ROGER GEORGE'S REMARKS WILL RETURN.
THE FISHING REPORT
Compiled by Dave Hurley and edited by Roger George, a former Olympic-class decathlete at Fresno State and striper record-holder at Millerton Lake who now guides in the greater Fresno area. Telephone numbers are in 559 calling area unless noted.
* Try dynamite
** Have to work hard
*** Limits possible
**** Fish jumpin' in boat
Delta Mendota Canal and Sloughs
Striper *** Catfish ** There have been few reports from Fresno, Merced and Madera counties since most striper fishermen are heading to the Forebay and San Luis. The best action remains in the California Aqueduct in Kern County where Pete Cormier of Bob's Bait in Bakersfield reported a 22-pound lineside landed on jumbo minnows. Cormier said, "The canal is full of fish and several anglers have been fishing around Mettler and those fishing closer to the Grapevine are reporting less moss in the canal." Catfish are to be had with live minnows, chicken livers, anchovies or mackerel.
Bass ** Trout * Bluegill ** Catfish ** Crappie * Those brave enough to launch in the lowered pool — the lake is at 472 feet in elevation and 9% capacity — have located largemouth bass to 9 pounds. Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, "There were bass at 9.6 and 8.15 pounds landed with a spinnerbait or jigs, and fishermen are averaging three to four bass per trip." Boaters have to be very careful as even running at 5 mph can be problematic with the bottom lurking. When boats can make it to the deeper water at about 48 feet near the dam, Carolina-rigged Brush Hogs or lizards or jigs are working to 25 feet. There are bass in the 4- to 5-pound range and there is a window for rip baits or crank baits in the morning. Catfishing remains decent with anchovies, chicken livers or sardines. The area from 1,000 feet south of the Raymond Bridge to the Corps Buoy Line near the Codorniz Boat Ramp is open through Nov. 30, but low levels have limited access.
Call: Six Star Tackle Box 673-5688; Eastman Lake 689-3255
Bass * Trout * Crappie * Catfish *** Bluegill ** The lake held at 5% and 447 feet, but all ramps are out of commission. A few are sitting on the banks in the evening for catfish with sardines, anchovies, frozen shad or mackerel.
Call: Fresno Fisherman's Warehouse 225-1838; Valley Rod Gun, Clovis 292-3474; Six Star Tackle Box 673-5688; U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Hensley Lake Hidden Dam 673-5151
Lake Don Pedro
Bass ** Trout *** Crappie * Kokanee * King salmon ** Surface temps are dropping and rainbow trout are keying on abundant schools of threadfin shad balling up throughout the lake. Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing advised fast-trolling heavy spoons to 60 feet through schools, but he will be bringing lead core line to see if the fish have risen closer to the surface. Kokanee are all but non-existent. Spotted bass are also are keying on the shad. There is good action on the surface with River2Sea Whopper Ploppers or Zara Spooks in the early morning. Once the sun hits, the fish move out toward the bottom and drop-shotting with shad-patterned plastics such as Reaction Innovation's Bad Shad Green or Robo Worm's Hologram Shad or Senkos in green pumpkin/copper flake or natural shad. Live minnows or night crawlers are effective from the banks. The lake is at 740 feet and 54%.
Call: Monte Smith (209) 581-4734; Danny Layne-Fishn' Dan (209) 586-2383; Gary Vella (209) 652-7550; Bait Barn (209) 874-3011
Lake Isabella/Bakersfield area
Bass ** Trout * Crappie *** Catfish ** Bluegill ** Action for crappie has improved for boat anglers in the main river channel closer to the marina in submerged trees with small minnows or minijigs. The only launch available is on the South Fork, but there is no dock. Pete Cormier of Bob's Bait in Bakersfield and Sierra Gateway Sports in Lake Isabella confirmed the action. Bass fishing has slowed, but a few fishermen are braving low water levels — down nearly a foot to 2,535 feet and 10% — in search of largemouths. Catfish action has slowed, but whiskerfish can be taken in deeper sections with garlic-scented clam meat, anchovies, sardines, chicken livers or mackerel. In the Kern River system, levels remain very low. There is fair action in the lower river for smallmouth bass with plastic worms, night crawlers, live crickets or crawdad-patterned crank baits. In the upper river, trout action is very slow. Lakes around Bakersfield are limited to bluegill, carp and occasional bass with Ming, Hart Park and Woollomes holding the most water.
