Fishing Report: Week of July 2

The Fresno BeeJuly 1, 2014 

Roosevelt High School Bass Fishing Club president Corrie Williams, left, and Bryce Her, right, hold forth the bass they caught midway through the April Extravaganza bass fishing tournament at Eastman Lake Sunday morning, April 14, 2013.

ERIC PAUL ZAMORA — Fresno Bee Staff Photo Buy Photo

ROGER'S REMARKS

It was imperceptible at first, but about two months ago, I began to slowly realize that I was in the middle of a fishing slump. It seemed like I was in the wrong place at the wrong time most of the time, or something unusual would happen. I don't especially like to share it -- but I've observed other anglers (some of them pretty good) who also have struggled through dry spells. Some guys won't ever admit it!

It all started on a trip a month and a half ago, when I hooked a good striper in the 15- to 20-pound range. I was thinking, "This is a good fish!" -- just as the lure popped loose and the line went slack. "What happened?," I thought as I kicked myself for losing a good striper. I realized later that this was the harbinger of things to come!

Several days later, I decide to make an early trip to Millerton, where I fished hard till about 8 a.m. with no luck before deciding to take off for home. Thinking hard about this streak of bad luck while driving back into Fresno, I had an inspiration, and after calling the San Luis windtalker line (it said the wind was calm), I headed out 99 to Los Banos. Yes, I was going to catch some stripers in the big lake!

I arrived at the Basalt ramp about noon and the lake was perfectly calm as I drove around it to launch. I was excited because it looked like a mill pond and the fishing just had to be good. At the ramp, I had begun to undo the tiedowns when I noticed waves coming from the north end of the lake. Curious, I decided to see if this was the start of a northwest wind. I walked out on the dock and waited. Within 10 minutes, the wind went from calm to a 15- to 20-mph blast and picking up speed! I dejectedly hooked up the boat and drove the 11/2 hours home. A full day of driving -- and not one fish!

Fast forward to the next week. I call my coastal buddy Andy Bedell and tell him to meet me at the Basalt launch ramp at noon. I'm going to make up for lost time! So, I'm on my speaker phone as I'm driving on Highway 152, and I feel a trailer tire blow. Great! I have all the tools, so this should be easy. I'm not going to be denied! Twenty minutes later, after wrestling with the tire in the heat, I finally realize that the ripped tire had actually flayed the metal tire guard, bending it around the back of the tire -- making it impossible to put on in that condition. I beat on the twisted metal in the sweltering heat with a small hammer for 10 minutes and finally was able to get the tire back on. Though I'm drenched, we're still going fishing. But three hours later, we're both headed home after getting blown off the lake. The fish had lockjaw, too. I would get blown away on the big lake several more times in a row!

Irritated, I was sitting at home a few weekends later when I suddenly told Elaine that I was going to go to Millerton to change my luck -- no matter how many boats there were! Funny, as I launched, boats were everywhere and normally I wouldn't have considered taking on the already tough to fish lake. But something felt different! Against all odds, I ignored the traffic, hit it hard, and as the sun set, I suddenly felt a tap on my lure as I reeled it in and the drag started to scream. Yes! It felt great to fight a big fish again. It surged several times before I netted the 37-inch, 18- to 20-pound striper. My prayers were answered!

Releasing the big girl, I said with a new felt gusto, "Tell your buddies: Watch out now, I got my 'mojo' back!" as she swam away back into the depths. Never give up!

Roger George is The Bee's fishing expert. He can be reached at rogergeorge8000@sbcglobal.net, at www.facebook.com/Rogergeorgeguideservice and @StriperWars on Twitter.

BEST BETS

Delta bass action hot, Randy Pringle said. Eastman bass bite good, Ranger Myers reported. Shaver trout and Kokanee bite rebounds, Dick Nichols said. Wishon trout hitting, Chuck Crane said. New Melones kokanee bite good, John Lietchy reported.

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.

