Fishermen who run out of bait sometimes resort to using whatever's nearby on the riverbank: mushrooms, old cigar butts, and pages from the first draft of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Rely on more traditional fish enticements with today’s Groupon: for $199, you get a full-day guided fly-fishing trip for up to two people from Sierra Fly Fisher Tours (a $400 value).
Sierra Fly Fisher Tours leads guests on fish-seeking expeditions throughout the Sierra Nevada region, from the breathtaking vistas of Yosemite National Park to the little-known fertile fishing waters of King's Canyon National Park. During the full-day fishing trip, an Orvis-endorsed fly-fishing guide takes anglers on the hunt for rainbow, brook, brown, and golden trout.
Tour takers can explore fishing spots inside Yosemite, where they'll hike through the tall grasses along the Upper Tuolumne River or descend the steep gorge that surrounds the Merced. They can also head to more southerly spots on the San Joaquin and Kings Rivers, where they'll use flies to attract great catches like magnets use magic to attract metals. The tour company provides all the necessary equipment, though experienced lip lassoers are welcome to supplement these supplies with their own arsenal.
Fishing spots and starting times vary depending on weather, season, and intel on rogue fish-troop movements. A California state fishing license is required to participate; one-day licenses may be purchased for an additional fee ($15/person).
Sierra Fly Fisher Tours
The wild trout has led humans on merry chases up and down rivers for generations, but the guides at Sierra Fly Fisher Tours have learned all the wily fish’s tricks—even those of the elusive golden trout. They possess the expertise to track the animals in spring, summer, fall, or winter, navigating the uncrowded waters of national parks from Yosemite to Kings Canyon. For the guides, the excursion’s allure involves the challenge of fly-fishing and the stunning California scenery, rather than making every catch into a meal. Instead, they try to preserve the species in local waters by emphasizing a catch-and-release philosophy, an ideology that makes for responsible fishermen and irresponsible police officers.