cancer Alliance is hosting a virtual 5K walk and fun run this year!!! Going on NOW!! You can do it from WHEREVER you are!!!Hello Friends!☺️
💥 ESCA 20th Annual 5K Walk & Fun Run! 💥October 11-17th! Virtual Edition!
Please LIKE and SHARE this flyer with your friends and family!
Thank you for your continued support! ☺️
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The Eastern Sierra Cancer Alliance is hosting a virtual 5K walk and fun run this year!!! Going on NOW!! You can do it from WHEREVER you are!!!

2 weeks ago

Dog days of summer or fall??!!
Last weekend we had warm temps and blue skies again. Fingers crossed we get some more blue skies this weekend!

Photo by Amanda Zhang
#NorthLake #fallcolors #keepbishopsafe
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Dog days of summer or fall??!! 
Last weekend we had warm temps and blue skies again. Fingers crossed we get some more blue skies this weekend!

Photo by Amanda Zhang
#NorthLake #fallcolors #keepbishopsafe

Comment on Facebook

I heard the colors have peaked in this area. Is it still worth visiting or are there other good spots to hit up?

Beautiful picture.

Wonderful vacation destination

Beautiful

Beautiful picture! Cute dog!

North Lake?

Looking good

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