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View Full Version : A donnell/ middle stanislaus river expedition.



TheGreatBasshole
01-29-2012, 05:55 PM
My dad and I made an agreement: we want big trout. Big, wild trout to Catch and Release for ourselves and other fishermen to catch in the future. We want to go to an area That is well, well, well off the highways. Donnell is luring in for a mid-summer camping trip there. I have never fished the middle Stan, nor donnell lake, however we plan on doing so. We will fish donnell reservoir from the dam, and fish the river just below the dam, and camp before the dam. Any tips/information/local coroners offices for the trip :hitfish: will be appreciated.

Thanks,
Tgbh

AngelosPop
01-29-2012, 07:18 PM
Good for you! The last time I was under the Donnell dam fishing was when I was about 10yrs old around 1980. What a journey to get there off the Beardsley road. I didn't think we'd ever get there, what a warm welcome to see the galvanized turnstiles. Being it was over 30yrs since I was there I can't lend you any advice. Other than it is a awesome area, and experience. I spent tons of time fishing Cow Creek, and Leland Creek right above the Beardsley/108 turn off. That was my stomping grounds when I was 8-14yrs old.

I am looking forward to this spring and summer to get back up in that area and do some exploring/fishing.

Just don't hook into the fellow laying at the bottom of Beardsley Res. :yikes:

TheGreatBasshole
01-29-2012, 09:54 PM
Thanks for the input. Ive heard rumors of big fish eating floating bobbers, im going to bring the crab net if i get a real big one:turkydance1:

borntoscout
01-30-2012, 08:18 AM
It is great that you and your dad would enjoy such an adventure together. While following the route of the first emigrant party to come to California (Bidwell-Bartleson, 1841), I approached the upper end of the reservoir. The point from which the attached pics were taken is fairly easily reached from a forest road. I am going to attempt to hike down to the mouths of the M.F. Stan. and Dardanelles Creek and toss a few lures this spring/summer.

Good luck on your adventure. You may find this interesting:

Donnells Dam - Part 1 of 3 | Tri-Dam Project Historic Videos on Blip (http://blip.tv/tridam-project-historic-videos/donnells-dam-part-1-of-3-1486087)

americainR_guy
01-30-2012, 01:17 PM
I was there a few months ago. We did really good from a boat!!! I hadn't been there for quite a few years and I look forward to going back again later this year. I also spent a few mins down river from the dam before we left. I caught four 8 to 10in rainbows in 20mins! All released! I think the river is closed right now. You might wanna call the ranger to make sure the gate isn't locked off the main road. It's a long rough rocky road in!! But that's how I like it! It is probably #1 best boatable lakes in CA to catch big WILD trout!!! Only other lake would be Salt Springs is a close 2nd. Thing is with these lakes, it's hard work to get a boat in, but it is always rewarding!!! Good luck and we look forward to a report!!!!!:a-fish:

TheGreatBasshole
01-30-2012, 05:50 PM
Thanks to all for the info provided. We will be going hopefully in july (depending on magnitude of this years winter) or august. We will camp there for around 5 days, and we are quite accustomed to tough river-hiking. As long as its somewhat do-able, we would love to fish the river for a majority of the trip.

AngelosPop
01-30-2012, 06:06 PM
It is great that you and your dad would enjoy such an adventure together. While following the route of the first emigrant party to come to California (Bidwell-Bartleson, 1841), I approached the upper end of the reservoir. The point from which the attached pics were taken is fairly easily reached from a forest road. I am going to attempt to hike down to the mouths of the M.F. Stan. and Dardanelles Creek and toss a few lures this spring/summer.

Good luck on your adventure. You may find this interesting:

Donnells Dam - Part 1 of 3 | Tri-Dam Project Historic Videos on Blip (http://blip.tv/tridam-project-historic-videos/donnells-dam-part-1-of-3-1486087)


Nolimits,

Can't thank you enough for the Tri-Dam video link. AWESOME! It will get sent to quite a few people. My step-dads father bought their cabin in Leland Creek in 1948. I have been looking for a cabin in that area for quite a while, but the economy has yet to affect that market. I can buy 3 homes here for the price of a hole in the wall cabin there. I have been kicking myself left and right for years that I passed up a cabin there in the early 90's for less than 30K :hissyfit:

americainR_guy
01-30-2012, 06:44 PM
Don't suprise me. Cabins are bought by people with money and people with money have plenty to spend on cabins! lol.


Nolimits,

Can't thank you enough for the Tri-Dam video link. AWESOME! It will get sent to quite a few people. My step-dads father bought their cabin in Leland Creek in 1948. I have been looking for a cabin in that area for quite a while, but the economy has yet to affect that market. I can buy 3 homes here for the price of a hole in the wall cabin there. I have been kicking myself left and right for years that I passed up a cabin there in the early 90's for less than 30K :hissyfit:

AngelosPop
01-30-2012, 07:18 PM
Don't suprise me. Cabins are bought by people with money and people with money have plenty to spend on cabins! lol.

While that's true, we aren't talking a cabin on Lake Tahoe :) This is a 99yr lease from the forestry for the land, maybe 900-1200sqft for 300K+, deep brown or mustard appliances, formica countertops, etc (from the 60's-70's), teal colored carpet, whatever the owner had left over or found on sale to toss in their cabin.

As a side note, that is what a cabin should be to me, but not for 300-400K in that area. Heck for another few bucks you can buy a cabin right on Pinecrest Lake. :embarassed:

borntoscout
01-31-2012, 09:00 PM
[QUOTE=AngelosPop;851543]Nolimits,

Can't thank you enough for the Tri-Dam video link. AWESOME! /QUOTE]

The folks behind the counter at the Pinecrest USFS office directed me to the video when I asked for pre-reservoir photos of Donnell Flat. If you imagine tree tops in place of the water surface that is probably close to the scene presented to the immigrant party as they camped for the night of Oct. 19, 1841, probably between Montgomery Meadow and and point 5929. The most dramatic events of their entire journey played out here and you have a hawks eye view of the terrain from the Donnell Vista Point. Bidwell and J. John were sent "over the point" to find a way through the Canyon.

Looking forward to heading over the point with my pack rod and a few Kastmasters.