Funny how trout from the same hatchery when placed on the 20 mile section of the Upper Kern take much bigger flies at 3,000’ elevation? About 4/hr. See CDFW stocking water temperature protocol here   From the CDFW website, “This dynamic Fish Planting Schedule is updated in real time, directly by CDFW Hatchery staff. Uh oh. Now all we need is a slow melt in the spring and no warm rains in the near future.   The very dry, windy, and hot July and August weather has spurned forest fires all over California and has pushed smoky air all over the state and beyond even to New England as seen on satellite maps. This isn’t great but far better than the 9% just a few weeks ago. Check Sport Fishing Regulations for these catch-and-release waters. This week I had dialogue with a senior CDFW hatchery supervisor and the plans for the Kern River hatchery were laid out. Power outages for wildfire season have not yet affected the hatchery but they have been on alert several times and there may be an outage later this week according to SoCal Edison. Helped +90 Kern Valley 4th graders plant their trout fry at Riverside Park as around 100 new 1” trout were stocked. That also may be why there wasn't evidence of recent stocking. Those wilder trout likely lost their natural wariness over that time frame and fattened up a bit. Remember to get your 2018 license, Click Here for Prior Years Fishing Reports,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, Flows on section 5 is 120 CFS and much lower than just a week ago when it was pushing 200 CFS. The Kern River Rainbow project could be initiated late this summer with the acquisition of brood stock. It was 72 degrees. Shasta fingerlings are being raised from eggs in the incubation house to prove the facility is capable of rearing. A lot of CDFW stocking has moved down stream below Kernville and Lake Isabella- even to Bakersfield lakes. 35 years of studies and science do not support your position that the proposed regulation change would not have a negative impact on this fishery. Why? If you are on the wrong side of the Upper Kern River you will only have a minute or less to get back on the road side before uncrossable flows end your fishing and may make for a very long walk to a safe crossing! At this time several of our Bako hospitals have exceeded their ICU capacity and there is real concern all county hospitals will exceed capacity soon. Black color worked best late morning and flashier later in the day. Thunderheads were building fast as I rigged down to head home. Get there early and camp on your spot strategically if this is your cup of tea. The Kern flows are still low and Section 5 is still almost a trickle at 45 cfs. Few appeared to be recent stockers. With fingers crossed our hope is the hatchery will plant the 50,000 pounds of trout allocated this year. There are just two spots left for our beginners fly fishing course at Bakersfield College, see our 1/11/19 fishing report below for details and registration. Additionally, the only two races that they have been holding trout in the last 3 years requires resurfacing. My bottom fly was 50” below the point dry fly and that is a good foot deeper than I normally fish. I did not see one rise all day to my dry or any other bug on the surface. The graph trend is distressing. Make sure you bring a stream thermometer. I can’t confirm, but seems likely. Remember that the Covid – 19 resurgence has escalated to extremely concerning levels. Kernville has snow and the higher elevations are getting a snow pack. The Southern Sierra Snowpack appears to be headed for a record low this year with no significant  snow in the foreseeable future. Time will tell but the water master has a very challenging job ahead of him over the next month. We expect Upper Kern River water temps to become lethal on the 20 mile section well before the 4th. Although a small creek, it can bring a lot of muddy water into the Lower Kings should this latest storm drive flows up over 50 cfs. Fingers crossed. Kern River Fly Fishing Inc, is a permitted catch and release fly fishing outfitter with the Sequoia and Inyo National Forest and operates on a non discriminatory basis. I had many fish chase the nymphs on the pick up. Fast sink tip stripped moderately slow. I think that you will all agree that we are living in most interesting times. I headed further up the 20 mile section stopping to take a river temp at 69 degrees and kept moving upstream. Arrived on the water at about 10 am. Trout become lethargic and conserve energy because food will be less plentiful. This should give trout a better chance to survive and disperse while escaping the onslaught of Facebook hot spotting harvesters and posters that have become common now on the Kern River and Bakersfield Lakes. To do this, go to this web page and check the first box that says AGENDAS: Business Meeting at this webpage: Extra flash might be too unnatural for these mostly wild fishes. Some of the trophies planted last winter are being caught and more to come soon. This species will thrive this summer on the 20 mile section. I hope this isn’t  a trend, as it may explain the dramatic drop off in the catching per foot of river covered. Bigger trout are impacted first by high river temperatures. I found a lot of nice fish mostly under 12 inches as well. Consider only much cooler high elevations to whet you fly fishing craving or head to tail waters way up north. Just two rises seen in 4 hours. Get up to speed on how to be successful by attending our two club outings to the Lower Kings to learn from the experts. While BFL has had one decent January rainfall day it has not shown up in the Southern Sierra snowpack. The Upper Kern went over 2,000 cfs this week and was blown out. Also the tubers were every where after noon and put trout down on every spot I fished. Soot and ash will foul the waters. You don’t want to exhaust them to the point of death by playing trout with light tackle. At this time there is no indication from my sources that the hatchery will be operational anytime soon. It has to be the best value for a new fly fisher in our area and you will be taught by some experts that have decades of fly fishing on our Kern River and other area waters. I had quite a few grabs on my #12 foam golden stonefly but none got the hook. OWENS                       51% Rich with near state record 33”long 27” girth estimated 26.5 lbs. Back to the catching. In the past, before the Kern River Hatchery rebuild began 3 years ago Riverwalk, Truxton, and Hart Park Lakes were planted beginning in October. Not much surface action but lots of hatches going on. Weather, stocking and flows are starting to line up great. The event should no last more than a couple of hours This gives more anglers a chance to catch before the stocking truck followers efficiently harvest. Unfortunately, NONE of the rainbows being planted in our home river and Lake Isabella have been fertile for a decade now. Thanks for your support and we