Lake Cuyamaca California

Lake Cuyamaca outside San Diego in the foothills, elevation  four thousand six hundred feet approx on the road to Julian.

IMG_0448It is a reservoir built in Eighteen eighty-eight. Around One hundred and ten acres in size. The lake is stocked with all warm water fish alongside rainbows. It is an easy drive to get away from it all. The drive up is very scenic with rolling hills and long meadows.

Your imagination can run wild, seeing the Calvary on horseback, single file with the Indians watching and planning their attack on the Whiteman. It is that type of scenery or maybe Ponderosa with Horse sitting in the saddle pondering his life on the plains, you get the drift!


On arrival, you must get a ticket from the bait shop to fish and park, eight dollars. That does not include a days fishing permit that you can get online for Sixteen dollars.

The bait shop staff are amiable, but nod and smile when you mention fly fishing as if you are out of your mind. It is all about bait fishing, renting canoes and paddle boats for the day.

The water was a very dirty brown, choppy surface and difficult to cast due to the wind. I started the day using a strike indicator with a prince nymph and green weenie. Moving the indicator up and down to verify the depth, trying to find the fish. No luck, plan B move into the weeds to find some sheltered water on the surface from the wind.

That is when it got interesting, wading in weeds with a sticky, muddy bottom wearing flip-flops, not a good combination. I tried bare feet but too many stones and sharp objects ready to puncture my feet.

When I stood and cast for a few minutes I would sink and get stuck, then it was a battle to free yourself, not easy! The wild Canadian geese have taken over the shoreline with all the corresponding poop, feathers, and foul smells!! In my mind forget about all the nasty bugs floating around my legs and concentrate on stripping my flies.

A small black wooly bugger stripped very fast if it sank too quickly you were stuck in the weeds under the water. The key was looking for some clear patches in amongst the top weeds. The water was so dirty you really could only see for different shades in the watercolor to determine the way.


I caught a small Crappie in the weeds, and later a rainbow out in the deeper water on one of my longer casts in between gusts.

After about four hours on the water, the smells overcame me, it was time to end the day.

My next venture lake fishing, will be to go up high in the Sierra Nevada mountains and find those wild trout that roam those pristine high mountain lakes.

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