The Young Ranch is home to Lake Christine, located in a park-like setting nestled in a forest of evergreens and hardwoods and watched over by the ever-vigilant bald eagle family that nests in a towering pine just off the shore.
This quiet 6-acre lake is less than an hour from Redding toward Mount Lassen National Park. It's easy to get to and is the perfect spot for a day of float tube fly fishing for brilliant rainbows and browns.
Access to the cold, clear, trout-filled Lake Christine is limited to very small groups and the lake is rested between anglers to ensure productive fly fishing and a quality experience. Like all of our Private Waters, Christine Lake is a prime target for self-reliant fly rodders that measure their day by elbow room and solitude.
Lake Christine opens to fishing with ice-out in the spring, usually around the first of March. The early spring fishing is mostly streamers on sinking or intermediate lines, and sight-casting midges to cruising trout. By early summer, the callibaetis hatches begin. And the callibaetis hatches on Lake Christine can come in epic proportions, sometimes two or three different
hatches during the course of the day, all of them blanket hatches that can get seemingly every fish in the lake slurping the dancing mayflies off the surface. During these amazing hatches - that last all summer long and into the fall - it is not uncommon to stalk and sight-cast to individual feeding trout in shallow water, much like bonefishing on the flats only with dry flies!
During lulls in the callibaetis hatch, the damselflies in Lake Christine can provide some great midday action during the summer months, both subsurface and as adults.
Although there's no place to spend the night at Lake Christine, there is a rental cabin just minutes away, and Redding and Red Bluff hotels and restaurants are less than an hour away. Moreover, the Young Ranch is a neighbor to the famous Rock Creek Lake and cabin, and anglers often end a visit to that fine fishery with an added day on Lake Christine.
Reservations & Rates
Some of our regulars at Lake Christine have been fishing it for years.
Lake Christine is known for its dry fly fishing because of the many weed beds and incredible insect population. This is a very easy ranch to access and utilize. You can drive right to the spot where you will be launching your float tube or pontoon boat. The 3000 foot plus elevation provides an ideal temperature for excellent water conditions and hatches. It takes the sting out of hot weather and it rarely gets uncomfortably cold.
We take reservations for Lake Christine anytime during the year. We start the season in March and keep the lake available until winter forces a closure, usually around the middle of November. In some cases you can make a reservation on any really warm winter day. The midges will be hatching and the lake's trout won't ignore them. As soon as Lake Christine ices out in the spring, the fishing can be great with streamers and midge pupae. By late spring, the lake's most famous hatch
begins as Callibaetis by the thousands dance above Lake Christine's glass-smooth surface, tantalizing the trout below. During the height of the Callibaetis hatch the bugs can come off two or three different times each day, creating blanket hatches and feeding frenzies from the lake's many rainbow and brown trout.
These large mayflies will continue to hatch throughout the summer months, especially in the cool evenings as the sun sets, and they are supplemented by midday hatches of damselflies. The days can be warm during summer, but it always cools down at the end of the day. Fishing can be best the first 4-6 hours of daylight and the last part of day, but you can usually find fish working someplace almost any hour of the day. Look for the shaded portions of the lake and you will most likely see some surface action. There are midge hatches most of the time and the summer and fall can be a super time for those terrestrials.
Prices: The cost of the daily rates (costs shown are per person) for the Lake Christine package are:
• Fishing: $135 per day
• Occupancy: maximum of 4 anglers
Inclusions: Included in your fishing package at Lake Christine is fishing on Lake Christine.
Non-Inclusions: Not included in your fishing package at Lake Christine are fishing license, rods/reels, terminal tackle (flies, tippet, etc.) and tube and fin rental (if necessary).
The Fly Shop® is not in the insurance business, but we recommend Travel Guard coverage as a service with a desire to see your best interests protected. It is impossible to know when an unfortunate situation (loss of luggage, fly rods, illness in the family, or an accident) may occur. However, such things can and do happen, and this insurance can provide a means of recourse against non-refundable financial losses. Click HERE for Travel Guard's Policies and more information
Seasons at Lake Christine
The most popular times at Lake Christine are the spring and fall, while it can fish great nearly every day of the season.
March to early May:
Cold and sometimes discolored water is the norm for the early part of the season. You can be fishing in rain and occasionally snow, or in beautiful sunny weather. It will be cold to cool at night and you may need to dress warmly during the day, although sometimes all you will need is a light shirt, and this can be especially true as you get into late April and May.
Usually hatches, especially in the first month or two, will be few and far from prolific. None of this means that the fishing will be poor; on the contrary, some of the best days of the season come in these early months. The fish are coming off of a long, cold winter and are ready to take on some calories. They are hungry, and this hunger can make them gullible at times, enough to make even novice anglers feel like a pro. They can be tough to fool at times as well, and knowing a few techniques for lake fishing will really pay off then.
March will mean off colored, cold water and you usually won't seem as many rising fish. However, they will slam those streamer type flies so you will want to have a good supply of various buggers and leech patterns. The larger sizes (#6-#8) can work at this time, but be sure to have some of the smaller patterns as well. Midges seem to be a factor every month of the season so having midge nymphs, emergers and some dries will be necessary. Something to remember is that when you are faced with cold water situations a slow to slower retrieve can be the ticket. That can be true when using these streamers and also with some nymphs. You can get away with heavier tippets in off colored water, but keep that slow retrieve on the back of your mind.
