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WEST CARSON RIVER
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FISHING REPORT
Updated - 12/1/23

Scroll down to links for information about Lodging,
Maps and up to the minute Stream Flows.

Current River Conditions: Flows 45 CFS  and clear. 

Fishing is Poor: No new report this week as fishing on the

W Carson is pretty much over for the season as the water is getting to cold.   

Scroll Down to See Hatch Chart at bottom of the page

Click here to see where CDFW has planted fish this week

              LODGING                 Markleeville, CA

LOCAL FLY SHOPS

Local Waters Orientation Clinics are Starting Now
Click here
for info

HATCH CHART

About the West Carson River

 

Of the two Carson’s, the West Carson has the most diverse water.  It begins as spring water collecting in the high mountain meadows just east of the Pacific Crest and works its way down slope varying between freestone and meadow stream until it reaches the Carson Valley in Nevada.  In its upper reaches it is no more than a creek, and after it is joined by a few tributary creeks, it becomes, for all practical purposes, a larger creek.   Because it runs right along Blue Lakes Rd, and Hwy 88 it get regular plants.

From the headwater meadows it becomes freestone pocket water for about five miles until it reaches Hope Valley, where it becomes a serpentine meadow stream again.  Downstream from Hope Valley the river descends into a canyon and tumbles over boulders into deep pools.  This section is heavily planted at the bridges.  Most of Hope Valley is conservancy land which means that there is lots of public access. 

Two creeks are tributaries to the river in the Hope Valley section.  One is Red’s Lake Creek which flows of, you guessed it, Red’s Lake, which is located at the western end of the valley.  The other is Willow Creek which flows out the north side of the valley and Parallels Hwy 89 for a few miles.  Red’s Lake Creek flows for several miles through Hope Valley and though it gets lots of pressure near where it crosses under Hwy 88, there is a long section in the meadow that sees few fishermen.  Be prepared for a good walk to get to productive water, but if like fishing meadow streams it’s worth it.

In most normal precipitation years the West Carson is usually in good fishing shape by the end of June and fishes well through the beginning of August when the water temps rise.  About the middle of September the fishing improves though the water can get pretty skinny.

The West Carson is one of the prettiest meadow streams that can be accessed by vehicle for most of its length.  One day on the river with one of our guides, will teach you everything you need to know so that every return trip will be successful.

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