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Every September after Labor Day, a sense of stillness descends on the Bishop Creek Canyon.  The kids are back in school, the family vacationers have come and gone, and the hustle and bustle of the summertime gives way to the relative peace and quiet of fall. It is during this time that serious trout anglers, the ones who are really in the know, head for the high country. Mild days, crisp cool evenings, light crowds, gorgeous fall colors and exceptional trout fishing are dead giveaways that autumn has arrived. Still, it’s safe to say that vast majority of area visitors miss out on what many consider to be hands down the best time of the year in the High Sierra.

So, you may be asking yourself “what’s so great about the fall?”. Well, there are a lot of reasons that September and October are exceptional but the biggest reason for anglers is simple …just as many fish, a fraction of the anglers. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife continues to stock South Lake, Lake Sabrina, North Lake, Intake II, Weir Pond and both forks of Bishop Creek all the way through October, not to mention another bonus stocking of gorgeous trophy Rainbow Trout from Desert Springs Trout Farm coming in late September. With the light fall crowds, there are simply more fish per rod to catch and less anglers to compete with.thelakenorthjaredsmith

Water conditions in 2016 have far exceeded our expectations with levels at South Lake and Lake Sabrina nearing normal conditions, a wonderful surprise for locals and visitors alike. Not only did the water rise higher than expected at our favorite reservoirs, but the water has stayed high much longer than expected leaving anglers with plenty of fishable water and allowing for continued weekly or bi-weekly fish stocking.

Wild Trout Too!

trout-in-hand-jared-smithIn addition to the stocked Rainbows, all canyon waters have self-sustaining populations of wild Brown and Brook Trout. While these wild species of trout are occasionally caught during the summer months, Brown and Brook Trout spawn in the fall making them far more aggressive and easier to fool come September and October. We always recommend practicing catch & release on these wild trout since the DFW no longer stocks them.

Backcountry fishing in the fall can also be spectacular with nearly fifty different lakes in day hike range in the Bishop Creek Drainage, all of which hold wild trout. There are five trailheads in the canyon (Tyee Lakes, Bishop Pass, Sabrina Basin, Piute Pass, Lamarck Lakes) which all lead to pristine trout-filled lakes. These backcountry fisheries hold wild Rainbow, Brook, Brown and even Golden Trout. With the cooler weather, these trout know that winter is on the way and are often easily fooled by a well casted fly or lure.

Prime Creek Fishing

Although the stillwater fishing in the canyon is certainly epic, the creek fishing is not to be passed up.  Some folks may not realize it, but there are nearly 20 miles of fishable stream on Bishop Creek from the highest elevation near South Lake down to the lower elevations in town. Creek flows this fall are nearly perfect making the best pools and runs ripe for the fly or spin fisher. Artificial lures and flies are extremely productive this time of year, but drifting a nightcrawler or salmon egg in the stream will surely entice a strike as well.

My Favorite Time….

shorefishingjaredsmithWhile the fishing alone makes a late season visit to the Bishop Creek Canyon worth the trip, there is so much more to it than that. It’s the friendly faces of the other folks lucky enough to have chosen the fall as their time to visit the canyon. It’s the scenery, the serenity, the sound of an autumn breeze shaking the aspens as it blows through the canyon…it’s perfect. It’s arguably my favorite time to be here. It’s the time of year that reminds me just how outrageously lucky we all are to be able to visit this place, for an afternoon, for a day, for a week. It’s the time of year when there is literally a postcard quality views in every direction and you simply can’t be here without being humbled by the grandeur of it all. Fall is the time….awesome autumn in the High Sierra.

For more info on fishing near Bishop, click HERE.

For more information on visiting the Bishop Creek Canyon, please contact these fine local businesses.

Bishop Area Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau
(760) 873-8405

Parchers Resort & South Lake Landing
(760) 873-4177

Bishop Creek Lodge
(760) 873-4484

Cardinal Village
(760) 873-4789

Creekside RV Park
(760) 873-4483

Lake Sabrina Boat Landing
(760) 873-7425

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15 hours ago

Inyo County has moved from the purple to the red tier!! ... See MoreSee Less

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Love that sound

Is that a good thing??

Is there still snow on the ground. So pretty

Doug, Brad....that sound 💙

Shh! Silence!😁

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2 days ago

Have you ever wondered "what flower is that" while you were here in the Eastern Sierra? Well, this article identifies 5 of the most common, so maybe you won't have to wonder again (at least about this little handful)!

Thanks, California High Sierra!
Photo by Betsy Forsyth, April 26, 2019
#visitbishop #mindfultraveler #RecreateResponsibly
... See MoreSee Less

Have you ever wondered what flower is that while you were here in the Eastern Sierra? Well, this article identifies 5 of the most common, so maybe you wont have to wonder again (at least about this little handful)!

