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August 2021 Table of Contents

General Meeting……………………
 August B-B-Q / Swap Meet!
President’s Line…………………….
 Stay Fishing My Friends
Fly Tying……………………
  Balanced Leech
  Bead Chain Woolybugger
Conservation Concerns……………
  Klamath farmers grow fish to quell water war
  Gill Net Buy-Back In California
  Pebble mine update
Membership Notes…………………
  2021 Rosters are available at the August 4 BBQ
  The Annual John Steele Award
  Casting Classes
Fishout Schedule…………………
Gone Fishing……………………….…
  Surf Fishout, July 3, 2021
  Fishing the Firehole River in Yellowstone Park
  Lake Almanor for the Hex hatch
Reel News……………………….…
  August NCCFFI update

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August B-B-Q / Swap Meet

by By Vice President Kevin Murdock

We have found an incredible venue for our annual B-B-q/Swap Meet this year! The Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Posse House is a beautiful property on the bank of the San Lorenzo River. There’s an outdoor picnic area, a pasture where we can demo or practice our casting, a beautiful indoor area with tables for our swap meet, a built-in grilling pit, and a horseshoe pit. (There’s also a fire pit but we will abstain for now). The club will supply burgers, dogs, sides, and soft drinks. We’ll have club swag for sale. You can bring your family & friends, but please RSVP  in form below or email to  so we know how much food to provide.  You may responsibly bring adult beverages, as well as any rods you might want to try out or tackle you want to swap or trade. No leaving unclaimed gear behind. Please, no pets.

The Address is 2127 Ocean Street Extension. To access, take the Ocean Street Extension past the cemetery, past the crematorium, about a quarter-mile down on the left. Use the second driveway entrance. Please drive slow and be respectful of the neighbors and this beautiful historic property.

5:00 pm:  Casting practice,  swap meet display

6:30 pm:  BBQ Dinner

Cost:  $0.00

The Santa Cruz Sheriff’s Posse Grounds

This will be our first opportunity in what seems like forever to meet and greet in person. Please, if you are un-vaxed, wear a mask for your own protection.

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Stay Fishing My Friends

by Tom Hogye

Hi everyone.    I am back from a terrific fly-fishing and hiking week with family high in the Sierra, far away from the internet or a phone.  The only technology in my hand was my  3wt, Sage LL with my beloved Abel reel.   Okay, truth be told, I had my “camera” with me – that sometimes doubles as a phone!    Hence the photos in this P-Message.    Tommy and I fished a mile together for the entire day both landing about thirty fish each, Tommy catching more than 15 on dry flies.   The beauty of a net and barbless flies is they often came out of the fish in the net, and made getting them back to their habitat all the better.   It was awesome spending a whole day together doing that, laughing, and talking.    The fish made it best of all and so much easier to do the rest.

Getting away from technology is one of the best things we can do today.  But admittedly, there is technology that enables us to enjoy that getting away even more.

As Mona and I traveled Sonora Pass in our air-conditioned comfy Ford F150, enjoying our cabin with electricity, a shower and a refrigerator, we took turns reading about the history of Sonora Pass, it’s first discovery, how treacherous it was to build and how people “camped” there in the weekends traveling there in Model T Fords with an ice box, no electricity, no showers and no “facilities”.  No fly boxes filled with hundreds of flies purchased with ease, if necessary, from the comfort of your home delivered to you next day.

Sonora Pass has some terrific history – ironically, if it weren’t for the Depression in the 30’s and WWII, it would likely not be the treasure it is today.    In the 20’s, plans were to take full advantage of that area building communities for getting away from the city.    Clark’s Fork, if you’ve ever been there, ends at Iceberg Meadow’s, abandoned plans for another highway that would have continued north and east, connecting with Highway 4.   Leland Meadows, a place I haven’t been, is reportedly the one place that was last developed beyond Pinecrest, but most halted because of the depression and the war.

While no one likes a pandemic, a depression, a war, these things have benefited the earth and all the creatures, and people, that were here long before us.   Even on this trip, while a year later, it seemed more beautiful, quieter and abundant.   I never realized that if it weren’t for the depression and WWII, where we’ve been going – for almost 30% of it’s entire 100 year+ existence, would not be what it is today.   Pretty cool.

