Local fly fishing club hosts Boy Scout clinic | SierraSun.com

Local fly fishing club hosts Boy Scout clinic

Bruce Ajari
"Gone Fishin"

This past weekend the Tahoe Truckee Flyfishers, a local fly fishing club, hosted the third annual Boy Scout fly fishing merit badge clinic.

The Tahoe Truckee Flyfishers are a local group of anglers dedicated to promoting the sport of fly fishing and conservation of our resources.

In that vein, the fly fishers began this program when the Boy Scouts of America established a fly fishing merit badge in 2002. The local group was one of the first groups in the country to begin sponsoring a day dedicated to helping the scouts achieve the skills necessary to obtain their merit badge.

Club member, and past president, Alex Penney and a dedicated group of volunteers have been the driving force behind the program. The program itself satisfies all of the requirements but one. The last thing that the scouts will have to do is to catch two different kinds of fish and identify them. They must release at least one of them unharmed and clean and cook another fish.

The program itself takes the kids through an introduction on safety, outdoor ethics, fly casting, tying fly fishing knots, fly tying and stream awareness (including basic entomology). Four stations are set up for fly casting, fly tying, knot tying and stream awareness. The other components are covered before and after the completion of these stations.

For the past three years, the program, which runs from 9:30 a.m. to around 4 p.m., has been held at the Granite Flat Campground on Highway 89 between Truckee and Tahoe City. The United States Forest Service and its vendor California Land Management has provided three camping sites each year to run the program.

The day is dedicated to teaching the skills necessary for the scouts to achieve their merit badge. Rudy Knudsen, vice president of the Tahoe Truckee Fly Fishers, chaired this year’s event. The crew of volunteers included the following club members, many of which have participated all three years: Steve Buelna, Dick Coates, Dave DeVoe, John Lim, Alex Penney, Art Penniman, Dave Prudames, John Roberts and Bruce Ajari.

Jeff Berger, the Northern Nevada Council’s coordinator, praised the efforts of the local group. He said, “The program is excellent. Other groups should come and see what you guys do.”

The program has been so popular that Berger actually has a waiting list, which prompted his comment about other groups. Berger says that the program is booked as soon as the announcement of the date is made. The lucky 16 scouts are always happy to be included in the program.

From the perspective of the club volunteers, the sentiment of those in attendance was that the kids were eager to learn, highly respectful and very appreciative. These are certainly traits appreciated by people volunteering their Saturday to teach fly fishing. As usual, the scouts were a terrific group.

The Tahoe Truckee Flyfishers will be hosting their annual fundraising dinner and program on Saturday, Oct. 23, at the Biltmore Casino at Crystal Bay, Nev. The event is open to the public. Denny Rickards will be this year’s guest speaker. He has written two books on fly fishing for trophy trout in lakes.

Raffles and a silent auction will be conducted to raise funds for the club’s programs which include the Boy Scouts and the Trout in the Classroom project in our local schools. For more information, call 583-2628. Cost for the dinner and program is $25. If you register by Oct. 15, you get a chance at a special early bird raffle prize. Mail checks to Tahoe Truckee Flyfishers, P.O. Box 5704, Tahoe City, CA 96145.

[Bruce Ajari, a Truckee resident, is a regular fishing columnist for the Sierra Sun and other area newspapers.]

By Lynne D. Foster

Courtesy of Nevada Dept. of Wildlife

Despite drought conditions, fishing the Truckee River continues to be good. The flow of water from Lake Tahoe halted last Saturday. The river’s flow dropped from over 400 cubic feet per second (cfs) last Wednesday to 60 cfs today.

Low water in the river has actually made for some very good fishing – and the time to fish is now. The river’s flow is not expected to resume until rain and snowmelt bring water levels up sometime during this winter or in the spring. Eventual survival rates for the fish will be low, and the Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW) is encouraging harvesting the fish. “This is no time for catch-and-release,” says Chris Vasey, Outdoor Educator for NDOW. “We need to take this opportunity to make the best of a bad situation by fishing the river.”

Although his group normally follows the catch-and-release ethic, Bud Johnson of the Truckee River Fly Fishers is encouraging his membership to “take a few fish.”

Most fish will congregate in deeper pools. “You can already see them from bridges,” reports Vasey. Anglers should seek deep water – under bridges and at cut banks. With cooler fall temperatures, fish will not be stressed and will still be feeding.

