Fall is The Perfect Time of Year to Fish

Picture I took at Apple Hill with the fall colors. Renee Heinichen Busey sitting under a tree at one of the farms.
Photo Credit: Doug Busey

by Doug Busey

Hello fellow anglers. The trees are turning and the weather is chilly in the mornings. The perfect time of year to fish. Renee and I took a journey to do some fishing and to visit Apple Hill in Placerville CA. We took highway 88 up to Morman Emigrant trail. As we ventured through the Sorensons area into Hope valley. The trees were shining bright with fall colors. As we passed the Blues Lakes area, the colors were just starting to turn. I highly recommend a viewing area just south of Blue Lakes Road. As we ventured up past Blue and Red lakes, the aspens had only started to turn.  But by this weekend they should be in full splendor. We then ventured up and over the Moman Emmigrant trail. The viewing was quite different. We had not been on that pass since the wildfire. Most of the viewing was of piles of hundreds of large trees that had been cut down and stacked along the sides of the road due the wildfire. It was a sad sight to see and accept, because of people that were not conscious of what they were doing in a national forest. The road takes you to highway 50 in Sly Park.

As we headed towards Placerville, the trees had not yet begun to show its true fall colors. We stayed in Placerville for a few days enjoying the downtown old town atmosphere. We were planning on fishing the American river, but found out that the water was way too low. So we spent the next day at Apple Hill. If you have never been, I would recommend putting this trip on your list. Along with a lot of patience and at least a whole day. We visited many farms and you could tell which ones were on the top of the list by the long lines of vehicles.

The next day we decided to take highway 50 back home going toward lake Tahoe. Hoping we could fish some of the spots my father had taken me when I was younger. But again we found low water and just enjoyed the drive, here again we viewed devastation from the wildfire. We entered Tahoe and took highway 89 over Luther pass back into Hope Valley. The aspens were just starting to turn, but were still in their summer colors until we reached Hope Valley. Then just like a light switch, there were yellow, red and orange hughs shining light small twinkle lights . We were going to fish the West Carson River, but many areas were so shallow, your ankle would not get wet. A trip to remember and a trip we will take again in a few weeks. Hope Valley is picturesc in the fall, but I think Apple Hill has more brighter and vivid fall color changes. Which should hit their peak by the end of October and into November.  Now for a little fishing news.

SILVER LAKE HIGHWAY 88: The water level is down and I would recommend small boats only use the launch area. There is a small channel leading to the lake which is a little shallow. The fishing has been fair for shore anglers using salmon eggs or power bait by the day use area. Many of the campgrounds in the area have closed for the season.

CAPLES LAKE: The water level is down, but they have slowed the outflow. Fishing has begun to pick up for shore anglers. A fly angler fishing the deeper areas by the spillway caught and released a few good rainbows and a couple browns. Boaters have been using flashers and a night crawler with good action. The EID day use area and boat ramp will stay open until the first snow flys. The Caple lake Resort will be closing their cabins this weekend. But will keep store, rental boats and kayaks in for as long as they can. For more information, stop by the Caples Lake Resort.

RED LAKE: The lake level is a little low and fishing has been slow.

BLUE LAKES: Lake level is low and the campgrounds will stay open until the first snow. Fishing has been on and off. Anglers using nightcrawlers or salmon eggs have produced a few small rainbows.

WEST CARSON RIVER ALPINE COUNTY: The river is very low. Best areas have been in the Woodfords Canyon area to Sorensons. They are working on the bridge by the Wilders general store with one lane traffic and a control light . For more information stop by the Creekside Inn

EAST FORK CARSON RIVER ALPINE COUNTY: The water level is low, but if you don't mind a hike, fish those hard to reach places that are not right off the side of the road. There are plenty of fish in the river, you just have to walk a little get to them. No fish plants scheduled for the rest of the season. The Carson River resort is open all year for lodging and camping right on the river. Do a little fishing and enjoy the fall colors. For more information, stop by the Carson River Resort.

INDIAN CREEK RESERVOIR:  Campground is closed. But the lake is open to fishing now. The Blue Green algae has not been detected for a month or so per Ca Water Quality Board. But I would still use caution and rinse your hands and do not allow pets to swim or drink the water.

HEENAN LAKE: The lake is open to fishing until the last day in October. Catch and release with artificial lures or flys with barbless hooks.

TOPAZ LAKE:  The lake level is low. The Douglas County day use and boat ramp is open. The NDOW plante the lake recently with 4000 rainbow trout. Green powerbait has been most productive for shore anglers. Trollers have been using flashers and worms and the occasional Raplala.

PYRAMID LAKE: The lake is open. A tribal permit is required but not a Nevada fishing license. The fishing has been very good for shore and trollers. An angler shared a photo of a 23 lb cutthroat he caught recently fly fishing from shore. You can get your permits by going to the Pyramid lake website.

I have talked with a few anglers that have told me they saw jellyfish like creatures in our local urban fishing ponds. I inquired about this with the NDOW. Kris Urquhart a Nevada Fish and Game biologist from the NDOW said. They could be a peach blossom jellyfish, which are not harmful to people. They are seen when the water temperatures rise, but will disappear when the temps go down, but may reappear  sporadically when conditions are suitable in the future. I wanted to pass that along to the anglers that had asked me to investigate.

NEVADA FISH PLANTS: Paradise Pond, Liberty Pond, Desert Creek, Mountain View Pond, Mitch Pond, Seeman Pond, Wilson Commons Pond, Topaz Lake, East fork Walker River, Onion Valley Reservoir.

Good luck on your next fishing adventure. If you get a picture of your catch, send it to [email protected].  Hope to see you on the waters soon. Good fishin' and tight lines

Good luck on your next fishing adventure. If you have a question. a report in our local fishing area or have a photo of your catch, send it to [email protected]. Hope to see you on the waters. Good fishin' and tight lines.

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More Reports

Carson Now Reports
for Friday, September 30th, 2022
: Welcome to the Sierra Fall Season
Caples Lake: Caples Lake Fishing Report
Red Lake: Red Lake Fishing Report
Blue Lake Lower: Fishing has been fair for anglers with patience
West Carson River (CA): The water level is very low through Hope Valley
East Carson River (CA): Plenty of areas that are still holding fish
Indian Creek Reservoir: Indian Creek Reservoir Report
Heenan Lake : Heenan Lake Fishing Report
Topaz Lake: The lake level is still plunging downward
Pyramid Lake: Pyramid Lake Opener October 1st
Gull Lake: Gull Lake Fishing Report
June Lake: June Lake Fishing Report
Silver Lake: Silver Lake Report
Grant Lake: Grant Lake Fishing Report
Rush Creek: Rush Creek Fishing Report
Owens River - Section 3 - Upper (above Crowley): Fly fishing has improved here a bit lately