Fall Fishing on the Napa River Drives Napa Valley Paddle

Kayak fishing is the fastest growing segment of the fishing industry.  It’s excellent exercise, more elegant and you can catch more fish because it quieter without a gas motor. Drew Dickson, owner of Napa Valley Paddle has added 2018 Hobie Compass Mirage Drive fishing kayaks to his fleet. Guided excursions include fish finding electronics and top of the line fishing gear from Sweeny’s Sport in Napa.

“This is the best time of year for fishing on the Napa River for Stripe Bass,” said Dickson, who has logged in over 1000 hours on the river and knows it intimately. “Right now, is a feeding buffet for all the natural wildlife and fish.”

He added another warm winter is expected this year.  While he is anticipating excellent fishing now through Thanksgiving, he said that could be extended to Christmas depending on the weather.  He will provide everything including fishing gear, but he does ask that guests to be prepared to get a little wet and wear appropriate clothing that is non-cotton.

Dickson or one of his trained guides will escort guests on a four to six-hour excursion over six miles through shallow slews where no other boats can go. He is also full versed in the Napa River’s restoration, history and wetlands and will narrate when appropriate.  Most of the fishing occurs early morning or evening depending on the tides.

Born and raised in the Napa Valley, Dickson’s late father, Dave Dickson started the Flood District in 1998 and managed the Living River Restoration project.

“I feel very connected to the river because of my dad and the abundance of life in it,” said Dickson.  “If you are interested in fly fishing, we also have a power boat that covers 20-plus-miles on the river.  This is an opportune time to see migrating birds and to catch Stripe Bass while the California Split Tails are in the system along with Salmon and Steelhead.”


Napa Valley Paddle covers the northern regions of the San Pablo Bay, which includes the Napa River, the Carneros Wildlife Preserve and the Petaluma River.  Guests this time of year can expect to see a wide range of migratory birds, such as, grain backs, herons and raptures.

Cost is $175/person with a two-person minimum for the foot paddle driven kayaks and $350/person for the fly fishing on the power boat.   Gourmet Box lunches or Oyster BBQ’s can be added for an additional fee.

For more information go to www.napavalleypaddle.com.



Article By: Kari Ruel for Napa Valley Life Magazine