Call: Bob's Bait (661) 833-8657; North Fork Marina (760) 376-1812
Bass *** Crappie ** Trout * Catfish ** Larry Kerns of the Visalia Bass Club reported excellent fishing at Saturday's New J Bass tournament, saying, "We must have caught 50 fish, but we had to cull most to for a 9.72-pound limit for fifth place." With low water levels, bass are holding on a few locations. There is a top-water bite in the early morning as Daniel Contreras landed a 14-pound largemouth on a 6-inch Lunker Punker. Kerns did most of his damage with crank baits and shad-patterned plastics on the drop-shot. Catfish are biting live crawdads, anchovies, night crawlers or chicken livers. The launch is on the second ramp. The lake dropped 4 feet to 591 feet in elevation and 8%.
Call: Sierra Sporting Goods 592-5212
Bass *** Trout * Catfish ** Crappie ** Chuck Stokke of Sequoia Fishing Company in Springville reported excellent bass fishing with jigs, crankbaits or swimbaits, saying, "Anglers are starting to drop-shot with shad-patterned plastics in the cooler water conditions." The lake dropped nearly a foot to 583 feet and 6%. In the Tule River, the water level rose with the recent rainfall and Stokke reported a slowdown in the dry fly action with the best fishing with nymphs such as Pheasant Tail Flashbacks or Prince Nymphs with an indicator.
Call: Sequoia Fishing Company 539-5626; Lake Success 784-0215
Bass ** Trout ** King salmon ** Kokanee * Crappie ** Catfish *** With levels dropping 8 feet to 31% and 720 feet, bass are suspending in deeper water. Bass and trout are keying on shad schools. There is some top-water action in the early morning with River2Sea Whopper Ploppers or Zara Spooks, but the most consistent action has been drop-shotting shad-patterned plastics. Shad imitation spoons are the key to landing limits of rainbows holding in deeper sections near the Horseshoe or the dam.
Call: A-1 Bait (209) 563-6505; Bub Tosh (209) 404-0053
Trout ** The McSwain Marina reported the last Department of Fish and Wildlife trout plant was last week and bank action has improved with Kastmasters, garlic rainbow Power Bait or inflated night crawlers from the Handicapped Docks and the Brush Pile. The cooler weather has limited the number of fishermen and few trollers have been working the lake. The best boat action remains above Gilligan's Island in the deeper sections of the river arm with chartreuse PPK spinners, Wedding Rings tipped with a night crawler or blade/crawler combinations.
Call: McSwain Marina (209) 378-2534
Millerton Lake/San Joaquin River
Bass *** Striper * Shad * Bluegill ** "Millerton is the best thing we have going in the area for bass," Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said. There is a small window for top-water lures in the early morning before dropping to the bottom with brass n'glass, shad-patterned plastics or jigs. There is an early morning rip bait or spinnerbait bite, but action dies before the gates on the Fresno side are opened for business. Gilbert added, "During the previous weeks, anglers have been running up the river arm for the best action, but within the past week, the best cut of fish has been found in the main lake with more spots in the 1.5-pound range." Striper fishing is slow, but fishermen are observing packs busting on the surface in the early morning in the Narrows above Finegold, but the fish drop down by the time the boats run to the area. Bluegill are found on red worms on a split-shot worked in the brush above Finegold. The river is very low above Finegold and the lake held at 526 feet and 58% due to heavy upstream releases out of Huntington. All boats must fill out a Quagga mussel self-inspection form before launching. In the lower San Joaquin, most are heading to the lower Kings River and the action has been slow around Lost Lake. The two-fish limit on the river has limited the number of fishermen. There are new regulations on the lower San Joaquin and from Friant Dam to the Highway 140 Bridge: Only two hatchery trout and two hatchery steelhead are allowed. The hatchery fish have a healed adipose fin clip. All wild steelhead or trout with an adipose fin present must be released.