By late April and May the Callibaetis mayflies will begin to hatch, so you will want dries, nymphs and emergers of that fly. Crippled patterns seem to out fish dries by quite a good margin. There can also be other mayfly species hatching and usually these will be small (#16-#18) and light yellow, tan or sulfur in color. There is one terrestrial insect event you could see in May and that is an ant or termite flight. You will know it is going on because every fish in the lake will working the surface and you will catch more trout during the ant flight than at any other time on the lake. Carry winged ant patterns in May!
June through August:
Summer is always associated with warm to hot weather which means light weight clothing while on the water and maybe a warm jacket or shirt for the evenings, which are usually cool due to the 3200 ft elevation the lake sits at. This warmer weather also means that every kind of insect in the lake and
around the lake is becoming active. June is considered Callibaetis month in this country, but you will also see other mayflies, caddisflies, midges, dragonflies, damselflies and the terrestrials (beetles and ants) throughout the summer season.
June and a good part of July can bring an amazing cast of insects doing their thing at Lake Christine, with the hilight being the phenomenal Callibaetis mayfly hatches and midday damselfly flight. We have found that cripple patterns are the best dry fly pattern for the imitating the callibaetis hatch, though the trout will also slurp spent callibaetis spinners towards the end of the hatch. There are so many callibaetis that live in Lake Christine that there are actually days where the hatch comes of two or three times during the course of each day, each a blanket hatch that really get the fish excited.
Streamer type flies will work, especially those that mimic damsel nymphs, but the smaller patterns seem to work best. This season is also terrestrial time and you will want to have beetle and ant patterns in your fly box. Beetles in size 14 and ants in size 16-18 seem to be the most productive. These patterns will take fish anywhere on the lake, but all terrestrial fishermen know that these insects seem to like to fall off of trees and bushes that hang out over the water- enough said! One last thing you might keep in mind is to use a loop knot to your flies when lake fishing, since it will help keep the fly looking natural and you can use a size larger tippet.
September through November:
All the information above about summer time fishing will hold true for a good part of the fall season. As the nights get colder and colder the hatches will get fewer and fewer, with the exception of the midges. They seem to hatch out everyday, sometimes for just a bit and sometimes off and on all day. Callibaetis will provide some action much of this season, but the flies themselves will be a size or two smaller than the June variety. Terrestrails will work most of the fall, especially in an around the lake side willows. During the first part of this season you can almost always get action early and late in the day. However, as the colder weather comes you will find that midday fishing is great.
A great tip from our shop manager, Tim Fox, is to always use fluorocarbon for your tippet and just as your fly and leader settles on the water give the whole thing a tug strong enough to pull the fly under (if you are using top water flies), then pause and the fly will pop up to the surface (if it's been properly treated) but the fluorocarbon will stay under and will be almost invisible. Your refusal rate will go way down as a result.
Getting To Lake Christine
We ask that you don't bring pets, that you park in the area provided and that you take your trash home with you. Non angling companions are welcome to hike the road system on and near the ranch.
From Red Bluff (35 minutes):
Proceed east for 2 miles on Antelope Blvd. - Hwy 99E to Hwy 36.
Turn left (north) on Hwy 36 and travel 11 miles to the Manton Road (A6).
Turn left (north) on Manton Road and go 16 miles to the community of Manton.
Turn left (north) at the general store and travel 1-mile to the junction of Wilson Hill Road and Rock Creek Road.
Take the right fork( Rock Creek Road) and proceed 5 miles. At this point you will be on the top of a knoll or ridge -look for a large oak
tree on the right with a orange dot on it.
Turn onto the unmarked dirt road and proceed east about 1/3 mile to a driveway turning off to the left. Follow this driveway to the ranch gate.
We will send you lock combinations and gate instructions once we have received your final trip deposits.
Cross the bridge and follow the road to the house. Park on the grassy area right before the house and near the lake. This is the place to launch your float tube or pontoon craft.
From Redding (50 minutes):
Go east on Hwy 44 for 35 miles to the community of Shingletown.
Turn right on Wilson Hill Road and travel 7 miles to Rock Creek Road.
Turn left on Rock Creek Road and proceed to the 5-mile mark.
Now follow the directions outlined above from this point on.
Itinerary for Lake Christine
It takes a little less than an hour to drive to Lake Christine from either Redding or Red Bluff.
When you've reserved time at Lake Christine for the day, it's your own private lake from daybreak to dusk if there are least two of you. If you are a single we reserve the right to book at least one more angler on the lake with you. You are welcome to arrive as early as you like, and leave whenever your angling day is over. We would like to have you drive off the property before dark, mainly so you won't get lost on your way out.
When you arrive at the lake you may drive around it to the lawn area by the house. You can pull down towards the water and launch at that point. Set out your lawn chairs and make yourself at home. The lake's owners, Gary and Sue Young, are two of the nicest
people you will ever meet and they love to see you enjoy their property.
There are no accommodations at Lake Christine, but there are cabins available to the public just minutes away in nearby Manton or Shingletown. There are also campgrounds along Hwy 44 not too far east of Shingletown. Many of our anglers will combine a day or two of fishing at Lake Christine with extended trips to our other nearby private ranches, Bailey Creek Lodge or Rock Creek Lake. Cabins in the Pine Trees: contact Lorna Nedler at 530-747-5262; The Cabins at Cedar Hollow: contact Steve and Kendra at 530-474-1584; Water Wheel Park: contact Cindy Collins at 530-474-4567.
Making Reservations to Lake Christine
To make a reservation, please give us a call at 800-669-3474 during business hours any day of the week, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org anytime. We can give you the answers you need, detailed explanations to questions you might have, or check on availability and confirm your reservation in minutes.