I recently caught up with some bass anglers after a big tournament at Clear Lake, and they brought up some counterintuitive things and the decisions they had to make to end up in the money after a poor start. It's pretty good knowledge from which all anglers could benefit when the chips are down.
The first day of the tournament they got some decent fish on dropshot plastics and a few on swimbaits, but the best areas they had identified in prefishing were getting hit hard. At this point they were way behind the top weights and a bit discouraged. But they knew there were big fish holding around their key area. Later that night, they reasoned that most of the anglers had fished the stretch very early without much success — so the fish just weren't biting, but they certainly were there. That's when they made a bold decision.
First, they speculated that since the big bass weren't biting in the morning they might be feeding later in the day. Second, they felt that the angler pressure might be driving the fish just out of their favorite hole — but that they had to still be nearby. Third, they felt the only way to climb back into the race was to target large bass — and that meant they needed to start throwing swimbaits and focusing on just big bites. From these three deductions they went into the second day of competition focused on concentrating on one single 80-yard stretch of water using swimbaits all day.
When the competition started up again the next day, the usual early heavy angler pressure descended on their key area once again. They watched everyone else hit it and soon realized nobody was getting much so they jetted off to greener pastures. Waiting till around 10 a.m. the anglers moved back in and began tossing big swimbaits around the spot. Not much happened until around 11 a.m. when they got their first big bite — and from that point on, the fishing kept picking up as they worked the small 80-yard area again and again. Within a few hours, they were culling big bass and shooting for a possible comeback weight to catapult them up the ladder after a poor first day. Their analysis of the situation had been flawless and they had executed it with patience in spite of no bites until late in the morning.
Making up for a poor first day is particularly tough in a lake known for big bass limits, but they managed to make it into the money with one of the biggest weights on the second day.
From my perspective, it's a bummer to have a bad first day in a big tournament but it takes some real wisdom, maturity and patience to boldly look at the facts and come up with a whole new game plan — one you intend to stick by for the duration of the competition come heck or high water! In addition, having the confidence to wait out the bite when you really don't know if it's going to come takes some real guts and conviction. It's my experience that most anglers cut and run pretty quickly when they don't get immediate results.
Sometimes the biggest victories in fishing don't come from bringing in the biggest bag, but rather from overcoming overwhelming conditions and circumstances with intuition, experience and just plain old good fishing savvy. Anyone can catch fish when things are hot, but it takes a good angler to weigh out all the intangibles and make the right decision when they're not!
Roger George is The Bee's fishing expert. He can be reached at email@example.com
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 • •
Striper fishing remains best in the south aqueduct in Kern County as Pete Cormier of Bob's Bait in Bakersfield reported continued good action with blood worms, minnows, anchovies or sardines. "There are few keepers, but if you stick with it, a limit of 20-inch striper is possible" He said. "There have been no complaints about moss or debris over the past several weeks." Catfishing is fair with chicken livers or dough baits. Interest in striper fishing in canals in Fresno, Merced and Kings counties has been slower with the good bite in the O'Neill Forebay and San Luis Reservoir. Small cats can be taken on chicken livers, sardines or anchovies.
Bass • • Trout • Bluegill • • Catfish • • Crappie •
The occasional quality largemouth can be taken with fishermen averaging four to five fish per day dragging jigs or Brush Hogs over rockpiles. Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun said, "The action depends on who you talk to since some are finding fish and others are struggling." There is a swimbait bite off the dam in the slow current. Catfishing from the banks is fair with sardines, anchovies, chicken livers or mackerel. The lake held at 471 feet in elevation and 9% capacity with no water releases this week.
Call: Six Star Tackle Box 673-5688; Eastman Lake 689-3255
Bass • Trout • Crappie • Catfish • • • Bluegill •
With launch ramps closed until the lake rises -- it's at 5% and 447 feet -- the Fresno Bass Club Open on Sunday has been canceled. The only game in town remains catfishing from the banks, and Patrick Movey of the Fisherman's Warehouse in Fresno reported a continued good catfish bite from the banks in the evening with chicken livers, mackerel, sardines or anchovies.