Key:

Try dynamite

•• Have to work hard

••• Limits possible

•••• Fish jumpin' in boat

VALLEY

Delta Mendota Canal and Sloughs

Striper ••• Catfish •••

The California Aqueduct and Delta Mendota Canals remain solid for striped bass and catfish, and Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis reported good night action for striped bass to 21 inches near moving water with night crawlers and for catfish with anchovies. In the south aqueduct, in Kern County, Jacob Rutledge of Bob's Bait in Bakersfield said, "Mike Luna weighed in a 9.9-pound striper on Friday night on a Lucky Craft Gun Metal Shad jerk bait to take top honors in our annual Striped Bass Derby held in June." Striper fishing is best with sardines, blood worms or lug worms. Bob's Catfish Derby is ongoing through July. Entry fee is $1.

Eastman Lake

Bass ••• Trout • Bluegill •• Catfish •• Crappie •

Ranger Myers of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Ranger Station reported a good bass bite in the evenings on crank baits, jigs, or shad-patterned plastics on the drop-shot. A few large bass have been taken from the dam area at night with Umbrella rigs, or topwater lures in the early mornings. Catfish to 4 pounds are found on anchovies or sardines, with the best action at night. Myers added, "Eastman has an abundance of large carp, and these fish will put up a strong fight when line-caught, and they may also be taken by spear or bow fishing." Launch ramps on both sides are on the lowest level. There are unmarked hazards, including submerged rocks and trees, present throughout Eastman. The area extending upstream from the "Keep Out" buoy line is closed to fishing and boating and Lakeview Trail also is closed. Closures are in place to protect nesting bald eagles and set to reopen Aug. 1. The lake is at 471.45 feet in elevation and 9% capacity.

Call: Six Star Tackle Box 673-5688; Eastman Lake 689-3255

Hensley Lake

Bass •• Trout • Catfish ••• Bluegill •• Crappie ••

The lake level dropped with the outflow of 202 acre-feet of water during the week and has fallen 6 feet in the past two weeks. Catfishing is the only game in town, with fish to 4 pounds taken on anchovies or sardines and the best action at night. Bass fishing has been very slow, particularly during the daytime. Low water levels continue to require extreme caution when maneuvering a boat around the lake. The ramp at Hensley is still barely in the water. The lake dropped to 452.14 feet in elevation and 7% capacity.

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 •• Kokanee •• King salmon • Crappie ••

Bass fishing has been decent from the banks with large minnows, particularly with the absence of extra-large and jumbo minnows in Northern California bait shops. Manny Basi of the Bait Barn in Waterford reported a good topwater bite in the mornings or evenings with small River2Sea Whopper Ploppers in bone or rainbow trout patterns while drop-shotting shad-patterned plastic worms such as Reaction Innovation's Bad Shad Green or Robo Worms Hologram Shad are working at depths from 30-40 feet. Rainbow trout fishing is best with ExCel, Needlefish, or Sockeye Slammers behind a small Sling Blade at depths from 50-70 feet. The kokanee remained scattered, holding tight to structure at depths to 100 feet. There is a 5-mph speed limit from the ramp at Blue Oaks Recreation Area to the buoy line at the mouth of Fleming Bay. The lake has dropped to 50% capacity.

Call: Monte Smith (209) 581-4734; Danny Layne-Fish'n Dan (209) 586-2383; Gary Vella (209) 652-7550; Bait Barn (209) 874-3011

Lake Isabella/Bakersfield area

Bass •• Trout • Crappie •• Catfish ••• Bluegill ••

Catfish are the top species at Lake Isabella, with frozen or fresh clams or garlic shrimp working best. Jacob Rutledge of Bob's Bait in Bakersfield said, "The crappie bite should be dead, but we are still selling plenty of small and medium minnows for crappie, but a boat or small craft is necessary to get to the best spots on the lake in the deeper water with submerged trees or bushes." Trout fishing is all but over, but bluegill are hitting wax or meal worms in the hot day temperatures. Bass fishing has slowed, with few reports. Boaters can launch, but a 4-x-4 vehicle and a pair of waders are helpful to keep dry while launching. The lake dropped to 2539.60 feet in elevation and 13% capacity. In the upper Kern, trout action is fair in the deeper holes with live crickets, salmon eggs, or spinners. Flows in the lower river are a trickle, but there are smallmouth bass to be had with plastics or spinners. Buena Vista is producing bluegill and catfish, with panfish or carp dominating lakes in the Bakersfield area. In the Golden Trout Wilderness, Chuck Stokke of Sequoia Fishing Co. reported catching and releasing hundreds of golden trout on dry flies on a recent trip by horseback.