Call: Fresno Fisherman's Warehouse 225-1838; Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474
Bass ** Crappie * Catfish *** Trout ** Kokanee * Melanie Lewis of Glory Hole Sporting Goods in Angels Camp reported fair trout action, saying, "Fishing continues to improve each week as cooler nights and shorter days will bring down the water temperature and make the fish more active and easier to catch." The shad are schooling up in the main lake near the mouths of major creek arms, and Lewis advised trolling shad-patterned spoons such as ExCels, Needlefish or Speedy Shiners over deep water near the dam, spillway and Rose Island. She added, "Two spoons trolled in tandem is a good way to trigger a few more strikes, as the two spoons will imitate a pair of fleeing baitfish. George Lindsey of Murphys landed a limit of rainbows to 2.25 pounds on Needlefish in the main lake. Bank fishing continues to be very slow, but with some rain and fresh water inflow, the rainbows will be moving closer to the shoreline. Kokanee fishing has slowed to a crawl with few anglers targeting the species. The fish are working their way up the river arm toward the Parrott's Ferry Bridge and the best action is occurring between the Highway 49 and Parrott's Ferry Bridges at 70 to 100 feet. The fish are starting to turn red, losing their scales and developing a hooked jaw. Lewis advised using Apex lures in pinks, greens or orange behind a large dodger and scenting shoepeg corn with Garlic, Anise, Kokanee Special or Bloody Tuna. Bass fishing is fair and Lewis said, "The bite has been tough for most anglers although some fish are moving into the shallows to feed in the early morning and in the evening." She advised using crawdad-colored jigs or soft plastics for the shallow fish and there are also fish suspending along structure in deeper water. Lewis said, "The key to finding these fish is locating the bait schools and using lures resembling small shad." Rip baits such as Lucky Craft Staycees or Pointer Minnows are effective as are shad-patterned spoons vertically jigged over the bait balls." Lewis continued, "The most popular spoon sizes are half-ounce and three-quarter-ounce P-line Laser Minnows, Mack's Sonic Baitfish or Hopkins spoons." Catfish action continues to be outstanding with most landing multiple whiskerfish per trip with anchovies, frozen shad, mackerel or chicken livers. Lewis said, "For bigger cats, try a whole mackerel or sardine fished on a double-hook rig using either a sliding sinker or no weight to allow the fish to swim off with the bait." Catfish roam the flats, humps or lake point in order to feed. Kracker Morris of Arnold is still firing on all cylinders with whiskerfish to 11 pounds on a recent trip. Crappie fishing remains very slow with the best action under submersible lights at night with small minnows or red/white crappie jigs. The fish have moved out into deeper water with the lake receding. New Melones dropped 1 foot to 950 feet and 44% with Tulloch also dropping a foot to 506 feet and 93%.
Call: Glory Hole Sports (209) 736-4333; Monte Smith (209) 581-4734; Danny Layne-Fishn' Dan (209) 586-2383; Sierra Sport Fishing (209) 599-2023
Pine Flat/Kings River
Bass ** Trout * Crappie * King salmon * Catfish *** Trout, salmon and kokanee action is nearly zero. Catfish to 3 pounds have been hitting anchovies near Windy Gap in deeper holes. Bass fishing remains fair with a small window for spinnerbaits in the early morning before dropping to the bottom with drop-shot plastics for the occasional bass to 14 inches. Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, "The recent full moon put down the bass bite, but there is more interest in the lake with the upcoming high school tournament. A 7.5- to 8-pound limit is possible." The Pine Flat Lake Marina and Deer Creek launch ramps are in the water with the Island Park ramp inaccessible due to low water, which held at 740 feet and 15%. Gilbert advised calling to find out which ramps are open. In the lower Kings, recent trout plants and sufficient water levels have brought out more fishermen and they are scoring with Power Bait or spinners such as Joe's Flies or Roostertails in white/black or Grasshopper. Please check for special regulations on the Kings River above and below Pine Flat Dam.
Call: Fresno Fisherman's Warehouse 225-1838; Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474; Sequoia Fishing Company 539-5626; The I Forgot Store 787-3689
San Luis Reservoir and O'Neill Forebay
Striper *** Catfish ** Bass ** Crappie * Mickey Clements of Coyote Bait in Morgan Hill reported excellent top-water action in the O'Neill Forebay with striper busting the surface in the early morning. He was driving east over Highway 152 one early morning and he could see thousands of striper boiling on the surface, chasing shad. The majority are undersized, but Clements said, "You could be able to put in a quick limit of striper to 20 inches tossing white flukes on a half-ounce jig head, Umbrella-rigs, top-water lures or rip baits such as Lucky Craft 68s, 78s and 100s or Pointer Staycees in Ghost Minnow, Chartreuse Shad or American Shad. The key has been to boat to the twin islands or the rockwall to avoid weed growth, which is a plague for bank fishermen. In the main lake, Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod reported bank anglers catching freshwater grass shrimp in the main lake and tossing out the bait for limits of striper to 23 inches. He said, "It takes longer to get down to the shoreline than it does to score a limit." One fisherman reported catching and releasing 21 striped bass to 23 inches within four hours. Clements added that bait shops now have a supply of jumbo and extra-large minnows in stock and fishermen are drifting the live baits around the Trash Racks into suspended bait balls. The increased pumping in the main lake is bringing in a source of food for the striper and they are keying on the moving water. Most boats are launching at Basalt Recreational Area with the ramp at Dinosaur Point remaining via a dirt road. San Luis Reservoir dropped to 24% capacity.