I hope to see you at the BBQ Wednesday.   Look at the newsletter and send Scott an article under the Newsletter submission page.  Someplace where you fished with family and or friends.    We love hearing from you – our members.

As we work hard to navigate the waters of living today, please know your board is actively and constantly talking about how we do our best to continue our mission to promote, educate and enjoy the sport of Fly-Fishing solely for the purpose of our members having fun, being engaged and being contributors to the same.    Thank you all for your encouragement, your membership and for participating like you do.  It is in fact how all of us came to this club, joined and took interest.   It is a lot of fun and such beautiful work.

As the year winds down, we are looking ahead at how we can continue growing.   I’m excited about the opportunities to be together, have fund-raisers, education days, new fish-outs, fly-tying, casting and other activities we will do thoughtfully with you, our members, in mind.   Do keep the ideas coming and thank you for being the most important part of the Santa Cruz Fly Fishing Club.

Oh – Follow us on Instagram:  santacruzflyfishing – and follow me:  tomhogye !

Fish often my friends.   Tom

Date:  8/11/21

Time:  6:30

Place:  Zoom

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Balanced Leech – August fly tying class edition

by Jerry McKeon

At first glance this fly looks like your typical wooly bugger but it’s not.  It’s tied in a way that allows it to hang in the water column in a horizontal plane or balanced.  Hung under an indicator in choppy water the fly pulses and swims  the way a baitfish or leech does.  Professional fly anglers like Phil Rowley and Brian Chan are big advocates for this pattern on still waters for trout and I’ll vouch for it as a great bass pond fly.

The body of this fly is created using a dubbing loop so some kind of dubbing whirl tool is needed.  Dubbing looped bodies are also very effective for nymphs and other streamers so this is a good technique to know.  If you need more info, check out this video with options for dubbing whirls:

Class is 8/11/21 @6:30PM on Zoom.

Please email by 7/29 and include your address so I can mail you the materials.  The days leading up to the class I will be out of town and unavailable to reach which is why I’m asking for the early RSVP.

Hope to see you there, Jerry




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Bead Chain Woolybugger

by Elaine Cook----fly tying chairman

To fish this fly, use a sinking line, twitch or strip to elicite a strike from a trout. Woolybuggers typically are not tied with bead chain eyes. They give an entirely different profile. This pattern also varies in that dry fly hackle is used and barbs are kept short.

Hook: TMC 5263 , sizes 8-14

Thread: color to match tail or body

Eyes: bead chain , size proportional

Tail: Marabou, color to match hackle or body.

Hackle:  Neck or saddle. Color to match body or tail, or dun.

Body: Chenille: black, brown, olive, cinnamon, or those colors variegated.

1. Crimp Barb.

2. Attach thread behind eye. Touching wraps 1/4 back on shank then forward to one hook eye behind eye.

3. Cut bead chain with wire cutters into sets of 2.

4. Attach bead chain eyes to top of shank, one ball on each side, using multiple figure eight wraps and around base of eyes on top of shank. Wrap thread to mid shank. Apply drop of glue.

5. Pull clump of marabou off stem of feather. Note: moisten marabou for easy handling. Cut off butt ends. Lay butts on top of shank behind eyes. Tie to top of shank back to end of shank. Break (do not cut) tips to desired length.

6. Select hackle with barbs equal to 1 1/2 hook gap. Holding tip, stroke barbs against grain. Position tip on top of shank, butt end to rear. Tie in place.

7. Pull fibers off about 1/4″ of chenille exposing core threads. Attach threads to rear of shank. Advance thread to behind bead chain.

8. Wrap body forward with touching wraps. Tie off, cut excess.

9. Spiral hackle forward in 6 evenly spaced wraps. Tie off, cut excess. A couple more thread wraps to secure.

10. Make several figure 8 wraps around bead chain eyes. Wrap thread head. Whip finish. Cut thread. Apply glue to head.





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Klamath farmers grow fish to quell water war

by Steve Rudzinski referencing LA Times article

Farmer Tracey Liskey believes his efforts to save the endangered sucker fish will help end a conflict over water on the California-Oregon border.(Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

JULY 22, 2021 5 AM PT
TULELAKE, Calif. — It’s a strange place to find fish, deep in the high desert, where drought-baked earth butts against scrubby mountains.
But water spews from the hot springs on Ron Barnes’ land near the California-Oregon border, pure and perfect for rearing c’waam and koptu, two kinds of endangered suckerfish sacred to Native American tribes.

