Compiled by Dave Hurley and edited by Roger George, a former Olympic-class decathlete at Fresno State and striper record-holder at Millerton Lake and who now guides in the greater Fresno area. Telephone numbers are in 559 calling area unless noted. Have a photo of a recent catch to share? Email it to email@example.com with “fish photo” in the subject line.
Lake Success bass active, Chuck Stokke said. Millerton spotted bass hitting, Merritt Gilbert reported. San Luis stripers showing up, Roger George said.
2-Have to work hard
4-Fish jumpin’ in boat
Delta Mendota Canal and Sloughs
Stripers 2; Catfish 2
The California Aqueduct is high and muddy, and few fishermen are heading to the northern section. The flushing of the aqueducts will pay dividends as the water clears. In the south aqueduct in Kern County, Jacob Rutledge of Bob’s Bait in Bakersfield reported small stripers in the sub-legal range are being caught and released on blood worms, sardines, lug worms, Gitzits, crankbaits or spinnerbaits. Anglers are encouraged to remove their trash and other debris to avoid limitations on access.
Bass 2; Trout 2; Bluegill 2; Catfish 2; Crappie 2
The lake rose 5 feet to 569.76 in elevation and 81 percent capacity despite water releases, but it remains cold and muddy. The spring bass bite should be outstanding with the highest water levels at the lake in several years. A trout plant will occur on both sides of the lake during the week of March 12.
Call: Six Star Tackle Box 673-5688; Eastman Lake 689-3255
Bass 2; Trout 2; Catfish 1; Bluegill 2; Crappie 2
In spite of water releases, the lake rose 4 feet to 501.10 in elevation and 42 percent capacity but now will be dropping about a foot per day. Few fishermen are targeting the lake, but similar to nearby Eastman, the bass bite should be outstanding in the spring with sections of the banks inundated for the first time in several years. A trout plant is scheduled for the week of March 12.
Call: 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 2; Trout 2; King salmon 1; Crappie 2
Don Pedro spilled over at the start of last week and was closed to all boating before reopening Feb. 27, according to lake news releases. The reservoir is releasing water through the controlled spillway in order to make room for anticipated snowmelt in the coming weeks. Updated information is available at www.donpedrolake.com. Bonds Flat Road is closed beyond Fleming Meadows and the Blue Oaks campgrounds to ensure the safety of the public and spillway operations. Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing, keeping a close eye on the lake, said “The lake has been closed to all boating since Feb. 20, but when I was last there on Feb. 14, we found solid action for rainbows to 3 pounds and 22 inches, releasing several other fish. We were running heavy spoons on lead-core or downriggers to 20 feet, and the water clarity ranged from 6-8 feet with a surface temperature in the 54- to 55-degree range. The reservoir will be in great shape for the spring and summer, and with all reservoirs near or at capacity, no one reservoir will experience too much fishing pressure this summer. I am looking forward to a fantastic spring season.” Increased releases from Don Pedro, and at other reservoirs on the San Joaquin, has led to pressure on levees in the south Delta as well as the maintenance of a flash-flood warning in the San Joaquin-Delta through the Carquinez Strait. The lake is releasing water as fast as possible through the spillway, but inflows of 14,500 cfs have kept the reservoir near capacity at 828.82 feet in elevation and 99 percent.