Call: Bob's Bait (661) 833-8657; North Fork Marina (760) 376-1812

Lake Kaweah

Bass •• Crappie • Trout •• Catfish •••

Sierra Sporting Goods in Exeter reported a few largemouth bass in the 9-pound range were caught and released this past week on a Senko or a live crawdads. Live bait has been the top choice for bass. Catfishing at night with chicken livers, anchovies or frozen shad is also solid; best action is along the banks at the right of the marina. Bluegill are hitting waxworms. Rainbow trout have scattered up the river arm. The lake dropped to 631.15 feet in elevation and 25% capacity.

Call: Sierra Sporting Goods 592-5212

Lake Success

Bass •• Trout ••• Catfish •• Crappie •

The lack of moving water has created an algae bloom and there was minimal interest in fishing. Recreational boating has taken over with the full arrival of summer. The only launch is on the Rocky Hill side. The lake has fallen to 598.95 feet in elevation to 15% capacity with the start of water releases. Chuck Stokke of Sequoia Fishing Co. in Springville reported great rainbow and brown trout action on the North Fork of the Middle Fork of the Tule River with dry flies, catching and releasing 50-100 trout per outing. He said, "The fish are really aggressive chasing the flies, and grasshopper patterns are working best." Near Balch Park, planted rainbows are found in deeper holes with night crawlers, salmon eggs or Power Bait.

Call: Sequoia Fishing Co. 539-5626, www.sequoiafishingcompany.com

McClure Reservoir

Bass •• Trout •• King salmon • Kokanee • Crappie •• Catfish ••

Live crawdads or minnows have been best bets for largemouth bass or catfish, and the whiskerfish are more and more active in the warming waters. Trout fishing is fair for the few anglers working at depths from 20-25 feet in the Horseshoe or near the dam with Apex lures or black/white PPK Tomahawk spinners. The lake fell to 704.86 feet in elevation and 22% capacity. A-1 and the Bait Barn are stocked up with all sizes of minnows due to high demand.

Call: A-1 Bait (209) 563-6505; Bub Tosh (209) 404-0053

McSwain Reservoir

Trout •••

McSwain Marina reported a 1,500-pound plant from the Department of Fish and Wildlife this past Saturday and shore fishing has improved with night crawlers the top bait. The handicapped docks or the two points near the marina have been the top spots. Chrome/blue Kastmasters or garlic white Power Eggs are also working. Trolling is best with blade/crawler combinations, Wedding Rings tipped with a night crawler behind a flasher or gold Johnson's spinners are working past the floating restrooms toward the Chimney. With the hot weather, the fish are closer to the bottom.

Call: McSwain Marina (209) 378-2534

Millerton Lake/San Joaquin River

Bass •• Striper • Shad • Bluegill •• Trout ••

Recreational boating has taken over the lake, and the bass bite has gotten tough. Best action is on the bottom with shad-patterned plastics or topwater lures in the mornings or evenings. A few dedicated fishermen have been tossing large plugs for striped bass up the river arm. But the falling water is having a negative impact as the fish move out of the river area. American shad are tough to find. The lake is releasing water and is at 533.53 feet in elevation and 63% capacity with 2,033 acre-feet of ouflow. All boats must fill out a Quagga mussel self-inspection form before launching. In the lower San Joaquin, a few anglers are heading to Lost Lake for rainbow trout while those with jet boats are working the ponds on the lower river near Highway 99 for bass. There are new regulations on the lower San Joaquin, and from Friant Dam downstream to the Highway 140 Bridge, with only two hatchery trout or hatchery steelhead allowed and a total of four in possession.