Barnes, who holds an advanced degree in aquaculture from UC Davis, has dug dozens of ponds on his property and filled them with thousands of young suckerfish. He hopes raising and releasing them into the wild will end the region’s epic water wars — or at least get federal regulators out of the mix before his neighbors descend into violence.

“We have to take a pragmatic view of this thing,” said Barnes, standing near his black-bottomed lagoons under an intense morning sun. “The single most effective way to get the government off our backs is to restore the fish population.”

The suckerfish, which are on the endangered species list, are at the heart of a rancorous water controversy. They typically spawn in nearby Upper Klamath Lake, an agricultural reservoir that is growing increasingly dry and toxic. To ward off their extinction, federal regulators have cut off every drop that normally flows from the lake to the Klamath Reclamation Project, a federally built web of irrigation canals that once held the promise of almost limitless water for nearby farms.  …


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Gill Net Buy-Back In California

by Bob Garbarino

In the California budget for 2021-2022, $1.3 million is allocated to pay each commercial fishermen $110,000 in exchange for turning in their gill net.   Gill nets are huge nets (up to one mile) suspended in the water column that ensnare any fish or mammal that gets entangled in the net.  Sea turtles, whales, sea lions and dolphins are some of the sea creatures that have been trapped in the nets.  California state law mandates that all gill nets be phased out by 2024.  Deep set buoy gear is the new method that is suggested to replace gill net fishing.  As expected, some commercial fishermen are resisting the change, claiming that gill nets are not as harmful as claimed by the NOAA and Oceana.  The fishermen also say that alternate fishing techniques are not commercially viable.  

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Pebble mine update

Our club’s  financial support has helped this campaign and one of our former ‘in person’ presenters at the Aptos Grange Hall, who lost his life on a sweeper tree on the American Creek AK, was our incentive to act for the noble causes to save the last non-dammed rivers in the North West and especially the greatest fisheries for commercial and sport salmon fishing in the  world. Pebble Mine is the big challenge and we must keep opposing them.

Dear Bristol Bay supporters,

We have exciting news to share with you! Yesterday, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game reported that the Bristol Bay’s 2021 sockeye run reached the largest on record with 63.2 million fish returning to the bay. The 2021 run broke the 2018 standing record at 62.9 million fish returning to the region.

Thousands of years of Indigenous stewardship and 100+ years of sustainable commercial fishery management made this year’s record-breaking sockeye run in Bristol Bay possible. Science has shown that clean water and healthy fish habitat will continue to support this world-class fishery that produces roughly 50% of all sockeye salmon on the planet.

Even though the fishery’s biggest threat- the proposed Pebble mine– was denied the key federal permit last year, Bristol Bay isn’t safe yet. The region still needs durable and permanent protections to ensure that Pebble, or another mining company, won’t come back in the future. Join us in asking decision-makers to advance permanent protections for Bristol Bay today.

Both the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Congress have the opportunity to establish safeguards that, together, would protect the fish, people, and fish-based industries in Bristol Bay. They need to hear from people in Bristol Bay and beyond that this is a national treasure that requires permanent protection. Take action here. 

The 2021 run record is just one reason why Bristol Bay needs greater protection for the years to come. It’s another reason we say “No Pebble Mine– Not Here, Not Ever.” And it’s why our work doesn’t stop until we can fully assure that we will never have to fight this irresponsible mine plan again. Help us continue our work in Bristol Bay by making a donation today.

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2021 Rosters are available at the August 4 BBQ

by Bob Peterson

2021 Rosters will be available at the August 4th
BBQ…..Should you not be able to attend, email me @ and I will mail one out to you.
Annual dinner volunteer needed to help set up online silent auction thru square and zoom.  Can send me an email if you can provide technical assistance.

