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Intro

Located below Pleasant Valley Reservoir and just north of Bishop, the Lower Owens River parallels Highway 395, making it easily accessible and a perfect spot for winter fly fishing. The river makes its way through a valley surrounded by the striking peaks of the High Sierra, so the views aren’t that bad, either.

What Makes It Great

The picturesque setting and good trout fishing in this area make it a popular spot among locals and visitors alike. Fly fishermen wade the Lower Owens River with nymphs and dry fly combinations, taking advantage of lower flows in the colder months. The ideal flow for wading is 250 CFS (cubic feet per second) and the flow here rarely exceeds 500 CFS in the cooler months.

The fish love hiding in all the little features that provide cover for them, such as undercut banks and aquatic vegetation. The most common catch from the Owens River is rainbow or brown trout, typically around 10 to 12 inches, though you might find some up to 18 inches.The Bishop Chamber of Commerce and CA Department of Fish and Wildlife stock rainbows in Pleasant Valley Reservoir and the river year-round.

The 3.3-mile stretch of the river below Pleasant Valley Reservoir is a designated Wild Trout Area and is catch and release. Farther downstream, the water is a little warmer and hosts other fish species including bass, bluegill and carp. Just east of downtown Bishop, the Buckley Pond area offers easy access, where wading, float tubing, and drift boating are all popular options.

Who is Going to Love It

The banks of the Lower Owens are nutrient rich, attracting a large population of aquatic insects and ensuring reliable dry fly fishing. It’s a great place to learn to fish given that there is a really dense trout population, or improve your skills if you have been fly fishing for a while. There are plenty of guides in the area that can assist with outfitting and lessons for new fly fishers.

Directions, Parking, & Regulations

To access the Wild Trout area on Lower Owens River, take Highway 395 North to Pleasant Valley Rd (about 6.5 miles north of Bishop). Follow Pleasant Valley Rd. northeast for about 1.8 miles. Cross the river and make a right onto Chalk Bluffs Rd, where you will see several access sites.

If you want to reach the river below the Wild Trout area, turn off Highway 395 north of Bishop from Highway 6 at Five Bridges Road or at Laws Railroad Museum. Access the Owens River East of Bishop from Line Street, Warm Springs or Collins Road.

Featured image provided by Patitucci Photo

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2 days ago

What's your favorite season in the Eastern Sierra?

Beautiful photo by @robert_lachman from October 12, 2019
#keepbishopsafe
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Whats your favorite season in the Eastern Sierra? 

Beautiful photo by @robert_lachman from October 12, 2019
#keepbishopsafe

Comment on Facebook

All seasons but fall especially! Been going every October for the last 9 years... Also always stop at Mahogany Smoked Meats before going home.

Fall when leaves change and late summer when tubing in cut off’s by day with jeans and flannel by the fire at night

I was raised on the Eastern side of the Sierras. When I was young it was Summers. When I got a little older it was Spring for the opening of trout season. Now at 73 it's Fall...😊

I go every year! 2nd or 3rd week of October! Beautiful scenery and weather!

I have to say mid to late fall. Although mid spring is awesome as well. ✌️

Fall is the best...but the other 3 run a close 2nd!

We from Bishop

Fall🍁🍂🎃

Autumn and Winter

Spring

Anything but fire season 😭

Yes! 😅😁

Gorgeous

Fall

Nice One!

Love the fall leave. We try to go every year in October

Fall

In Bishop all of them. Bishop picture love this site 🙂🙂❤❤

So pretty

Beautiful

Fall

Beautiful picture

Fall by far! I love the colors. We try to go every year in October for my husband's birthday.

Fall for sure. Before the snow shuts the roads. And early summer. When it is just a little cooler. 🐈😷

Beautiful!

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4 days ago

With fires, poor air quality and COVID-19 all currently going on, who needs a little something to look forward to??
How about Wynonna for Labor Day Weekend of 2021!!
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With fires, poor air quality and COVID-19 all currently going on, who needs a little something to look forward to?? 
How about Wynonna for Labor Day Weekend of 2021!!

Comment on Facebook

Lol whatever floats your boat Bishop. With way things are we might be in a middle of some other bs that will shut it down. I’m done hoping and waiting for “better” times to come.

its sept 21??!!

Can’t wait!!

oh next yr ugh

Looks like she needs an enema !

Mary Allegra Nicol

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1 week ago

Wishing all of the firefighters and emergency support teams a safe weekend. Thank you for all that you are doing!!!

Sending love from Bishop to all who are being affected by the fires. ❤️

This photo by Instagram user @sammyzz17 and is from February of 2018 when we had the Pleasant Valley Reservior Fire. Hoping that he and his crew are safe!
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Wishing all of the firefighters and emergency support teams a safe weekend. Thank you for all that you are doing!!! 

Sending love from Bishop to all who are being affected by the fires. ❤️

This photo by Instagram user @sammyzz17 and is from February of 2018 when we had the Pleasant Valley Reservior Fire. Hoping that he and his crew are safe!

Comment on Facebook

🙏God Bless you all. I have been praying for rain to help put all the fires out and is in the forecast for some areas yeh!

God Bless all of you amazing men and women fighting these horrible fires. Stay safe!🙏❤️👩‍🚒👩‍🚒👍

Thanks guys!! Hope you all stay safe and return home to your families soon!!! Bless you all❤️

Wonderful pic.of these brave Firefighters! Prayers for their safety! 🙏🏻💕🙏🏻

Thank you to ALL FF's and Incident Command crews, Strike Teams busting butt out there. Love & prayers for All Your Safety from Santa Rosa 💜😷🐈

🙏 to all the first responders and thank you for your hard work.

Thank you Bishop firefighters for all of your extremely hard work!

A big Thank You To All Our Firefighters God Bless You And Your Families Stay Safe

Sending love and prayers from the Florida Panhandle. Be Safe! God Bless you and yours!

Thank you for your service. and God Bless You All .

God be with you all. Thank fort doing what you do

What a commitment! Thank you! Your work can never be repaid!!!

God bless you boys! Please stay safe!

Thank you God bless and stay safe

God Bless you all🙏☮️

Thank you all for what you do for us everyday 💗

Stay safe 🚒😊👍🏼

Amen

Ty

👊👍🤙😎🙏

Thanks to all the firefighters out in California, Oregon & Washington who work tirelessly everyday ❗️❗️. You are true heroes❗️

This is a spectacular photo, a real prizewinner! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Thanks never were more than a few brave people

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1 week ago

To any of our Inyo County residents....Please take a minute, if you haven’t yet, to sign up for the Inyo County emergency alerting system, CodeRED. This will ensure that if there is a local emergency such as an evacuation notice or missing child report that you will be notified. Stay safe and stay informed!
Click on this link to sign up:
public.coderedweb.com/CNE/en-US/DAD807D480BF

📷 by John Paul DeRousseau
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To any of our Inyo County residents....

Comment on Facebook

Jack Lila McKinney just making sure your signed up ❤️

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