Important note: All boats, personal watercraft, kayaks, canoes, sailboards, inflatables and float tubes must undergo a mandatory inspection for Quagga and Zebra mussels. These invasive species threaten recreational opportunities, the water delivery infrastructure of California and the aquatic habitat of San Luis Reservoir. Failure to allow inspection will result in the refusal to launch.
Call: Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711
Bass ** Trout ** Kokanee ** The bite has slowed for kokanee rapidly turning dark in prespawn colors. Jigging has been the top technique near the dam with half-ounce P-Line Kokanators, half-ounce P-Line Laser Minnows or half-ounce Kastmasters in pink, orange or red at 30 to 50 feet. Trout fishing has slowed, but Power Bait or inflated crawlers are producing a few rainbows to 18 inches from docks at the Pines or around Sheriff's Tower. Rainbows are found by trollers pulling blade/crawler combinations at 36 feet from the Pinese Resort to Marina View. Todd Wittwer of Kokanee.net Guide Service requests kokanee between 8 and 12 inches to be reported with a picture including measurement by text or email to Todd@Wittwer.net. Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, "More and more bass fishermen are targeting the lake and drop-shotting plastic worms, jigs or crank baits are working for bass in the 1.25- to 1.75-pound range near the docks or along the natural banks. Once we have four consecutive nights of cold weather, the bite generally takes off." A webcam is at www.BassLakeFishing.com or www.BassLakeCA.com. The lake dropped slightly to 73%.
Call: Todd Wittwer 288-8100; Mike Beighey 642-3748; Bass Lake Water Sports 642-3200
Brown trout ** Trout ** At Lake Edison, Merritt Gilbert reported a few brown trout to 16 inches have been landed despite low levels. Small boats have to launch from the sand along the shoreline. Fishing pressure continues to be minimal with the low water levels at all lakes. Edison held at 4%, Florence held at 8% and Mammoth Pool rose slightly to 7%.
Call: Vermilion Valley Resort at Edison Lake 259-4000
Shaver Lake/Huntington Lake
Kokanee ** Trout *** Smallmouth ** The third annual Shaver Lake Trophy Trout Project's Sportsmen's Dinner is Saturday, and proceeds are used to stock approximately 3,000 trophy trout for the coming year. There are still a few tickets that can be purchased through Shaver Lake Sports at 841-2740. Dick Nichols of Dick's Fishing Charters reported landing multiple limits for clients Monday with the best action higher in the water column on side poles loaded with Trout Busters behind a Mountain Flasher at 20 feet while Apex lures at 35 feet on the downrigger have been productive. He added, "It was a good fishing week on Shaver Lake as the kokanee have moved in both depth and location. We are finding pre-spawn kokanee around Eagle Point, Stevenson Creek and Tunnel Creek at depths to 35 feet." Captain Jack's orange Super Hootchie behind a CJ Dodger or Trout Busters behind a mini-Mountain Flasher are working for kokanee. Nichols added, "The late-morning winds have been playing havoc on trolling and the morning bite has been over by 11:30." Boaters are anchoring near Tunnel Creek and Black Rock with Power Bait for rainbows while bank anglers have had success in the Road 1 and 2 areas. A trout plant hasn't occurred since early August. At Huntington, the Southern California Edison Company continues with the rapid drawdown of the lake due to water right obligations. The lake dropped to 64%. Merritt Gilbert said, "The lake is dropping 3 feet per day and the bank areas are loaded with mud. However, one bank fisherman landed a limit of rainbows to 13 inches on pink Power Bait within 4 hours." Check www.sierramarinawebcam.com for conditions. Shaver is at 63%.
