My dad and I fished, hunted and explored together for years, and the real secret to being able to do it all was my mom. She was always uplifting, generous to a fault and completely dedicated to family. I think Mom reflected the traits that I've seen in many other moms with outdoor-oriented families: They're self-sacrificing saints who keep it all together at their own personal expense. It may sound like an outdated concept, but having an unheralded yet fully committed mom in my corner is probably one of the biggest reasons for any so-called success I've achieved. If you have one also, count yourself among the lucky.
In my early teen years, I can recall hearing Dad on the phone with his buddies about the latest and greatest fishing action. Within seconds, Dad would be working out what our ranch hands needed to do if he could get away, and then he'd go ask Mom if he could go. It was a formality, as I never heard her say no to him — ever! Looking back, I realize she wanted Dad and me to go fishing and that's how Dad became my best fishing buddy and friend. We built a strong bond that's forged only through spending time focused on a mutual passion and it was all made possible because Mom had the vision to see how important it was.
Funny, but she wasn't an outdoors person. Raised in a big city, she loved reading books, researching genealogy and spending time with friends. Living on a ranch wasn't her idea of heaven, but she felt that raising her family in a small community and doing things as a family was a better choice. I think she was right! No matter how late we returned from one of our all-out fishing trips (Dad didn't know any other kind), Mom would always want to know how we had done. If we did really well, she would be excited about it — even though I think she went fishing with us only about two times ever. She was never negative (except if we were going too late and didn't call) and I believe she lived out our victories vicariously and celebrated them as if she had been there, too!
Mom was proud of the legacy of fishing we had in the family although I didn't realize until much later how much she had given up to make it possible. I was always able to talk to Mom — she would listen and point me in a positive right direction. She was always behind the scenes encouraging us, while putting herself second, to move us ahead. My parents never missed a track meet or football game I was in and later when I was competing internationally they traveled all over the U.S. to support me.
I believe that there are many more moms out there who are the unsung heroes of their families, making it possible for their children and spouse to pursue their outdoor passions. In this crazy world of self-promotion, it's an incredible blessing to have someone behind you who is committed to your success no matter what sacrifices it takes. Thank you, Mom!
Maybe you have a mom who's sacrificed greatly for you, too. Did she pave a path that allowed you to fish or hunt? Is she your advocate and cheerleader? If she is, you need to celebrate her commitment and be thankful for her. I do! Never give up!
Roger George is The Bee's fishing expert. He can be reached at email@example.com
Delta sturgeon action is good, Tony Lopez said. California aqueduct stripers are hitting and the Millerton bass bite is shining, Merritt Gilbert reported. Don Pedro bass and trout are active, Dave Hurley said. McSwain rainbow bite has been spurred on by plants, McSwain Marina reported. New Melones trout are on a tear, Melanie Lewis said.
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 • •
Increased action in the Fresno area locations of the California Aqueduct and Delta Mendota Canal is due to heavy pumping out of San Luis to increase capacity at Pyramid Lake. Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis reported increased sales of white flukes along with Lucky Craft 128s in American shad or Ghost Minnow for canal fishermen. Striped bass to 24 inches have been pulled out of the running water. In the south aqueduct in Kern County, Pete Cormier of Bob's Bait in Bakersfield reported solid action for the occasional legal striper to 28 inches with lug worms, blood worms, sardines or anchovies. Most fishermen head to the Buena Vista Golf Course, but more go to remote locations such as Tupman or Twisselman Road access areas.
Bass • • Trout • • Bluegill • • Catfish • • Crappie •
Caution is advised for boaters at the lake with Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun reporting treacherous ramp conditions with boaters having to use extreme caution in the shallow waters -- the lake is at 9% capacity and 471 feet in elevation -- with submerged hazards and minimal water clarity at less than a foot. Drop-shot plastics or jigs are producing bass to 1.75 pounds. A few larger bass continue to be taken on trout-patterned swimbaits. Power Bait coated with Lip Ripperz Hatchery Dust, night crawlers or Kastmasters are working for planted trout from the banks, but trolling is difficult due to the water conditions. The river arm is closed beyond the Keep Out Buoys until Aug. 1. The Day Use side and the Codorniz side have active ramps.
