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Top Ten flies for stillwater

Stillwater fishing, anglers, MyOutdoorBuddy.com, Jon Baiocchi, fly fishing

By Jon Baiocchi
05/24/13 -- Stillwater fishing has progressed at a rapid pace in the last decade. Techniques, rods, lines, and even the players on the field have gone in different directions to hone their craft. It has almost become personal now, the way we want to present our offering to the fish in our own special style.

Stillwater anglers should have many individual skills in their approach to the fertile waters at hand. Think of these skills like tools in a carpenter’s belt, each tool with a specific purpose in mind. Indicators, sinking lines, floaters, drop lining, and the dry game all rely on one key element; flies.

I’ve compiled an essential list of flies that every Stillwater technician should not be without. These flies are for trout, some are old, and others are standards. Then there are the ones that cross the line and take it too far like my “Baiocchi” ties with a special twist. Welcome to the staircase of progression in stillwater fly tying.

1) The Sheep Creek Special

Stillwater fishing, anglers, MyOutdoorBuddy.com, Jon Baiocchi, fly fishing,Sheep Creek Special

George Biggs of Jerome, Idaho developed this fly for Sheep Creek Reservoir in northern Nevada. It’s an all-rounder type of pattern that suggests it could be many different things. For Lake Davis and Frenchman’s Reservoir, it’s a must have. I tie my version on a heavy scud hook instead of the long shank; it has better hooking power with a more defined silhouette of a snail.

2) The Jay Fair Wiggle Tail

Stillwater fishing, anglers, MyOutdoorBuddy.com, Jon Baiocchi, fly fishing, Jay Fair Wiggle Tail

I love Jay’s simple approach to creating this fly, the marabou tail tied sparse with the right length makes this pattern come alive! This fly would not be complete unless it is tied with Jay’s proven materials; his colors glow and give the wiggle tail a three dimensional look. This fly has given me great success on many different lakes across the west.

3) The Swimming Rabbit Hair Leech

Stillwater fishing, anglers, MyOutdoorBuddy.com, Jon Baiocchi, fly fishing, Swimming Rabbit Hair Leech

This fly does exactly what the name suggests; it moves and provides the perfect silhouette of a natural leech. Klamath Lake and Eagle Lake have abundant populations of leeches and this pattern has shined with flying colors in these waters. It offers more bang for your buck than a Wooly Bugger, and its durability is bombproof. Rust is my first choice of color, followed by black.

4) The Callibaetis nymph

Stillwater fishing, anglers, MyOutdoorBuddy.com, Jon Baiocchi, fly fishing, Callibaetis nymph

This is a top producer when the mayflies of a lake are brewing up a hatch under partly cloudy skies. The old standard has been the Gold Ribbed Hare’s Ear, a great fly on its own but I’ve been doing extremely well with my Z-Lon Callibaetis. Add a copper flashback and you’ll have even more fish attracting qualities. When it comes to this pattern, size, shape, and movement is more important than color.

5) The Damsel Nymph

Stillwater fishing, anglers, MyOutdoorBuddy.com, Jon Baiocchi, fly fishing, Damsel Nymph

The damselfly hatch in spring is one that many fly anglers have a special passion for. It offers them a chance to hook large trout just under the surface or stalk them off the bank. When tying these patterns keep them sparse with lots of moving parts. I like to fish two types; one leaded for deeper water before the hatch, and the other tied for shallow water that will “hover” in the strike zone. Keep in mind that damsels change color to match their surroundings. As the weeds change in color, so do the nymphs.

6) The Blood Midge

Stillwater fishing, anglers, MyOutdoorBuddy.com, Jon Baiocchi, fly fishing, The Blood Midge

Much has been written about this famous chironomid. Its abundant hemoglobin lends it the red coloration that suggests its common name and enables it to live in the oxygen poor muddy substrate called the ‘death zone’. I can remember hatches at Lake Davis back in the day when your boat would be spotted red with the blood of these midges from the ride back at dusk. This simple blood midge tied on a heavy pupa hook with red thread, gold wire, a white bead, and coated in nail polish is all you need. It shines in both Indicator fishing and the traditional strip.