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 •
Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing found very good action on Saturday's trolling adventure, scoring limits of rainbows to 21 inches pulling heavy spoons on lead core line at 13 to 15 feet or 35 to 40 feet on the downrigger. He said, "We didn't see large bait balls on the meter, but several of the fish were stuffed with tiny 1-inch shad. The fish were fat and healthy and we had several in the 18- to 21-inch range." For bass, Michael Her of the New J Bass Club placed second in Saturday's Strike Zone tournament and advised, "If you are lucky, you can pull up to an area where they're heavily feeding on bait fish and catch them on top-water and reaction type baits up shallow. There are a lot of little ones chasing shad schools everywhere." However, the fish disappear after the sun rises. "You have to cover a wide area of water with drop-shot plastics or bottom bouncing worms and soft plastics since catching a limit of 12-inchers is considered good at the present time," Her said. The lake is at 733 feet in elevation and 51% capacity.
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 • •
Bass fishing remains good despite extreme low lake conditions at 9% and 2,533 feet. Launching remains a challenge since there are no courtesy docks. Pete Cormier of Bob's Bait in Bakersfield said, "The spinnerbait bite is good and the coming temperature change will create an even better bite. The jig bite and worm bite should be good for another month." Crappie fishing is slow, but catfishing is solid with clams, garlic-scented clam meat, sardines and mackerel. With the low water levels, bank fishing remains slow. In the Kern River system, trout plants on the upper river have created very good conditions. Cormier said, "Despite the recent plants, there have been few fishermen on the upper river, but those going are reporting good action with salmon eggs." The small local lakes have been planted with trout and the action has been good with Pautske's Green Label salmon eggs, Hatchery Formula Power Bait or night crawlers. Buena Vista is very low, but a 30-pound catfish was landed by Steve Galippo of Bakersfield on Secret Seven Catfish bait.
Call: Bob's Bait (661) 833-8657; North Fork Marina (760) 376-1812
Bass • • Crappie • Trout • Catfish •
Sierra Sport Fishing in Exeter reported drop-shotting, jigs or crank baits are the top techniques and the bite could improve after the weather front brought temperatures down. Quality largemouths have been found at 12, 11 and 8 pounds. Lures are far more effective than bait. Crappie fishing at night under lights from the Houseboats with small minnows or minijigs remains solid, but catfishing has been slow. The lake dropped a half foot to 583 feet in elevation and 5%.
Call: Sierra Sporting Goods 592-5212
Bass • • Trout • Catfish • • Crappie •
Bass fishing improved, and Chuck Stokke of Sequoia Fishing Company in Springville touted crankbaits or Sonic spoons as the top lures. "With our recent rain and cooler temperatures, bass fishing should continue to improve," he said. The lake held at 580 feet and 5%. In the Tule River, Stokke said, "The water level should rise with the snow and rain in the area, and although brown trout have finished their spawn, we are finding good action on Prince Nymphs without an indicator in the shallow water near Hidden Falls." Dry fly action remains slow.
Call: Sequoia Fishing Company 539-5626; Lake Success 784-0215
Bass • • Trout • • King salmon • Kokanee • Crappie • • Catfish • • •
Jason Mello of A-1 Bait in Snelling said, "McClure is tough right now, but live crawdads are producing bass to 3 pounds. One boat put in two limits of bass using live crawdads." Action on plastic worms has been only fair with only a few fish taken on the bottom at 25 to 50 feet. A 1.5-pound crappie was brought up from 80 feet by a bass fisherman. Catfish are found at night from the Houseboats with anchovies or chicken livers. Mello said, "Anglers are reporting that the catfish are loaded with crawdads in their bellies." There are few trout or king salmon reports as interest has waned. The lake dropped nearly a foot to 706 feet and 27%.
Call: A-1 Bait (209) 563-6505; Bub Tosh (209) 404-0053
Trout • •
Jason Mello of A-1 Bait in Snelling reported good trout trolling action with a regular putting two limits to 3 pounds pulling a crawler behind a hammered nickel cowbell flasher from the First to the Second fence lines. Shore fishing at the Brush Pile has been good with floating garlic Power Eggs in fluorescent white or yellow. There have been rainbow trout to 4.5 pounds landed in the Merced River below Lake McSwain, but the river below the Crocker-Huffman Dam closes for fishing Thursday.