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The Annual John Steele Award

by V/P K Murdock

While summer is in full swing, now is the time to take note of the help you receive on your flyfishing journey. Freeze in your mind each act, and then nominate the perpetrator for this year’s John Steele Award. Our Annual B-B-Q at the Sherriff’s Possee House would be a great place to drop off a ballot. Or just e-mail me at

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Casting Classes

mobile scrollable table 

Casting ClassDateInstructor
‘Pick-up and Lay-down’ CastingAugust 25, 2021Mark Trougott – Casting Intructor
‘Review and Advanced’ CastingSeptember 22, 2021Mark Trougott – Casting Intructor

Aug 25 10:00 AM : ‘Pick-up and Lay-down’ Casting

'Pick-up and Lay-down' Casting

Fishmaster: Mark Trougott – Casting Intructor

We had a very successful first class on July 28. Four club members, all experienced casters, attended, and we spent the full two hours working on perfecting the mechanics of the roll cast. The riverside site can comfortably accommodate up to six casters. In order to prevent any chance of overcrowding, I will maintain a sign-up list for future classes. If you would like to participate, send me an email at, or call and leave a message at (831) 338-6056. I will send an email message providing all necessary details to those who sign up.

The August casting class will focus on the Pick-up and Lay-down (PULD) cast. This is the foundation for all overhead fly casting. This lesson will be geared primarily to beginner and novice fly casters, so no prior casting experience is assumed (though the ability to do a basic roll cast would be helpful.) The class will take place in Boulder Creek at 10 AM on Wednesday, August 25. This month’s general lesson plan is to conduct a very brief review of the roll cast (for those who attended the July class) followed by a systematic examination of the steps involved in a simple PULD cast. Time permitting, we will also cover the off-side PULD and false casting. Participants should plan to bring the rod of their choice, a matching reel, and a floating line (or contact me to see if I can arrange for loaner equipment.)

Sep 22 10:00 AM : ‘Review and Advanced’ Casting

'Review and Advanced' Casting
Fishmaster: Mark Trougott – Casting Intructor

Beginning in September, my intention is to continue to devote the first half of the two-hour session to touching up novice casters’ mastery of the roll cast and PULD; and to orient the second hour to more advanced techniques appropriate for SCFF members who are experienced casters. Examples of this last sort of topic might include presentation casts (reach mends and curve casts that present the fly without spooking the fish); slipping line and hauling (single and double); or loop control (how and why to throw wide and narrow loops). If you have a specific topic in mind, please let me know by mid-August so I can incorporate the most frequently requested techniques into a lesson plan for the second hour of the September session.

The riverside site can comfortably accommodate up to six casters. In order to prevent any chance of overcrowding, I will maintain a sign-up list for future classes. If you would like to participate, send me an email at, or call and leave a message at (831) 338-6056. I will send an email message providing all necessary details to those who sign up.

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Fishout Schedule – August 2021

mobile scrollable table 

Rio Del Mar BeachAugust 07, 2021Surf Perch and other speciesJeff Gose – (831) 227-0722
Alaska TripSeptember 04, 2021 – September 12, 2021Rainbow, Salmon and Dolly VardenRoy Gunter
Manresa State Beach Surf FishingSeptember 04, 2021Surf Perch and other speciesMark Traugott, 831-338-6056
Mammoth FishoutSeptember 18, 2021 – October 02, 2021TroutJohn Cook fishmaster– (831)688-1561 or (831)234-6515
O’Neill Forebay – Oct 7 – 10 2021October 07, 2021 – October 10, 2021Striped BassSteve Rudzinski
Palm BeachOctober 09, 2021Surf Perch and other speciesSam Bishop (831) 476-6451
O’Neill Forebay – Nov 4 – 7 2021November 04, 2021 – November 07, 2021Striped BassSteve Rudzinski

Aug 07 6:00 AM : Rio Del Mar Beach

Rio Del Mar Beach

Rio Del Mar Beach (Click for address and map)
Fishmaster: Jeff Gose – (831) 227-0722

Back to Rio Del Mar State Beach for the August Surf Fish-Out where we started this year. Meet up at 6 am at “the Platform” at the end of Beach Drive. Parking is outside due to the early hour before the paid parking gate opens. We have an Low to Mid Flood tide.

Take Rio Del Mar Blvd all the way to the flats, do the round-about to the left and go ½ mile down Beach drive.