7) The Blood Midge Emerger

Stillwater fishing, anglers, MyOutdoorBuddy.com, Jon Baiocchi, fly fishing, Blood Midge Emerger

Many innovative tiers have their own special blood midge emerger, including myself. The key elements that make a winning model is one that keeps the butt of the fly in the water, and the head and wings above the surface where it is visible to the angler’s eye. My pattern incorporates a mohair shuck, a foam body, followed by a white foam post with a burnt orange hackle wrapped parachute style. Refusals are rare with this fly.

8) The Floating Snail

Stillwater fishing, anglers, MyOutdoorBuddy.com, Jon Baiocchi, fly fishing, Floating Snail

When snails are out dancing on the surface like buoys in the wind, trout line up for an easy high calorie meal. The use of foam in our flies has brought our fishing to a whole new level as they float like a cork, and wobble about. What’s killer about this fly is that it also doubles as a camouflage indicator for spooky trout.

9) The Parachute Midge Emerger

Stillwater fishing, anglers, MyOutdoorBuddy.com, Jon Baiocchi, fly fishing, Parachute Midge Emerger

Scott Sanchez of Jackson Hole, WY developed this fly for fussy trout on the Snake River. Though it was never intended to be used as a specifically stillwater fly, its performance is unmatched. The way it sits in the film is identical to a real midge emerging into its new world of the wild blue yonder. The key ingredient is the ribbing of pearl crystal flash that shimmers and shines, attracting many trout from just below the surface.

10) The Scud

Stillwater fishing, anglers, MyOutdoorBuddy.com, Jon Baiocchi, fly fishing, Scud

The freshwater shrimp populates most of our lakes in high desert areas stretching well up into Oregon. Scuds supply trout with a super high protein meal that makes them grow large and fast. Picking out the dubbing from under the body gives it a translucency that trout key in on. Effective colors are brown, olive, and gray. Trout will have no trouble seeing pregnant females; they’re bright orange!

Jon Baiocchi has been fly fishing and tying flies since 1972 and is a California licensed fly fishing guide, published author, educator, innovative tier, and public speaker giving fly fishing presentations to clubs and expos around the state. Jon operates Baiocchi’s Troutfitters guide service in Northeastern California where he has a reputation as a hard working guide who has been trained by some of fly fishing’s best known master anglers.