Call: Six Star Tackle Box 673-5688; Eastman Lake 689-3255
Bass • • Trout • • Crappie • Catfish • • Bluegill • •
Planted trout are the top bet with various colors of Power Bait coated with Lip Ripperz Hatchery Dust. Another plant is this week. Bass action remains very slow. Ramps are closed with the lake at 449 feet and 6%.
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 •
Live jumbo or extra-large minnows continue to be the top draw as artificial action is relatively slow. Drop-shotting with shad-imitation plastics such as Reaction Innovation's Bad Shad Green, Robo Worm's Hologram Shad or Pro Worm's Pro Gold are working on a slow presentation in deep water, but by far the best action is coming on live bait. With heavy trout plants, rainbows can be taken from the banks with Power Bait, night crawlers or Kastmasters near Fleming Meadows while trollers are locating planters near the surface with spoons such as Needlefish, Speedy Shiners or ExCels. In the event the rainbows are biting in open water, anglers should be prepared with blade/crawler combinations on sideplaners close to the shoreline. Boats over 20 feet are advised to launch at Fleming Meadows. The lake is at 733.31 feet in elevation and 51%.
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 • •
At Isabella, Pete Cormier of Bob's Bait in Bakersfield reported few are targeting the lake with the low water levels -- it's at 10% and 2,535 feet -- and difficult access for boats. There is a decent catfish bite with frozen shad, garlic-scented clam meat or shrimp for fish to 2 pounds. Crappie fishing also is improving in the warming water with small minnows near the French Gulch Marina. Trout fishing continues to be slow, but the trout derby is April 12-14. Bass fishing remains slow with a 4-wheel drive needed to launch a boat, but Pete Cormier of Bob's Bait in Bakersfield reported, "The fish should be biting on jigs, crankbaits, plastics worms or RatTraps since there should be some warm water somewhere in the lake with the temperatures in the 70s." The upper Kern River is producing planted rainbows in the deep holes with night crawlers, live crickets, salmon eggs or Power Bait. Fishing is only fair, but there will be plants prior to the Whiskey Flat Days in Kernville from Feb. 12-17. The small impoundments continued to be a highlight with regular plants. Chunky Cheese Power Bait with garlic is the top bait. The Bakersfield Fire Fighters third annual Trout Derby is March 8 at the River Walk and 25 tagged fish to $1,000 will be released along with a boat raffle, pancake breakfast and BBQ. At Buena Vista, a huge holdover rainbow at 14 pounds was landed, but overall the bite is slow.
Call: Bob's Bait (661) 833-8657; North Fork Marina (760) 376-1812
Bass • • Crappie • Trout • • Catfish • •
Bass fishing has been limited to small fish in the depths to 50 feet with drop-shotting or jigs working best. The regular trout plants have brought out the infrequent larger bass taken on a rainbow trout patterned swimbait, but these fish are few and far between. A plant is this week and this should help bank anglers tossing Power Bait, night crawlers or Kastmasters from the Second Launch Ramp. The lake rose nearly a foot to 585 feet and 7%.
Call: Sierra Sporting Goods 592-5212
Bass • • Trout • • Catfish • • Crappie •
Planted trout are providing the greatest pleasure for fishermen, and Chuck Stokke of Sequoia Fishing Company in Springville reported the banks are lined with fishermen on the Rocky Hill side of the lake for planters and the occasional brooder with Power Bait, night crawlers or spinners. Bass fishing is fair, but the fish remain deep and holding tight to the bottom. The occasional larger bass is taken with a rainbow trout patterned swimbait for patient fishermen. A trout plant is this week with Murry Park in Porterville also scheduled. The only launch available is on the Rocky Hill side. The lake rose a half foot to 585 feet and 7%. In the Tule River, Stokke reported an overall fair to slow trout bite, but he was able to find trout rising on dry fly caddis patterns.