Call: Monte Smith (209) 581-4734; Danny Layne-Fish’n Dan (209) 586-2383; Gary Vella (209) 652-7550
Lake Isabella/Bakersfield area
Bass 2; Trout 3; Crappie 2; Catfish 2; Bluegill 2
Most fishing action in Kern County is taking place at the River Walk, Buena Vista or aqueduct, but Jacob Rutledge of Bob’s Bait in Bakersfield said, “Catfishing is starting to pick up with stink baits, and bass continue to be taken on deep-diving crankbaits or jigs in 10-20 feet of water. Crappie are staging on the outside, but they haven’t moved in as of yet.” The 28th annual Isabella Lake Fishing Derby is April 8-10; early-bird registration closes at 4 p.m. March 4, with no entries accepted after 7 a.m. April 7. Information and registration is available at www.kernrivervalley.com/online-registration. Campgrounds open during the derby are Boulder Gulch, Camp 9, French Gulch, Paradise Cove, Pioneer Point and Tillie Creek Campground. For reservations, please call the Sequoia Recreation Office at (760) 376-1815. The lake dropped a half foot within the week to 2,582.71 feet in elevation and 59 percent this week. The Bakersfield Firefighters Trout Derby is March 4. The River Walk will be planted prior to the event. The small lake at Buena Vista was planted with trout a few weeks ago, and trout action has been good with Power Bait or Berkley Mice Tails as well as lures. There are few reports from the upper or lower Kern River with the high flows.
Call: Bob’s Bait (661) 833-8657; North Fork Marina (760) 376-1812
Bass 2; Crappie 2; Trout 2; Catfish 2
The lake rose 7 feet this week to 670.20 in elevation and 54 percent. The banks have been busy over the weekends with anglers lined up around the second launch ramp. Bass fishing is decent in the cold water, and the action should be outstanding in the coming weeks. A trout plant is scheduled for the week of March 12.
Call: Sierra Sporting Goods 592-5212
Bass 3; Trout 2; Catfish 2; Crappie 1
Chuck Stokke of the Sequoia Fishing Co. in Springville reported, “Bass anglers are doing well to excellent using deep-diving crankbaits from 15-18 feet in depth, and there are more anglers showing interest at the lake. Fishing for bass should get even better for the week to come with the temperatures getting warmer.” The lake dropped 1.75 feet to 637.08 in elevation and 62 percent capacity. Stokke added, “The Tule River should also improve when the flows slow down.” A trout plant is scheduled at Murry Park Pond this week.
Call: Sequoia Fishing
Call: Sequoia Fishing Co. 539-5626, sequoiafishingcompany.com
Bass 2; Trout 2; King salmon 1; Kokanee 1; Crappie 2; Catfish 2
The lake rose to 91 percent within the week despite water releases into the Merced River. Currently, releases are directed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as the lake has exceeded 67 percent capacity. There is record snowmelt in the Merced River watershed, and releases will continue to accommodate the runoff. The water is stained along the shores, but bass fishing is decent with Berserk jigs in brown/purple or Purple Hornet along with 5- to 6-inch Pro Worms in patterns 124p or 300 at depths from 25-50 feet. Boaters are advised to use caution given floating and submerged logs and debris on the lake. The launch ramps at Barrett’s Cove South and McClure Point are open.
Call: Bait Barn (209) 874-3011
Trout plants are still lacking, but the occasional holdover rainbow from the last plant in October is taken on garlic trout dough bait, clear Gulp! Power Eggs or nightcrawlers on an 18- to 24-inch leader. There are small park-model rental cabins overlooking the lake under construction and scheduled to open in the coming months. The Exchequer Bike Park will be opened with a constructed cross-country bike loop. There is hope for biweekly plants at the lake in the coming months.