“This is an opportunity for a successful fishing experience, especially for little ones,” says Vasey. “We’re encouraging families to put down the television remote and the Gameboy and experience Nevada’s outdoors.” Minimal travel is required – a plus when gas prices are so high. No fishing license is required for children under 12. Annual junior licenses for youth aged 12-15 are $13.00, and annual adult licenses are $29.00. Short-term permits for adults or youth are $9. Pack a picnic lunch and the whole family can have a day of fun for less than the cost of going to the movies. “Parents need to remember that it’s not just the fishing, it’s the worms, the bugs, the rocks…the whole experience that makes it fun for small children,” Vasey said.

Unless you purchase the short-term fishing permit, a $10.00 Trout Stamp is also required to fish on trout waters. Purchase of the $10.00 Trout Stamp by anglers supports hatchery refurbishment and stocking. The Nevada Department of Wildlife stocks the Truckee River regularly beginning in the spring of each year with rainbow, brown, and cutthroat trout. Since March of this year, 87 thousand trout have been released into the Truckee. Next spring, the agency will resume stocking activity.

Below Crystal Peak Park in Verdi the daily limit is 5 trout, 10 mountain whitefish, and 15 warm-water game fish. Above Crystal Peak Park the limit is 2 trout, minimum size 14 inches, and 10 mountain whitefish. See http://www.ndow.org for complete fishing regulations.

The Nevada Department of Wildlife is the state agency responsible for the restoration and management of fish and wildlife resources, and the promotion of boating safety on Nevada’s waters. Wildlife offices are located in Las Vegas, Henderson, Ely, Winnemucca, Fallon, Elko, and Reno. For more information, contact the agency web site at http://www.ndow.org.

Boca

(5,330 Acre Feet) Inflow is a low 58 cfs and the outflow is 58 cfs. Boat and shore anglers have had fairly good success. Fish have been caught with minnow imitating lures and flasher combination rigs. Most anglers are fishing from shore using nightcrawlers or Powerbait. Fly fishermen near the inlet have experienced fair to good action. Nymphs and streamers have accounted for most of the fish caught, although some fish have also been caught on dry flies and emergers.

Donner

Fishing has been good for mackinaw. A combination of jigging and trolling has been successful. Shore fishermen near the launch ramp have had fair success. Nightcrawlers and Powerbait seem to be the main bait. Fly fishermen have taken a few fish mostly with streamers.

Lake Tahoe

At 6222.89 on 9/26/2004 (Lake Level 6223.00) Fishing has been good for mackinaw. A guide is highly recommended if you are fishing for mackinaw for the first time. Toplining and shore fishing is fair.

Prosser

(5,010 Acre Feet) Prosser is fishing fair to good. Boat anglers have been catching fish with minnow imitating lures and flasher combination rigs. Most anglers have been shore fishing with nightcrawlers or Powerbait. Smallmouth bass fishing has been good. Fly fishermen have been taking a few fish near the inlets and the dam with nymphs and streamers.

Stampede

(106,700) Stampede fishing has been fair to good. Boat anglers have had good success and have caught fish with minnow imitating lures and flasher combination rigs. Shore fishermen are also doing pretty well. Most are using nightcrawlers or Powerbait. Smallmouth bass action has been good. Fly fishermen are using a combination of nymphs, emergers, dries and streamers with fair to good success.

Martis Lake

(Martis is restricted to artificial lures with barbless hooks. Zero fish may bagged or possessed) ” Fishing is fair. Mostly small Cutthroats. Most anglers are using midge emergers, pheasant tails, hares ears, small damsels and streamers. The water is very warm. The past couple of years the weed growth has limited fishing on this lake to early and late season when the weeds are less of a factor.

Little Truckee River

(Special Regulation Water ” Artificial lures or flies with barbless hooks ” no bait. Only two fish with a maximum size of 14″ may be possessed) This body of water between Stampede Reservoir and Boca Reservoir is the area’s best option, but continues to be very crowded. Flows are now 58 cfs. Fishing will be difficult at this flow. This water has been very crowded all season. Anglers are using nymphs such as the PT and Hares Ear. Dries and emergers are also working.

Truckee River

Lake Tahoe has dropped below is natural rim, and there is no measurable flow coming into the river at Tahoe City. The stretch between Tahoe City and River Ranch is almost void of water, and only a mere 6.8 cfs between River Ranch and Truckee. Fishing is fair to good where you can find adequate flows in the river. Below Donner Creek and Boca, the flow gradually increases. Anglers should concentrate in this section through the canyon below Boca. Most fly fishermen are using nymphs, emergers and dries now. Streamers can also be very productive.

Other Waters

Davis and Frenchman reservoirs have been fishing fair to good for most anglers. Fish are starting to be caught in shallow water at Frenchman and Davis. Intermediate and floating lines are working well.