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Russian River & Steelhead Park, Sonoma County / Forestville, California

My goal for 2012 is to fly fish at least one day each month. Of course, I will fish far more that 12 times, but the goal is to at least fish one day in each of the 12 months.

So, for February’s fly fishing day I fished the Russian River for Steelhead at Steelhead Regional Park in Forestville, California. This is a wonderful river to fish with a great deal of easy access that can easily be fly fished from shore or waders. This is a great location and a world class river right in the middle of Sonoma County wine country. There are several great places along the river in the area to fish, but with limited time I chose the highly reputed Steelhead Park.
The weather was typical early spring type in CA… 60 degrees and sunny. Fly fished for about 3 hours with various pink & orange streamers, articulated steelhead flies and an occasional double bunny. I saw only one float go down river, no waders and about 5-6 guys fishing with jigs and floats. I saw 3 fugly fish slowly swimming down river, even smacked one of them on the back without disturbing his oblivious travels. All three were certainly past their due dates. I could tell I had missed the run and read reports that fishing was better either several miles up river or closer to Bodega Bay. Being there for business I didn’t have a lot of flexibility, so this was as good as it was going to get. No fish caught today, but the good news is that it is quite easy to cheer up at any one of the 500+ wineries within a 10 mile radius or the Russian River Brewery in Santa Rosa & the Lagunitas Brewery in Petaluma. Highly recommended to all.

FYI: Do you like chowder? Try Spud Point Crab Company in Bodega Bay. It is without a doubt the best I have ever had anywhere on either coast. Well worth the 30 minute drive after fishing.

EQUIPMENT REVIEW: Today, I had much better success testing out the new Sharkskin Steelhead Fly Line. Check out the review on the EARTHangler fly fishing gear & equipment page.

Address: 9000 River Rd, Forestville, CA 95436, USA
Time: Sunday, January 1, 2012, 12:45-2:30pm
Weather: 58-60 F
Water: 45 F, low, clear
Access: Great
Rig: Steelhead flies
Notes: This is a GREAT place to fish, the park has ample parking, BIG boat launch, picnic tables & nice public bathrooms

-gone fly fishing,


  1. On January 10, 2013 Darwin Wheeler says:

    Good Times!!!

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