Saturday, March 20, 2021


                                                              Napa Valley Fly Guides 


 Hi and welcome to my Putah Creek report Clients and myself have been seeing some really brightly colored fish with that unusually bright chrome look with nice size this early in the season. The numbers are not what I would hope for but the trout I'm getting to net with clients are really nice and willing to play ball if the presentation is good and the correct fly is presented. 

As I stated in my previous report, try stripping in extra line before executing your mend. It makes sense to remove as much line as possible from the water before you start mending. A lot of the time I get better results by stripping in a little and then I don't need to mend nearly as aggressively to achieve the same results.

There's a lot more going on than you might think: I suspect even I have things I have yet to fully understand on how to get a perfect drift. I've come to understand much of this by simply standing at a riffle and throwing cast after cast over and over again thinking about what is happening and how to make a better drift. Is my leader to short or long? Is the fly ahead or behind the indicator? Is my line causing drag? Sometimes I think I must be a little mad to have spent so much time fishing the same creek, but it results in hooking up regularly on this very challenging technical creek. 

I've spent a lot of time fishing Putah but I don't claim to know it all. The floods change the topography of the river so what worked on a specific riffle one season is so different the next it is hard to put a finger on it. Certain areas like #5 are completely different this year.

Flows will continue to rise this spring, and the creek will continue to fish better as we move towards summer, but I honestly don't really enjoy the high flows that come with July, August and September. Flows over 470 cfs gets to be a bit much, but I still fish and guide, I just prefer a little less flow plus I like to fish from the back side and wading can get dicey with flows over 500cfs.

Guide fly tip: For the next few weeks try using  #14 San Juan Worm or any Tungsten bead head flys to get down as quickly as possible and have brought me fish to net as of late.

Please feel free to call for available dates 


Thank you

Richard Loft 


Napa Valley Fly Guides----------------<*)()()()><


Saturday, March 13, 2021

                                                            Putah Creek Report 3/12/21

Hi and Welcome to Napa Valley Fly Guides early Spring report as of Saturday 3/13/20 Putah Creek flows are 248cfs fishing can be little slow this time of year as I am still trying to locate where find younger fish are holding

After years of fishing the creek I have noticed early spring can be a time where I seems hard to find younger fish until things pick up in April May and on into summer 

I will be on the creek more now that we are out of the Spawn and flows are starting to climb

Friday, February 5, 2021

Napa Valley Fly Guides Winter 2021 Report


                                2021 February Report By: Richard Loft  > Napa Valley Fly Guides

                                                                      Winter Report  

Hey Everyone I just wanted to check in and  report whats happening on Putah Creek flows are holding right around 105 cfs as of 2/03/2021 and not seeing fish many fish hanging around the redds so I am assuming the Spawn is winding down as it normally does this time of year. So it's watch and wait until flows start to climb again in Spring March/April.

Living in Napa and fishing the creek as much as I do- maybe 100 days a year or more, its still hard to put my finger on it. But it seems like this time between end of the Spawn and summer can be a little slow; its fishable but it just seem like the river is trying to heal itself and fish metabolism is much slower in winter and it just takes time to get back into Spring through Fall when fish are feisty and when it all starts over again. 

Access points and Flows:

 Between Monticello Dam and Lake Solano there are 5 marked points to access and fish the creek #1, #2, #3, #4, and #5 but remember there are 4 1/2 miles between the dam and Lake Solano so you really need to walk and hike to find the holes to fish. The flows dramatically effect how a area fishes so check the flows every time you go and before you leave the house.  I use Dreamflows so you can develop a sense of how an area fishes at a given flow, Remember it takes some time but it is one of many factors that help me when I'm thinking whether or not to fish on a given day.


Remember to adjust your leader length, indicator size and amount of weight as flows change.

Flys: As always, one of my go-to flys is the Cravens JuJu Baetis and or WD40 I found gray a great choice. Black Soft Hackle with green foil body. That got immediate results and of course a Black Zebra Midge is a must have. 

