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  1. #1
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    Sierra biking and fly fishing.

    So just got into another hobby (fly fishing) and have been told there is some great trout fishing in the high Sierras. I would love to be able to ride, fish, then ride out, in or around the Tahoe area. Does anyone have experience? I would love some advice, trails to start from (as a hunter I understand if you dont want to give up your honey hole) and any fly advise. I have a Tenkara Sierra collapsible rod. I dont have any high expectations, but i would love to get a few trout by the end of summer.

  2. #2
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    Grouse ridge area
    Maybe some slt trails out of Christmas valley

  3. #3
    Obi
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    Above Bear Valley's always been fun.

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    Quote Originally Posted by socobiker View Post
    Grouse ridge area
    Maybe some slt trails out of Christmas valley
    That was actually one of the first areas I had in mind. I hunt a bit near 4 dyce lake and have always seen fish in steams near that area. Now I just need to figure out how to fish well enough to catch something.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Obi View Post
    Above Bear Valley's always been fun.
    Any trail recommendations for access?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mzorich View Post
    That was actually one of the first areas I had in mind. I hunt a bit near 4 dyce lake and have always seen fish in steams near that area. Now I just need to figure out how to fish well enough to catch something.
    Talk to a local fly shop. They will always be willing to sell you what is working on the area, in terms of flies, and will give you plenty of advice on how to use them. Iíve never met a fly shop employee who wouldnít help someone out.

    My FIL is a Tenkara guy, and I regularly employ a regular fly rod in a Tenkara-like manner. Just flicking a rod-length bit of line out into a 15ft wide mountain stream. Caught a bunch of brook trout near Leadville and Vail (CO) that way last summer.


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  7. #7
    gimme friction
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    Total Tenkara convert. I love the bike n fish vibe, but so far limited to N Yuba around Dville. Spoiler: chunky rainbows upstream of Rocky Rest.

    Grouse Ridge area is tough for fish, but I like your idea of moving water around 4Dyce. Tenkara kills on that small water. I donít fish Tenkara flies, just standard nymph patterns.

    Probably not epic riding, but if you want to hone your skills with the fly rod, Silver Fork off of 50 is pretty reliable. Not blowing up any spots, errbody knows about it, unfortunately. Should be shaping up by early June.

    Heading up tomorrow either to Grouse or western Deso to check the snow and wet a line. No cycling content, tho.

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    sent you a pm

  9. #9
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    South Lake Tahoe. Ride and fish on the same day.
    My favorite areas: Hope valley, Carson river. Can be crowded, but if you walk a mile you can get away. Park at 88/89 or better on Blue Lakes road by the first campground. Explore. You are only 15 minutes from SLT and all the great biking there.

    Silver Creek is also nice, but thereís not much riding in that area. Caples creek loop. Alternates between nice single track and rockiness. Difficult creek crossing on the a big log above a deep pool. Donít fall.

  10. #10
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    Thanks for all the advise. Looks like ill probably hike Grouse Ridge next week and check a few spots out. I have a 3 day trip planned in Dville in mid June so ill bring the rod on that as well.

    For my fellow Tenkara users, have you all had any luck. Seems like a great concept. Im an avid backpack hunter and always wished i had a rod with me but couldnt justify spending 800 on something that would be small and light. In really hoping I can figure this out as there is some great trout fishing where I hunt.

  11. #11
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    Subscribed. In general anything that is rideable (or any fun to ride) has easier access and usually gets quite a bit of pressure. Naturally the best fishing is always the hardest access and usually very rocky/technical and very hard to ride to. The few exceptions that Iíve seen are Downieville area, as mentioned already, where you have a few different drainages/creeks/options near trails and Marlette Lake off the Flume Trail. Marlette is a NDW breeding lake for other area lakes and streams and has tons of fat rainbows and cuts. I always carry my Tenakara rod whenever I ride the flume but have only actually used it once as Iím usually I riding with guys who donít have a rod and are more focused on riding than watching me fish I did pedal into it from spooner once with waders and gear just to fish and caught several fish from 14-20Ē stripping streamers. The season is short too, I think June or July 15 to October.

    Definitely interested in learning about more options but not expecting much with both really good riding AND good fishing.

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    Iíll echo what Holback said. The easier something is to get to, the more people will use that stream.

    My wife and I rarely fish below 8,000ft in CO for that reason.

    Subscribed, as the wife and I will be out in Tahoe this summer.


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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    Iíll echo what Holback said. The easier something is to get to, the more people will use that stream.

    My wife and I rarely fish below 8,000ft in CO for that reason.

    Subscribed, as the wife and I will be out in Tahoe this summer.


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    Its the same with deer. I have no issues hiking 3 or 4 miles back to have some fun. I think a fun day fishing van override how epic the trails are or vise versa. Its all just am excuse to get out in the woods for me.

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    We saw a friend (who happens to be a top 10 in the world CX racer) riding to a couple of local holes last summer. My wife, who rarely rides, asked for a gravel bike.

    I chalked that up as a win for the home team.


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  15. #15
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    The big advantage Tenkara has is line management, or lack thereof. Super easy to get good drifts without extra line on the water. I use furled leaders, which has kinda forced me to switch from drys to nymphs. I catch way more fish subsurface, and Iím not having to always keep that fly dry. But Iím a hack.

    I also love the simplicity, itís like singlespeeding for trout.

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    Fished Star lake a coupe times last season, there not big fish but at times I was catching them in like every other cast, pretty fun.

  17. #17
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    Sierra biking and fly fishing.

