Native Rainbow Trout

Trout fishing in the local lakes and streams.
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mcquade outdoors
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Native Rainbow Trout

Post by mcquade outdoors »

**I know this is SDFish but i wont disclose which southern California county this is in**
There's a place i hiked to as a boyscout for weekend trips and i remember bushwacking for quite a while one time and finding a pool deep in a canyon that had trout in it. Catch up 20 years later and i couldn't remember where it was so i spent the better part of 2-3 months searching google earth for the few landmark memories i have of the place. Once found, i called up a friend from out-of-town thats into hiking, bushwacking and maybe catching some fish.

Left the house early friday to be able to setup camp before dark and woke up early saturay to find frost on everything. After a hot breakfast and coffee we were off on our 8+ hour bush whacking, rock scaling adventure. 1st bite was almost 1/2 way through the day and it was a micro 3-4" fish on a size 20 fly. We fished and searched hard the rest of the day for a total of 3 fish (biggest going almost 12"!). Im sure if there was an actual trail we could have stayed down there longer but come 3pm it was time to make the~2 hour hike back to camp. Some might say that all the hiking wasn't worth it, but we both loved every second of the adventure and its always nice to get away from people/cell service for a few days.



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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by Midnightpass »

My kind of fishing... At least it used to be... Old, bad knees aren't doing it anymore... But I really enjoyed your video.. "Thanks for the memories"... :) ..
Butch
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by mcquade outdoors »

Midnightpass wrote: Thu Dec 07, 2023 9:16 am My kind of fishing... At least it used to be... Old, bad knees aren't doing it anymore... But I really enjoyed your video.. "Thanks for the memories"... :) ..
Butch
Glad you liked it, hoping to do more of this in the sierras at some point! Maybe work on the heritage trout list.
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by Carpkiller »

So cool.
Bad knees, but mostly just lazy so I don't do this kinda thing anymore. But it reminds me of the easy-access spots along Beasore Creek (Near Yosemite), where you only have to hike a little bit to find small, very wild fish in tiny pools.
I'll pretend my tube's not sinking
'Cause I'm the king of wishful thinking....
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by mcquade outdoors »

Carpkiller wrote: Thu Dec 07, 2023 1:34 pm So cool.
Bad knees, but mostly just lazy so I don't do this kinda thing anymore. But it reminds me of the easy-access spots along Beasore Creek (Near Yosemite), where you only have to hike a little bit to find small, very wild fish in tiny pools.
Best part of those out there areas. Good access with good fishing!
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by monstahfish »

That's great stuff. Remember to wet your hand before handling the fish so you can protect their slime coat. I only know of one spot for sure that's got em but I suspect there are a handful of creeks around where if you get up into the right areas you can find wild trout. We've just gotta protect what's there and keep them under our hats like you have.
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by bendopolo 44+ »

Most all the “Wild Trout” in So Cal are really Steelhead that can’t get to the ocean any more. These were the fish that repopulated the streams after times of extreme drought. There are some rare streams that flow East off the mountains that have never had access to the ocean. These are Purebred California Rainbow Trout.I don’t know if it is because they are so deep in the hills but they are much more aggressive than the West Slope Steelhead. All are beautiful, with sublime differences in each drainage. The Brown Trout were brought in from Europe on the 1890s and widely stocked in the Western Waters.
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by Queue »

Actually most "wild trout" in SoCal streams/creeks/rivers are genetically feral remnants of fish stocked years/decades ago. There are only a couple waters with genetically identifiable southern DPS "steelhead" genetics and they are closed to fishing without any public access.
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by bendopolo 44+ »

They taught us different at UC Santa in 1978. Of course knowledge increases as time winds on. We sampled Fish from unnamed streams in the mountain’s behind Santa Barbara, in the back country behind Camp Pendleton, and several streams that would have emptied into Salton Sea. Our results seemed to verify our hypotheses. No Trout were stocked into these waters but could have come up from larger waters below. If you ever get a chance, check out the Rainbows from upper Taquitz Canyon above Palm Springs. Exotically beautiful truly wild Rainbow Trout. Also check the “wild Rainbow Trout in San Gabriel Canyon. We came up with landlocked Steelhead there and also Santa Anita Creek, they just can’t get to the Ocean anymore from there. I would imagine the same could be said for the upper Santa Ana River.
I also interviewed so old Cowhands that said they speared 75 or so 5-8 pound Steelhead each year out of Handy Creek in Orange County. They said that was half of them and that they let the other half spawn. This would have happened around 1910. Handy Creek is a Spring Creek that is a tributary of the Santa Ana River. None there now.
We also found that the southern terminus for Salmon was the Ventura River. Anything South of that was all Steelhead, at least in the last 200 years. Perhaps they are so hyberdized now that there is no chance to find out.
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by mcquade outdoors »

@bendopolo 44+ youve just added a lot of hiking into my books. Not sure if ill put those in front or behind the search for the natives down in baja.
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by Tailingloop »

mcquade outdoors wrote: Fri Feb 02, 2024 10:01 am @bendopolo 44+ youve just added a lot of hiking into my books. Not sure if ill put those in front or behind the search for the natives down in baja.
Some of the best trout water in Baja is on private property (Rancheros) including in areas of Sierra San Pedro Mártir.

