Fly-Fishing Faire

A great event for fly-fishers wishing to take their skills to the next level is happening from Oct. 14 to 16 in Bishop. The 4th annual Fly Fishing Faire is hosted by the Southwest Council International Federation of Fly Fishers.


Pat McChesney hooked up on the Owens River below Pleasant Valley Reservoir. | Bruce Ajari

The event will be held at the Tri-County Fairgrounds on Sierra Street in Bishop. Registration for an individual is $15 for all three days, $20 for a family of up to four members; there is a discount of $5 for Eastern Sierra residents.


“Bishop is fly-fishing central for the Eastern Sierra.”


What makes this show a great one is the location. Bishop is fly-fishing central for the Eastern Sierra. There are many options for fly-fishers to fish both lakes and streams.

Some of the nearby waters include the Owens River, Hot Creek, Lake Crowley, Convict Lake, Rush Creek, East Walker River, Convict Creek, the June Lake Loop, Lake Mary, San Joaquin River, Twin Lakes and Bridgeport Reservoir.

Whether you are a beginning fly-fisher or a seasoned veteran, you will learn skills to make you better. There will be casting, fly-tying, how-to and where-to demonstrations, and programs for adults and children.

This is not a large show and its intimacy makes it a prefect for a learning experience. There are many opportunities for hands-on experience with additional on-the-water clinics and others. Some of these are free while others are available at a reasonable cost.

On the night before, on Oct. 14, there will be a screening of “Manzanar Fishing Club.” This movie is about the World War II Japanese American Relocation Camp of Highway 395. The movie will be shown for free at the Tri County Fairgrounds Patio Building from 6 to 9 p.m.

The town of Bishop is a wonderful place to spend time. There are restaurants, art galleries, shops, plenty of lodging, campgrounds and a new microbrewery called Mt. Rambler.

Mammoth Lakes and Bridgeport are also close. We usually fish these areas on the way down or back from our Bishop stays.

It has long been one of my favorite places to visit and fish. Most visitors are from Southern California. Even though it is only about a three-hour drive from Tahoe, most locals have never experienced fishing in Bishop.

By attending this fair, you have a terrific opportunity to learn about the area and improve your fly-fishing skills.

For more information, a complete schedule or to register, call (818) 200-1499 or visit




Boca Reservoir | Inflow is at 29 cfs and the outflow is 34 cfs. Powerbait, nightcrawlers and lures are all working. Fly-fishers have been catching fish near the inlet with nymphs, streamers and dries.

Donner Lake | Fishing has been fair to good. Kokanee fishing has been good. Nightcrawlers and Powerbait seem to be the main bait for trout. Mackinaw fishing has been good. Fly-fishers are catching fish with streamers.

Lake Tahoe | Fishing has been fair to good for mackinaw. I highly recommend a guide if you are fishing for mackinaw for the first time. Toplining and shore fishing is fair. Most anglers use inflated nightcrawlers.

Little Truckee River | The flow is at 29 cfs. This is too low to fish. It is best to avoid this water.

Martis Lake | Zero kill. Catch and release only with barbless artificial lures or flies. There are a few nice fish in this lake. Smallmouth bass are now part of the fishery here.

Prosser Reservoir | Fishing has been fair. The lake level is rapidly dropping. Anglers using bait, lures and flies have all caught fish. Fly-fishers have done well near the inlet areas. Bass fishing has been fair.

Stampede Reservoir | Fishing has been slow. There are not many reports from this water. Nightcrawlers, Powerbait and lures have all produced from shore. Fly-fishers have been doing well near the inlets with nymphs and streamers. The kokanee fishing has been poor. Smallmouth bass fishing has been fair to good.

Truckee River | It is not flowing out of the lake at Tahoe City. The flows through Truckee are at 67 cfs. Cooler night temperatures are starting to cool the river down. Crayfish and small mayflies along with streamers are your best bet now. Some caddis are around, too. Hoppers are an option with a dropper. Best flows for fishing are below Boca. This water is special regulation, artificial only, with barbless hook. Catch-and-release fishing, but an angler may keep two fish with a minimum size of 14 inches.

Davis and Frenchman lakes | Both are begging to show signs of life with the water beginning to cool. Boat, shore and fly anglers are catching a few fish. Reports typically show improvement after Labor Day.


Bruce is a long-time area fly-fisherman and past president of Tahoe Truckee Fly Fishers. Visit to read more.