Call: McSwain Marina (209) 378-2534
Millerton Lake/San Joaquin River
Bass • • • Striper • Shad • Bluegill • •
Millerton remains a solid option for numbers with limits in the 7- to 8-pound range possible. There is a good top-water and reaction bite in the morning and evening, but the most fish are found on the bottom with jigs, spoons or drop-shot plastics. Striper reports are nil with locals heading to San Luis Reservoir or O'Neill Forebay. Striped bass have been observed busting the surface near the dam at first light. Bluegill continue to be found on red worms on a split-shot worked in the brush above Finegold. The river is very low above Finegold and the lake dropped only a half foot 523 feet and 56% due to heavy releases out of Huntington. Boats must fill a Quagga mussel self-inspection to launch. In the lower San Joaquin, trout plants continue and the majority of action for rainbows is around the Broken Bridge. The two-fish limit on the river has limited the number of fishermen. There are 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 in possession. The hatchery fish have a healed adipose fin clip. All wild steelhead or trout with an adipose fin present must be released immediately.
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 trout fishing has improved with the fish moving into the shallows. She said, "Once the lake turns over and surface temps cool, the trout bite should be wide open." Trollers found rainbows at 25 to 35 feet with shad-patterned spoons such as Needlefish, ExCels, Kastmasters or Speedy Shiners. Trout are feeding heavily on shad schools. In the morning, there are fish on the surface and top-lining a F5 or J5 Rapala has been effective. Nadya Baron landed a holdover rainbow at 3.75 pounds in 60 feet of water near Glory Hole Point on a shad-patterned swimbait soaked in Pro Cure's garlic. Bank fishing has been good with fish moving closer to the shore, and Lewis advised tossing small Kastmasters in chrome, chrome/blue or chrome/prism on clear days and gold or firetiger on overcast days. Marshmallow/crawler combinations or Power Egg/crawler combinations are effective with rainbow Power Bait being a top choice. Kokanee are done for the season as they are holding in the river arm. Bass fishing is fair with fish throughout the water column. Lewis said, "The tough part about targeting bass is that there is generally a short window of opportunity where they will be feeding." She advised using shad-patterned grubs on a quarter-ounce dart-head dragged along the bottom or fished vertically. California Reservoir Lures on football head jigs are working. Fishing remains very good for Catfish holding in the shallows and feeding heavily. Once some runoff makes its way into the lake, the catfish will move into the feeder creeks to take advantage of the new source of food. Night crawlers, chicken livers, shad or anchovies are the top baits. Bob James of Murphys landed catfish to 14 pounds in Mormon Creek on chicken livers. Crappie and bluegill action continues to be slow, but small Kastmasters or Beatle Spins are working next to standing timber. With the low water levels, there is an abundance of standing timber and wood in the lake.
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 • •
Bass fishing has been good for some with Larry Kerns of the Visalia Bass Club reporting, "There are plenty of fish to be caught and plastics on the bottom are the best technique." They landed spotted bass to 3 pounds in preparation for Saturday's Visalia Bass Club tournament. Trout trolling has been fair at best with Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun saying, "Trollers are picking up two to three fish per rod at 35 to 40 feet with Apex lures or Needlefish." The lake held at 741 feet and 16%. In the lower Kings River, trout plants continue and, with the closures of local lakes, more are targeting the planters below Pine Flat Dam with Power Bait or spinners such as Joe's Flies or Roostertails in white/black or Grasshopper. The season on the Kings River from Pine Flat Dam to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Bridge on Pine Flat Road ends Nov. 15. Please check regulations for other sections of the Kings.
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 •
Striper action remains very good for experienced anglers with Roger George of Roger's Guide Service catching and releasing 24 linesides from 18 to 22 inches Saturday with Andy Bedell. They were trolling the dam area with plugs on the downrigger at 60 to 80 feet, and George said, "We were able to locate the schools of bait and striper feeding on them. For us the bite was stable and we worked hard until the afternoon, but most trollers told us they got two to three fish per boat. I believe the fishing has kicked into gear and should get better with cooler weather causing the fish to school up." Mickey Clements of Coyote Bait and Tackle in Morgan Hill confirmed action near the Trash Racks, but most drift jumbo or extra-large minnows when the pumps are working. Bank anglers are driving to the bank off Goosehead Point near the Basalt Recreation Area to toss top-water lures or soak bait. In the Forebay, striper fishing remains very good in the early morning by tossing a variety of Lucky Craft 128s, white flukes or three-quarter ounce chrome/blue RatLTraps near the islands or along the rockwall into the boiling fish. Patrick Movey of the Fisherman's Warehouse in Fresno reported a good trolling bite in the Forebay with P-Line Predators, Smithwicks or broken backed Rebels. San Luis Reservoir continues to pump through heavy amounts of water and it was at 23% capacity by week's end.