Fishing Reports

Fishing the Klamath below JC Boyle Dam
 Brian Buckingham with one of the larger fish from this section. This trout, estimated at 2 lbs., was caught near the BLM campground on the west shore six miles down the JC Boyle Dam on the Klamath River in Southern Oregon. Photo by author
By Trouteagle
03/02/15 -- Year round trout action can be found on the Klamath River within the 20 or so miles of free flow within Oregon and California. While fishing below the flumes at the JC Boyle powerhouse, it can be difficult to know just when...Full Story
CV/Sac River salmon forecast hopeful 02/28/15 -- Although drought concerns still persist, the forecast for salmon off the California coast and salmon fishing in the Central Valley/Sacramento Rivers looks hopeful, according the Golden Gate Salmon Association...Full Story
Humbug to Horse Mountain: 1.3 million kings!
Chinook salmon caught and being held up by Larry Ellis, photo by Larry Ellis
On Oregon Waters by Larry Ellis
02/27/15 -- This year, at least 1,298,600 adult Chinook are expected to be finning their way through the ocean in the KMZ, otherwise known as the Klamath Management Zone, an area that spans from Humbug Mountain, Oregon to Horse...  Full Story
Shasta bankers catching bass By Gary Heffley
02/27/15 -- With the strong winds whipping Shasta Lake into a froth, many boat anglers are staying off the water. The action has been limited to mostly bank anglers with many finding success on both bass and trout...Full Story
Tackle innovator to be at Nor-Cal Sports Show 02/27/15 -- Radio show host, seminar speaker, television personality, outdoor writer, author, photographer, angler/hunter- Sep Hendrickson will make one appearance Saturday March 7th at 2:00p.m. at the Nor-Cal Boat, Sport, and RV...Full Story
Salmon ocean abundance: 1 million plus!
CDFW Environmental Scientist and Ocean Salmon Project team member James Phillips, holding a Chinook salmon. CDFW photo by Kristie Amtoft
02/27/15 -- At the annual salmon informational meeting held in Santa Rosa today, state and federal fishery scientists presented encouraging news for sport and commercial salmon anglers. Forecasts suggest there are 652,000 adult...Full Story
Klamath had healthy return of salmon
Chico resident Nick Hanna landed this nice Van Duzen steelhead Sunday while fly fishing the lower river. Photo courtesy of Evan Oetinger
Fishing the North Coast by Kenny Priest 
02/26/15 -- So much for last year being a down year on the Klamath. Turns out the number of fall Klamath River adult kings returning to the river was much higher than originally predicted. According to the Pacific Fisheries Manage... Full Story
Pyramid Lahontan Derby is Mar. 14/15
 Sean Bottomley with 23 lb. 4 oz. 36-inch Lahontan Cutthroat trout taken at Pyramid Lake on Feb. 23. Photo courtesy of Valarie Taylor of Crosby Lodge
By Frank Galusha
02/26/15 -- If you haven’t caught a giant Pyramid Lake Lahontan Cutthroat, a good time is coming. Another derby will be held at the lake and hosted by Crosby Lodge during the weekend of March 14 and 15 – you won’t want to...Full Story
Some steelhead & salmon tags carry reward 02/26/15 -- Successful north coast steelhead and salmon anglers could catch a $10-50 reward for returning their fish tags this season. Of the more than 4,500 fish that were tagged, 3,000 are eligible for a cash reward...Full Story
Lake Berryessa bass fishing report
Jim and James with their prized catches from Lake Berryessa. Photo by Sid Silberberg
By Sid Silberberg
02/24/15 -- This past weekend (Friday and Saturday) were excellent but Sunday was very windy). Friday I took Jim and his son James out for the day. I went to the back of Monticello ski school the water was like glass but there was no...Full Story
Special low flow conditions in effect 02/23/15 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) informs anglers that sport fishing regulation changes have gone into effect for coastal streams in Mendocino, Sonoma and Marin counties. On December 3...Full Story
Shasta County anglers staying busy
Brenda McClure of Redding, finding rainbow trout fishing success during a recent outing on the Sac River. Photo submitted by the Neil Amundson.
By Jeff Goodwin
02/23/15 -- After a rough start to our 2015 winter angling opportunities, things are really starting to heat up on our local waters. The clear skies and warm temperatures over the past few weeks have virtually erased our poor waterr...Full Story
Salmon abundance figures expected shortly
John Vincent from Sacramento, California caught this steelhead on the Chetco River
On Oregon Waters by Larry Ellis  
02/22/15 -- Do I sense a tremble in the forest? Goosebumps in the gallery? Or perhaps the hairs on the back of your neck are standing on end? If you’re an ocean salmon fanatic and you’re wondering about ...Full Story
Bass think it’s spring at Nor Cal lakes
Ron Gandolfi holding 6.6 spotted bass taken at Bullard’s Bar
Article and photo by Ron Gandolfi
02/22/15 -- Here it is at the end of February and it feels like spring. Our warm 65-78 degrees temps have made it seem like the real deal. What is happening in the lakes is the same thing, the bass are thinking it is spring...Full Story