Call: Fresno Fisherman's Warehouse 225-1838; Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474

New Melones Reservoir/Tulloch

Bass •• Crappie • Catfish ••• Trout •• Kokanee •••

Kokanee fishing continued to be strong, with John Lietchy of Glory Hole Sporting Goods in Angels Camp reporting most anglers catching limits. He added, "The average size is 11-13 inches with a few approaching 14-16 inches, and the fish are schooling in deep water off of Glory Hole Point, the dam, the spillway and Rose Island." Orange is the top choice for hootchies or spinners, and Lietchy advised putting a little bend in your dodger to give the lure more action. Scenting with Pro-Cure's garlic, Bloody Tuna, Anise, or Kokanee Special is essential, and adding a scent chamber swivel is another good option for creating more strikes in the off-color water. Trout fishing is fair at best; the greatest action at night under submersible lights. Lietchy said, "Trout in the 2- to 3-pound range are possible at night with night crawlers or Power Bait loaded with scent." Trolling is best with a fast troll of 2.5-3 mph in 30-50 feet of water in the main river channel where the water is coolest. Bank fishing is very slow. Bass fishing is fair with the spawn over and moving deeper. Lietchy said, "They move into the shallows in the morning and evenings before moving out into deeper water during the day," adding, "Reaction baits in the cooler hours of the day are effective before switching to a slow presentation with soft plastics with a Carolina or Texas-rig." Mary Podesta of Soulsbyville caught and released a 7.54-pound largemouth on a Berkley Power Worm. Catfishing is good with the larger whiskerfish moving into the shallows. Evan O'Shea of Sonora landed a 20-pound, 1-ounce catfish near Tuttletown on chicken livers while other catfish to 12 pounds also have been reported. Crappie fishing remains very slow; best action is at night under submersible lights. New Melones has dropped more than 10 feet in two weeks and is at 899.05 feet in elevation and 30% capacity. The Tuttletown Launch Ramp is closed; Glory Hole and Angels Cove ramps remain open.

Call: Glory Hole Sports (209) 736-4333; Monte Smith (209) 581-4734; Danny Layne-Fish'n Dan (209) 586-2383; Sierra Sport Fishing(209) 599-2023

Pine Flat Reservoir/Kings River

Bass •• Trout •• King salmon • Catfish •• Crappie •

The bass bite has gotten very tough over the past week, and experienced anglers reported only landing a few for 4-5 hours of fishing hard. The reaction bite has dried up, and the best action is on the bottom with plastics -- though Merritt Gilbert said, "It is hard to get bit on plastics." Trout fishing has slowed, with a few rainbows taken at depths from 25-30 feet or as deep as 50 on the downrigger. Best trout fishing occurs from daylight to 10:30 a.m., but it is basically over by mid-morning. The lake dropped to 812.28 feet in elevation and 36% capacity with 4,730 acre-feet of outflow. Trout plants in the lower Kings continue on a weekly basis, but trophy fish are scarce both in the open and the catch-and-release sections of the lower Kings. Super Dupers, Thomas Buoyants or Power Bait are working for planted rainbows or brook trout. The majority of river trout action has been on the Kings below Pine Flat. There are special regulations in the Kings River above and below Pine Flat Dam.

Call: Fresno Fisherman's Warehouse 225-1838; Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474; Sequoia Fishing Co. 539-5626; The I Forgot Store 787-3689

San Luis Reservoir and O'Neill Forebay

Striper •• Catfish •• Bass •• Crappie •

Bait fishing remained the top option, with Coyote Bait and Tackle in Morgan Hill reporting pile worms or anchovies producing stripers to 24 inches from the banks near Romero Visitor Center in the main lake or under the Highway 152 Bridge or Check 12 in the Forebay. Patrick Movey of the Fisherman's Warehouse said, "White flukes are also working at night in the same areas." Boaters have been reluctant to launch with the slowdown in action, and extra-large and jumbo minnows remained nearly impossible to find in bait shops throughout Northern California. The lake is at 32% capacity after releasing 5,827 acre-feet in the past week. All boats, personal watercraft, kayaks, canoes, sailboards, inflatables and float tubes must undergo inspection for Quagga and Zebra mussels. Failure to do so will result in the refusal to launch.

