Our second California River, Hat Creek, and our second Matt… but this time it was Matt Dahl of The Fly Shop in Redding. We met at Hat Creek Park which is a small park dedicated to fly fishing. There is a major project happening on Hat Creek, the “Wild Trout Project” being done by CalTrout. We saw great stream side work being done to shore up the banks of the Creek, miles of paths providing great Creek access and even large trees placed in the water to provide trout with cover. It was impressive.
We took out hiking our way downstream, looking for some “fishy” water and found some where Barb landed a really nice size and colorful trout. Matt was even excited seeing the size of the rainbow in his net. Downstream, I got a hit and landed a much smaller rainbow, but it was still a fish. Unfortunately, those were the only fish we landed that day.
While the “hooking and catching” was tough, the fishing, scenery and great coaching from Matt were awesome. We tried some dries to rising trout in an area of Hat Creek Matt described as “church”, which really meant that these fish were REALLY hard to snare. However, trying to get one of these Ph.D. level fish to think the fly attached to your 6x tippet, was a blast.
Matt worked really hard to get us on fish, but as we talked to other anglers that day we found that in catching one each, we’d had a pretty good day. Afterward, we had a chance to interview Matt in the cool shade of a tall pine. We know you’ll enjoy hearing how Matt got into fly fishing and why Hat Creek is so special.