Trout to 8 pounds taken at Collins Lake
Angel Swan holding her 7 pound rainbow she caught on Collins Lake, photo by Kathy Hess
By Kathy Hess, Lake Reporter
02/22/15 -- We’ve had incredible trout catches this week. The biggest one was 8 lbs. on a stringer brought up by Nancy Stapp and Madeln Baker. They limited out and they trolled the east side either on a Rapala or Needlefish, the guys did...Full Story
CDFW invites comment on red ab plan By Frank Galusha
02/18/15 -- If you dive for or pick red abalone off the California coast, here is your chance to express yourself about the regulations on this fishery. California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is seeking public input to “inform the...Full Story
Hope for Snake River sockeye
Snake River sockeye, photo by FISHBIO
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO 
02/17/15 -- [Posted with permission of FISHBIO] When it comes to salmon success stories, few can match the Snake River sockeye (Oncorhynchus nerka). Not long ago, the Snake River sockeye was considered one of the most...Full Story
Travis Lee takes 1st at Pyramid Derby
The end of the rock jetty south of the Pyramid Lake Marina. Photo by Frank Galusha
Article and photos by Frank Galusha except as noted
02/16/15 -- Travis Lee of Sparks took first place in the Presidents’ Day Derby concluded this afternoon at world-famous Pyramid Lake with a 20 lb. 8.8 oz., 35-inch Lahontan cutthroat trout. Lee had the choice of a 14-foot...Full Story
First free Kid’s Fishing Day is April 4 By Gary Heffley
02/14/15 -- Anderson River Park in Anderson Ca. will host a free Kid’s Fishing Day on April 4, 2015 sponsored by the California Fish and Wildlife Department along with many local sponsors. The CFWD will have the park’s ponds stocked...Full Story
Mt. Shasta free kids fishing days set
2 men with thier daughters on Free Fishing Day at Mt. Shasta Fish Hatchery, photo by Gary Heffley
By, Gary Heffley
02/14/15 -- Three of my favorite days of the year are spent at the Mt. Shasta Fish Hatchery volunteering at the California Department of Wildlife’s Free Kids Fishing Days. Monty Currier of the CDFW has announced that the free...Full Story
CDFW wins lawsuit defending hatcheries 02/12/15 -- California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) was victorious in the Third District Court of Appeal yesterday when the court upheld the agency’s statewide Environmental Impact Report (EIR) on its hatchery...Full Story
Junior fly tying classes planned 02/11/15 -- If you are age 10 through 17, and would like learning how to tie your own flies, you can attend a fly tying class that begins Tuesday, March 10, 2015 at 6:30-8:00 p.m. The class is being put on by Shasta Trinity Fly Fishers... Full Story
Hatchery History in California
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
02/10/15 -- [Posted with permission of FISHBIO] The year is 1871. California has been a state for just over 20 years and the country is mired in reconstruction following the end of the Civil War just six years earlier. Both the telephone... Full Story
Blake Jones Trout Derby is Mar. 14 02/06/15 -- The Bishop Area Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau is already preparing for the very popular Blake Jones Trout Derby. They are encouraging everyone to save the date….Saturday, March 14th. Since 1968, the Blake Jones Trout... Full Story
Steady bite on for Upper Klamath steelhead
Rob Rash 1/27/15 Klamath Steelhead , photo by Scott Caldwell
Article and photo by Scott Caldwell
02/03/15 -- Winter Steelhead fishing the last 10 days on the Klamath River has been a productive relaxing adventure. One cannot go wrong with little to no boat traffic, biting fish, and weird spring type weather in January and now... Full Story
ARIS Camera aids fisheries research
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
02/02/15 –- [Posted with permission of FISHBIO] Close your eyes and plunge your mind into the depths of a rushing river at midnight. It's dark and cold, and the constant pressure of moving water -- weighing more than eight pounds per...Full Story
NMFS preseason planning for salmon starts 01/29/31 -- [Federal Register Notice] The Pacific Fishery Management Council has announced its annual preseason management process for the 2015 ocean salmon fisheries. NOAA Fisheries has published a notice in the Federal...Full Story
Release of 600K winter Chinook may save run 01/27/15 -- An increased number of hatchery-reared juvenile winter-run Chinook salmon produced from adults that were collected as a precautionary measure to offset anticipated in-river drought related mortality will likely be released in... Full Story
Future Pro Tour kicks off March 21st! By Vince Harris
01/07/15 -- The Coors Light Future Pro Tour will kick-off its 2015 season in grand fashion as the road to the Coors Light –Silver Bullet Angler of Year , Navionics Cup, and 2015 FPT Classic titles, begins anew at lakes known...Full Story
CV salmon regs changes expected 01/03/15 -- The CA Fish and Game commission issued a notice today advising stakeholders to expect changes in the bag and possession limits for Chinook salmon taken the American, Feather, and Sacramento rivers. The objective will...Full Story
