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5732 Dunsmuir Ave
Dunsmuir, CA, 96025



Guide Notes

Ted Fay Report : May 3, 2019

Rick Cox

The Wild Waters Fly Fishing crew was not letting high water conditions spoil our "traditional" trout opener last weekend. Our guides found water to fish and fish to be caught. The snow melt is making it tougher than normal but over the years we have learned where and how to successfully handle these conditions.


The McCloud River

Although flows were very high, somewhere north of 1100 cfs we were able to get it done. However they are dropping and today are at 700cfs at Ah Di Nah. You can fish the edges effectively but expect to move around to find good locations. If the flows continue to drop many more spots will open up. Hatches are not really kicking in yet but we are seeing Golden Stone nymphs getting ready to join the party. The Conservancy is open and the care taker has set up residency. There is one shaky spot in the road just past the campground where a culvert has washed out but repairs are coming. Remember too the road to Ash Camp is closed just past the dam. You can walk in if you feel inclined or take a mountain bike, scooter, roller skates, etc.


The Upper Sacramento River

The Upper Sac is running right around 2000cfs which is high and fast. Probably will be such for a few more weeks. Currently thinking late May is when you best be ready to get in some serious fishing. It is fishable but be cautious wading. Fish the edges and softer water, there are hungry fish here who haven’t been harassed since last season. We have been seeing salmonflies from mid river upstream but not much for top action, it’s all about nymphing and getting the bugs down. Recommendation … You might think Golden Stone nymphs, their getting ready to to pop anytime soon.


Hat Creek

Although Hat Creek was a very social scene and crowded Saturday Sunday proved otherwise. Our guides and clients found very good fishing at the Power House 2 riffle both days with Sunday being far fewer anglers. The creek is in excellent shape running a bit high but gin clear. We witnessed occasional PMD's and Caddis but nothing to get excited about....yet. This is an excellent choice right now for ya'll.


Trout Lake

A nearby lake that's off most people's radar other than locals is Trout Lake. This is a gem that offers outstanding trout and bass fishing. Poppers on the surface were the ticket for us for some nice bucket mouths. This is a great option when others are off the table.


If you have further questions please call Bob at the shop and when you are in the area stop in and bug him.


Rick Cox


Ted Fay Report : April 25, 2019

Rick Cox

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Well here we are just before the general opening of all our rivers and guess what, we have a lot of water to deal with. The McCloud is flowing north of 1100 cfs at Ah Di Nah and the Upper Sac is north of 4000 cfs. These numbers are double and triple what our average spring flows are. I’ve seen these types of springs before so we just deal with it and pull out all the options….Lower Sac, Hat Creek, numerous local lakes, etc. It’s about fishing the edges of these big flow rivers and not getting too squirrelly wading. Looking ahead there is a lot of upper elevation snow pack which will not start melting for a couple more weeks so don’t expect flows to drop very fast any time soon. The McCloud access has been affected this winter and the road to Ash Camp is closed just across the dam. The Forest Service and PG&E are battling over who’s responsible for the repairs so don’t hold your breathe for any quick fix. You can however park at the closure point and hike in if you like. The road to Ah Di Nah and the Conservancy is open although I just found out that a portion of the trail into the Conservancy cabin is flooded but passable. Currently you can expect to see Salmonflies, flying ants and a few mayflies hatching. Soon to come will be the Golden Stones and a plethora of mayflies and caddis. Just remember caution wading and be envious of those white water dudes as they go flying by. If you have any further questions call the shop, Bob will be more than happy to help feel your pain.


Rick Cox

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If you have any further questions call the shop, Bob will more than happy to feel your pain.

