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Lower Sac

An angler with a wild trout caught near the Sundial Bridge
Guided Float Trips
$575 for 1-2 Anglers
  • Year-round
  • Drift Boat Trips

The Lower Sacramento River between Redding and Red Bluff is California´s premier wild trout fishery. It is one of the few destinations where anglers can expect to hook into 18+" fish on a regular basis. Clear, cold, consistent flows coming out of Lake Shasta provide excellent conditions for the aquatic insects that trout eat. The Lower Sac is open to fishing year round. The Confluence Outfitters guide team can get you hooked up with quality wild trout on the Lower Sac at any time of year!

Lower Sac guide trips usually start between 7am and 9am depending on arrangements made with your guide. Most of our Lower Sac guide trips are drift boat trips, although we also do a lot of jet boat trips for folks who want to use Trout Spey techniques. Most of our guests opt for the shuttle-included rate, which means your guide can pick you up at your hotel and then drop you off again at the end of the day. If you opt to not include a shuttle, then plan on following your guide to the river in your own vehicle and assisting with shuttling the guide's vehicle to the take-out. You can hop into the boat in regular street clothes most days - waders are only necessary in inclement weather. Our guides can put more fish in the net by keeping their guests in the boat all day, but will definitely accommodate you if you want to do some wade fishing. Most days we fish nymphs and indicators all day long. Lunch is served on the river and trips usually wrap up by 5:30pm. On any given day you could be on one of six full-day floats - well over 60 miles of river. If fishing is red-hot in one area, our guides will sometimes do the same short float twice in one day.

Dry fly fishing can be very good almost any time of year. Our guides are always on the lookout for splashy rises in shallow riffles and stealthy risers in the flats. The best time for dry fly fishing is usually after lunch when water temperatures are warmer and there is more bug activity. If you have an interest in dry fly fishing please let your guide know so he can plan the day accordingly. The fish don't rise everywhere - you really have to be in the right place at the right time.

Lower Sac Guide Team

Our Lower Sac guide team includes Andrew Harris, Brian Kohlman, Kevin Kay, Peter Santley, Luke Geraty, Mike Wright, Andreas Fuhrmann and Ben Thompson.

Recent Lower Sac Fishing Reports

Lower Sac Fishing Image
January 1, 2022
Lower Sac Report by Brian Kohlman

Today begins a new year and I can’t think of a better way to ring in 2022 than going fishing!  Fishing the lower Sac on New Year’s Day is how my guests Ron and Steve planned to kick off their 2022. This time of year, the Sac is more about quality than quantity, so you need to know that from the start. They both hooked nice fish before Steve landed a beautiful 18” fish. Then it happened - Steve hooked into a fish that did whatever it wanted, and he could only hang on and hope for the best. Once it was in the net, we realized this was the fish of a lifetime! The photos don’t show just how large this fish is. It taped right at 26” and was one of the fattest fish I’ve seen on the Sac!  What are your goals for 2022? My goal is to fish more. I hope everyone has that same goal and we would love to take you fishing!

Lower Sac Fishing Image
December 21, 2021
Lower Sac Report by Luke Geraty

Mike came up back in October during our famous egg bite and was back for round two, only this time he brought his son, Connor. C-Dawg is a fly fishing guide in Colorado on the Arkansas River, a fantastic brown trout fishery that I've been fortunate enough to fish a couple days on. So how would the Lower Sac stack up against the Arkansas? Well in many ways they just can't be compared because they are SO different. The Arkansas has a million browns and you can use streamers or big dry flies all day long. The lower Sac? No browns and dry fly fishing is pretty sporadic, tho it's definitely a thing starting in thr spring... but what we lack in the brown trout department is made up in the sheer average size of our rainbows. Averaging around 18 inches up in Redding, it's no wonder it's considered by many to be one of the best tailwaters in America.Connor and Mike had a great day. Guiding guides is super fun because they fish a lot and understand the golden rule: do what the guide says ?? Plus, Mike has become a "stick," so we spent more time hooking and LANDING fish rather than missing fish or losing 'em.That being said, Connor and I both had to remind Mike to ENJOY fighting his fish! He told me he was competitive and just wanted to get the fish in the net immediately, but I had to remind him that one does not just DRAG an 18 inch rainbow to the boat. The stand out moment of the day was when he was fighting one of his fish and borderline horsing it in and told me, "I'd like to see the net out right about now." That was his gracious way of saying, "Luke, net my fish... NOW." Well Connor and I had a good laugh and told him to take his time and enjoy fighting the fish... and, when it was the appropriate time, I net his fish. "Trust your guide, Mike. Trust your guide." Haha.As I've noted before, December isn't a numbers game but it sure is a quality game. We got several 18+ inch fish and had grabs throughout most of the day. There is definitely a peak "bite" between 9am to 1pm lately, but if you fish hard until the end, you can scratch out fish here and there.So what are they eating and what's the river conditions? Great questions! If you wanna know the best flies to use, book a trip and I'll show ya (haha). The Sac's flow is currently at 3160cfs, so it shouldn't get any lower (Lord willing!). The clarity all depends on where you are. I'd say the average visibility is around 3 feet, give or take 6 inches. There are a TON of BWO's coming off around 11:30am most days, especially with this cloud cover and rain. You'll see smolt eating on the surface here and there but larger fish haven't seemed to care (yet) and our BWO nymphs haven't been thr primary bug they are eating... but that should change soon. Until then, I'm definitely running at least one mayfly nymph because we ARE catching fish on them. Which one, you ask? And what size? See aforementioned booking directions ??But seriously... the Lower Sac has big fish in it... and they are beautiful, so let's go! Connor and Mike did it and we had a great day! And if you head to Salida to fish the Arkansas, look him up at UpRiver Fly Fishing!

Lower Sac Fishing Image
December 17, 2021
Lower Sac Report by Kevin Kay

Luke Geraty and I fished the Lower Sac today to check out the current conditions.  We had quite a bit of rain in the last few days and that definitely added some more color to the water.  We managed to catch some big, beautiful fish but we really had to hunt them down.  When the water is colored-up they aren't in their usual spots and seem to be in pods when you find them.  They also seem to be pretty hungry so get your flies in front of them and hang on!  When hooked they all really put up a fight.  There's more rain in the forecast after the weekend so we'll do our best to keep you posted on conditions.

Lower Sac Hatch Chart

March Browns
Golden Stones
Giant Stoneflies
Little Yellow Stones
Salmon Eggs
Steelhead Present
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Lodging Recommendations

The Lower Sac runs right through Redding and Red Bluff. Please visit our Redding Info Page and Red Bluff Info Page for ideas on lodging, logistics, and other activities in the area.

Lower Sac Photo Gallery

A very large trout on the Lower Sac
Fishing the edges of the current from the drift boat on the Lower Sac
Fishing some interesting water on the Lower Sac
A guest with a great wild rainbow trout from the Lower Sac
Wade fishing can be very productive on the Lower Sac
Guide Andrew Harris lands a Lower Sac rainbow
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