To those who fished it in its heyday, Hat Creek was enchanting and often cruel. Its trout were picky, its hatches dense, and its underwater weedbeds a deep, gorgeous green.
It was CalTrout's first big conservation victory in 1972; back in 1983, it boasted approximately 5,000 fish per mile.
Today, that population has fallen to approximately 1,000 fish per mile. Hat Creek in better days (image courtesy Val Atkinson)
It's gotten bad enough that CalTrout is launching a restoration effort; you can read all about what's happened to Hat Creek and learn what CalTrout wants to do about it here.
At the end of the article you'll find Mikey Wier's first sizable video effort for CalTrout: The Hat Creek restoration video (or you can see it here sans article).
Read the article or watch the video; either way, you'll know a lot more about Hat Creek than you did (and why excessive sediment is not our friend).
UPDATE: Forgot to embed the video. I'm old...
See you on Hat, Tom Chandler