View Full Version : Trout Opener Burney Falls, Pit River, Hat Creek

04-27-2010, 03:20 PM
Headed up with my pops to Burney on Saturday in the afternoon after attending my nieces first communion and party. That is 2 years in a row that there has been a Communion that I have gone to on the trout opener. By the time we got to the campsite it was dark and we would have to begin fishing the next day. The other people in our group were already 2-4 fish ahead of us. Woke up Sunday morning and with a tip from a nearby camper we tried the canal at Cassel. Saw 5 nice brookies come out but we could only fish for an hour since the deal was my dad goes up to camp and I have to go to church. After mass we hit up the Pitt with some buddies and my dad cast out a small jig. When nothing happened for a while I asked him if he wanted to change up and next cast he caught a descent trout with I believe was a brown.
No matter the skunk was off and he had caught his first Pitt River fish, his first brown and I think his first trout. I was so excited that he got one and it made the whole drive worthwhile. Quick picture then released. No bites for me so we packed up after feeding a lure or 2 to the river. The regs on the Pitt were barbless/artificial, 2 fish limit, over 18 inches.
Heading up there and then back to camp we saw a lot of snow more then I have seen for any opener.

After showing my father the Falls I tried my luck above the falls with no bites.

Heard from a few fisherman that there were scheduled plants but because of the lawsuit there hadn't been any for a few months. A flie fisheman told me that since there were so many bugs hatching, and eggs in the water he was finding fishing difficult everywhere he went. I didn't have one scratch and usually I can see 20-30 trout by the pump house. Later that evening we hit up the Hat Creek park off 299 and my buddy Ben got the skunk off with a small brook trout on a trout Rappala.

I had a bite but didn't set the hook and a few cast later I had a fish on for a little bit that came off. I don't know if I didn't set the hook hard enough or since I was so excited I may have set the hook too many times. this section of Hatt had the same regs as the Pitt. Got checked by fish and game and after looking at my liscense he looked at my lures to see if they were barbless. Later that night Rick from Colorado a friend of my buddy Joe's dad Rich made up some Chile Colorado. Took him 4 hours to slow cook and it was worth the wait.

Kept warm around the campfire
Was Pretty cold at night 30 degrees, and my dad and I woke up at first light to hit up Cassel above the hatchery. When we got there, nobody was fishing compared to the 20 people that were there the day before. Heard some guys say "hurry up and get the spot". I grabbed my pole and fishing bag and jetted to the other side of the canal and cast out a 1/4 ounce gold castmaster. Bang fish on first cast and luckily the other guys were walking up the hill and netted the 3 pound 19 inch brook for me. Skunk off for me and an hour later my dad added another nice brook which was 2.5 pound 18 inch which the other people fishing there also netted for us. It was his 1st or 2nd cast after I changed his lure to a silver castmaster. You think I was excited when he caught the small Pitt River trout, but I am still smiling that he landed this beauty. Fished for about 2 hours and then went back and we cooked up some sausage, french toast and eggs. I got the trophy for biggest fish and with the way I fished the first day it looked like I was taking home the toilet bowl trophy which would have stunk.


After breakfast eveyone headed down 89 to fish a different Park on Hat Creek. We stayed and broke down camp and then tried to meet up with them but couldn't find the park and turned around and headed back to Cassel. 10th cast using a large firefox I got the nicest fish of the trip a 3 pound 4 ounce brook.
Had a rainbow on for a second which came off then when the wind picked up I took a load of stuff back to the truck. When I got to the truck I heard "fish on" from my dad so I sprinted back to see that the lady across had snagged his line while he was fighting the brook. Her lure came of his line and the fish bolted for the gate and got caught up. I quickly got it loose and my father finished off the fight. Since it was tail hooked we let her go, not before I removed the other castmaste which the fish had busted off someone else's line.

04-27-2010, 05:22 PM
Great report G. and good job getting your Dad some fish.
How did they taste? As good as the salmon you're slammin?

04-27-2010, 05:47 PM
Great Report !!

And NICE FISH ! Way to go POPs !

a worth while trip indeed.

04-28-2010, 08:17 PM
Good eat's. Fried 1 night baked the next, cut some in chunks and going to beer batter in 2 nights. Next time if I catch any I might just catch and release since they are such a pretty fish. Nothing compares to ocean salmon except maybe for some raw tuna.

NorthBay Troutster
04-28-2010, 08:36 PM
Nice fish kevin! Always love fishing with my pops

04-28-2010, 10:35 PM
Very nice pics and great report. Congrats on the nice catches!!! Always wanted to go camping at Burney Falls.


Captain Compassion
04-29-2010, 06:29 AM

What else could I possibly say. Love those brookies. Got to get myself up there. Your pictures are absolutely beautiful.


04-29-2010, 07:22 PM
CC I never knew this but the Hatchery right down the hill from where I fished is either the only or one of few hatcheries that plants brookies and you can do a tour which I plan to do next time.

04-29-2010, 09:30 PM
Thanks for the great report and those wonderful pictures!