Call: McSwain Marina (209) 378-2534
Millerton Lake/San Joaquin River
Bass 3; Striped bass 1; Shad 1; Bluegill 1; Trout 2
Although there are few tournaments scheduled at Millerton Reservoir given a number of factors, spotted bass fishing remains a draw for area fishermen, particularly with extremely limited action at nearby Eastman and Hensley Reservoirs. The lake is releasing water in order to keep up with inflow from the upper watershed, and there is up to 20 feet of snow at the higher elevations. The high water will contribute to an outstanding bite for all species in the upcoming months. Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “Bass fishermen are picking up from 10-12 bass in the 1.5- to 2.25-pound range on most trips, and the best action remains on the bottom with 6-inch plastics on the drop-shot or dart head. The numbers are better at Millerton than at Pine Flat, and there is the emergence of a reaction bite as one group found a boil on the surface, landing four spots on Poppers. The most consistent bite occurs at depths from 10-40 feet in the main lake as the river arm remains muddy and loaded with debris.” The lake is releasing water and was at 560.04 feet in elevation and 84 percent capacity. There are no striper reports. In the San Joaquin River, Sycamore Island Pond opened two weeks ago. The park will be open Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and all state holidays. The trout pond is stocked and all ponds are open. Day passes are $9 and a season pass $85, available online or at the bait shop on the property. A Fish and Wildlife trout plant is scheduled for next week at Sycamore Island and Woodward Park ponds. Regulations on the lower San Joaquin, and from Friant Dam downstream to the Highway 140 Bridge, allow only two hatchery trout or hatchery steelhead with a total of four in possession. The hatchery fish have a healed adipose fin clip.
Call: Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474
New Melones Reservoir/Tulloch
Bass 2; Crappie 2; Catfish 2; Trout 2
New Melones is rising steadily. With the anticipated snowmelt from the Stanislaus River watershed, the lake may come close to filling after holding at about 20 percent for the past year. The lake was up to 65 percent, rising 26 feet to 1,009.23 in elevation this week. With the temporary closure of Don Pedro, Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing launched at New Melones for the first time in two years, and he said, “The water clarity was heavily stained with visibility less than 2 feet, but my clients managed to land eight rainbow trout. I feel that we did well considering the conditions with stained water and water temperatures in the 48- to 51-degree range. We started off running spoons but quickly switched over to Vance’s Slim Willies with a threaded nightcrawler coated with Pro Cure Carp Spit. Once we switched to the Slim Willies, we started to hook up as scent, vibration, and sound is essential in the stained water. We were trolling at 1.5 mph at a depth around 7-8 feet. Boaters have to be very careful since many objects in the water are hard to see. We came up on one log that was at least 30 feet long, and we didn’t see it until we were very close since it only had a two-inch twig sticking up above the surface. There is a lot of grass in the water so clearing lines regularly is necessary.” The bass have moved closer to shore with the warmer water around the south-facing banks. The combination of sediment in the water and increased sun exposure are warming the water around the shorelinr, and the bass are getting active. The big fish should start making an appearance. With the warmer water near shore, crappie are coming to life and vulnerable with minijigs or small minnows around submerged structure. Catfish are holding near the inlets with moving water.
Call: Glory Hole Sports (209) 736-4333; Monte Smith (209) 581-4734; Danny Layne-Fish’n Dan (209) 586-2383
Pine Flat Reservoir/Kings River
Bass 2; Trout 2; King salmon 1; Catfish 1; Crappie 1
Cold and muddy water has plagued Pine Flat for spotted bass. With the lack of upcoming tournaments on the lake, fewer bass fishermen are targeting the reservoir. The water is clearing in the main lake, and trout trolling has improved around the power Lines and Lefebre Creek. Floating and submerged debris upriver has resulted in the temporary closure of the Trimmer Marina launch ramp above the trash barrier. Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “Most of our trout fishermen are heading to Pine Flat, and one boat came back with four and another with seven rainbows running at depths from 3-5 colors with Needlefish, Apex Lures, or Wedding Rings in the main lake. The boats stayed around the Power Lines and Lefebre Creek, but they didn’t go into Windy Gap. The water is much clearer in the main lake.” For spotted bass, Gilbert said, “The water has turned cold due to the recent cold snap, and the bass bite has only been fair with some struggling while others are finding limits in the 8- to 9-pound range. The bank fishermen are really struggling, and you have to keep moving to find fish. There is a small window in the early morning hours with reaction baits, but the best action has been at depths from 10-40 feet with plastics in Oxblood or People’s worms on a finesse presentation on a drop-shot or dart head. The larger grade of bass is found on reaction baits, but there was a 3.25-pound spot taken on a jig this week.” The lake rose 8 feet this week to 911.71 in elevation and 78 percent capacity. In the lower Kings River, the water is high and roily, but trout plants continue on a weekly basis, and bank fishermen are scoring the catchables with trout dough bait, spinners, or nightcrawlers. The river is planted on a weekly basis at the present time. Regulations in the Kings River above and below Pine Flat Dam set the season as running from the last Saturday in April to Nov. 15 from Pine Flat Dam downstream to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Bridge on Pine Flat Road with a five-fish limit. The bridge is the first one west of the dam.