Call: Sequoia Fishing Company 539-5626, www.sequoiafishingcompany.com
Bass • • Trout • • King salmon • Kokanee • Crappie • • Catfish • •
Larry Kerns of the Visalia Bass Club pre-fished the lake for an upcoming derby, saying, "We were able to scratch out a limit drop-shotting at depths from 31 to 50 feet, but the bite was tough. The fish were all mouth and tail and very thin." The dropping water levels -- the lake fell 1.5 feet 59 682 feet and 21% -- on a weekly basis have the fish suspended and creating a difficult bite. Jason Mello of A-1 Bait in Snelling reported steady action with live crawdads or minnows for bass to 15 inches over main lake points. Large minnows are selling in great numbers in the shop. A lake record largemouth at 16 pounds, 12 ounces was taken this week at nearby Kelsey Bass Ranch with a 6-inch Huddleston rainbow trout swimbait. The banks at McClure Point near the ramp with rainbow Power Bait is producing planted rainbows. Trolling reports have been slim.
Call: A-1 Bait (209) 563-6505; Bub Tosh (209) 404-0053
Trout • • •
McSwain Marina reported the recent trout plants have spurred on the bite with trollers scoring with blade/crawler combinations, Wedding Rings tipped with a night crawler behind a flasher or blue/silver Kastmasters from the Floating Restrooms to the Second Fence Line. Bank anglers are picking up fish with corn Power Bait, white garlic Power Eggs or night crawlers. A kayaker used his fly rod with woolly buggers for a limit. No plant this week, but there will be every other week.
Call: McSwain Marina (209) 378-2534
Millerton Lake/San Joaquin River
Bass • • • Striper • Shad • Bluegill • • Trout • •
Bass action at Millerton is starting to shine and the lake is receiving more attention with anglers pre-fishing for tournaments. Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis reported the best cut of fish is found in the main lake at 20 to 45 feet along steep banks. Drop-shotting and jigs are best for the deeper water while there is a reaction bite in the afternoon when fish move closer to the shoreline. Gilbert said, "A limit in the 8- to 9-pound range is a clear possibility." Striped bass are showing up with one at 25 pounds hooked on a Super Spook. The lake dropped 2.5 feet to 495 feet and 39%. All boats must fill a Quagga mussel self-inspection form before launching. In the lower San Joaquin, weekly trout plants continue on both sides of the river, but there has been far more interest in the lower Kings. Power Bait or night crawlers are the top offerings with the best action near the Broken Bridge or Lost Lake. There are new regulations on the lower San Joaquin and from Friant Dam downstream 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 must be released. In addition to the river, trout plants this week are at Sycamore Island Park and Woodward Park. Patrick Movey of the Fisherman's Warehouse reported good action for planters at Woodward with various colors of Power Bait scented with garlic or minijigs under a bobber. The Roosevelt High Bass Club conducted a two-day Clean-A-Thon at Sycamore Island and the event was a success at removing loads of debris.