Call: Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711

HIGH SIERRA

Bass Lake

Bass •• Trout •• Kokanee ••

Todd Wittwer of Kokanee.net Guide Service said, "The boat traffic started on Monday, and the shorelines were muddy by the end of the day." He plans on taking a break until Tuesday to allow the water to settle. The huge kokanee continue to be found on occasion. Wittwer's partner, Mike Bieghey. put a client onto a 19.5-inch, 2.75-pound kokanee, while Wittwer has found them to 18.75 inches. He said, "There are a few large ones to be had, and if you find a school of fish, you had better work them since they are spooky and will scatter quickly." Small groupings of the large fish remain, but they move daily. The best opportunities for larger fish occur from Indian Cove to the dam and near Wishon Point. Wittwer has been finding big kokanee with pearl white RMT hootchies behind a Rocky Mountain Tackle's white dodger or the double pink Rocky Mountain Tackle Assassin spinner behind a Hyperplaid dodger at depths from 30-40 feet. Trout have been scattered, with the best action near shore. The Gulp! Minnow has been producing better quality rainbows, and Wittwer said, "The kokanee are so aggressive that we have even hooked four of the larger fish on the Gulp! Minnows." Second-year kokanee remain scarce, with no fish of this age group landed in the past two weeks, keeping the total at four reported this season. The Sheriff's Motor Fee is required on all boats for the summer. Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis reported a decent morning topwater bite, with Senkos worked along the docks also producing spotted bass. The lake is at 62% capacity.

Call: Todd Wittwer 288-8100; Mike Beighey 642-3748; Bass Lake Water Sports 642-3200

Edison/Florence/Mammoth Pool

Brown trout • • • Trout • •

Kaiser Pass lakes are open, and Patrick Movey of Fisherman's Warehouse said a kayak angler reported good action for brown trout trolling a Rapala in the deeper sections. Edison remains low at 13%; Florence dropped to 62%. Mammoth Pool has fallen to 12%, and there has been great interest in trout fishing, but few reports.

Call: Vermilion Valley Resort at Edison Lake 259-4000

Shaver Lake/Huntington Lake

Kokanee ••• Trout •••

The trout and kokanee bite is improving, and Dick Nichols of Dick's Fishing Charters reported mixed limits of kokanee and rainbow trout are possible, with trout starting to make more of a contribution to the limits. He said, "Action has gone from excellent to fair over the past week, but it has improved at the start of this week with more and more trout in the mix," adding, "We hit a triple on rainbows, followed by a 14-inch kokanee at the end of the day on Sunday to finish off our three limits." He has been fishing nearly every day for the past month due to steady interest. Kokanee are found at depths from 20-72 feet near the Island with orange or pink Apex lures tipped with corn behind Captain Jack's CJ Dodgers on the downriggers while Dick's Trout Busters loaded with a corn on the top hook and a piece of night crawler on the rear hook behind a weighted Mountain Flasher are effective on the side poles at depths to 22 feet. Nichols advised, "Trollers are having success venturing into other areas of the lake in search of kokanee, and they must try different levels in depth and also different lures in order to entice strikes." Rainbows are holding in the triangle from the point, dam and Edison Camp. The SLTTP annual Sportsmen's Dinner is Aug. 9 at the Shaver Lake Community Center. Tickets are on sale at Shaver Lake Sports, Ken's Market and Captain Jack's Tackle in Shaver. The event is expected to sell out fast. Call Treasurer Bob Bernier at 360-7185 for information. The leading fish in the Fresno Ag Hardware/SLTTP derby is a 16.2-pounder, but there are three positions this year. Weigh-in stations are Shaver Lake Sports, Young's Sporting Goods and Ken's Market, all in Shaver. At Huntington, trout action has been best at Dam 2 or the mouth of Rancheria Creek for planted trout with Power Bait or night crawlers. A few trollers are dragging small boats to the side of the lake for kokanee in the 10- to 11-inch range, or rainbows of larger size near the surface. Shaver is at 63% capacity, with Huntington at 50%.

Call: Dick's Fishing Charters 841-2740; Dinkey Creek Inn 841-3435; Rancheria Marina 893-3234; Shaver Lake Sports Inc. 841-2740

Wishon/Courtright

Trout •••

Chuck Crane of Wishon Village RV Park and Store reported good action at Wishon for trollers pulling blade/crawler combinations, Speedy Shiners in copper/red, or ExCel's in frog patterns at 3-4 colors of lead core. Tom and Susan Sheets, who spend summers at the lake, have been scoring limits of rainbows pulling blade/crawler combos. Shore fishing is best from the far side of the dam with orange or rainbow Power Bait. Boaters have been traveling to the mouth of Woodchuck Creek for good bank action. The launch is off the concrete ramp, and boaters will have to launch from the dirt road. At Courtright, the lake has plenty of water, with the launch easily accessible with the benefit of a courtesy dock. Trollers have been scoring with 4-inch Rapalas pulled on the surface from 100-150 feet behind the boat at 2 mph. Wedding Rings tipped with a night crawler behind a dodger are effective at 3-4 colors of lead core. The majority of fish are holding near the dam, with planters making up the majority of the catch. Bank fishing is fair around the dam with orange or pink Power Bait or inflated night crawlers. The local creeks are limited to deep pools, such as the one below Dinkey Creek Bridge.