Call: Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474; Sequoia Fishing Co. 539-5626
San Luis Reservoir and O’Neill Forebay
Striper 3; Catfish 2; Bass 1; Crappie 1
San Luis Reservoir has risen to 97 percent capacity. With the increased flows in the San Joaquin Delta, water exports will continue though the reservoir still is expected to fill in early March. Striped bass are starting to get active for plug casters, trollers and bait fishermen. Jesus Reyes Silva of Hollister’s JKings Lures said, “We have been scoring schoolie fish with my custom 130 mm jerkbaits in various color patterns. I landed 15 stripers, trolling at depths from 30-55 feet along the west side of the lake. The fish look like they are starting to spawn.” Roger George of Roger’s Guide Service in Fresno took Jeff DeYoung of Fresno out Friday for his new personal-best striped bass at 16.6 pounds and 37 inches trolling minnow plugs. George said, “This was DeYoung’s largest striper ever by 5 pounds, and we released the lineside via a Seaquilizer. Funny, we actually went out just looking for a new PB for him and the first fish we hooked was the big one – luck is a good thing! Now Jeff wants a 20-pound-plus fish! Our numbers were pretty good but we had to work. The bite has been sporadic, going between good and poor depending on the day.” Coyote Bait and Tackle in Morgan Hill reported Dinosaur Point has been the top location for bank fishermen soaking blood worms or jumbo minnows. Kayakers have been launching and trolling in the area around the launch ramp, and most anglers in the San Jose area have been heading to San Luis with the high water plaguing the area reservoirs. O’Neill Forebay remains slow because of muddy water, but the majority of fishermen are working the moving water around Check 12 with blood worms, pile worms, sardines or jumbo minnows.
Call: Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711, Roger George of rogergeorgeguideservice.com (559) 905-2954; San Luis Reservoir and O’Neill Forebay Wind Conditions (800) 805-4805.
Bass 2; Trout 2; Kokanee 1
Few reports from the lake, but better times are on the horizon as the big bass bite with swimbaits is only a few weeks off. The magic mark is 45 degrees for this to occur, and the lake is currently about 41 degrees and 78 percent capacity. Webcams are available at www.basslakeca.com. The first bass tournament at the lake will be April 2.
Call: Mike Beighey 642-3748; Bass Lake Watersports 642-3200
Access to Edison and Florence Lakes is limited to those on snowmobiles. Edison dropped slightly to 27 percent capacity and Florence to 10 percent. Mammoth Pool is full at 99 percent. The snowpack on top of Kaiser Pass is reported to be at least 19-20 feet tall, and the opening of the road may be delayed past the normal Memorial Day opener.
Call: Vermilion Valley Resort at Edison Lake 259-4000
Shaver Lake/Huntington Lake
Bob Bernier of the Shaver Lake Trophy Trout Program said, “The few boats on the lake are picking up a few rainbows near the dam with blade/’crawler combinations in the upper 5 feet of the surface. The fish are all close to the surface, and those using downriggers at 15 feet are not getting bit.” Shore fishing is slow with an average of 1-3 rainbows to 16 inches with trout dough bait/nightcrawler combinations. A webcam of the launch ramp and parking lot is available at www.sierramarina.com/camera.html. Trophy trout plants from the Shaver Lake Trophy Trout Project will occur in the coming months. The lake held at 62 percent capacity, with Huntington at 45 percent.