Everyone is welcome, but I highly encourage you to learn to cast before you come to the beach. Check in with our Castmaster Mark Traugott, or his assistant (me) and work on the haul and the double haul. For surf equipment, clothing and general information, go to our website under EDUCATION and read the section on surf fishing.

Stripping baskets for free loan or purchase $20 to the Club. If you need a stripping basket, please be there early, before we hit the beach to fish. Best to have your rod strung up already and your waders on already doesn’t hurt!

See you and your friends at the Beach!

Sep 04 12:00 AM : Alaska Trip

Alaska Trip
Eagle Landing Resort, Alaska (Click for address and map)
Fishmaster: Roy Gunter

Roy Gunter writes:   I am offering to sponsor a fishout to the Kenai Peninsula in Alaska leaving on September 4, 2021 and returning on September 12, 2021. Limited to 4 participants including Roy. We will stay in the Riverside Cabin at the Eagle Landing Resort in Cooper Landing, AK (go to to check out Resort and Cabin). Trip will be fishing the Kenai River, Russian River and nearby creeks, targeting rainbows and dolly varden, but catching many salmon along the way. Trip includes 2 guided trips on the Kenai River, including at least one boat trip down the Kenai River Canyon to the delta of Skilak Lake. You will have to provide your own airfare to Anchorage and return, which can be arrange for virtually no charge if you obtain an Alaska Airlines Credit Card.  Alaska Airlines now flies out of Monterey. However, a rental car is included in the trip. Food and beverages are included and obtained from Costco and Carrs Supermarket for preparation at the cabin. Since I am cooking for the most part, meals are gourmet including wine and/or other beverages. Since I am an Alaska Air card holder, over the last 20 years I have never exceeded $2,000 for the entire trip, including the cost of a motel before flying out, and once paid only $770. Couples are welcome, but there is only one queen bed in a separate bedroom. Other Club Members who have accompanied me include: Bob Monaco, Steve Rawson, Milana Rawson, Daneen Gunter, Don Foskett, Gary Hazelton, Harry Petrakis, Mark Traugott and Gil Santos. Requirements: $1,000 deposit subject to forfeit unless you find a substitute fisherman to accept your spot and you must have recieved all of your covid vaccinations at least 14 days prior to departure. Prior participants have priority. If interested please contact Roy Gunter at 831-809-0316 or email at

Sam Bishops adds some insight on the Alaska Airlines Credit Card opportunity:  “Buy a new Alaska Airline card and get 50,000 miles if you spend $2,000 in 2 or 3 months. $75 for the card, but you get a free bag. Without it the first bag is $40. I just got a new card for about the fourth time. I let the old one expire and get a new one for the mileage. I paid the house insurance on the new one and bingo I am covered.”

Contact: Roy Gunter 831 809 0316 email is best.

Sep 04 6:00 AM : Manresa State Beach Surf Fishing

Manresa State Beach Surf Fishing
Manresa State Beach (Click for address and map)
Fishmaster: Mark Traugott, 831-338-6056

The September Surf Fishout will take place at Manresa State Beach, on Saturday, September 4th. The sun will rise at  7:10 a.m., and the tide will be high a Mid Flood. We will meet at 6:30 A.M. at the entrance to the State Park at 1445 San Andreas Road. Park outside and just past the park entrance where there is space for a half dozen cars. There are a couple more spaces on the opposite side of the street. If all the available spaces are full when you arrive, go a quarter mile further along San Andres Rd. and turn right onto Oceanview Drive. Park at the end of that street, along the fence on the right, and take the stairs down to the beach where you can eventually join the rest of the group. For details regarding equipment and technique, check the excellent instructions on surf fishing that Sam Bishop has published on our club website. The basic equipment is a five- to 8-weight rod with an intermediate to full-sinking line or sinking tip. Any type of Clouser pattern or anchovy fly will work for stripers, and small bonefish patterns (for example, Gotchas) will catch perch, especially if they have red or orange highlights. The only surf-specific piece of essential equipment is a stripping basket, which Sam makes and sells for $20 to benefit the club. Make contact with him in advance, or let me know if you would like to borrow or purchase a stripping basic on July 3.

