Bass Fly Fishing Locations & Reports

Fly Fishing for Bass at Lake Cachuma – Santa Ynez, California

As planned we took the trip from Monterey to Santa Barbara, California April 2-8 & went fly fishing at Lake Cachuma in the Santa Ynez Valley, just up in the hills from Santa Barbara. I brought my Orvis TLS Power Matrix 906-4, a fine four piece rod that travels well in airports. I also brought the Orvis Battenkill Large Arbor with a sink-tip fly line and an assorted collection of streamers, zonkers, & wet & dry flies since I had no idea what to expect.

It’s early in the year and the weather is often unpredictable in the hills of Central California wine country. This time, it was overcast & about 60°+. We rented a motor boat and set out across the lake to Cachuma Bay. The water level is 180% of normal, so water is deep & had a ton of foliage, trees, rocks, etc. just under the surface.

Once I had the boy’s gear in the water & the boat calmly drifting through a small inlet, I quickly tied up a big Grey/White Double Bunny.
BAM. Two casts and I landed the first small mouth bass in the boat…fun. I had never caught bass on a fly, but this was looking easy. A couple more casts and another one. Another small mouth about 2lbs…nice fish. He was smart enough to jump off right at the boat.
Then… disaster hits. Long story short…I put down my fly rod & help my son’s line from getting caught in the prop. Just as I manage to save his line mine gets tangled in the prop. I kill the motor, too late. My $70 line is toast and so is my Double Bunny.
Note to self: Take your own gear out of the water first.
We concentrated on his fishing for a hour more and called it a day. Expensive & short, but still a good day on the water.

-gone fly fishing,
EARTHangler