Call: Fresno Fisherman's Warehouse 225-1838; Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474
Bass • • Crappie • Catfish • • Trout • • • Kokanee •
Trout action remains good with plenty of planted and holdover rainbows moving close to the banks. Melanie Lewis of Glory Hole Sporting Goods in Angels Camp reported, "Bank anglers have been catching limits off Glory Hole Point and near the Tuttletown Launch Ramp with Power Bait, Gulp! Eggs or night crawler/marshmallow combinations fished off the bottom," Anglers with a two-rod stamp are casting with Krocodiles or Kastmasters with one rod while soaking Power Bait on the other. Trollers are finding the best action from the surface to 15 feet long-lining a small F5 or F7 Rapala at least 150 feet behind the boat. Large brown trout to nearly 9 pounds were landed, and Lewis requests that anglers release them. Bass fishing is fair with most anglers reporting hit or miss action. Lewis said, "The hard part is finding the fish since the spotted bass have a tendency to roam and they are moving from one day to the next." She advised using electronics to locate the schools of bait and drop-shot vertically over them with shad-patterned plastics on a light fluorocarbon line. Carolina-rigged Brush Hogs or Senkos on a slowly dragged presentation or half- or three-quarter-ounce football jigs with crawdad colored twin tail grubs, Brush Hog or Beaver as a trailer have been productive. A few large bass have been landed on rainbow trout patterned swimbaits. Catfishing continues to be slow with fish moving toward the ledges and the deep water near the mouths of creeks. Crappie and bluegill action is non-existent. New Melones dropped slightly to 949 feet and 43% capacity with Tulloch rising nearly a foot to 501 feet in elevation and 83% capacity.
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
Kokanee • Bass • • Trout • • King salmon • Catfish • • Crappie •
Anglers had been enjoying the occasional big bass on rainbow trout patterned swimbaits over the past few weeks, but Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis reported, "This bite has slowed down in the past week and the lake has experienced heavy action with at least six tournaments taking place over the past few weeks." Texas-rigged or dart-heading plastics in shad imitations have been the top artificial, as the drop-shot bite has slowed. The very occasional larger bass to 5 pounds has been taken on a swimbait, but Gilbert said, "There hasn't been the eight to 10 large fish per week that had been occurring." Trout fishing is limited to a few fish per rod on Apex lures or Needlefish from 3 to 5 colors of lead core. The lake rose slightly to 749 feet and 18%. Weekly trout plants in the lower Kings continue with stream fishermen congregating along the stretch below Pine Flat Dam. There is a plant this week at Avocado Lake. Chuck Stokke of Sequoia Fish Company in Springville caught and released another 9-pounder on Sunday in the designated catch and release section of the river, and the fish was so powerful it shattered his 5 weight fly rod, leaving the blank in pieces. He said, "Any nymph in red or salmon egg patterns are working for the rainbows and other fly fishermen were scoring using streamers." There are special regulations in both 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 and Tackle said, "Striper fishing in the big lake remains fair, but there have been a few large fish taken by trollers working at depths from 60 to 80 feet near the Trash Racks. Smaller versions of plugs such as the Lucky Craft Pointers 68 through 100 seem to be more effective. Drifting jumbo minnows in the same areas are producing the occasional lineside and bank anglers are soaking pile worms from the shorelines, particularly near the Basalt Recreational area." Roger George of Roger's Guide Service reported that the bite is still tough during most of the day, with the average angler getting from one to three fish on minnows or trolling. "We had two trips this week, with 20- and 21-fish days by trolling, for striper from 18 to 24 inches -- all released -- but no bigger fish. The water temps haven't changed in four weeks from 51 degrees in the morning, and with little pumping, its caused the fish to be pretty spread out. There are a few big fish, but most guys are telling me they are releasing them!" In the Forebay, striper are found near Check 12 and the twin islands with pile worms, white swimbaits, white flukes or rip baits. The lake held at 31% capacity with an import of 1,021 acre-feet of Delta water due to releases into the California Aqueduct.
Important note: All boats, personal watercraft, kayaks, canoes, sailboards, inflatables and float tubes must undergo a mandatory inspection for Quagga and Zebra mussels. Failure to allow inspection will result in the refusal to launch.
Call: Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711; Roger George, Roger's Guide Service (559) 905-2954
Bass • • Trout • • • Kokanee •
Patrick Movey of the Fisherman's Warehouse in Fresno reported a continued good trolling bite for rainbow trout with Rapalas or Wedding Rings tipped by a night crawler behind a dodger, but the overall size of has diminished with rainbows averaging 12 inches. Small boats are able to launch from the public ramp, but larger boats enter at their own risk. The best action is between the Eagle's Nest and the Sheriff's Tower or close to the dam. Bass fishing is slow with few boaters willing to launch. A webcam is at www.BassLakeFishing.com or www.BassLakeCA.com. The lake held at 48% capacity.
