2019 is off to a great start!
Lake Houston- White bass, yellow bass and crappie spawn are in full swing and if you wait much longer you may miss it. Largemouth and Spotted bass are staging to spawn though and the topwater bite has started to turn on.
Lake Conroe- Bass are on beds and the spawn is kicking off. Bowfin are shallow and water clarity is finally getting sight fishable. Grass carp are of course shallow and gorging most days. Watch for more Lake conroe stuff over the next month as my focus on white bass changes to bass and bowfin. Gar are also getting shallow and the spotted gar have been entertaining.
Urban bayous- Carping has been awesome with the carp spawn in full swing, low flows and clear water making for a great time to be carping. Grassers have been surface sipping for at least a month now and im not complaining!
Texas Racks and Quacks Lake- Bass are starting to make beds and bluegill have been shallow and super aggressive. Top water bite is just getting off and streamers have been fooling the skeptics.
Lake Houston- white bass, yellow bass and crappie are off to a great start. Recent rain and flooding has temporarily blown out the creeks and rivers but look for the fish to turn on as the water drops. Bass are starting to get shallow and their spawn will kick off any day now.
Lake Conroe- Bass are shallow are also staging to spawn and the top water bite is almost here with the occasional popper eater right now. Bowfin are spawning and shallow but water clarity has made sight fishing difficult. Look for clear water or blind cast. Carp and gar are also shallow and frisky. Its a great time of year to to more catching than fishing.
Urban Fly Fishing- Dry fly fishing for grass carp has been awesome with the occasional plop eat. Common carp and a few Koi have also been out and very willing to eat. The Commons should be on for the next two months and out in bigger numbers than usual. Smallmouth Buffalo have also showed back up and its a great time to target them. San juan worms being most effictive. Tilapia have also shown back up and are getting into spawning mode also.
Texas Racks and Quacks lake- Streamer fishing for bass has been super effective along with the occasional topwater eat. Theyre starting to make beds but not there yet. Any day now though. Bluegil have been on and taking small streamers and nymphs along with small poppers.
Lake Houston- a combination of water temps between 45 and 55 degrees(warmer being better) in the creeks and rivers and slightly spiked flows has kicked off the White Bass run, along with Crappie and Yellow Bass. So between now and April are great times to get out and wade the creeks and do a little catching!
Urban bayous- haven't been awesome but on select days Grass carp and Commons have been on the flats and catchable.
No other reports as of right because that's all I've personally fished lately other than saltwater and a Guadalupe river trip. Good luck out there!
Lake Conroe- Bass have been shallow taking poppers and baitfish patterns. Bowfin are in similar areas but don't be surprised if you see one backing or close to it either. Crawfish patterns and small poppers have been working for Bowfin. Grass carp have been a little more frisky and willing to take a well placed fly.
Lake Houston- Bass are still taking poppers but the streamer bite has been more consistent. Watch for bass busting shad to especially in lagoons and coves. Whitebass and crappie have started showing up to not in crazy spring numbers but enough to have fun.
Urban bayous- Grass carp have been decent and taking plopped flies. Commons mostly scattered but willing to eat if you find em. Tilapia have been taking most small buggy flies similar to your carp bugs. Just keep their attention!
Racks and quacks ranch- top water bite has been solid along with a slightly better streamer bite. Pick your poison here fish are feeding.
February 21st Houston Fly Fishing Report
White bass, Crappie and Yellow bass are all starting their spring spawning rituals up the creeks and rivers of Lake Houston and across Texas. Just before the rain we were catching some solid male Whitebass along with the occasional female. Once the creeks and rivers start to clear in the next week expect for even more Whitebass and yellow bass to be further up river. We also are catching double digits of crappie most days. A lot of 9 inchers but some decent 12” to 15” fish also. Spotted bass and channel catfish have been making appearances also.
Grass carp have been surface sipping consistently. Making it a great time for urban dry fly action! Common Carp have also been roaming the flats and seem very willing to eat almost any well placed bean chain nymph. Tilapia have also started showing up on the flats gearing up for their spawn. Buffalo have been scattered occasionally finding one that'll eat.
Reports of buck bass bedding and Bowfin being caught. It's almost time for Bowfin trips! Grass carp are shallow in warmer days and grumpy but will eat.
Whitebass and carp trips officially start February 10th. If you've never fished the run you're missing out! They are fiesty and very willing to eat! Making for a great time to get the kids out, a newbie or yourself!
I know most people aren't even trying for carp right now but hey we live in Texas! This time of year we get a lot of rising Grass carp making for a crazy urban experience! Who throws elk hair caddis in a concrete bayou in the winter? This guy!!
Couple of things to look forward to this spring.
The Bass spawn on Lake Houston and possibly Lake Raven.
I'm really looking forward to this one. The Bowfin spawn on Lake Conroe. If you haven't seen Bowfin's spawning colors you are missing out! Google it! Oh did I mention how hard they fight and that they are sight fishable?
