A little known secret...

It has been hot recently in chico, ca....really hot like 106F. While most people just sit indoors and vegitate with the A/C on, I can't just stay home. Due to baby watch I am staying in town this week, but I can't just sit in doors all day. I was scheduled to work up at the Clearwater lodge but due to some cancelations I was able to stay home with steph.

One of my favorite things to do on the hottest days of the year is go explore valley creeks for smallmouth. Pretty much every valley creek that dumps into one of our big tailwaters like the Feather, American, or Sac has smallmouth bass in them. While it does take some exploring to find access, the productive buckets, and the best way to get after them it is well worth it as these fish eat all day and once you get the presentation down are more than willing to jump on a fly. My favorite thing about the areas I fish is the simplicity, one fly pattern, 4wt, wading boots (optional, sandals work just fine), nice cool water on a hot day.

All that said the fish aren't incredibly big. A nice fish on the waters I fish is about 15" avg fish is about 12" but on a 3 or 4wt they pull like a semi truck. Most of the fish I find will eat a fly dragged across the bottom or a popper presented with some action. One thing I have found key is fishing while the sun is high in the sky as this will allow you to see the fish. Most all the fishing I do is sight fishing and on average these fish are not spooky at all making walking the banks or wading down the middle of the creek looking for them pretty easy. Many cruise the shallow flats or runs looking for anything they can get their mouth on and a small woolly bugger dragged
across the bottom usually works just fine. Bottom line is get out and explore. There is so much fishing that many people rarely take advantage of close to home.

Hogan Brown