I'm not sure if there are any publicly accessible trouty areas today. I don't personally know anyone who has gone trout fishing down there since about 2000 but adventurous folks probably do find fish in accessible areas.

A couple of U.S. based outfitters helped organize trips to Rancho el Coyote Meling and Meling Ranchero in the 1980's and 1990's. The fishing as well as other activities were covered in articles in the UT and LA Times during that time frame and knew a number of people that went down there. Horseback trips into the watershed area.

You can book stays at Rancho el Coyote Meling today at https://www.ranchoelcoyote.com

It seems from the websites that it is a bit more upscale than back then.

This study may be of interest. There are even GPS coordinates. This was published in 2022 with most recent sampling data from 2017.

https://nrm.dfg.ca.gov/FileHandler.ashx ... 069&inline

also

https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm ... story.html
https://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/198 ... gger-game/
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by monstahfish »

I just watched the tight loops video on san pedro martir. Pretty cool stuff. I doubt I'll ever get up there and even if I did, I'd may catch one or two and then leave, but it's cool to know it's there. I wonder if there's still grizzlies up there too. I hear occasionally people tell stories of seeing them and there may be a small remnant population but I don't think there's been any photographic or physical evidence that confirms it for real.
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by bendopolo 44+ »

Go with a person that can’t run as fast as you….. all good.
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by DarkShadow »

Queue wrote: Thu Feb 01, 2024 1:01 pm Actually most "wild trout" in SoCal streams/creeks/rivers are genetically feral remnants of fish stocked years/decades ago. There are only a couple waters with genetically identifiable southern DPS "steelhead" genetics and they are closed to fishing without any public access.
I saw that the new Heritage Challenge now accepts fish from the West and East Fork of the San Gabes.

Department of Fish and Wildlife representative per my inquiry:

“For Coastal Rainbow Trout any watershed that flows, or used to flow, into the ocean will count. All the rivers you mentioned and their tributaries (East Fork San Gabriel, West Fork San Gabriel, North Fork San Gabriel, Arroyo Seco) will count. Piru is another good spot."

I also perused a lot of literature in the past few years regarding DNA analysis being done in local watersheds and found the following:

"Among the populations in tributaries of rivers that run through the highly urbanized areas of Southern California, only three groups of populations contained significant evidence of native coastal steelhead ancestry: (1) populations from the San Gabriel River system, (2) Coldwater Canyon in the Santa Ana River, and (3) the San Luis Rey River. The analyses also further established the native origin of O. mykiss nelsoni from the Sierra San Pedro Martir in Baja California as the southernmost representative of the coastal steelhead lineage in North America (Abadı´a-Cardoso et al. 2015)."

Perhaps the research done in 2015 made DFW now accept fish from the San Gabriel system as a "Coastal Rainbow."
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Re: Native Rainbow Trout

Post by Midnightpass »

DarkShadow wrote: Tue Feb 27, 2024 10:44 am
Queue wrote: Thu Feb 01, 2024 1:01 pm Actually most "wild trout" in SoCal streams/creeks/rivers are genetically feral remnants of fish stocked years/decades ago. There are only a couple waters with genetically identifiable southern DPS "steelhead" genetics and they are closed to fishing without any public access.
I saw that the new Heritage Challenge now accepts fish from the West and East Fork of the San Gabes.

Department of Fish and Wildlife representative per my inquiry:

“For Coastal Rainbow Trout any watershed that flows, or used to flow, into the ocean will count. All the rivers you mentioned and their tributaries (East Fork San Gabriel, West Fork San Gabriel, North Fork San Gabriel, Arroyo Seco) will count. Piru is another good spot."

I also perused a lot of literature in the past few years regarding DNA analysis being done in local watersheds and found the following:

"Among the populations in tributaries of rivers that run through the highly urbanized areas of Southern California, only three groups of populations contained significant evidence of native coastal steelhead ancestry: (1) populations from the San Gabriel River system, (2) Coldwater Canyon in the Santa Ana River, and (3) the San Luis Rey River. The analyses also further established the native origin of O. mykiss nelsoni from the Sierra San Pedro Martir in Baja California as the southernmost representative of the coastal steelhead lineage in North America (Abadı´a-Cardoso et al. 2015)."

Perhaps the research done in 2015 made DFW now accept fish from the San Gabriel system as a "Coastal Rainbow."
I’ve caught quite a few trout out of all 3 forks of the San Gabriel River and also out of the upper Peru Creek.. Some really pretty fish….
Butch
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