san jose ca 9/10-9/11-recommendations? [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: san jose ca 9/10-9/11-recommendations?

09-02-2006, 12:24 PM
i'll be in soquel ca next week and have a couple of days off on the 10th and 11th. soquel is near san jose. any recommendations or leads for trout or steelhead fishing would be greatly appreciated.

Steelie Mike
09-03-2006, 11:00 PM
Since you are in the South Bay Area, there is not much in the way of steelhead. The only trout creek of the top of my head is Putah Creek. If you want to travel a little farther North you might consider the Yuba River. There might even be a few fall chinook in. It will be too early for steelhead in the Yuba and Loer Feather Rivers. Another option may be the Lower American near Sacramento, but I have no experience on that river. Check out:

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If I was down there I would probably find a guide and fish the Delta for Stripers. Then again you guys have stripers over on that side of the country. TL's

09-05-2006, 07:39 AM
Lived in the Bay Area (Sunnyvale most recently...close to San Jose) for 12 years before moving back to the East Coast.

What fishing there is really depends on how far you want to drive.

In the spring, I would drive over the hills to Soquel or Aptos to fish the beach, and you could probably do well there for some surf perch and possibly halibut.

Too early for steelhead on the coast rivers.

with a 3 hour drive you could get to the American River in Sacramento that will definitely have King Salmon, and possibly some trout / steelhead.

Another hour could put you on the Feather River in the low flow area near Oroville, or the Yuba River....I found the Yuba held more trout, and the Feather will have Salmon, and some steelhead, though a bit early for steelies.

Another couple hours and you can fish the freestone streams in the favorites being the different branches of the Stanislaus River.

Alternatively, you could have a day fishing on the Delta....mostly fishing for largemouth bass...probably a bit early for the stripers.....

You could give San Jose Fly Shop a ring...and there is Ernie's Casting Pond in soquel that could give you some advice as well. In Sacramento, you could call Kiene's fly shop to get the latest on teh central valley rivers.


09-13-2006, 10:34 PM
Too bad I read this post too late.

I lived in San Jose for 19 years. I can tell you every single place to catch fish there, and YES there are steelhead there. And YES there are summer run steelhead.

Guadalupe River has Chinook and Steelhead but only Fall Kings and Winter Steelhead. This was my favorite river to fish as a kid. It runs through downtown San Jose and i've seen Chinook up to 45lbs in this creek sized river and i've caught steelhead to 6lbs, most in the 2-4lb range. Nothing huge, but I where there are 2 salts there are 6 salts. :) I remember how the homeless would make "nets" out of shopping carts and trap the Chinook and would have bum bbq's that would be suitable for any class of person. :lol:

Carmel River and Big Sur River aren't in San Jose but are within an hour and a half away down hwy 1. They have a small run of Summer Run steelhead and can be a blast to fish! I first discovered Big Sur River summer runs as a youngin'. I was fishing for trout at the big sur campsite. It was closed for fishing, but I was 7, unaware of the rules, and messing around with a handline and a nightcrawler that I found and was tossing it in hoping to catch these little trout which I know now were steelhead smolt. I saw this opaque shadow at the bottom of the creek-sized river. It had to have been 30" long. A trophy trout I thought! I kept tossing my worm offering at it and finally it turned and I saw it's mouth open. I didn't realize it took the worm. So I continued to slowly pull the line in as I was doing before. All of a sudden the line began to pull...HARD and I saw the big "trout" shaking it's head and then it shot out of the water like a bullet and ran downriver. The 10lb spool of Stren began flossing my fingers. I stepped on the spool that was on the ground to stop the fish and "SNAP" the line broke. My hands were sliced open from the line. Every year I came back in mid-June when school got out to camp with my family. Every year there was a steelhead at the bottom of that 8' deep hole. Every year I tried until I learned of the regulations when I was 10 yrs old or so.

Head north and you have the option to catch some 2-4lb Summer Run steelhead from the Feather River but you will spend half the day driving. They also have a plenty of Chinook that number in the hundreds of thousands!

If you ever head back, buy the Northern California fishing guide. A nice thick book that will help you A LOT. Lots of information. :)

09-14-2006, 12:57 PM
Kid's note on the Carmel River brings back fond memories. Again, being very young and unaware of regulations, I'd fish the lagoon at the mouth of the Carmel River every chance I could get. My family enjoyed picnicking on the Carmel beaches, and it was just a short walk from the wienie roast to the lagoon. Except during the biggest storms, the river was blocked at its mouth by a large sand dune.

The smolts would collect in the lagoon by the hundreds, and I would catch them like crazy on daredevils and flies. Most of the fish were in the 10" range, and I thought I'd really found something special.

Once I was casting for these things in a backwater channel that led off through the tules out into the artichoke fields, when a monster kelt steelhead rose in red striped splendor to chomp my size 12 black gnat. I was aghast. I'd never seen a fish that large before -- in my astonishment, I tripped and slid down the bank I was casting from, fell into the canal and lost the fish.

But, I have the memory for as long as I can.