Call: Todd Wittwer 288-8100; Mike Beighey 642-3748; Bass Lake Water Sports 642-3200
Brown trout • • Trout • •
Minimal interest at the Kaiser Pass Lakes with the road scheduled to be closed due to snow levels. Edison held at 4%, Florence held at 8% and Mammoth Pool rose slightly to 14%.
Call: Vermilion Valley Resort at Edison Lake 259-4000
Kokanee • Trout • • Smallmouth •
With recent success for huge fish at Shaver Lake, the banks around the Sierra Marina were packed, and Dick Nichols of Dick's Fishing Charters said, "Bank fishing is better than trolling right now as a number of trophies in the 2- to 5-pound range were taken around the Sierra Marina, the dam and the Point over the weekend." Shaver Lake regular Dave Dungy confirmed the slower trolling bite with the best fishing from the shoreline with night crawlers or Power Bait while drifting crawlers from the boat is another viable option. Rick Rodriquez of Tulare had a successful trip from the banks near the Sierra Marina accompanied by his 6-year-old son, who landed rainbows at 21 and 24 inches. They kept the 21-incher. Things were much slower on a subsequent trip with Rodriquez only reporting a few fish taken from the banks at the Sierra Marina. Trolling action has slowed with only a few boats out and returning empty-handed. The Sierra Marina ramp is open with no restrictions. The Shaver Lake Trophy Trout Project has planted approximately 2,500 rainbow trout ranging from 2.5 to 8 pounds. Donations can be sent to the SLTTP at P.O. Box 908, Shaver Lake, CA 93664. The SLTTP is a non-profit organization. At Huntington, few reports are the rule. Snow in higher elevations is finally expected this week and there will be more experienced brown trout fishermen dragging their aluminum boats down to the lake. Shaver held at 59% and Huntington held at 29%.
Call: Dick's Fishing Charters 841-2740; Dinkey Creek Inn 841-3435; Rancheria Marina 893-3234; Shaver Lake Sports Inc. 841-2740
Trout • •
Gates are closed on McKinley Grove Road at Dinkey Creek and Wishon and Courtright are inaccessible.
Call: Wishon RV Park 865-5361
Half Moon Bay
Striper • •
The Body Glove Mavericks Invitational took place Friday amid a 30- to 40-foot swell, and party boats sold out within hours. Captain Tom Mattusch of the Huli Cat is the only large party boat running combination trips, saying, "There are crab to be had out there since my pots are in the water and we haven't turned them over recently." Anglers should expect to bring home a number of sand crab in addition to limits of Dungeness crab on the lightly-attended ventures. Captain Roger Thomas of the Salty Lady will be running whale watching trips for the Oceanic Society every weekend out of Half Moon Bay with reservations available at the Oceanic Society or (415) 256-9604. Thomas said, "We traveled out 10 miles to find one southbound gray whale on Sunday, and by the second or third week of February, the whales will be traveling up and down the coastline."