Call: Dick's Fishing Charters 841-2740; Dinkey Creek Inn 841-3435; Rancheria Marina 893-3234; Shaver Lake Sports Inc. 841-2740
Trout ** Chuck Crane of the Wishon Village RV Park said the water level at Wishon rose considerably and trout action has been very good for trollers using blade/crawler combinations at 2 to 4 colors or silver bikini Needlefish at 3 to 4 colors for rainbows and brown trout ranging from 12 to 16 inches. Shore action has been slow with a few fish taken around the launch ramp with Power Bait. Crane said, "You have to be patient since it is not a fast bite." At Courtright, Crane said, "Trollers have to work hard for a few fish at 2 to 4 colors with blade/crawler combinations, ExCel spoons or Needlefish." Shore fishing continues to be slow with a few fish per rod on Power Bait or inflated crawlers. There was a dusting of snow at Courtright on Saturday night while nearly an inch of rain fell at Wishon. Crane said, "There were four deer and a bear brought by the store for pictures within the past week, but there may be others that were not reported."
Call: Wishon RV Park 865-5361
Half Moon Bay
Albacore *** Rockfish *** Salmon ** Striper * Captain Dennis Baxter called on Saturday afternoon to let us know that there has been a resurgence in the salmon bite near Buoy One with one small commercial outfit putting in six salmon on one trip, following up with another 11 on the next day. Baxter said, "The Fishing Luhrs, a private boat, was headed out for tuna on Saturday morning, but they changed their plans after seeing in the incoming storm. They ended up putting in two salmon to 23 pounds trolling near the Ritz Carleton Hotel." Baxter went south all the way to Pigeon Point to find biting rockfish and to avoid the rain and although they put in 13 limits and a pair of ling cod, he said, "It was a slow pick." Captain Tom Mattusch went out for albacore on Friday and he said, "The wind blew all week long, but this made the hard temperature breaks easier to see and find." They went north 60 miles from the Pillar Point Harbor to the area at 37'45/123'/46, but Mattusch said, "There were also fish landed near 37'42/123'42. He said, "We were hooked up almost immediately when Captain Mike Velasquez scored on the meat line." They landed a total of 30 longfins with fish taken on the troll, on iron and on swim baits. Mattusch said, "The weather was excellent, the fishing was great and the anglers had plenty of opportunities, losing a number of fish on the slide. The water temperature ranged from 61 to 63 degrees. Further north in Pacifica, Sheryl Jimno of the Rusty Hook reported fishing interest has waned in the past few weeks. A few perch, striped bass or sharks have been landed from the pier with anchovies or blood worms.
Call: Happy Hooker (510) 223-5388; Roger Thomas, Salty Lady (415) 760-9362; Bait and Switch Sport Fishing Center (650) 726-7133, (650) 726-7133; Emeryville Sport Fishing (510) 654-6040; Don Franklin, Soleman (510) 703-4148
Rockfish *** Salmon * Striper* White sea bass * Chris Arcoleo of Chris' Landing reported continued excellent rockfish action at Cypress Point with the Check Mate posting 13 limits of rockfish and nine ling cod on Sunday. The bite was a mixed Saturday with the Checkmate returning with 13 limits and two lings, the Caroline with near limits for 16 fishermen to go with six ling cod and the Star of Monterey boxing half limits of rockfish and three ling cod. Arcoleo said, "The bay is just loaded with tons of anchovies and there are over 400 whales feeding on the bait from one side of the bay to the other making for great whale watching." They have plenty of room throughout the week with the exception of full boats Saturday.
