Meandering Angler: Fishing like spring

Spring-like conditions prevail throughout Northern California so it’s a good time to get in some fishing, even though most of us would prefer that it would rain.

For fly-fishers, the lower Sacramento River through Redding is looking pretty good and the weather is going to be absolutely balmy. Although there are places to wade and fish, it’s much better if you have a drift boat, or better yet, a guide with a drift boat. The Fly Shop in Redding has a team of guides who take clients on the Sac and other Northern California rivers. You can find out more about them by going to, or calling 800-669-3474.

The other excellent guide service for that area is Anthony Carruesco’s AC Flyfishing,, 800-201-5047.

For a far more casual outing closer to Sonoma, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife is planting rainbow trout in several lakes near us, including Lake Berryessa in Napa County, and Bon Tempe Lake in Marin County. The closest, however, is Lake Ralphine in Santa Rosa. It’s a great place to take your kids or grandkids fishing. The most recent planting there was last week, and there will be another one this coming week.

Lake Berryessa and Clear Lake are also good spots for crappie right now.

In just about two weeks, everything new in the game of fly fishing from Upper Sac trout to Delta stripers, Trinity River steelhead to Lake Oroville bass, will be on display at the 2022 Pleasanton Fly Fishing Show, Feb. 25-27 at the Alameda County Fairgrounds.

The show’s 2022 edition features more than 15 seminars, demonstrations or audio/visual presentations each hour together with wall-to-wall displays of the newest fly rods, reels, lines, boots, waders, clothing, water craft, artwork and flies during the mid-winter run.

In addition to tackle, artwork, lodges and exotic destinations, show visitors can view continuous fly-tying demonstrations and how-to-do-it seminars.

There will be 17 classes with experts. Class registration is $85 except for an eight-hour advanced casting class with Gary Borger and Mac Brown a day before the show on Thursday, Feb. 24. Tuition is $625.

Among the classes available are Trout Hunting 101 with Landon Mayer, The Perfect Cast with Borger, Increase your Distance Casting for the Wind with Brown, Practical Nymphing with Ed Engle, Advanced Stillwater Strategies and Tactics with Phil Rowley, and Guide Flies with Mayer.

Seminar topics include Dan Blanton’s Fly Fishing the California Delta – Latest Updates and how to deal with changing conditions; Jeff Currier’s Streamer Tactics and Tricks to Catch Bigger Trout; and Landon Mayer’s Learn How to Fish Simple Patterns for Tough Trout.

Among the dozens of Destination and Adventure presentations are programs on Golden Trout: A California Treasure, Fishing the Hex Hatch at Lake Almanor, The Truckee River: A Guide’s Perspective, Fly Fishing in Iceland, Amazing Chile, Peacock Bass in the Amazon, Montana’s Kootenai County, and Patagonia: A Fly Fisher’s Bucket List.

The Northern California premiere of the 2022 Fly Fishing Film Festival is Fri. (2/25) at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance or $15 at the door.

Fly Fishing Show admission is $15 for one day, $25 for two days and $35 for three days. Children under age 5 are free as are Boy and Girl Scouts under 16 in uniform. Children under 12 are $5. Active military with an ID is $10.

For a complete list of fly-fishing films, classes, seminars, door prizes, demonstrations and the Scout Merit Badge program, visit or phone 814-443-3638.

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