Local lakes on CTT schedule
Keith Bryan with the fish that sealed the win and new world record at Melones
By Jason Haley
01/03/15 -- California Tournament Trail (CTT), the self-proclaimed Working Man’s Tournament Circuit, opened its doors in January 2014 at Lake Oroville and wrapped-up a successful inaugural season at Clear Lake in June... Full Story
Ocean climate revealed in tree rings
Large standing trees in a green pasture, photo by FISHBIO
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
12/23/14 -- Scientists have tried many approaches to unravel the complex puzzle of past ocean climates. Now, a recent study in the journal Science uses an unlikely source to put the pieces together: tree rings. The study's authors found... Full Story
'Get paid to fish' derby returns to Topaz
Topaz Lodge 2015 Trout Fishing Derby
By Mike Mogler
12/13/14 -- Dave Rossman, manager of Topaz Lake Store, reports the annual “get paid for fishing derby” starts as usual on January 1, 2015, New Year's Day, and will end on April 12, 2015 with a fantastic drawing... Full Story
Bottomfish anglers get knuckles rapped
pacific Halibut
Tom Marking GAP Sport Representative
11/20/14 -- We North Coast rockfish anglers are a victim of our own success! 2014 has been an eventful year for many reasons, but there are definitely winners and losers on the horizon. In a nutshell, halibut is a win/lose... Full Story
The Mystery of the Middle Fork, Part IV
Jim Broshears, author badge, myoutdoorbuddy.com
By Jim Broshears
11/10/14 -- This trip was to be the final chapter in the saga that began three years ago but is actually over 20 years in the making. As Bruce, Tuck and I journeyed back to the Middle Fork of the Feather River we made...Full Story
Climbing Terms for the Fisherman
Trailhead Tales by Jim Broshears
10/14/14 -- For those of us who prefer to fish the rugged and remote streams and rivers for the elusive wild trout, rock climbing is a skill that is required to reach the special places where catching the big one is a “sure thing.” The skills...Full Story
German brown trout afternoon in Modoc
german brown trout in Modoc creek. MyOutdoorBuddy.com
By Lea Huetteman
09/04/14 -- Catching a German Brown Trout from the creeks in Modoc County is a fine way to spend an afternoon. There are many creeks in this part of California that drain the Warner Mountains. Stream trout fishing in this region opens...Full Story
Throw the kitchen sink at them
Indian Paintbrush is a favorite wildflower that carpets wilderness landscapes. Phil Flip Akers, myoutdoorbuddy.com
Article and photos by Phil Akers
08/20/14 -- Our wilderness areas are special, where Mother Nature is landlord and natural forces operate freely. Within the wilderness you will find no roads, shelters, picnic tables, toilets, or other conveniences. You enter at...Full Story
Humboldt Bay: Busy port, excellent fishery
Woodley Island Marina, Humboldt Bay, Eureka, California
03/06/04 -- Humboldt Bay, a busy commercial harbor and home port to many charter and private offshore fishing boats, is also popular with shore-based anglers and small boaters seeking bottomfish, sharks, crabs and clams...Full Story
First Light
Boats in the harbor alight at night with a soft wake from a departing boat
Article by Matt Goldsworthy
03/04/14 -- Reprinted with permission of HASA (Humboldt Area Saltwater Anglers) – Light is one of the most important factors to consider when fishing deep water. Over the years while fishing for Pacific halibut, we have always... Full Story
Pulled into the pipes: Green Sturgeon
green sturgeon
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
03/04/14 -- [Posted with permission of FISHBIO] Living in the Sacramento River can be a risky business for juvenile green sturgeon (Acipenser medirostris). The young fish must swim through a gauntlet of water... Full Story
Not Just Any Fish
California Golden Trout, California Heritage Trout Challenge, Not Just Any Fish, Phil
By Phil "Flip" Akers
02/14/13 -- Trout have inhabited California waters from the Sierra Nevada and Warner Mountains to the Pacific Ocean since prehistoric times. However, most of the trout caught by anglers are either hatchery raised fish...Full Story
Fishing with Phideaux
By Phil “Flip” Akers
01/26/14 -- Meet Phideaux, a 110-pound neurotic chocolate Lab. His name is pronounced “Fido” but it is spelled “Phideaux” because he is a Cajun dog. Anyway, last summer Phideaux took his human (that’s me) on a trout hunt up into...Full Story
A primer on fishing Lake Shasta By Gary Heffley
01/01/12 -- Shasta Lake draws more visitors to Shasta County than any other single attraction. While it is often a challenge to fish, it is more likely to produce stringers of fat trout or spotted bass. Trout to four and five pounds are caught here routinely...Full Story
Lake Oroville; 'tis the season By Chuck Giles
01/11/12 – Lake Oroville is probably one of the best lakes for sheer numbers of Spotted Bass in Northern California. This is not just on a seasonal basis, but year round. To start, I have a list of baits that produce decent results... Full Story

 

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