Tuesday, June 8, 2010

American River and Shad 2010 Part 4

I got to the River at 0730, donned my waders and walked to the spot where we fish. Since last weekend there has been talk about the big water releases from Shasta Dam on the Sacramento River. I didn't even think about increased releases or to even look at them in the American. Last Wednesday the release from Lake Natoma Dam was 4929 cfs. Today the release is 6706 cfs. Doesn't seem like a lot more, but in the picture below where we stand to fish, it's the difference between water that is ankle deep, to water that was half way up your thigh. See, you have to get out past the bushes on the side to drift your jig. A pretty steep drop. The river flow is right to left.

OK, back to fishing. My old brain has been working since the last time I was down because, damn it, I want to catch a Shad on my fly rod. So logic tells me to use the same jig that I use on a spinner. Problem is, once you put the jig on and add a couple of split shot (to get the jig to the bottom), you have a 1/2 oz of weight on the line. Solution? Put a smaller jig head on and less split shot. Drop the line out a ways, let out some more line, back swing and, snagged in the weeds. Sure, I got a picture of that too. This is DIRECTLY behind where you stand. Lots of places to catch your jig.

I did manage to get a bunch of casts with the fly rod and even got one big hit, but the time I spent untangling the jig from the bushes, out weights any chance to catch anything. So I went back to spinning. I did manage to land one and since I was no longer skunked, went back to the fly rod. I am a glutton for punishment, but I am determined. After another hour of weed fishing, I called it a day. Catching all those weeds wears a person out.
On the walk out, I snapped a picture of the California Poppy (State flower) for your enjoyment.
Well, that's it for Shad fishing until I get back from vacation next week. We're taking the laptop, so if I find any interesting lakes or streams, I'll report back. I still think I can get one more day up at Bear, maybe Thursday or Friday. I'll let you know.
Till then.
Mark (Shoreman)


  1. Great post! My wife and I fish the eastern Sierras all of the time and we take our laptop along so we can scout out new places. We find a lot of new water and every trip is a little different. You've got an awesome blog! I'll check back in soon! Thanks!

  2. Good to see that Bill found your blog. Check his out, I have enjoyed it since I found it.

    Shoreman, you are tenacious and will persevere with that fly rod. Happy to see the jig still works.

  3. You know, if all else fails, you can always use dynamite. lol Works wonders on stubborn Shad.
    Tight lines