Call: Chris' Landing (831) 375-5951; Bayside Marine (831) 475-2173; usafishing.com
San Francisco Bay
Albacore *** Halibut * Striper *** Rockfish *** Leopard shark *** Salmon ** Sturgeon * The rockfish action along the Marin coast was slower Sunday with Captain Jim Smith of the Happy Hooker struggling for 51 rockfish and eight ling cod for 17 anglers. No captain takes it more personally than Smith when the fish aren't biting and he tried the outside and inside reefs at Duxbury and point north to Arch Rock, saying, "We could see fish on the meter, but they didn't bite." The Bass Tub out of San Francisco was in the same area and they had the same problem. The water temperature dropped a few degrees after Saturday's storm and perhaps this affected the bite since Smith didn't believe the swell was large enough to get the fish to hunker down. The New Huck Finn out of Emeryville found much better rockfishing on Sunday at the Farallon Islands with 36 limits and seven ling cod to 17 pounds. Salmon fishing continues to be a scratch bite with Captain Roger Thomas of the Salty Lady saying, "If you are there at the right time, it will be your day." Thomas said, "The Wacky Jacky out of San Francisco put in eight salmon, the Lovely Martha also had eight salmon and the New RayAnn out of Sausalito went 14 for 14. All of the boats were working in the normal locations along the north side." He wants to take a few more live bait albacore trips this season and he is keeping an eye on the weather and the fish counts since he has no desire to take out customers for slow action. Thomas added that there was a decent albacore bite 30 miles outside of the Farallon Islands on Sunday. Interested anglers can get on his call list at (415) 674-3474. With the weather predicted to blow for the next few days, Captain James Smith of the California Dawn has put his planned albacore trips on hold. Striper action in the bay has definitely improved with Captain Jim Smith putting his seven customers on to limits to 9 pounds by 9 a.m. Friday. He had predicted great action in the bay and he was right. The area in the central bay around Alcatraz continues to be restricted with the comeback of the Oracle Team on Sunday, extending the America's Cup event for at least one more day. In the south bay, John Akina at Oyster Point Bait, Tackle and Deli in South San Francisco is one of the many fishermen that are looking forward to the end of the America's Cup since there have been few boats launching out of the harbor to head out to the event. Few fishermen have been targeting halibut, but Akina said, "The best action remains from Brisbane toward the Tubes as the last several fish have been taken from this area. A few smelt are showing up from the pier and we are hoping that some striper will follow up the smelt." There were only a few fans on the pier during Sunday's football game at nearby Candlestick Park. Also in the south bay, Captain Craig Hanson of Argo Sport Fishing continues to put his clients on to catch-and-release action for leopard sharks on his afternoon trip after landing a salmon off Duxbury on a morning venture. Keith Fraser of Loch Lomond Bait and Tackle in San Rafael reported only a few anglers were out trolling for salmon at California City over the weekend, although a 23-pounder was landed a few days back. The action remains far from red hot. Striper are found for trollers at the top of the tide with a mixture of undersized and schoolies. Halibut fishing remains hit or miss, but one boat picked up two flatties to 15 pounds over the weekend with one at Paradise and the other at Red Rock.
San Luis Obispo
Rock cod *** Rockfishing remains outstanding with limits on two consecutive trips out of Patriot Sport Fishing in Port San Luis. On Sunday, the Patriot scored 18 limits of rockfish including a cabezon to go with 14 ling cod to 14.75 pounds. The previous day, the Rita G loaded up with a similar score of 18 limits of rockfish and 12 ling cod to 9 pounds. Their ling cod count is at 2,020, an increase of 50 in the past week. Patriot offers half price for children 12 and under with a paid adult on specific half-day trips Out of Morro Bay, Virg's Landing will start their first tuna trip of the year Oct. 1-2, departing at 11 a.m. and returning at 6 p.m. Rockfishing remains solid with the Fiesta posting half limits and a pair of ling cod on a recent half-day trip. Virg's is running their next two-day rockfish trip this weekend. They also have half-price trips for children 15 and under on 8 a.m.-2 p.m. trips Sundays through Fridays. Virg's added 51 ling cod to its count of 2,744. Both ports are running a variety of trips.
Call: Virg's Landing, (805) 772-1222, (800) 762-5263; Patriot Sports Fishing (805) 595-4100; Port Side Marine Sports Launch (805) 595-7214
Bass ** Striper ** Catfish ** Sturgeon ** Bluegill ** Salmon fishing has been slow in lower Suisun Bay with Tony Lopez of Benicia Bait reporting three salmon at the State Park and another at First Street, saying, "I was down at First Street in the morning and you could see the fish rolling on the glassy surface." Striper fishing remains very good from the shorelines with bullheads. Lopez reported good sturgeon fishing in the Pittsburg area in the shallows. The third Lauritzen's Yacht Harbor Catch-and-Release RatLTrap Derby was this past weekend with 64 participants. Ernie Marlan of the Fishsniffer Magazine said, "We caught and released a bunch of striper on Saturday and Sunday's bite was much tougher but I was able to catch a beautiful 27-pound striper. The real winner was Restore the Delta that received a $5 donation for every entrant. Dockside Bait in Pittsburg reported a huge striper at 42 pounds was brought into the shop Saturday, taken in the deep water. Sturgeon fishing slowed somewhat with two brought in Friday and two Saturday. Demand for bullheads and mudsuckers has been high as they sold out of both live baits Sunday. Doug Chapman at Gotcha Bait in Antioch reported striper fishermen have been finding plenty of action on fresh shad with a number of undersized fish with the legal linesides in the 18- to 20-inch range. Trollers have been picking up a few striper to 30 inches near Collinsville. Sturgeon fishing has slowed with the best action on the Sacramento River side of Broad Slough. The cooler temperatures have slowed catfish and bluegill action in the sloughs. Alan Fong of the Fisherman's Warehouse in Sacramento reported good bass fishing for largemouths to 7 pounds on a recent trip, dropping wacky-rigged Senkos in green pumpkin. Jay Graham of the Fresno Bass Club reported a few fish came on reaction baits in the early morning during Saturday's club tournament with one participant landing two on top-water lures, but he added, "The 5-inch Senko in black/purple flake, cinnamon black/purple flake or watermelon/red flake on a wacky-rig were the most productive artificial." The 24 participants weighed in 19 limits of largemouth bass.
