Smoke is Gone!

Crowley Lake - Mammoth Lakes, CA (Mono County)

Lahontan Cutthroat
23" snake of a Cutthroat from Crooked Creek.
Photo Credit: Jim Elias

by Jim Elias

Water temps in the upper 60s to low 70s across the lake.  Surface temps have come down a bit, but that's opened the door for the algae. It's now starting to get very green up top. Lake levels have dropped several feet in the last couple of weeks. 

Rod Size:  #4-#6 Weights

Tippet Size: 3-5X  

Dries: Don't Bother

Nymphs: Red/Black Zebras, Black Zebra #20, Red Baron , Copper Tiger , Shaft Emerger, Copper Zebra Midge, Callibaetis

Streamers: Perch, Damsels


Stripping fry patterns in the tube will yield big fish, but they're few and far between. Intermediate lines are a must in anything shallower than 5ft. Type II and III lines for anything deeper. There are lots of weeds, so make sure you're stripping along the weed lines, or casting towards the weeds and retrieving. 


Water temps are moderating a little finally. Temps on the surface aren't getting above 73 at the moment, but the cooloff has triggered the algae, and now the water is getting rather green. It floats around the lake depending on wind direction, but once that stuff moves in the fish move out, this is especially important in shallow water because this green stuff only goes down about 4-5 ft. The fleet has moved out deeper to compensate. 


The fish have made their move into the north arm, and are still in McGee. These fish are directly in the channel the shallower you go, there are lots of weeds on either side of the channel in anything less than 12ft of water. Outside of that the fish aren't glued to the channel, but there are patchy weeds on both sides. Haven't heard much of anything going on in HIlton. Lots of dinks still back in Crooked along with the occasional big fish (see below). I've been finding fish from 13ft all the way out to 20ft. Anything less than 10ft your fish finder is not very effective and you should do it the old fashioned way. Drop a line for 10 minutes and see what happens. 


DFW recently planted 50,000 6-8 inch cutthroat and these guys are all over the lake now. The good news is it's still a good mix of small and big fish. Generally it'll start off with smaller fish, and then the big fish will push they out. 

Fish Mammoth Guides Services is located in Mammoth Lakes, CA (Mono County). Fishing Guide, Jim Elias, can take you fishing on Crowley Lake, Upper Owens, Lower Owens and East Walker River. To book your guided fishing trip with Jim Elias please all him at (760) 582-2195 and for more information please visit his WEBSITE..

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