THE FEATHER RIVER
The Feather is California's most phenomenal Central Valley steelhead river. Below Lake Oroville, this tailwater is open all year long, but we focus on this fishery in the fall and spring. CastHope guides use drift boats to access the river between Oroville and Gridley.
Steelhead fishing here peaks around mid-October and stays consistent through late November. During this time of year, we find steelhead sitting behind salmon redds waiting for their next meal. On the Feather it's quite common to hook and land over 10 steelhead in a day. Very few rivers in the country can boast of steelhead numbers like those found on the Feather River. Most of the steelhead we catch weigh between 3-7 pounds, but every year we hook fish that top the 10-pound mark.
In the spring, the river gets a large consistent run of half-pounders that feed heavily on caddis and mayfly nymphs. From mid-March through April we chase these half-pounders with 5/6-weight fly rods. There are even a few opportunities to get these juvenile steelhead on dry flies in the evenings. If you have never fought and caught a steelhead or have struggled on other traditional steelhead rivers, then I recommend you book yourself a trip to some epic California steelheading.