Call: Randy Pringle (209) 543-6260; Captain Stan Koenigsberger, Quetzal Adventures (925) 570-5303; Mark Wilson Sport Fishing (916) 682-1630; Intimidator Sport Fishing (916) 806-3030
Lake Nacimiento/San Antonio/Santa Margarita/Lopez
Bass ** White bass * Striper * Catfish ** Crappie * Low conditions plague San Antonio — it dropped 4 feet to 666 feet and 7% — and the Tournament of Champions Day One event has been moved to Nacimiento. Rangers are monitoring the south shore ramp. With the exposed bottom, a major cleanup of the lake is scheduled for Saturday. At Nacimiento, bass fishing is best with a top-water bite in the morning with Super Spooks before dropping to the bottom with drop-shot or Texas-rigged plastics. The cooler water in the coming month should bring out the best in the lake, particularly if levels remain somewhat stable after dropping 2 feet to 739 feet and 31%. Reminder: Consuming white bass, black bass, crappie, catfish or carp are subject to safe eating guidelines due to excessive mercury. Info on coastal lake tournaments is at www.my.calendars.net/cctsched/d01/01/2012?display=M&style=B&positioning=A. Quagga mussel inspections are now required before boat launching is allowed.
Call: Lake Nacimiento (805) 238-1056, ext. 3; Lake San Antonio Marina(805) 472-2818; Central Coast Bass Fishing.com (805) 466-6557
New J Bass Club at Kaweah on Sept. 22: 1, Krandall Bryan/Ryan Schaefer, 21.40 pounds (Big Fish, 6.74); 2, Shado Vangyi/Sharif Zugsaw, 15.35; 3, Bishop Vue/Vang Yang, 14.40
Saturday: Rio Vista Striped Bass Derby Seminars, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 204 First St. in Isleton, info: (707) 374-2700
Oct. 3: Randy Pringle, the Fishing Instructor, on Big Bass Techniques for Fall Fishing, 6:15 p.m. at Fisherman's Warehouse in Fresno
Oct. 31: Professional Bass Angler Ish Monroe on Techniques for the River2Sea Tournament, 6 p.m. at Fisherman's Warehouse in Manteca
Saturday: Western Outdoor News at Delta/Russo's Marina; Visalia Bass Club at Success; Lake Isabella Bass Club at Isabella; Santa Barbara Bass Club at San Antonio
Saturday-Sunday: Sierra Bass Club at Delta/Russo's Marina
Sunday: Tracy Bass Club at Delta/Tracy Oasis
Oct. 5: Rotary Club of Fresno Central California SAF Open at Pine Flat, info: Mike Spencer, 261-5296 or email@example.com
Oct. 11-13: 65th-annual Rio Vista Striped Bass Derby at Rio Vista, info: www.bassfestival.org
Nov. TBA: Roosevelt High Bass Club at TBA, info: Mike Spencer, 261-5296 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Fresno County: Kings River, Below Pine Flat Dam; San Joaquin River, below Friant Dam
Madera County: Corrine Lake; San Joaquin River, below Friant Dam
Minor Major Minor Major
Wednesday 10:27 4:15 10:52 4:39
Thursday 11:18 5:06 11:42 5:30
q Friday —— 5:54 12:06 6:18
Saturday 12:28 6:39 12:51 7:02
Sunday 1:10 7:22 1:33 7:45
Monday 1:51 8:02 2:14 8:25
Tuesday 2:31 8:42 2:53 9:04
q = quarter moon