celebrate over 60,000 views this month and continue to strive to provide the best fact based trout fishing reports in our area. I did land 13 to the net over 4 hours. Currently, over 15,000 people in Kern County are at home recovering from Covid-19 in quarantine. Article here It is now expected to be contained by 9/30, however, that seems very optimistic. It is baffling that there isn’t more concern? The low elevation Lower Kings is fishing very well and many trout survived the summer as KRFF members participated in the recent electro-shock survey. Probably had 25 hook ups. The Y axis shows the number of days into the year the Upper Kern recedes to under 1,000 cfs and the X axis sows the April 1st snow pack for that year. They want their own residents to have the ability to fish. Whew, I drank a lot of water. The first big rain in November of 2002 caused a huge amount of erosion and soot/ash flows in the Upper Kern. at high elevations. Leave the 4 wt at home. If there is a rain event, watch flows from Mill Creek as it is not flow controlled and can muddy up the Lower Kings quickly and clear up very quickly as well. It may be under 70 degrees from 7 am to 10 am but that doesn’t make it wise to fish. However, expect lower pounds and fewer places to be planted than normal well into 2019 in our region and we will pass along when local lakes get stocked if at all. After a good fight I finally found a way to get him to come to the net. Raising KRR will require a learning curve and constant monitoring. I think I will leave my streamer rod at home next time. When we get our first rain the 170,000 acre SQF fire is going to make things pretty bad for a while. In that case, as the planters become extremely stressed, they have to be removed fast and planted quickly. There still is no time frame to restart the Kern River Hatchery an no plan to stock from the San Joaquin Hatchery has been communicated. Several trout had fresh scars indicating bird strikes. These high flows require it. We also look forward to the free kids fishing day at the hatchery April 28th. We desperately need fertile trout to be continuously placed into our favorite river for the first time in almost a decade given the tremendous fishing pressure it receives. Thankfully there are 30 teachers in Kern County that are making an effort to get there kids to a place that they may come back to with their families and friends to recreate responsibly in the future. Much of that time the Lower Kings was flowing at +3,000 cfs and at unsafe conditions for wading. ( I also get cheap from )  and no action on the dry? Some folks advocate fly fishing water as long as it is below 70 degrees, however, this practice can be deadly on a river like the Upper Kern that varies in water temp quite a bit in one day. If trout planted on much of this section weren’t harvested by fishers it sure would be easy pickings for herons and hawks. The air quality was poor. I moved onto another stretch that I had to myself. It doesn’t have a lot of trout in the races and is still closed to the public and hoping to reopen by April. No trout to be seen there according to baiters I talked to. The crappie bite has been dramatically slowed with the cooler weather at Lake Isabella. Check out the smiles. The last 20 years we seem to have isolated sporadic great water years nestled within years of drought. Grey Reef Fishing Report Feb. 2021 Happy New Year! Very little surface action. Snow pack is 30% of normal for this date in the Sothern Sierra and a bit better up north. There is a long section below Alta Weir that is barbless, catch and release only and is often patrolled by stealthy CDFW wardens with binoculars to delay harvesting. We are just reaching critical threshold of signing all the other leases for Phase One that must open with Bass Pro Shops to make the economics work for the 80+ acre site. Many fly fishing experts say that 90% of trout hold in 10% of the water. Overall a good day with 9 to the net and a really nice 18” buck who smiled for the camera. We also emphasize the importance of the great resource we have in our National Forest and how important it is to use it wisely. A total of 25,000 fingerlings were planted, with the hope many would survive to grow to catchable size. Three CDFW hatcheries in the eastern Sierra and Southern California have had to be depopulated due to a bacterial outbreak. But the hatchery is holding trout in three races for the first time in months. The lake offers great catfishing, bass fishing, crappie and rainbow trout fishing. I didn't bother stripping a streamer today because the dry/dropper rig was exceptionally effective. Hopefully a restart of a trophy trout program here could be initiated during a good water year. Can’t imagine camping in this kind of heat? Some were up to 16 inches. The Lower and Upper Kern have been planted so fish should be scattered all over the river during the summer. Catching on the Upper Kern has improved a bit since stocking was resumed for December even with very cold water temperatures. Probably the last remnants of snow pack well above 12,000’. However,  when the first storm that dumps more than an inch hits, expect some pretty lousy fly fishing conditions. Many participants were blanked as in past low snow pack years and substantially reduced stocking. It is confirmed that the Kern River Rainbow project will be delayed another year. Bass Pro Shops is a 400-day build, and it’s 7-9 months to finalize the civil engineering, building plans, and permitting of all. A great day to be on the water. The CFGC is working to open up ocean fishing particularly for salmon. While the precipitation is great, the colder weather has dropped water temperatures dramatically. Being able to cover a lot of river is the key to double digits on the Kern River between Johnsondale Bridge and Kernville. Pine Flat Reservoir is low and will be in the accumulation mode so releases should be low (been well under 150 cfs the last month). Practically all ICU beds are filled. KRRT , spawned in Kernville, will also be transported to and raised at the San Joaquin Hatchery. So I’m sure they focused on those areas if they came back the next day. Packed up and went home before 3 pm. See article from March The three two hour classes are February 26, March 5, and March 9. Some could be as large as 15” by now. I continue to protect the community up there by having all the food, water, fuel, and flies I need packed before I leave home. Full details can be found at the below link:, I haven't had a chance to get away for a couple of weeks and wanted to get above the fog in the Bako today. Most of the new construction is not operational. Did real well on purely wild trout using the same set up with the Arnerd and the Foam Stone. There could be a small event 2 weeks out.........             fingers crossed. I decided to try a spot above Fairview Dam on section 6. I never found a planter today? 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