Copyright 2013 James Marsh
Hatches and Trout Flies for the Lower Sacramento River
The most consistent mayfly that hatches on the Lower Sacramento River is the
Blue-winged Olive. Of course, the little olives represent several different species
of different genera. Most of the larger ones are Baetis species in a hook size 18.
They start hatching in March and hatch off and on throughout the Spring,
Summer and early Fall. Other hatches can occur during the winter months
depending on the particular species. You should always have some imitations
along with you. On cloudy, overcast days they likely to show up.
Pale Evening Duns can hatch from March through June. Both the duns and
spinners of this mayfly can be important.
Little Black Caddisflies, Brachcentrus genus species, hatch from about the first of
March on into the middle of May depending on the section of river and weather.
Spotted Sedge caddisfly hatches occur from May through the middle of October.
These are the most common caddisflies on the Lower Sacramento River. They
are several species and most of the heavy hatches occur during the Summer
There are also plenty of Green Sedges. The different species hatch from the first
of March until the middle of May. Imitations of their larvae, called Green Rock
Worms, are effective all year.
Golden Stoneflies hatch from the middle of March until the middle of May
depending on the section of water you are fishing. Little Yellow Stoneflies are the
most plentiful stonefly species. They hatch from April through June. Most anglers
call these Yellow Sallies. You should have imitations of both the larva and the
October Caddis are very plentiful and are a fish producing hatch. It occurs
according to its name, during October on the Lower Sacramento River.
Terrestrial season on the river starts in warm months of the year. Beetles can
become important anytime from the first of May until through the first of
September. Grasshopper usually become large enough to become important in
June and last through July and August.
Although few anglers fish them, imitations of midge larvae and pupae will catch
rainbows on this river throughout the year. They are most important when few
other insects are hatching. Many anglers think the tiny flies are too little to catch
the big rainbows on the Lower Sac but they are wrong. They can be very
effective fished correctly.
Streamers are very important. Imitations of sculpin, minnows and baitfish will
catch trout all year. They are very important during low light situations or when
the water is slightly off color.
Be sure to check our Hatch Chart (link on main Sac page) and be sure to use our
Perfect Flies to match the various insects.
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