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 transition from kokanee and rainbow trout to bass has occurred with more bass fishermen targeting the lake. Spotted bass can be taken at 30 to 50 feet by dragging jigs along the bottom. Patrick Movey of the Fisherman's Warehouse in Fresno reported slow trout action, but he thought the bite would pick up by mid-November. The lake dropped to 55% capacity and it is nearing the range where larger boats will have difficulty launching. A webcam is at www.BassLakeFishing.com or www.BassLakeCA.com.
Call: Todd Wittwer 288-8100; Mike Beighey 642-3748; Bass Lake Water Sports 642-3200
Brown trout • • Trout • •
Fishing interest remains minimal at the Kaiser Pass lakes with low water levels as Edison is at 4%, Florence 8% and Mammoth 8%. A few deer hunters have been soaking Power Bait from the banks at Edison for mixed results.
Call: Vermilion Valley Resort at Edison Lake 259-4000
Kokanee • Trout • • Smallmouth •
The cold weather has limited the number of fishermen at Shaver and Captain Jack Yandell of Captain Jack's Tackle said, "The action is limited to two to three fish per rod from the banks at the dam or along the creek at the Sierra Marina." There are hundreds of spawning two-year old kokanee in the shallows at Sierra Marina, and Yandell said, "With the second-year fish spawning early, kokanee counts will be down for next season." The marinas on Shaver have closed for the season. At Huntington, the pace of the drawdown has slowed and it's at 37% capacity. Levels are so low brown trout hunters are waiting for the first snow to drag their aluminum boats down to the lake since it is very difficult to pull boats through the mud. Check www.sierramarinawebcam.com for conditions. Shaver held at to 60%.
Call: Dick's Fishing Charters 841-2740; Dinkey Creek Inn 841-3435; Rancheria Marina 893-3234; Shaver Lake Sports Inc. 841-2740
Trout • •
Trout fishing continues to be on the slow side at Wishon, as Merritt Gilbert reported one landed seven rainbows in the 13-inch range on frog Flatfish. Lake levels fluctuate, so boaters should call ahead to check on the ramp. Shore fishing is only fair and floating the bait off the bottom with light line is essential. At Courtright, snow and cold temps limited fishing interest.
Call: Wishon RV Park 865-5361
Half Moon Bay
Rockfish • • • Salmon • Striper •
Rockfishing has been the best option over the past month, but things will change Saturday with the opener of the Dungeness crab season. Captain Tom Mattusch of the Huli Cat went south to San Gregorio for near limits of ling cod with 19 lings to 20 pounds to go with limits of rockfish Saturday. Trap rigs loaded with a variety of baits were the best set-up for lings. Black rockfish are plentiful and limits are taken off most any rock within quick order. An occasional salmon is found from the Red Can to Martin's Beach as there are still squid spawning. The Huli Cat and the Ankeny Street will be the only party boats offering crab/rockfish trips in November and December with the New Captain Pete converting to commercial crabbing. In Pacifica, Sheryl Jimno at the Rusty Hook reported interest has been on the decline prior to the crab opener, but the pier is expected to be packed with fishermen the morning of the opener. Sales of snares, crab traps and crab nets have exploded.
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 in Monterey reported outstanding rockfishing at Cypress Point and south to Point Sur. The Check Mate stayed local Sunday for 10 limits of rockfish and eight ling cod while the Star of Monterey went south to Point Sur for near limits of ling cod at 47 for 25 to go with limits of rockfish. On Saturday, the Check Mate posted 29 lings for 23 along with limits of rockfish. Arcoleo said, "We massacred them Friday at Point Sur with the Caroline loading up with 25 limits of rockfish and 25 limits of ling cod while the Star of Monterey posted 33 limits of rockfish and 40 ling cod." Chris' has a few spots available for Saturday's crab/rockfish trips with several spots open Sunday. He said, "We have had a tremendous response to the combination trips." There continue to be rumors of Humboldt squid off Morro Bay and Chris' is prepared to offer Humboldt squid/crab trips if the cephalopods show up.
