Home  |  NorCal  |  SoCal  |  Message Board  |  Online Store  |  Photos  |  Tips  |  Miscellaneous  |  E-Mail

Freshwater Reports
Saltwater Reports
Message Board
Rivers & Streams
SoCal Links
Online Store
Our Sponsors:

Advertise Here

San Gabriel River

Location and Directions:

     The San Gabriel River is located in Los Angeles County near the city of Azusa, CA. From Int. 210. Take hwy. 39 (Azusa Av.) exit North into the canyon. Once you pass the second reservior you can turn Left to the West and North Forks or Right to the East Fork.

General Info:

    The river is open year round. Fishing is free as long as you have a valid Fishing License and a $5 Forest Adventure Pass to park your vehicle. (available at the ranger stations) Camping is available at several campsites on the East Fork.

San Gabriel River - West & North Forks
Click for a printable version of this map

Fishing Info:

    Trout is the main action here although there are some Large and Smallmouth bass and Panfish here also. The DFG stocks both East and West forks regularly as long as there is enough volume of water moving thru. There are some Wild Trout within short hiking distance on the West fork.

Comments and Tips:

Title=re:San Gabriel river

Name=scott R. aka fishinfool24-7


Message=when going to the san gabriel river stay on the west fork, do not cross the bridge on the left a little ways pass the bridge there is a service road park in the little lot just before the gate right below that spot at the river is my favorite hole its deep and wide. also up the road a little ways is a big rock formation it usally holds fish .i usally use a flyrod but i bring powerbait and eggs and a light spinning reel in case the wind comes up good luck scott

Title=Response to San Gab. River

Name=John "JB" Butler


Message=I've fished the river - but up at the head waters in Azusa Cyn. If you go up Azusa Ave it goes up into the front range of the San Gab. mountains. Follow the road up past both dams, past the first bridge that takes you across the river to "East Fork", up to where the bridge crosses "West Fork". You can park your car on either side of the road and either side of the bridge.

I'd take bicycles becasue you can't drive up the road. There's plenty of great stream fishing NORTH of the bridge. South of the bridge is ATV heaven and is usually poluted with all sorts of riff-raff.

Walking the road isn't bad, but it goes for a few miles up to Crystal lake. They stock the stream - at lest they used to - from a bridge about 1 1/2 to 2 miles up the road from Azusa - or Hwy 39. And as I recall, it's the second bridge up the road they dump from.

I've fished it before the dump, the day of it, and the day after and most of the fish go down stream from there. But some do go up.

I've used salmon eggs in the white water on the back side of big rocks where the water swirls, I've used worms in the same way and caught my limit in a couple hours.

There's many pools that drop in from small waterfalls - some are 5'~6' deep in places - and theres really neat places lined with oak trees where the stream curves and cuts in deep along the rock wall, making a shallow entry to a gradual deep channel along the wall that gets pretty deep too.

Lots and lots of variation in there and plenty of more open areas for fly fishing.

I'd stay away from the area during the weekend as it's the local hangout for far too many people - nearly ALL of which have NO sense about fishing or respect for those of us who do. They'll have a rock skipping contest or swim fest right under your nose while your line is out! Well, at least during the hot days of summer they do!

It's a beautiful canyon. I haven't been there in years but it used to be my favorite place to go that was close to home. Have fun!