Call: Wishon RV Park 865-5361

OCEAN

Half Moon Bay

Rockfish ••• Salmon • Striper ••

Coastal rockfishing was the only game in town as June concluded, and limits to near-limits of rockfish with a fair sprinkling of ling cod are the rule for party and private boaters. Salmon remain a distant memory; the Queen of Hearts out of Half Moon Bay Sport Fishing tossed in the towel for now after putting in a single 20-pound salmon for 25 anglers Sunday.

Call: Happy Hooker (510) 223-5388; Roger Thomas, Salty Lady (415) 760-9362; Bait and Switch Sport Fishing (650) 726-7133; Emeryville Sport Fishing (510) 654-6040; Don Franklin, Soleman (510) 703-4148

Monterey/Santa Cruz

Rockfish ••• Salmon •• Striper •• White Sea Bass ••

Todd Arcoleo at Chris' Landing in Monterey reported solid rockfish action. There has been a sprinkling of a mixed grade of salmon on the Santa Cruz side of the bay both north and south of the city along the beaches at a depth of 120 feet. Private boaters have been doing well on occasion. White sea bass are found outside of Capitola and Pajaro with fresh dead squid. The market-grade squid schools are thick on the Monterey side of the bay, with commercial anglers from the entire West Coast getting in on the action.

Call: Chris' Landing (831) 375-5951; Bayside Marine (831) 475-2173; usafishing.com

San Francisco Bay

Halibut •• Striper ••• Rockfish •• Leopard shark ••• Salmon •• Sturgeon ••

Rockfish action slowed Sunday, with a huge swell perhaps pushing the fish off the rocks. "It didn't matter who you were or where you were, the rockfishing was tough," said Captain Jim Smith of the Happy Hooker, adding that inside the bay, the striper bite has been limited to the right tides when the bait is pushed up on the rocks. Chris Sainz of C-4 Custom Rods went into the south bay on a sharking adventure, and they caught and released multiple leopard and sand sharks during the slower period of water movement.

San Luis Obispo

Salmon • Rock cod •••

Rockfish action continues to heat up, with the Patriot and Sea Angler out of Patriot Sport Fishing in Port San Luis returning with a combined 27 limits of rockfish, including 90 vermilion and 33 ling to 12.25 pounds. Both harbors are running trips including a Fireworks Cruise at 7 p.m. Friday out of Patriot Sport Fishing to the Pismo Pier and at 7:30 p.m. out of Virg's and Morro Bay Landing to the Cayucos Pier.

Call: Virg's Landing (805) 772-1222; (800) 762-5263; Patriot Sports Fishing (805) 595-4100; Port Side Marine Sports Launch (805) 595-7214

OTHERS

Delta/Stockton

Bass ••• Striper ••• Sturgeon •• Catfish •• Bluegill •••

Pam Hayes of Benicia Bait reported, "A few sturgeon fishermen have slipped out between the periods of wind, and they have been catching and releasing diamondbacks on grass shrimp/eel combinations near Buoy 2 or the mouth of Montezuma Slough on the Grizzly Island side." The river salmon season begins July 16 and the Benicia shore at First Street and Dillon Point State Park are two of the most popular areas in Suisun Bay. Striped bass can still be found in the main river near Antioch or in the back sloughs of the Old River and Empire Cut with sardines or live bluegill. Largemouth bass fishing has been "phenomenal" with reaction baits, particularly when the wind is blowing, as the bass are gorging themselves on crawdads or bluegill. In the Antioch area, Doug Chapman of Gotcha Bait reported stripers to 31 inches, with several in the 26- to 27-inch range, have been taken from the Antioch Fishing Pier. Whole sardines are producing the larger fish. Chapman reported good action for sturgeon along the west side of Broad Slough with grass shrimp, eel or pile worms. Ghost shrimp have been nearly impossible to obtain throughout the Delta. For largemouth bass, Randy Pringle, the Fishing Instructor, reported the best action has been in deeper water with current on outside weedlines with crawdad-patterned Berkley Chigger Craw and a flipping technique or the Berkley Havoc Flat Dawg in dark colors on a Zappu head on 8-pound test. There is a topwater bite in the morning and evenings for "better than average fish" with the ima Big Stick, but larger fish take some effort. Punching the weeds is a consistent technique for larger fish. Top limits during the past weekend's Best Bass Tournaments were taken by punching the weeds with large baits. Alan Fong of Fisherman's Warehouse in Sacramento put together a 25-pound limit punching weeds and mats of hyacinth with PayCheck Punch Skirts with a Sweet Beaver or a Missile D Bomb creature bait trailer weighed down by 1-3 ounces of lead.

