Exploring the Wild: A Comprehensive Guide to Fishing at Middle Fork Tule River

The Middle Fork Tule River stands as a crown jewel in the Sequoia National Park fishing scene, offering a unique experience unlike typical lakes or reservoirs. This untamed river, cutting through granite canyons and ancient sequoia groves, is home to a variety of fish that will test your angling skills. In this guide, we will delve into the types of fish you can expect to catch, provide historical insights, and offer invaluable tips and strategies for optimizing your fishing adventure.

Fish Species Found in Middle Fork Tule River

  1. Rainbow Trout:
    • Description: Wild, fierce fish that have battled the currents and survived on natural instincts.
    • Size: Ranging from 9 to 11 inches.
    • Tip: Be prepared for a challenging fight when reeling in these beauties.
  2. Golden Trout:
    • Description: Fiery fish with a dorsal fin like sunshine, found in the higher reaches above the confluence with Bubbs Creek.
    • Tip: Test your skills and amaze your eyes by exploring the remote areas for these stunning trout.
  3. Brown Trout:
    • Description: Less common than rainbows, these brawlers lurk in deeper pools and runs, especially near Granite Pass or below waterfalls.
    • Tip: Use streamers and nymphs for a chance to lure these elusive fish.
  4. Sacramento Perch:
    • Description: Scrappy fish providing light tackle fun, especially near weed beds and eddies.
    • Tip: Use small jigs and spinners to entice bites from these energetic perch.

Local Insights for Successful Angling

  1. Match the Hatch, but Be Ready to Adapt:
    • Tip: Experiment with different fly patterns and lures based on water conditions and fish behavior.
  2. Embrace the Hike:
    • Tip: The best fishing often lies in remote stretches. Be prepared to hike upstream, wade through shallows, and scramble over rocks.
  3. Read the Water:
    • Tip: Learn to understand the river’s currents, eddies, and structure to locate the best fishing spots.
  4. Leave No Trace:
    • Tip: Respect the pristine wilderness by packing out all trash, avoiding wildlife disturbance, and practicing responsible catch-and-release.

Unique Aspects of Middle Fork Tule River

  1. Fly Fishing Nirvana:
    • Tip: The clear water, abundant hatches, and variety of trout species, especially the elusive golden trout, make the Middle Fork a dream for fly anglers seeking a true challenge and pristine beauty.
  2. Remote Wilderness:
    • Tip: This is a haven for those who crave solitude, the sound of rushing water, and the sight of towering sequoias reflected in glassy pools.
  3. Multi-day Adventure:
    • Tip: Plan a backpacking or kayaking expedition to explore the different reaches and hidden gems of the Middle Fork.

Specific Fishing Locations

  1. Above Bubbs Creek Confluence:
    • Tip: Cast for rainbows and browns in the fast-moving currents and eddies. Look for golden trout in the higher tributaries.
  2. Granite Pass Area:
    • Tip: Hike upstream for a chance at trophy trout in secluded pools and runs.
  3. Below Roaring River:
    • Tip: Try your luck for Sacramento perch near the confluence or fish for aggressive rainbows in the deeper sections.
  4. Hot Springs:
    • Tip: Reward yourself after a long day of fishing with a relaxing soak in the natural hot springs along the riverbanks (check regulations and practice responsible etiquette).

Check out our Gearlist for the gear we for trips like this

Our Gearlist account lists all of the gear we use. Discover our top picks, where to snag them, and stay informed with our regular updates.

Always check the latest California fishing regulations, obtain necessary licenses, and be aware of water flow levels and weather conditions before venturing out. Practice responsible catch-and-release in designated areas to preserve the beauty of this wilderness.

The Middle Fork Tule River is not merely a fishing spot; it’s an adventure, a test of skills, a reminder of nature’s power, and a reward for those who seek the thrill of the wild. Pack your sense of wonder, your love for solitude, and your respect for the wilderness, and get ready to be hooked – not just by the fish, but by the magic of this Middle Fork paradise.