Call: Chris' Landing (831) 375-5951; Bayside Marine (831) 475-2173; usafishing.com
San Francisco Bay
Halibut • Striper • • • Rockfish • • • • Salmon • • Leopard shark • • • Sturgeon • •
The salmon continue to bite and several private boats reported scores from limits to near limits trolling in the Middle Grounds on Saturday. Captain Roger Thomas of the Salty Lady out of Sausalito was on a whale watching trip on Sunday and reported salmon scores remains around a fish per rod with salmon over 20 pounds with action around the Middle Grounds in 80 to 85 feet of water. He said, "We are expecting some weather for the next couple of days and our next open load salmon trips will be from Wednesday through Friday. We did put in 7 limits to 22 pounds on our last trip on Friday." By the way, whale watching was spectacular on Sunday with over 17 humpback whales observed from the decks of the Salty Lady."Rockfishing remains outstanding with Captain Jim Smith of the Happy Hooker putting his clients on to limits in addition to 20 ling cod to 18 pounds. Most Bay Area partyboats are running Dungeness crab/rockfish trips starting with Saturday's opener, and Smith has room on Sunday's crab/rockfish trips. The New Huck Finn out of Emeryville Sport Fishing went rockfishing up the Marin coastline on Saturday for 16 limits of rockfish and 23 ling cod to 14 pounds while the Tigerfish took a salmon/rockfish trip, switching to rockfish for 28 limits after finding only six salmon to 15 pounds. The New Seeker out of Emeryville returned with six salmon to 15 pounds for 17 anglers on Sunday. Inside the bay, Keith Fraser of Loch Lomond Bait and Tackle in San Rafael reported minimal interest on Sunday due to a cloudy, swirling, cold, wind at 10 to 15 mph. He reported continued outstanding striper action with scores of bass along the Marin shoreline, in the creeks and in the sloughs. The banks from the Loch Lomond Marina toward China Camp are producing bass in the 18-inch to 7-pound range on mudsuckers, bullheads, shiners or shrimp baits. Fraser said, "There haven't been any bass over 10 pounds, but there are keepers to 7 pounds. I haven't seen a halibut or Cal City salmon in over a week, but there are few fishermen trying." The tides are turning in the favor of sturgeon fishing this weekend and Fraser hopes to have live mud shrimp to keep the supply of frozen mud shrimp company by the weekend. John Akina Jr. at Oyster Point Bait, Tackle and Deli in South San Francisco reported few were on the pier Sunday afternoon after the weather turned cold. Earlier Sunday, a 24-inch halibut was landed from the pier to accompany a 23-incher landed Saturday. He said, "There were lots of guys trying for halibut on Sunday morning before the weather changed."
San Luis Obispo
Rock cod • • • •
Ling cod counts continue to climb with the Princess out of Virg's Landing in Morro Bay returning with 15 limits of ling cod and 15 limits of rockfish, including 20 vermilion on Sunday. The Fiesta scored 19 limits of rockfish, including 76 vermilion to go with 14 ling cod. Top local fishermen were Launie Robinson of Visalia with an 18-pound ling, William Hurrarah of Hanford with a 12-pound ling and Coby Hannah of Bakersfield with a 10.5-pound ling cod. On Friday trips, the jackpot winner receives a fishing trip for two. Virg's has two-day trips scheduled for Nov. 23-24, Dec. 7-8 and Dec. 28-29. Virg's ling count is 3,540. Out of Port San Luis, Patriot Sport Fishing reported the Patriot scored 170 rockfish, including 83 vermilions in addition to 14 ling cod to 12 pounds on Sunday. Their ling cod count is up 126 to 2,612. Both ports are running a variety of trips and discounts.