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
Striper • •
Chris Arcoleo of Chris' Landing in Monterey reported, "Sand dab fishing has been off the hook. I don't know where all of these sand dabs came from, but they are gorging on the tiny squid." In addition to the bucketloads of sand dabs, Saturday's trip produced eight to 10 mackerel per rod along with Dungeness crab limits for 20. The crab pots are loaded with squid spawn and the Check Mate returned with another eight limits of crab and loads of sand dabs on Sunday to go with a few mackerel. Whale watching remains steady as they only have to head out to the Monterey Canyon to find the gray whales. One of the best shore fishing events of the year is March 8 with the 10th annual Sand Crab Surf Perch Derby out of Santa Cruz, an annual benefit for the Monterey Bay Salmon and Trout Project. Information is at www.theletsgofishingradioshow.com or through Allen Bushnell at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Call: Chris' Landing (831) 375-5951; Bayside Marine (831) 475-2173; usafishing.com
San Francisco Bay
Halibut • Striper • • Leopard shark • • Sturgeon • •
There is minimum interest in running 45 minutes to the Gate only to have a longer ride to fish for sand dabs. Emeryville Sport Fishing hasn't had a trip out since the rockfish closure on Dec. 31. Inside the bay, herring spawns continue to take place and a big one happened at McNear's Pier. The spawns have most likely sucked some of the sturgeon into the closed zone, but a 59-incher was brought to the shop on Sunday afternoon, caught on a Loch Lomond ghost shrimp. Fraser added that Ross Peterson was out east of the Pumphouse on Saturday and he released three striped bass and a shaker sturgeon, losing two more diamondbacks in the legal range on Loch Lomond ghost shrimp. Striped bass continue to hang around San Pablo Bay. Captain Gordie Hough of the Morningstar out of Crockett got a few striper on Saturday fishing near Sonoma Creek on the incoming and at Buoy 11 on the outgoing tide. In the south bay, John Akina Jr. of Oyster Point Bait, Tackle and Deli in South San Francisco reported a good surf perch bite off the pier for barred and pogy perch on grass shrimp or prawns. Pile worms have been scarce due to the weather conditions on the East Coast.
San Luis Obispo
The Rita G out of Virg's Landing in Morro Bay took its first halibut/sand dab trip of the season. There were no halibut landed but the sand dabs were plentiful. Virg's is running a Dungeness crab/sand dab trip Sunday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m for $59/angler. Out of Patriot Sport Fishing in Port San Luis, crab/sand dab trips will be offered Friday and Saturday in addition to whale watching. Both harbors are offering whale watching and nature trips through the winter. Rockfish season starts May 1.
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 • • Sturgeon • • • Catfish • • Bluegill • • •
The eighth annual Diamond Classic Catch and Release Derby out of Martinez Marina was a huge success. Lynda Abbott, aka "Diehard," said, "There was a total of 41 legal sturgeon and five oversized caught and released as part of the 95 calls for our on-the-water weighmasters." The majority of the action took place east of the Mothball Fleet or in the Big Cut with a variety of baits. Tony Lopez of Benicia Bait and Tackle reported good action for sturgeon expert Ron Riesinger of Chico in the shallows of Grizzly Bay with eel strips. He released sturgeon at 59.5 and 55 inches on consecutive trips. Steffen Masters at the Lost Anchor Bait in McAvoy's Boat Harbor in Bay Point reported a few striper have been landed including one between 20 and 30 pounds. Do Doung at Dockside Bait in Pittsburg reported a few sturgeon have been brought to the shop and the majority of striper action remained around Chain Island with mudsuckers or frozen shad. J.D. Richey of Richey's Sport Fishing has been tossing white Robo Worm swimbaits on jig heads ranging from a quarter- to three-quarter-ounce in the north Delta for striper to 10 pounds. He said, "The action has been fair to good and we have released at least one fish over 10 pounds on our last several trips." On the San Joaquin River, Lee O'Brien at Gotcha Bait in Antioch reported striped bass are still hanging around the mouth of the San Joaquin. Alan Fong of the Fisherman's Warehouse in Sacramento said, "I hit all of my favorite spots for a total of eight small striper on Fish Traps." The waters of the San Joaquin are clear and full of dying hyacinth. In the Stockton area, striped bass fishing remains slow. For largemouth bass, Randy Pringle, the Fishing Instructor, reported the reaction bite is slowly emerging with the early arrival of springtime temps. He has been scoring with the half-ounce Persuader spinnerbait, the ima Flit rip bait and the ima Rock'N Vibe, all ticked over the tops of the weeds. He said, "The numbers of bass are there since the bite is hot, but the size of the fish remains on the small side." Striped bass are scattered into small groupings of schoolies to 22 inches and grinding Optimum Double A shad-imitation swimbaits or Hopkins Smoothies along the bottom are producing the most action. "The fish are definitely wanting a slower presentation," Pringle said.
