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  • Writer's picturealexosen

Shivering Hands, Smiling Faces: Why February is Prime Time for Northern California Trout

February in Northern California throws open the doors to a unique brand of trout fishing. While temperatures dip and snow paints the peaks, these cooler months can unveil hidden gems for anglers willing to brave the bite of the wind. Here's why you might want to grab your rod and head out:




1. Winter Steelhead: Steelhead, the chrome-clad warriors of the ocean, make their annual pilgrimage upstream in February. Fly fishing these powerful migrants on rivers like the Eel, Klamath, and Sacramento offers an exhilarating fight and a chance at a trophy catch.


2. Still Water Serenity: With many lakes less crowded, February becomes a peaceful haven for stillwater enthusiasts. Target trophy rainbows lurking in the depths of lakes like Almanor , Shasta, Camanche, Pardee, Los Vaqueros, and Beyrressa or cast dries for eager browns rising in sun-dappled corners of smaller reservoirs.


3. Underrated Rainbows: Don't underestimate the resident rainbows! Streams like the McCloud and Fall River hold healthy populations hungry for winter offerings like nymphs and streamers. Enjoy the solitude of casting along snow-kissed banks and landing feisty fighters.


4. Challenging Conditions: Yes, it's cold. But for dedicated anglers, that's part of the allure. Mastering winter tactics, adapting to changing weather, and finally coaxing a fish from the chilly depths brings a sense of accomplishment unlike any other season.


5. Fewer Crowds: With many families opting for warmer pursuits, February offers a respite from the summer rush. Enjoy uncrowded access to your favorite spots, savor the tranquility of nature, and forge deeper connections with the environment.


Remember, check regulations and dress warmly. February's trout fishing might test your resilience, but the rewards are truly worth the chill. So, bundle up, grab your gear, and experience the unique magic of winter trout fishing in Northern California!


Let's go fishing


1st cast:


Robert George with the Bend Company Fly Fishing Guides had a cancellation for this coming Sunday's Trinity fly fishing trip. Grab this trip at a discounted rate of $400, which includes everything except lunch. Up to 2 people.


The Trinity is LOADED with fish now. Call Robbie to book the trip: 707-812-4671


2nd cast:


We now offer one-on-one personalized coaching for boat owners looking to improve their Napa River fishing knowledge and techniques. Hands-on instruction on Napa River fishing techniques, navigation, and sonar reading.



3rd cast:


Los Vaqueros Reservoir received 2,000 pounds of Mt. Lassen trout on Monday, February 12, 2024.


1800 lbs are 90% Catchables 1-2 lb trout.

200 lbs. are Trophy Rainbow Trout 3-8 lbs.

The total for 2024 is 10,500 lbs. of TROUT!


We love fishing Los Vaqueros and manage to limit out almost every trip. Make sure you call them ahead of time to check conditions and boat rental availability. Renting a boat is the best way to go. Check out our Los Vaqueros fishing trip and start planning your own.




Tight lines!

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