Copyright 2011 James Marsh
Fly Fishing Guide for the Upper Tuolumne River in California -
Gear, Tackle and Flies
The Upper Tuolumne River and its tributaries is very diverse and requires a variety of gear
We recommend either a 5 or 6 weight floating fly line for most of the rainbow and brown trout
fishing. You may want a 3 or 4 weight fly line for some areas with smaller rainbows and
brown trout and/or brook trout. There could be situations where you need a sinking tip or
sinking fly line but it would be for a specialized application in cold water.
The rod for the 3 or 4 weight line should be between 8 and 9 feet in a medium action. We
recommend a 5 weight fly rod in a medium to medium-fast action that is 9 feet in length. The
6 weight fly rod should be a medium fast to fast action rod with a slightly stiffer tip for nymph
fishing and 9 feet in length.
The fly reel used should be for either the 5 or 6 weight line should have a very good drag.
We prefer disc drags but there are other types that will work as well. The reel for the 3 or 4
weight rod just needs to be light.
Leaders should be a size 3X to 6X and range from 8 to 12 feet in length. Most leaders
should be 5X or 6X in a 9 foot length.
You should have spare tippet in 3X to 6X. Some anglers prefer fluorocarbon for nymphs but
mono is fine.
Waders are necessary. We recommend the breathable type. If you fish during the cold
season, you may want to use neoprene waders.
Wading boots can be felt but that's subject to change to rubber or non-felt soles.
A landing net is strictly optional but we do recommend using one.
The Tuolumne River has a very diverse population of mayflies, caddisflies and stoneflies.
Perfect Fllies closely imitate all the real aquatic insects, crustaceans and terrestrials that are
found on and in the stream. We have specific imitations of all the insects in all stages of life
that exist on the Tuolumne River. If you haven't already tried them, we hope you will. Give us
a call or email and we can help you make your selections.
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