Call: Dick’s Fishing Charters 841-2740; Dinkey Creek Inn 841-3435; Rancheria Marina 893-3234; Shaver Lake Sports Inc. 841-2740; Todd Wittwer 288-8100; Fish Box Charters 871-3937
The gates on McKinley Grove Road are closed, with no vehicle access to Wishon or Courtright until the spring.
Call: Wishon RV Park 865-5361
Half Moon Bay
Striper 2 Crabs 2
Sand dab/Dungeness crab or crab-only trips are still on the slate, but the combination of limited interest and steady storms along the coast have led to the trips being few and far between. The Huli Cat is the only large party boat running the combination trips, and they will also operate crab-only or whale-watching trips until the anticipated salmon opener in April. Party boats are limited to nature and whale-watching trips. The Huli Cat, Captain Roger Thomas of the Salty Lady, and Captain Dennis Baxter of the New Captain Pete, and the Queen of Hearts will run whale watching and nature trips. The bottom fish season will open April 1 south of Pigeon Point and on April 15 in local waters, while the ocean salmon opener and seasonal restrictions have yet to be announced.
Call: Happy Hooker (510) 223-5388; Captain Roger Thomas, Salty Lady (415) 760-9362; Emeryville Sport Fishing (510) 654-6040
Striper 2; Crab 2; Surf perch 2
Chris Arcoleo of Chris’ Fishing Trips in Monterey said, “We ran trips on Friday and Saturday, but there wasn’t enough interest to run a trip on Sunday. The counts have been good with 360 sand dabs and 35 Dungeness crab for nine anglers on the Check Mate on Friday with 600 sand dabs and 48 crab on Saturday for 12 anglers on the same boat. We will be running the combination trips on Wednesday through Sunday of the current week.” The 13th annual Sand Crab Classic is coming to Santa Cruz and the adjacent coastline on March 11. Allen Bushnell of Santa Cruz Kayak Fishing and Surfcasting Guide Service reported, “The rivers are muddy, the ocean is lumpy, the winds are howling and the surf is still massive at most spots. Sounds about perfect for surfcasting adventures. Care must be taken to find and choose the right spot at the right time and tide. With the massive amount of water moving via wave action and side-shore or rip currents, combined with some drastic dunes and troughs near the shorebreak, extra care is necessary to stay out of trouble. Even knee-deep whitewater can knock an angler off their feet. Remember never turn your back on the ocean. Watch the waves outside to know what is heading your way. And, check behind yourself occasionally. If there is a log or boulder on the beach you can end up tripping as you backpedal up the beach incline. Surf perch reports have been sketchy. A few fish were reported caught near Seacliff and Rio Del Mar, mostly in the ones and twos. Open ocean fishing was pretty much shut down all week due to conditions. In Santa Cruz, boats are not going out due to continued shoaling at the harbor entrance. Equipment problems and relentless surf conditions continue to slow the dredging process. We continue to suffer from an average depth of only three feet across the mouth of harbor. There is also a broad shallow area to the east of the harbor jetties, where the approach channel is normally located.”
Call: Chris’ Landing (831) 375-5951; Bayside Marine (831) 475-2173; usafishing.com
San Francisco Bay
Striper 2; Leopard shark 2; Sturgeon 2; Crab 3
The sturgeon action came to a screeching halt over the weekend in San Pablo Bay, perhaps due to the drop in water temperature, but it looks like this week is bringing promise for sturgeon fishermen. Captain Trent Slate of Shelter Cove Sport Fishing was scratching his head over the action on Friday and Saturday with no bites on Friday and only a shaker sturgeon on Saturday despite staying out until dark. He said, “There are several theories why the bite was slow, but the cold water must have something to do with this.” Chris Smith of the Captain Hook was in San Pablo Bay on Sunday, and he had a similar experience as his father as they didn’t hook a fish while the Lovely Martha out of San Francisco landed four sturgeon near them. He said, “The debris was thick, but it was mostly tules that would hit the rod and bounce off. Sturgeon fishing should be very good in the coming months, and I will be staying down in Martinez until mid-April or later since I don’t think live bait will be available in the bay until late May at the earliest with all of this fresh water.” John Badger of Barbarian Sport Fishing out of Martinez is optimistic about the coming week, and he said, “Wednesday, March 1, looks like a great day for San Pablo Bay with only wind speeds at only 4 mph predicted.” Reminder that sturgeon may not be taken in the following described area through March 15: That portion of San Francisco Bay included within the following boundaries – A direct line between Point Chauncy (National Marine Fisheries Laboratory) and Point Richmond, the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge and a direct line between Point Lobos and Point Bonita.