Of course there are many great flys to choose from and I have surely forgotten to list a few so definitely ask the guys at Lost Coast Outfitters for some help 

* Mending;  One thing I've noticed time and time again is clients over mending or mending in the wrong direction throwing huge mends the the left as soon as the Indi hits the water, Not necessary, try making smaller adjustments as needed or doing a shorter cast and keeping you'r arm elevated to minimize the amount of line on the water 

Environmental Factors:Time of Day, Seasons, Weather, Fires and floods. Flows; (cfs) Check Check Dream Flow.

The Quail Fire

* Fires,  As most of you know we had another huge fire again last summer and you would think it          would have negative effect on the fishing. Nope Think again! I was on the creek the day it started and was actually guiding a husband and wife from Texas well my clients got nervous and left. So not wanting to let a little fire ruin a good day of fishing I stayed and fished and had an awesome day on the water. 

* Weather; Wind speaks for itself if the wind interferes with casting then I might adjust my day, or work     on my casting Proper casting mechanics helps by properly loading the rod and staying low and under the                                          main gusts of wind and increasing accuracy and distance. ( I can help with proper casting during a guided trip ). 

*Time of Day; Time of day effects where the sun is so I will adjust where I stand so the sun doesn't cast my shadow on the water if at all possible. also I do really well mid day but in July Augest its so hot mid day this no longer applies and I fish mornings or dusk to avoid midday heat. I think it drives fish down reduces fish in the riffles until dusk when things turn on that last hour or so of the day. 

* Time of Year; Spring is probably my favorite with Fall a close second. 

* Euro Nymphing  I really started spending more time looking at my leader construction and how to fish water not  effectively fished with an indicator and was stunned by the results a month after the Quail fire in August.

I hope this helps and gives you something to think about when you're on the water.

For available dates or pricing for a guided trip with me, contact; Richard Loft, Napa Valley Fly Guides, (707) 294-4738;

Saturday, February 8, 2020

Putah Creek Pre-Spring Report

                                                      Putah Creek End of Winter Report

Hey Everyone Just checking in with current Putah Creek ; Flows and other fishy news 

                                                                     Putah Creek
   2/08/2020 Tail water flows are still bouncing  between 44cfs and low 80s so I am just watching and waiting for weather to warm up when the flows will follow as things warm-up , Water temp around 56 deg , I was at Putah last week and saw really nice hatches of midges and the occassional BWO so I will be keeping a close eye on things and give more reports as things evolve; 

Also I noticed that the fish have left the  spawning beds so I think the spawn has mostly finnished but be carefull when wadding so we dont step on those eggs or fry and think about joining and get to know a few of the guys we do a picnic once a year plus there is always oppertunitys to help with conservation efforts on the creek

Saturday, December 14, 2019

Putah Creek 12/07/2019 Report

Napa Valley Fly Guides last report for 2019 

Hey Everyone I just wanted to say Merry Christmas as I am ending my 2019 fly Fishing season on Putah Creek until March in Past years I did fish clear through but decided to give it a break 

As for the fishing report last Saturday as it rained off and on all day I was blessed with a great day on the water starting with my usual nymphing rig with an indi tossing #18 &20s midge patterns I got broke off a few times but still getting a few in the net with one or two of them in the 16 to 17 in range Pictures to follow. 

After a few hours I decided to try High-Sticking with Tungsten flys I recommended below I had good results landing some and loosing some I think 5 in total over 16ins Crazy good fishing probably 10 or 11 fish and most of it while it was raining some of it heavy rain. Crazy day !!! 

I have been using the
#18 BH Perdigon Zibra Rider
#16 BH Perdigon Dilated Pupil 
#14 BH Perdigon Carrot Stix
and a few more for good messure are : #18 BH Perdigon Peanut
# 18 BH Perdigon Kilowatt
Please feel free to call if you would like to book a trip this spring 

Thanks for reading : 