Sep 18 12:00 AM : Mammoth Fishout

Mammoth Fishout
Mammoth Lakes (Click for address and map)
Fishmaster: John Cook fishmaster– (831)688-1561 or (831)234-6515

Dates:  This fishout will take place over two consecutive one-week periods. You may sign up for one or both weeks. Week 1: Sept  18 – 25.     Week 2:  Sept 26 – Oct 2.

Location: The town of Mammoth Lakes is located on the eastern side of the Sierra, 6 or 7 hours drive from Santa Cruz. There are many lakes and streams in the area to fish.

General: We will be staying in condominiums in the town of Mammoth Lakes. Condo has a lovely hot tub, so bring your suit. Two people per bedroom. Most people bring a sleeping bag to share king size bed or a pad and sleeping bag to sleep on floor. A private room option is possible at an increased fee.

Cost:  Covers 7 night’s lodging and 3 meals per day. $320/week, $640/two weeks. $535/week for a private room. $ is not refundable unless someone takes your place. Any unused funds will be used for prizes at the annual fund raiser.

Food Preparation: Breakfast and lunch items will be purchased by the fishmaster ahead of time. Each person will be assigned a Kitchen Day. On that day, tasks will include setting out breakfast and lunch items, store unused food, and preparing the evening meal and clean up afterwards.

SignUps: Call John Cook letting him know which week or both or private room. ASAP or up to May 1st. We will be leaving town mid May, so need to put things together and confirm reservation by then. Receiving your $ will reserve your spot. I will maintain a waiting list and, if space becomes available you will be notified by phone, even while we are on summer vacation. Deliver your $ by mail ( PO Box 2822, Aptos, Ca. 95001 ) or deliver in person. (215 Treasure Island Ave., Aptos , Ca. )

Covid Issues: All participants must have completed the vaccine regiment at least one month prior. Must be free of symptoms.  If negative public health issues arrive, the fishout will be canceled and $ returned.

Oct 07 12:00 AM : O’Neill Forebay – Oct 7 – 10 2021


Nov 04 12:00 AM : O’Neill Forebay – Nov 4 – 7 2021

O'Neill Forebay - Oct 7 - 10 2021
Islands Oneill Forebay (Click for address and map)
Fishmaster: Steve Rudzinski

The annual O’Neill ForeBay Striped Bass FishOut has been scheduled for Oct 7-10 and Nov 4-7 (Thurs-Sunday). I made it during the dark phase of the moon this year.

We will camp at the same place again at Medeiros Campground site #23 I will try to get again, there are 4 sites there and more than one car per site is okay. New people should contact me personally for details. Bring everything to camp bare bones style, only a single vault style toilet which is not too bad compared to the other porta potties throughout the campground.  Bring water, and food and cooking gear, there will be a camp stove or two to use or cook over the camp fire.

Gear to use: 7 or 8 wt rod, full sinking line like Rio Outbound Short or Tungsten T-11 shooting head with a good running line. 15 lb test fluorocarbon leader (6′ is long enough so the fly gets down deeper).  Lee Haskins or Jim Hall has flies for sale. Both are listed in our club roster and you can make an order directly with them. Float tubes of course or small craft like flat bottom dingy’s and some kayaks work okay except when windy. (It can really BLOW you away there and we hope for good conditions but we have had big rainstorms in years past so prepare for the worst).

One thing we never have enough of is firewood for the evening rap sessions, the size of wood that comes in a box at the grocery store is perfect for our portable fire tubs.

The camp is only 70 miles from Santa Cruz and directions can be easily be found on your GPS system.  Call or email me @ 831 462 4532 or to be on the list so I have a good idea of how many will attend.  We always have a good time at this event.  See you there, Stosh

Oct 09 7:00 AM : Palm Beach

Palm State Beach (Click for address and map)
Fishmaster: Sam Bishop (831) 476-6451

Meet at 7:00 am

Target Species:  Surf Perch and Stripers

Tide:  Mid Flood

Sunrise @ 7:10 am

Fishmaster:   Sam Bishop  831- 252-3300

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Surf Fishout, July 3, 2021

by Mark Traugott

Dennis Rosario, Tommy Polito, Matt Jockers

Seven of us rose before dawn to celebrate the arrival of the July 4 weekend. We found our way to Manresa State Beach despite the morning mist and heavy overcast. The only fireworks involved were in the fact that everyone caught fish, with honors for the largest going to Tommy Polito, as pictured above. The group included regulars Jeff Gose and Scott Kitayama as well as the club’s newest member, Matt Jockers. Dennis Rosario, James Davis, and myself rounded out the group. No one has been able to figure out where all the stripers have gone this year, but the perch have been very cooperative, and getting pushed round by the waves is a great way to start your day. Come join us for our monthly surf fishouts!