Remembering Joe Kimsey

Rick Cox

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As we approach the upcoming season Bob and I agree we should remind all of you about why and how the shop is what it is and why it is an institution here in Northern California. Ted Fay started his guiding business in Dunsmuir in the early 50’s out of a motel he owned offering free guiding for guests who stayed in it. He popularized the short-line, weighted fly tactic known as “short line nymphing.” Fay popularized his version of the pocket water technique, which usually involved two flies; one tied at the end of the tippet, the other some distance above as a dropper. For a time in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s, Fay’s fly patterns were hot items, so much so that “authentic” Ted Fay flies began appearing on the shelves of other fly shops. Fay died in 1983 a year after I met him and Joe Kimsey at Ted’s shop. Joe was tying and guiding for Ted then and continued the shop at the Acorn Motel until 1996 when Bob Grace, the current owner, bought it from Joe. Joe carried forward Ted’s short line technique, teaching it using all the popular Fay flies such as the Bomber, Spent Wing, Peacock and Burlap. After Bob purchased the shop Joe continued to be a fixture here. One of my fondest memories of Joe was when a customer would walk through the doorway and inquire enthusiastically, “Where are the fish?” Joe would reply in a blink “In the water!” Joe continued to show up every day almost to the end tying flies in the old Ted Fay style and swapping stories with Bob and the customers. Joe was laid to rest in 2010 wearing his signature red suspenders. We miss his presence but know that his spirit is minding the store.

Checkout the YouTube videos ……

Rick Cox

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Ted Fay Post : April 4, 2019

Rick Cox

OK kids as we sit here watching the continual rain and very high river flows an important issue has come up recently concerning the new 2020 Department of Fish and Wildlife proposals for statewide regulation changes and among them specifically the McCloud and Upper Sacramento Rivers. I attended a meeting in Redding last week where they laid out their changes. As you can imagine it was well attended by guide services, fly shops and businesses directly affected. I will not go into my opinions here but the important thing is DFW is looking for serious feedback from the public and not the “you guys have your heads up you know what” type of rhetoric. They really are leaning on us, the fishing community, for feedback. These proposed changes very general right now. It is important that as many of you that can make your voice heard, they are open to suggestions. I urge you to get your comments in soon, your comments go to a final hearing this summer when the regulations will be set. Consider in them not only personal issues but the impact on our local economy that will take a hit with the delayed season.


McCloud River

The glaring thing for the McCloud River is the delayed season opening and its extension to the end of February which has no access usually in the winter.

(E) McCloud River from McCloud Dam downstream to confluence of Ladybug Creek.
Saturday preceding Memorial Day through the last day in February
2 fish bag, artificial lures

(F) McCloud River from confluence of Ladybug Creek downstream to lower boundary of the U.S. Forest Service loop (southern boundary of section 36, T38N, R3W).
Saturday preceding Memorial Day through the last day in February
0 fish bag, artificial lures with barbless hooks

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Upper Sacramento River

(156) Sacramento River and tributaries above Keswick Dam (Shasta, and Siskiyou Cos.).
(A) Sacramento River and tributaries from Box Canyon Dam downstream to the Scarlett Way bridge in Dunsmuir.
All year
0 fish bag, artificial lures with barbless hooks

(B) Sacramento River and tributaries from Scarlett Way bridge downstream to the county bridge at Sweetbriar.

Saturday preceding Memorial Day through September 30
5 fish bag, no gear restrictions
October 1 through the Friday preceding Memorial Day

2 fish bag, artificial lures

(C) Sacramento River and tributaries from the county bridge at Sweetbriar downstream to Shasta Lake.
All year
2 fish bag, artificial lures

Ted Fay Report : March 21, 2019

Rick Cox


Upper Sacramento River Report

The Upper Sac has been experiencing the leading edge of the snow melt recently and the flows are just south of 3000 cfs which may scare some of you away. Rest assured the river can be fished at these flows, it isn’t pocket water style fishing so common on this river, it’s more of a big water game and knowing your high water spots. We have been experiencing one of the best winters in memory and getting into some of those the fabled lake run fish (we call them steelhead descendants) that test your skills. I suspect that these flows will be around for awhile so best get used to them. All you need to see is the shot below taken at about 7500 ft. on Mt. Shasta to realize there’s plenty of water in the bank and coming downstream soon. If you would like to join in on our fun as Mother Nature does her runoff thing and learn a few worthwhile tips from one of our seasoned USac guides give us a call or check in with Bob in the shop.


Rick Cox

877-9347466 or 530-235-2963

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