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Fishing the Trinity... Again

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  • Fishing the Trinity... Again

    For eight of the last ten years, I've made an annual pilgrimage to California's Trinity River during the first week of October. Some years the steelhead returns have been huge and the fishing electric. Last year was the slowest year I've ever experienced there as we went about ten days later than usual and a rain storm put the fishing off. Counts are down, but spirits are high. Fires near Helena are going to be the wild card as they've intermittently closed roads, but there's plenty of access and it's a gorgeous place to fish. This year we have a group from Washington, California, Oregon (me), and Arizona coming together. I'm curious if anyone else fishes there with any regularity? I'll try to post a report upon my return.

  • #2
    I made it home yesterday from the Trinity River in NorCal. 1,171 miles driven in total, it was another successful trip down there. The number of fish seems to be a bit down from previous years, but that was to be expected. Over three days of fishing, I hooked nine and landed six. None were particularly large with most in the 24-26" range, but willing to take dead-drifted flies. I brought my spey rod but never broke it out.

    A few weeks back, a section of the river burned. That section, between Junction City and Helena, holds a lot of good water that's been very productive over the years, but it was inaccessible. Every day, we sat in traffic waiting to be ferried through the burn zone. That section of Hwy 299 was only open a few times a day with scheduled openings, so we had to reel up at times and rush back to wait in line for an opportunity to get up/down the road. We'll be back next year and ready for the road to be truly opened again.

    It's a really scenic river (outside the burn zone -- which is totally scorched earth) with great access. We picked up fish in here and there with some of our most consistent spots not producing at times and new water holding fish. Even after fishing it a ton of times, we still managed to find new, exciting water. That's probably the best part about fishing, there's always something new and you learn more every time.

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    • #3
      I fished the Trinity in the early 90's closer to Hoopa. Beautiful river. I remember there being a half pounder run at the time as well as fall summer/fall steelhead.



      • jmwfish224
        jmwfish224 commented
        Editing a comment
        There were a few half-pounders caught and even two jack chinook. My buddy hooked a large fish that I think was a chinook because it totally kicked his butt and was 180-degrees different than the steelhead we were sticking. We didn't see too many fish on redds this year. Usually we see a few more spawning salmon, but there hasn't been much rain to speak of, so perhaps there's another push of fish yet to hit the stretch we fish (Junction City to Del Loma).

    • #4
      Sounds like a fun trip! NorCal has some really fine fly fishing. Now if they only let in the Oregonians instead of those danged Bay Area people . . . .
      Last edited by Fuzzy; 10-10-2017, 12:40 PM.
      aka Scott Richmond