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Fishing the Firehole River in Yellowstone Park

by Elaine Cook

If you have never fished the Firehole, it’s fun to know that the stream has many geysers that drain into it which makes the water warm year round. Our annual trek brings us here to catch Browns and rainbows that average 9″ to 12″ and some up to 15″. This year found the water warmer than usual and only the 1st day produced fish. When the water reaches 70 degrees the fish turn off and fishing is highly discouraged. In the photo, you can see where we fished right across from a major outflow from one of the geysers and the fish readily came up for dry flies.

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Lake Almanor for the Hex hatch

Went to Lake Almanor for the first time to try out the Hex hatch with club members Bob G, Cecilia  and Darla.   Sharing the ride makes the time go faster and the trip cheaper.  Took a lesson from Tim Loomis the first evening who really helped to understand how to fish the lake and where to fish.   Others that were up  at the lake during the hatch included Kevin M, Yog, and John D.   Picture is Bob G with one of two nice trout he caught during the hatch.  The others in our group didn’t fare as well.

As of late July, the Dixie fire continues to spread and the west shore of Lake Almanor where we stayed have been evacuated.  Let’s hope that the fire gets contained, the people are safe, and we can fish the Hex hatch there for years to come.

(Pictures by Tim Loomis and Darla Lews)

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August NCCFFI update

by Mark Rockwell - NCCFFI President

The Heat Is On
Mother nature is serving up a blow this summer? 2021 is way hotter than average across much of the United States. What does that mean for trout? What does that mean for those of us that fly fish for trout? These questions have been on the minds of many of us this past month as temperatures soared here in California and across the west.

In the heat of summer, water temperatures increase, which can be troublesome and often fatal for trout, especially during extended periods. If water temps get above 68 degrees Fahrenheit, fish begin to struggle to breathe, get stressed and need a little extra TLC from us. How hot is too hot for trout? Here are a few tips courtesy of Trout Unlimited based on water temperature:

  • Below 65 °F – Fish are happy, healthy, hungry, and ready for a fight.
  • 65 – 68 °F – Trout are starting to slow down and are feeling the heat. Rope up with heavy tippet and land fish quickly. Skip the picture and give them plenty of time to revive before release.
  • Over 68 °F – Heads up: Too hot for trout. Trout are feeling stressed and need a break! Mortality rates increase even with proper handling. 

How do you tell if the water is too warm and causing the fish stress? Pack a fishing thermometer with you and when you get to the stream check the water temperature. If the water is too hot (out of the trout comfort zone), have a beer, take a nap, read a book, chase warm water species, fish a spring creek or a tailwater, or head for the high country and try again when the water temperatures drop. In other words, give the trout a break. We all have a responsibility to protect the trout we love.
My Personal Actions for Trout This Summer
I will always carry a thermometer and check water temperature every
hour. If water temperature goes above 65 degrees I will stop fishing.
I will consider not fishing cold water fish if air temps go above 95
degrees and water temps are not below 65.

  • I will consider fishing only early morning & late evening. Measure water temperature before starting, hourly thereafter, and I will stop if temps go above 65.
  • Every day will be different. Some days just will not be trout days.
  • I will consider only fishing warm water fish if the heat prevails, and I will do so into the Fall and until water temps are below 65 throughout the day.

The point here is to protect our cold water fish so they will be with us in the winter and next year. As some of you already know, Oregon has issued a set of regulatory changes to protect its fisheries (see emergency regulations for angling zones: ).

We’ve not yet heard anything from CDFW but I do expect it. Let’s band together and do our part to care for and protect our fisheries in this, our most severe summer in years, if not ever. I salute all of you who join me in this effort. We’re in this together – we and our fish.