Napa Valley Fly Guides
Richard Loft 

--------------*. <*)()()(><

Thursday, November 21, 2019

                                     Napa Valley Fly Guides
                                     Reports for November

Hey everyone so Flows have been going up and down for several weeks between 50cfs then low 80  then up to 140 then rising to 180cfs in less than 12 hours The funny thing is fishing has been really good. I have heard many times that these types of drops and increases will always negatively effect the fishing well that has not been my experience here on Putah Creek or on the Little Truckee. I have found that I just need to adjust my positions where I fish and ! and what technics I am utalizing and of course always keep a really good selection of flys,split shot, Tippet  So Also be willing to put in some effort moving around This does not mean Flows don't impact the fishing they do I'm just saying it has not always been my experience

Top Water Action   Think dry Flys
Also on another note  I am seeing a lot more top action so consider bringing another rod and I like to keep a separate fly box with a good selection of Elk Hair Caddis # 18 and if you can find some other really small options  like a size #22 or #24 knat or other very small flys get a few of those to temp these elusive fish. I have had some success on the #16. Caddis so I am just saying im seeing a lot more action this last year over previous 10 years Ive been fishing

Lastly Much of my recent success has been High Sticking with Tungston beaded fly like the  

Frenchie #14,16
Perdigon #14,16
Perdigon Zibra #16,18
To name just a few all  Tungston bead heads
Check with the gang at Lost Coast Outfitters for help picking out fly if you need And
At the end of the day Learn the creek, Check the flows everytime you fish the creek and cover the water well before you leave to fish another spot. -------------  <*)))))()><  

Don't leave before the merical,
Please feel free to contact me if you would like to book a trip and I will do my best to get you on some Putah Creek Wild Trout

Call Richard Loft
      (707) 294-4738
or email me @
I will be unavailble Dec 15 on to january 10th

November report from Napa Valley Fly Guides

                                                         Napa Valley Fly Guides
                                                           November Report

Hey Everyone Flows have been supper low at 51cfs then up to 82cfs then back down jumping back up to 140 and up again to 180cfs Well A common belief I have heard so many times before is these type of fluctuations negativly effect the fishing. Funny Thing is fishing has been Really Good lately and it goes with my personal experience on Putah Creek and other rivers like the Little Truckee. It is my belief that first  I need to just adjust my Tactics before I leave a run I happen to be fishing, Changing my weight is one of the first things then moving on to flys, Then leader length, I might spend two hours without a fish before moving on to another run if I like my drift and like the scenery Other times I may move on right away due to conditions not being favorable such as super heavy hydraulics or glare on the water making it difficult to see my indicator or I may just go to a larger indicator but I will most often find another spot if glare makes it too difficult to see my indicator because there are too many other options

Top Action
I don't know if anyone else has noticed but I am seeing a lot more fish actively feeding on really small Emergers maybe Tricos or something I don't know for sure they seem to be very small maybe size #22 I am seeing mostly small fish on the drys but I have heard of much larger fish in the 20 in range and I landed a little13in on a #14 Elk Hair Caddis

 Finally I want to mention that I am bringing my 10.6 4 wt Echo Shadow II it first it was just a pain getting the leader just right then it was to long or short but after a year of working with it off and on I seem to be getting better results picking up fish my Indicator rig misses so consider looking at getting one of the rods out there

Here is a few of I would recommend

Any of the Echo series I have the  Echo Shadow II 10.6 4wt But any of these other rods will do the trick the idea is to get more reach so just ask any of the gang at the LCO shop and I am sure you will find one that will do here are a few more but at the end of the day any one of these will do Just ask a staff person for a peak    : A Sage ESN or one of the Clearwater series .  The rod gives you the reach and the fly punches you through

 As for flys I have been using the Tungston Beadhead fly and have been getting some super nice fish

Heres a few flys have used for high sticking on Putah don't worry about the fly as much as getting the one your using on the bottom with a good presentation you need to get some penetration on and get through to fish holding on the bottom

I have been using the
#18 BH Perdigon Zibra Rider
#16 BH Perdigon Dilated Pupil
#14 BH Perdigon Carrot Stix
and a few more for good messure are : #18 BH Perdigon Peanut
                                                              # 18 BH Perdigon Kilowatt
There are many to choose from don't get stuck on having the perfect fly just get some fly and get on the water and see what clicks and go from there

Please feel free to contact me
Richard Loft
(707) 294-4738
or email me @