San Luis Obispo
Rockfish season reopensApril 1 and the party boats out of Port San Luis and Morro Bay will continue to focus on nature and whale-watching trips until then.
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 2; Striper 2; Sturgeon 2; Catfish 2; Bluegill 2
The Sacramento-Delta is starting to drop slightly, but the water remains high and muddy. Few launch ramps in the north Delta are open as of press time, but Hogback, Arrowhead and Brannan Island have been consistently accessible. The municipal ramp in Rio Vista is still under water, and Sandy Beach is silted in. Boaters need to check launch ramp conditions before heading out on a trip into the Delta. Despite a weekend of clear weather, water releases remain high from the upstream reservoirs. Johnny Tran of New Romeo’s Bait in Freeport said, “The Sacramento River is still high, but it is dropping a bit. Launch ramps are hard to find, but there are a few stripers starting to show up in the Sacramento Deep Water Channel with jumbo minnows or swimbaits. A 50-inch sturgeon was landed on Saturday in Prospect Slough on an eel/pile worm combination, but most sturgeon fishermen are heading into Suisun Bay as the shallows of Honker Bay have been on fire.” With the high water and launch ramp challenges, the lower Delta remains the top location for sturgeon, but the diamondbacks went off of the bite over the weekend. Chris Smith of Captain Hook Sport Fishing out of Martinez was able to land a legal sturgeon Saturday on the incoming tide near Benicia. Captain Jay Lopes of Right Hook Sport Fishing rebounded from a tough day Saturday to put a 52-inch slot limit sturgeon in the boat Sunday near Benicia. The Addathon Iron Man Sturgeon Derby is March 11-12 out of Pittsburgh Harbor. The San Joaquin-Delta has been inundated with water releases from upstream Don Pedro as well as nearly every other reservoir on the watershed other than New Melones, and the San Joaquin County Office of Emergency Services expanded a boat closure in the south Delta over the past weekend. The original closure restricted boating on the San Joaquin River between the Stanislaus County line and Burns Cutoff, Paradise Cut from the San Joaquin River to Old River, and on Old River from the San Joaquin to Middle River, but the closure was expanded to include the waters surrounding Bacon, Woodward, Lower Jones, Victoria and Roberts Islands. The levees in the south Delta have been pushed to the max from water releases, resulting in break on the San Joaquin southwest of Manteca earlier in the week. In the Stockton area, Ladd’s Marina and the Morelli launch ramp remain open, but anglers need to be aware of the restricted waters. Waders are a necessity when launching or retrieving your vessel at high tide from either location. In the east Delta, Alan Fong of the Fisherman’s Warehouse in Sacramento has continued to launch in challenging conditions out of Honker Cut to work the sloughs, but he said, “It is getting pretty muddy out there, and the 20-mph winds have cooled the water to 52 degrees so we only caught 10 bass with the big fish at 7.5 pounds flipping Missile’s D-Bombs or Sweet Beavers. Finding decent water is going to be a challenge.” Dan Mathisen of Dan’s Delta Outdoors in Oakley said, “The sun has come out after a week of rain and wind, and I can’t believe how many anglers are starting to troll. We have been selling a number of chartreuse and green plugs this past week. As water temps reach mid-fifties, the black bass bite in Discovery Bay is rolling as evidenced by the 28.50-pound limit winning the weekend’s tournament out of Russo’s Marina. Most anglers are sticking with jigs and slow rolling blades searching ledges near sparse tule flats. Others looking to beat the clear conditions are starting to crank Red-Eye Shad and Big Poppa’s. In Frank’s Tract, the bass bite is picking up at a consistent pace with Black Blue Fizzles, Swim Jigs and FatSack jigs along with spinnerbaits.” Randy Pringle, the Fishing Instructor, will be back on the Delta after this weekend’s Fred Hall Show in southern California, and he is looking forward to terrific largemouth bass action as the river drops, warms, and clears. He has chosen to stay off of the river even prior to the recreational boat closures due to safety concerns for his clients.