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 • • •
Striper action has been outstanding in the Delta from Suisun Bay to above the Rio Vista Bridge, but several trollers or bank anglers still are targeting salmon. Tony Lopez of Benicia Bait reported salmon continue to trickle in along the shoreline with five fish landed on Sunday at the State Park with another taken from First Street. Shoreline striper fishing remains very good with bullheads and the shop has a steady supply of bullheads once again as the shrimp boat is back in operation. Lopez said, "There is such a demand for bullheads that fishermen are sitting outside the shop waiting for the bullheads to come off the boat. We tell them bullheads will be available at 1 p.m. and they are waiting outside by noon." Sturgeon fishing remains good, but Sunday's winds kept every sane angler off the water. Captain Mark Delnero of Fin Addict Sport Fishing had a great day Saturday, putting in three sturgeon at 52, 52 and 60 inches to go with some small striper. Salmon roe on the incoming tide was the ticket and Delnero found the fish stacked up in deep water near the mouth of New York Slough. While Delnero was anchored outside the channel, several boats were anchored in the channel and forced to move Saturday when an ocean-bound vessel came down the river. Dockside Bait in Pittsburg reported high winds kept boats off the water Sunday, but two huge striped bass at 42 and 30 pounds were brought to the shop Sunday morning. The fish were reportedly landed on live bullheads in deep water. Prior to the winds on Sunday, a few sturgeon were brought in over the weekend and striper in the 6- to 10-pound range are found on bullheads, mudsuckers or fresh shad at depths from very shallow to 15 feet. They have all baits in the shop. Jacob Dubin at Gotcha Bait in Antioch reported a continuation of the past few weeks with excellent striper fishing with fresh shad. He said, "The larger fish are taken on either fresh shad or mudsuckers with small fish landed on anchovies." A limit at 10 and 8 pounds was landed from a boat on fresh shad in front of the industrial section of the Antioch shoreline. An oversized sturgeon was landed off the River View Pier in downtown Antioch. Bluegill are found on wax worms or meal worms and several striper fishermen are catching bluegills for live bait. They have mudsuckers, ghost shrimp and fresh shad in the shop. Alan Fong of the Fisherman's Warehouse in Sacramento reported fantastic striped bass action on the San Joaquin River near the Santa Clara Shoals with birds diving all over the place. He said, "We caught over 100 striper ranging from 12 inches to 7 pounds in 30 feet of water using 2-ounce P-Line Laser Minnows or Duh! spoons." They tossed bone patterned swimbaits into the shallows for striper. He added, "There were so many striper that the graph was lit up better than the simulator mode." H and R Bait in Stockton confirmed the excellent supply of fresh shad available and striper have been moving into the east Delta toward the Port of Stockton with action near the Tracy Oasis and Whiskey Slough.
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 •
Nacimiento is the best option for consistent action in the coastal lakes, and spotted bass can be taken on crankbaits, RatLTraps or shallow divers in the morning before dropping to the bottom with drop-shot plastics, Senkos or Huli Grubs. Working the flats and ledges near Oak Shores or Las Tablas has been productive. Nacimiento dropped to 731 feet and 25%, and San Antonio to 656 feet and 5%. Due to the low pool of water, there is concern that the striped bass population will be affected by low oxygen levels as fish concentrate in the one remaining pool. Reminder: Consuming white bass, black bass, crappie, catfish or carp are subject to safe eating guidelines due to excessive mercury. There is a calendar of coastal lake tournaments at www.my.calendars.net/cctsched/d01/01/2012?display=M&style=B&positioning=A. Quagga mussel inspections are required before launching.
Call: Lake Nacimiento (805) 238-1056, ext. 3; Lake San Antonio Marina(805) 472-2818; Central Coast Bass Fishing.com (805) 466-6557
Sierra Bass Club at McClure on Oct. 26: 1, Gary Johnson, 6.69 pounds; 2, Craig Gong, 6.27; 3, Ryan Hennecke, 5.81; Big Fish, Michael Murphy, 1.99 pounds
Strike Zone Bass Club at Don Pedro on Oct. 26: 1, Shado Vangyi/Sharif Zagsaw, 10.01 pounds; 2, Michael and Anthony Her, 8.14; 3, Thomas Vang/Chester Yang, 8.13
Thursday: Professional Bass Angler Ish Monroe on Techniques for the River2Sea Tournament, 6 p.m. at Fisherman's Warehouse in Manteca
Saturday: Kerman Bass Club at Don Pedro; Visalia Bass Club at Pine Flat; Western Outdoor News at Nacimiento
Sunday: Hook, Line and Sinker at Delta/Russo's Marina; Modesto Ambassadors at Delta/Russo's Marina
Sunday: Fresno Bass Club at Hensley due to low water
Fresno County: Kings River, Below Pine Flat Dam
Kern County: Brite Valley Reservoir
Madera County: Corrine Lake; Manzanita Lake; Yosemite Lake
Tulare County: Tule River North Fork, Middle Fork No. 1
Minor Major Minor Major
Wednesday 1:57 8:08 2:19 8:31
Thursday 2:37 8:48 3:00 9:12
> Friday 3:19 9:31 3:43 9:56
> Saturday 4:05 10:18 4:31 10:44
n Sunday 4:56 11:10 5:24 11:38
> Monday 4:54 10:35 5:23 ——
> Tuesday 5:56 11:37 6:26 12:11
> = peak activity; n = new moon