January 17th Houston Fly Fishing Report
Since it hasn't been very cold this month so far we're already seeing Whitebass caught up the creeks and rivers of Lake Houston along with Yellow Bass, Crappie, Catfish and Bass. All eating small minnows patterns.
Also the Grass carp have been surface sipping consistently. Making it a great time to try and land a 10lb carp on things like elk hair caddis! Smallmouth Buffalo are still around and eating but not to many Commons on the flats.
As you know the 5 year drought effected most of Texas. Including our fishing and had caused the Whitebass population to dwindle and for several years on Lake Houston. With almost no flows to spike a spawn and warmer water temperatures we went a couple of years without any spawn at all. On your best days you were lucky to catch 5 Whitebass. Now they were big fish all over 14 inches for the most part, but nothing compared to my beginner days of fly fishing the run and catching so many fish you lose count. It had in fact got so slow the bait chunkers would pull up ask a person how they were doing and just leave. Usually there were 20 cars lined down the road now you'd maybe see 3 of the die hards.
Finally during the beginning stages of the 2014 run I caught my first juvenile’s in the 6 inch range and not just one, but fifty in one pocket. I was ecstatic! It had been so long it felt like it would never happen and soon the Whitebass would be non existent. As that season went on we had perfect flows and floods. That made for some decent fishing days nothing crazy but sometimes 10 or more fish if you worked for it. The spawn was happening though and next year was looking brighter.
During the 2015 run it was about the same daily numbers did go up slightly. But finally with more 10 to 11 inch fish and the big girls who had been making it through the drought and thousands of jigs, flies and live bait tossed near them. Still improvement and signs of a bounce back were on the horizon and I could almost hear the sound of the drag screaming on my 2wt.
This year's run (2016) was the best I can remember. Not necessarily in terms of numbers (though there were some 30+ fish days), but consistently big Whitebass were caught. Average size this year during the actual spawn were between 12 and 14 inches with several 16+ inch fish being caught. (I saw the lake record broke at least 3 times on the fly and not submitted.) Not much under 12 inches through the actual spawn but juveniles were caught but only in the early staging and some as the run tapered off.
It's great seeing the lake bounce back so fast and give you so much to look forward to the next year. Of course there's bass and carp fishing still but there is just something about the spring run that just screams fly fishing to me. Plus who doesn't like to break out the 2wt or glass 4wt and wade down a creek throwing clousers with an almost guarantee of getting bent.
With all this rain keeping our lakes at pool you can bet next year's run is going to be even better!
Well as everyone's noticed, the temperature has dropped and we've been getting a bit of rain. This doesn't mean all hope is lost though! Fish are still biting, you may just have to change your tactics and check flows and water temperature. If you've been waiting to break out your sink-tip line, now's not a bad time. Hint hint, get those flies down!
This time of year, I tend to gravitate towards the feeder creeks and rivers looking for White Bass or walking the bayou's looking for rising Grass carp. Don't get me wrong though: Bass are still biting, and if you can get a couple days of consistent weather, you may be able to pull out some big girls. Plus that prefrontal bite can surprise you!
A Look Into What's To Come
Rainbow and Brown trout stockings are starting on the Guadalupe River and can be a great way to get through those cooler, crappy weather days. Dust off your 4wts and nymph boxes and make a weekend out of it! I plan to spend a month or so in the hill country this trout season so look for paddle, wade, and possibly raft trips to be offered very soon until the end of January. Lodging may also be available so please feel free to ask about that.
The Guadalupe river is also known for its Striper, so don't be afraid to sneak that 8wt out and bang some streamers!
As soon as I get back from the hill country, the White Bass run should be on and dates are already booking up. I still have some weekends open so you may want to book them sooner rather than later. Available dates will be from February to April and this year paddle trips will be offered along with the usual wade trips.
Contact Houstonflyfishing@gmail.com for more information. I look forward to fishing with y'all!
Fishing Report October 19th
Urban Fly Fishing - has been good with nice flows bringing out all the fish. Common carp have been showing up usually as the day warms up. Smallmouth Buffalo are still scattered around. Grass carp have turned on big time and are super aggressive loving the plop. Fall is a good time for urban carping!
Lake Houston - The Bass bite has been on along with huge Grass carp! A fantastic popper bite early and late in the evening with some streamer fishing the rest of the time. Olive woolly buggers, various colors of clousers, baitfish patterns, and leggy crawfish patterns. The upper creeks have been awesome with decent clarity and cooler temps making a wade or paddle that much better. Streamer fishing is the way to go if you want to catch multiple species LM Bass, Spotted bass, crappie, channel catfish, Whitebass, various sunfish have been making appearances daily.
Grass carp have been found in big groups tailing and backing and even better taking a fly plop in front of them! When I say big I mean 10-20lbers easy! Perfect for sightfishing out of the Diablo’s!
Lake Conroe - Bowfin fishing has been on all day. With plenty in the 3-5lb range eating. Mostly pitching streamers to active fish. Grass carp have been more aggressive here also sucking of flies on the plop!