Thanks, California High Sierra! 
Photo by Betsy Forsyth, April 26, 2019
#visitbishop #mindfultraveler #RecreateResponsibly

Comment on Facebook

I knew paintbrush thanks to my mom and camping trips. Have never seen the iris!

So beautiful and amazing picture thanks for sharing 🙂🙂❤❤


Robert Yanasak

Visit Bishop: Regarding the attached article: Mules are not bovines, they are equines!

Indian paint brush?

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3 days ago

Please #RecreateResponsibly !!! Locals and visitors alike, we will need to be EXTRA careful to do our part to prevent wildfires this year!! (most wildfires are caused by humans)Fire season already???!!
This fire occurred yesterday and was quickly out out by local fire fighters. Fortunately there were not the winds that we have today (it is currently howling).

Just a reminder to everyone out there that we already have VERY dry conditions due to a low snowpack from this past winter, so please please be EXTRA CAREFUL out there!!! Please take extra care with cigarette butts, campfires, and anything that could spark!!
#RecreateResponsibly #mindfultraveler #inyocounty #doyourpart

Photo by Betsy Forsyth
... See MoreSee Less

Please #RecreateResponsibly !!! Locals and visitors alike, we will need to be EXTRA careful to do our part to prevent wildfires this year!! (most wildfires are caused by humans)

Comment on Facebook

That’s good that the fire was put out quickly!

A FIRE, Already!!?? I wonder how many drivers are "Rubber necking" in town now? Like they've NEVER seen a fire before!!! If you're driving , DRIVE! If you want to look at the fire; pull over and park your car and gawk all you want!

Fire rings only.

broken glass which acts like a magnifying glass. just send the jobless out cleaning up


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7 days ago

Thinking about venturing this direction? Good to know:Wondering what is open? Here is the latest update:


Roads open: McGee Creek Rd., Rock Creek Rd. to the Snow Park, Hwy 168 to Aspendell, South Lake Rd to Bishop Creek Lodge., White Mountain Rd., snow, travel at own risk, Silver Canyon Rd. (4x4-high clearance expect snow), Wyman Canyon Rd. (4x4-high clearance, snow), Glacier Rd.(Big Pine Canyon) to Glacier Lodge.

Road closed: Rock Creek Rd. at the Snow Park, Hwy 168 from Aspendell to Sabrina Lake, North Lake Rd., South Lake Road after Bishop Creek Lodge.

Campgrounds open: Bitterbrush (winter ops), Grandview (winter ops), Pleasant Valley (County), PV Pit (BLM), Baker Creek (County), Goodale (BLM), Taboose Creek (County), Tinnemaha Creek (County).

Campgrounds closed: Convict Lake, Holiday, Aspen Group, Palisade Group, McGee Creek, Tuff, Rock Creek, Iris Meadow, Big Meadow, East Fork, French Camp, Rock Creek Group, Mosquito Flat Backpacker, Pine Grove, Upper Pine Grove, Horton (BLM),Table Mountain Group, Forks, Intake 2, Four Jeffrey, Sabrina, Bishop Park, Big Trees, Bishop Park Group, Willow, Mountain Glen, North Lake, Cedar Flat Group, Clyde, Sage Flat, Upper Sage Flat, Big Pine Creek, Glacier Group, Palisade Glacier Group.

The Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest Visitor Center is closed for the season.

The White Mountain Ranger Station Visitor Center is closed, but visitor questions are being answered via phone, 760-873-2500, Monday – Friday, 8:00 am -4:30 pm, closed federal holidays.


Roads closed: Onion Valley, Whitney Portal Rd., Horseshoe Meadow.

Roads open: Foothill Road, Division Creek.

Campgrounds open: Independence Creek (county), Lower Grays Meadow (winter ops), Portuguese Joe (county), Lone Pine (winter ops), Tuttle Creek (BLM), Diaz Lake (County).

Campgrounds closed: Upper Grays Meadow, Onion Valley, Whitney Portal, Whitney Portal Group, Whitney Portal Trailhead Campground, Cottonwood Lakes, Cottonwood Pass, Horseshoe Meadows Equestrian, Kennedy Meadows.

The Eastern Sierra Interpretive Association is operating their bookstore at the Eastern Sierra Visitor Center in Lone Pine, Thursday through Monday 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Visitor questions are being answered via phone, 760-876-6200, Monday- Friday, 8:00 am - 4:30 pm, closed federal holidays.

Photo by Greg Connor
#mindfultraveler #RecreateResponsibly #inyocounty
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Thinking about venturing this direction? Good to know:

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Chiquito pero muy hermoso🌲🌲🌳🌳🌵🌄🌪🌫🌬


Greatly appreciate this update!

This is such a beautiful area!

I would love to move there because it is so beautiful but lacking in basic needs.

Beautiful time of year to go up the Eastern Sierra

Beautiful picture!

So beautiful and amazing picture thanks for sharing 🙂🙂❤❤

Please take your trash out with you.

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