I fish the second dam (san gabriel resrvior) and the DFG & W&P allows you to fish it. Right know they have a proplem with poching and it's the illegal immigrants with no ID or fishing license. I had a 73 fish day here in the mid summer of 98' (large mouth) it really depends on the water level. If it's high you will see the water under the east fork bridge. Cross it and head to the barrow shooting range and park across from it there will be some pine trees and a trail to the lake.....WARNING.....WATCH YOUR CAR AND AND LEAVE NOTHING IN YOUR CAR THEY WILL TAKE EVERYTHING BUT THE PEDALS. THIS GO'S FOR THE WHOLE AZUSA CANYON (EAST,WEST,NORTH & CRYSTAL LAKE) the lower lake IS CLOSE TO THE PUBLIC. It use to be a Naval base and would test torpedos at the bottom and that is what that big concrete thing on the first lake is (some where between 1950-1985) in 98 the naval lease was up and the city of azusa and the county took back contorl. And drain the reservior which dropped the upper lake dramaticly which made good fishing but almost impossible to reach the lake..........IF YOU GO TO SGD (SAN GABRIEL DAMN) PLEASE CATCH & RELEASE ALL FISH THIS LAKE HAS. ((((((IT IS NOT STOCKED))))) AND HOLDS TROUT THAT HAVE BEEN WASH DOWN FROM THE STREAMS FROM THE WEAST & NORTH FORK WHEN THE DFG stocks those CREEKS.(TROUT HERE ARE ANY WHERE FROM 10 TO 18 INC WITH FULL FINS AND THE MALES HAVE HOOK JAWS) I have never caught a cat fish here but I have seen fillet corpses up to 23 inc caught by pochers that leave the corpses on the lake.

San Gabriel River, hints

Posted by Bent Rod on May 16, 2000 at 01:38:19:

I can tell you right now you have lost that bet.lol..My grandfather told me when I was young he said "Mejo never bet a man at his own game you will never win, thats why he makes the bet he knows he will win" Wise man my grandfather but I will give you some hints about fishing up there. Move quitely and try not to let the fish see you they like hiding in small pools or cutins use a #14 or 18 treble hook with salmon eggs and the smallest split shot that will get your bait to the bottom and let it move with the current. Be sure to post the outcome of the contest I'm curious to see how it goes...good luck hope you can at least be in the running

San Gabriel Hints

Posted by daveinhb on May 16, 2000 at 14:14:48:

First off forget treble hooks as studies have shown single hooks hook better. Get over the "power bait mentality". Get some 1lb leader, size 14 or 16 salmon/worm hooks and BB split and go with an 18in leader. Get eggs and worms as both do good there. Look for eddies around rocks and at beginning or end of pools. The harder it is too reach the better the spot. Some of the best spots are near the brifge and a 1/4 mile downstream. Good luck.

stream trout

Posted by fongster on May 16, 2000 at 18:32:12:

Walk up the stream not down. They face into the current, walking from below spooks them less. Fish the edges of quiet pools that are fringed with moving water. Shadows are cool too. It doesn't take much water to hold trout--you'll be amazed. Cast upstream and lightly swing on any 'tick' as the bait tumbles down or across the riffles. I like straight 4# with a #12 gold salmon egg hook flylined or with a BB sized shot. Premium Pautzkes (red label) work best for me. Also, a #10 bait holder hook with a jumbo meal worm threaded on fished on the same line as above works well, too. Please carefully release the little wild rainbows there if you catch any.

     I was amazed at how many trout were present before we even hit the one mile mark on the west fork trail. Just before the marker I looked down into this pool and saw about 15-20 trout huddled by a rock. I couldn't believe it. All were rainbow. At one point my friend was standing in the water as I walked down to him and about 20 trout scattered down stream and actually tried to hide next to my friends legs. I recommend trying fly fishing as its the best way to test your skill at catching those suckers. Walmart ($20 includes pole, tapered line, reel and tippets and a handful of flies) I caught two fish within 5 minutes of each other using a #14 hook and a synthetic salmon egg fly. After I lost my only two eggs I was unable to catch any other fish. I did have one hit a nymph and then fall off the hook when I went to set it. All in all a very productive day. This stream kicks the hell out of Piru creek and Deep creek for trout. I would like to see this place designated as part of the Wild Trout Heritage protection program. (fly-fish only with a barbless hook). Have fun!

    About the West Fork of the San Gabriel. For those who want catch and release it is already there, a bit above the bridge on the access road. The area even includes some sites for people to fish from wheel chairs. The river as a whole, as well as the East Fork is a good place for fly fishing novices.
Bruce Wright (greybeard)

     If you know something about this area that you'd like to share, please E-mail and I'll post it here!

Site Design by: Fishinghotpage.com

Copyright © 2005 FishingNetwork.net All Rights Reserved.