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 ••

At Nacimiento, the white bass have been spotty with few of this species found in the past week. Smallmouth, spots and largemouth bass can be found on plastic worms from Las Tablas to the dam at depths to 25 feet with the best action in the early mornings or late evenings. At Santa Margarita, early and late are the story for bass with topwater lures before dropping to the bottom at 25 feet in depth with plastics. San Antonio is limited to kayaks, canoes, or inflatables with the low water level. Nacimiento dropped to 721.85 in elevation and 19% capacity and San Antonio to 652.60 and 4%. Reminder -- Consuming white bass, black bass, crappie, catfish, or carp is subject to safe eating guidelines because of excessive mercury. There is a calendar of coastal lake tournaments at http://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

EVENTS

Results

Best Bass Tournaments/Delta/Wine Division at Delta/Russo's Marina on June 28: 1, Larry Hutton/Jim Griffin 22.09 (big fish 8.12); 2, Mike Hamontree/Bronson Collins 21.77; 3, John Rossi/John Schromm 20.60

Upcoming

Tournaments

Sunday: Angler's Choice at Delta/Ladd's Marina

July 11: Poe Man's at Don Pedro

July 11-12: Visalia Bass Club at Kaweah

July 12: Kiwanis Division 5 Trout Derby at Wishon; Bakersfield Bass Club at Isabella; Taft Bass Club at Nacimiento

July 12-13: Riverbank Bass Club at New Melones; Sierra Bass Club at Don Pedro; Fresno Bass Club at McClure; Success Bass Club at Success; Kern County Bassmasters at Lopez

July 13: Stockton Bass Club at Delta/Ladd's Marina

July 19: Angler's Choice/Tri Valley Bass Masters at Delta/Ladd's Marina; Mid Valley Bass Club at Don Pedro; Bass Classics of Santa Clara at McClure; Kings River Bass Club at Eastman; American Bass Association at Isabella; Santa Barbara Bass Club at Lopez

July 19-20: Kokanee Power Team Kokanee Derby at New Melones; California Bass Federation at McClure

July 25: Poe Man's at Don Pedro

July 26: Angler's Choice at Delta/B and W Resort; Golden Empire Bass Club at Isabella; San Luis Obispo Bass Ambushers at Nacimiento; Tri Valley Bass Club at Lopez

TROUT PLANTS

Fresno County: Bearskin Creek; Big Creek, Huntington; Courtright Reservoir; Huntington Lake; Kings River, Below Pine Flat Dam; Mono Creek; Portal Forebay; Rancheria Creek; San Joaquin River, South Fork; Shaver Lake; Ward Lake; Wishon Reservoir

Madera County: Chiquito Creek West Fork; Chiquito Creek, Lower; Lewis Creek; Nelder Creek; Rock Creek; Willow Creek North Fork

Mariposa County: Big Creek, Madera

Tulare County: Balch Park Lake Lower; Balch Park Lake Upper; Hedrick Pond (Redwood Lake); Stony Creek

SOLUNAR TABLE

AM PM Minor Major Minor Major

Wednesday 9:33 3:22 9:54 3:44

Thursday 10:20 4:09 10:41 4:30

q - Friday 11:06 4:55 11:27 5:16

Saturday 11:51 5:40 ---- 6:02

Sunday 12:12 6:24 12:36 6:48

Monday 12:57 7:10 1:23 7:35

Tuesday 1:43 7:57 2:11 8:24

q = quarter moon

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