By Doug Neal
Almanor Fishing Adventures

April 11, 2018

Surface temps about 43, to 46 degrees by mid day. A good soaking warm rain has streams, creeks, and the North Fork of the Feather River flowing strong. Factor in the melting snow pack and you get the picture. I went by the Chester By pass also known as the Super Ditch yesterday and it too was flowing.

The Hamilton Branch and the Powerhouse is flowing muddy inflows down from Walker Lake. Lake levels are rising fast, refloating sticks, small logs, and big logs. Clarity in the east basin is poor, and areas like the Branch, Big Springs south to Rec.1 are not going to be good for fishing. I was there last week and hardly marked any fish because of the poor water quality.. If I was a fish I wouldn't be there either. Clarity improves from the Dorado south to the Dam, and catch a few fish, but moved on. Its going to take a little time for things to improve in the east basin. Prior to the heavy rain we been fishing Almanor West, and Red Banks to Baily Creek, and doing well. We been slow trolling SMD dodger crawler rigs in the morning, and if that bite slows we switch out to speedy Shiners and pick up the pace. Water clarity was much better on the west side about 8 to 9 ft. probably less now. Fish have moved into the Almanor West flats. Some bugs were beginning to hatch, with a couple bugs going airborne. The sonar reveals large aquatic insect blooms appearing on the bottom. Fish are here grabbing the larva as they emerge. This is the beginning of a major food event.

Fishing pressure has been light, just a few boats out last week. However there was a couple reports of bigger Browns caught and released trolling near Rec. 2 and a couple coves along the east shore. We been getting a mix of King Salmon and Rainbows. The Salmon are last years plants, and are running from 16 to 17.5 inches. The Rainbows are all sizes, small med. and a couple over 4 lbs. But the average Rainbow was about 2.8 to 3 lbs. We released all fish except a couple Salmon for the smoker.

There's a break in the weather this Thursday and we will be headed out to Almanor West again for a look. There's good weather ahead. Looking forward to another great season. Charge your batteries, gas up the boat, pack a cooler, and get your AZ up here. Watch for floating hazards.

Canyon Dam open with dock.
USFS ramp open, no dock in place yet.
Private ramp at Almanor West open, no dock in place.
Private ramps at LACC Rec.1 and 2,  open with docks.

The LACC crews were great this year keeping both ramps accessible most of the winter.