    Quote Originally Posted by TahoeBC View Post
    Fished Star lake a coupe times last season, there not big fish but at times I was catching them in like every other cast, pretty fun.
    Iím an avid FFíer and guided in CO. For anything high mountain lakes, nothing is better than your standard terrestrial patterns. Think small beetles, flying ants, etc, and do a dropper with a midge pattern. More than like 7x tippet unless youíre fishing moving water. Thereís a thing called terrestrial rain where wind at high elevations lifts bugs off the lips of mountain tops and trees and they fall into the lakes and with the lower temps not more than midges can hatch in the lakes. Other than terrestrials, parachute Adams and Griffs gnat in all sizes is a great fly to have up high.

    Every time I climb star lake there are fishing rising. They look smaller, but Iím sure itís a ton of fun.

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  18. #18
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    Sierra biking and fly fishing.

    Iíll add South Yuba Trail as one other potential option. Iíve done it once but did not have Tenkara rod. Itís beautiful and looks super fishy but have heard that it got pounded by hydro back in the mining days. But You never know till you go!

  19. #19
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    Hey Guys,
    Good timing for this thread. I got into sporatic fly fishing a few years back but really got the bug this past 6 months. I was thinking about heading up to Graeagle this weekend for the SBTS event and wondering if anyone had any tips for that area? Would prefer river or stream (middle feather?) over lake, but not sure if the rivers are still too blown out? If the flows are really high is it impossible to find some good nooks still?

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    Quote Originally Posted by holback View Post
    Iíll add South Yuba Trail as one other potential option. Iíve done it once but did not have Tenkara rod. Itís beautiful and looks super fishy but have heard that it got pounded by hydro back in the mining days. But You never know till you go!
    I backpacked the South Yuba one-way from from Washington to Purdon crossing in July '17, and had good luck fly fishing the section between Missouri Bar and Edwards Crossing. Saw a lot more fish than people along that stretch (one old gold miner vs. about a dozen good sized and delicious rainbows).

    Came back on my bike in September, starting near Edwards crossing, going North up through Malakoff Diggins and then taking Missouri bar down to the river and heading back West along the river. Fishing wasn't great that time around, but the route was an adventure, and reckon you'd get some good fishing in if you did it in the next couple of months. Here's my (almost) complete Strava track for the ride. I've confirmed it's all bike legal. https://www.strava.com/activities/1200194767.

    If you can figure out a shuttle, would be really fun to go all the way from Washington to Purdon on a bike (all rideable with the exception of a few downed logs and washed out sections). But it's about 25 miles of exhausting, up-and-down riding so you likely wouldn't have a ton of time for fishing on that trip unless you're a much stronger rider than I.

  21. #21
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    South Yuba is an interesting prospect. I would indeed expect good fishing along that stretch, as I bet it gets almost no pressure. Seems like water access would be a PITA, with lots of poison oak. Would be great to spend a night or two deep in the canyon and do it right!
    Johnny Ryall rode MTB

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    Quote Originally Posted by Quercus agrifolia View Post
    South Yuba is an interesting prospect. I would indeed expect good fishing along that stretch, as I bet it gets almost no pressure. Seems like water access would be a PITA, with lots of poison oak. Would be great to spend a night or two deep in the canyon and do it right!
    Gets pretty warm in the summer.... Up by Edwards it's a bit colder with Poorman coming in. In the Fall/spring/winter fish travel through from Englebright. There are a few wild fish and they stock the heck out of the river at Golden Quartz

  23. #23
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    https://www.pinkbike.com/news/tour-d...mountains.html

    I don't fish and don't bikepack but this video makes me wanna do both.

    I'm visiting from the Sierra with family thread, where we don't have time for epic weekenders!

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by shmadge View Post
    https://www.pinkbike.com/news/tour-d...mountains.html

    I don't fish and don't bikepack but this video makes me wanna do both.

    I'm visiting from the Sierra with family thread, where we don't have time for epic weekenders!
    They rode some fun trails, its just a bummer they didn't catch anything.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Obi View Post
    Above Bear Valley's always been fun.
    Upper North fork of the American River as well. Truckee. Lavezzola Creek in the Downieville River drainage

  26. #26
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    I know this thread is about the Sierras but Oregon Timber Trail crosses some of the best fishing in the country.

    In CA I know a friend of mine toured the old rail road bed at McLeod river and had a blast.

    I personally like to park at Balch Park and ride the old dilapidated logging and 4wd roads down to the North fork of the Tule River in Seqouia NF. A lot of people like to hit Tahoe, but Ive found Alta Sierra and the southern section of Golden Trout wilderness are devoid of people, which is fine with me!

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    there is some great fishing near Bridgeport, but i asked; the trail i hike is not open to bicycles. it is a fantastic single track too.

    i have yet to try fly fishing..i simply hack it up with a nice spinning outfit. i just bought a new 3 piece light rod for backpacking.
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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boomchakabowwow View Post

    i have yet to try fly fishing..i simply hack it up with a nice spinning outfit. i just bought a new 3 piece light rod for backpacking.
    There is nothing wrong with a good spinning setup. You're talking eastern sierras, and the Eastern Sierra outfit that has done me the best was

    Mainline, Swivel, Clear Bubble, 6-8' leader, an ugly bug (for weight) and a small egg hook (red) with pink or red power worm.

    I fished last night and the water coming out of the mountain is just too much. The rivers are so swollen.

  29. #29
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    Eastern Sierra National Forest(s). You can live like a free American there riding bikes, off roading, shooting, and camping where you want for free. Lots of great places if you check out the maps. It makes Lake Tahoe look like one big traffic jam with little hills.

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    I fly fish, but not in that area. I was perusing MTB Project's maps the other night and found the Emigrant Trail near the Little Truckee and Tahoe. I know there's great fishing nearby, but without further research, not sure if there's fishing along the trail. maybe some little creeks. check it out.

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