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
Nacimiento/San Antonio/Santa Margarita/Lopez
Bass • • White bass • • Striper • • Catfish • • Crappie •
Nacimiento -- at 726 feet and 22% -- and Lopez are the most viable lakes for tournament fishing along the coast with low levels plaguing Santa Margarita and San Antonio, which is at 656 feet and 5%. Tournaments on San Antonio will need to be relocated and this may be true of Santa Margarita. At Nacimiento, jigs and drop-shotting at 15 to 35 feet along main lake points are producing the best quality as the water temperature is warming up to 49 and 53 degrees. Hula grubs, flick shakes and dart-heading are producing a few fish, and the occasional larger fish to 2 pounds is taken on reaction baits such as rip baits.
Call: Lake Nacimiento (805) 238-1056, ext. 3; Lake San Antonio Marina(805) 472-2818; Central Coast Bass Fishing.com (805) 466-6557
Angler's Choice at Delta/B and W Resort on Jan. 25: 1, Chris Raza/Larry Vignolo, 18.63 pounds; 2, Brian Carpenter/Robert Jones, 18.06; 3, Lonnie Woodlief/Ron Smith, 11.18
Eighth annual Diamond Classic Catch and Release Tournament at Delta/Martinez Marina on Jan. 25: 1, Paul Koval, $3,062.50; 2, Mike Rael, $2,187.50; 3, Lyle McDonald, $1,750
Sierra Bass Club at McClure on Jan. 25: 1, Michael Murphy, 8.50 pounds; 2, Pete Hennecke, 7.98; 3, Nicholas Thao, 5.99; Big Fish, Anne Rowles, 3.22 pounds
Saturday: Tracy Bass Club at Delta/Tracy Oasis; American Bass Association at Delta/Russo's Marina; Best Bass Tournaments at McClure; American Bass Association at Pine Flat; 101 Bass at Nacimiento
Saturday-Sunday: The Original Sturgeon Derby, aka the Super Bowl Sturgeon Derby, at Delta/McAvoy's Boat Harbor, info: www.originalsturgeonderby.com
Sunday: California Bass Federation at McClure, info: 284-2768 Mark Corrente
Feb. 15: Roosevelt High Bass Club at McClure (Barrett's South Launch), info: Mike Spencer, 261-5296 or email@example.com
Feb. 22: Dinuba High Bass Club at Kaweah, info: John Celum, 797-5793
March 8: 10th annual Sand Crab Surf Perch Derby at Portuguese Hall in Santa Cruz, info: www.theletsgofishingradioshow.com or through Allen Bushnell at firstname.lastname@example.org; Roosevelt High Bass Club at Millerton (Day Use Launch), info: Mike Spencer, 261-5296 or email@example.com
April 5: Roosevelt High Bass Club at Eastman (Campground Side), info: Mike Spencer, 261-5296 or firstname.lastname@example.org
May 18: Student Angler Federation's California State Championship at Delta/Russo's, info: Mike Spencer, 261-5296 or email@example.com
Fresno County: Avocado Lake; Fresno City Woodward Park Lake; Kings River, Below Pine Flat Dam
Kern County: Cuddy Creek Pond
Madera County: Hensley Lake; Sycamore Island Pond
Merced County: Yosemite Lake
Monterey County: Del Venturi Pond
Tulare County: Kaweah Reservoir; Success Reservoir
Minor Major Minor Major
> Wednesday 3:03 9:18 3:33 9:48
n Thursday 4:00 10:15 4:30 10:44
> Friday 4:59 10:41 5:27 ----
> Saturday 5:58 11:41 6:25 12:12
> Sunday 6:57 12:44 7:24 1:11
Monday 7:56 1:43 8:22 2:09
Tuesday 8:53 2:40 9:18 3:05
> = peak activity; f = full moon