I fished the North Fork of the American River at the Iowa Hill Access on Sunday afternoon from 4 to 7 PM. Bugs were not coming off, so I decided to nymph the pools. From my experience a week earlier, I drifted a two fly rig using a Solitude Tungsten Golden Stonefly (#8) with an Angel Cased PMD (#16) dropper. Within minutes, I hooked up and landed a 15″ Rainbow Trout. For this size river, this is a large fish. As I worked my way downstream, I hooked up with two more 8″ trout.
The North Fork headwaters start near Donner Summit in the Sierras and finally ends at Folsom Lake in Placer County. The areas that I fish from Lake Clementine in Auburn to the Iowa Hill access near Colfax is home to Smallmouth Bass and Rainbow Trout. It’s great fly fishing when the water flows subside after the winter runoff. The best trout fishing runs from May into July. During the rest of the summer, the water flows are low and warm. Trout can survive in the deep holes, but they just hunker down. During this time, it’s Smallmouth Bass time, baby!
Here’s a picture of the Iowa Hill Bridge with a lone fly fisherman starting to rig up.