Call: Randy Pringle (209) 543-6260; Intimidator Sport Fishing (916) 806-3030; Captain Steve Mitchell – Hook’d Up Sport Fishing (707) 655-6736
Lake Nacimiento/San Antonio/Santa Margarita/Lopez
Bass 2; White bass 1; Catfish 2; Crappie 2
Lake Nacimiento’s spillway was opened up over the weekend, and the Monterey County Water Resources Department will continue making flood control releases of up to 4,000 cubic feet per second from Nacimiento Reservoir for the purpose of maintaining flood control space. Timing and release rates will vary depending on natural river flow and weather conditions. Releases from San Antonio Reservoir are expected to remain at 3 cfs. Nacimiento topped out at 90 percent, but it has dropped to 87 percent within the past few days. The Best Bass Tournaments was back on the lake Saturday, hosting 32 boats with five teams weighing in limits to just over 9 pounds. Small spots are the rule with the big fish of the tournament at 2.94 pounds. San Antonio continues to rise with most of its inflow remaining behind the dam, and it is currently at 48 percent capacity and may be opened once again with the coming months. At Lopez, the lake has risen to more than 50 percent capacity, and the launch ramp is open to all boats. All boats are inspected prior to launching and must be clean and dry upon arrival. Use caution while on the lake of floating debris and underwater hazards near the shore. Finesse techniques work best for numbers, but the larger grade is found on deep-diving crankbaits. At Santa Margarita, the lake has risen from 9.6 percent to spilling within six weeks; debris on the lake has created hazardous conditions for boaters. Vehicle entry at Santa Margarita and Lopez is reduced to $5 on Tuesdays. Quagga mussel inspections are now required before boats can be launched.
Call: Lake Nacimiento (805) 238-1056, ext. 3; Lake San Antonio Marina (805) 472-2818; CentralCoastBassFishing.com (805) 466-6557
- California Tournament Team Trail on February 25 at Delta/Russo’s Marina: 1, Mike Andrews/Phillip Dutra 28.40 (big fish 8.69): 2, Robert Jones/Mike Menne 27.92; 3, Nick and Robert Cloutier 19.65
- Best Bass Tournaments on Feb. 25 at Nacimiento: 1, James Keeney/Tom Ryan 9.11; 2, James Hall/Todd Langston 8.30; 3, John Flynn/Darin Ferguson 8.27
- March 4: California Delta Team Trail at Delta/Russo’s Marina; New Jen at Kaweah; American Bass Association at Nacimiento
- March 4-5: Valley Hawg Hunters at Delta/Russo’s Marina
- March 5: Success Bass Club at Success
- March 11: 13th annual Sand Crab Classic Perch Derby at Santa Cruz/Monterey County, sandcrabclassic.com; Best Bass Tournaments at Delta/Ladd’s Marina; American Bass Association at Delta/B and W Resort; California Tournament Team Trail at Delta/Russo’s Marina; Christian Bass League at Tulloch; Kerman Bass Club at Don Pedro; Visalia Bass Club at Kaweah; California Tournament Trail at Success;Kern County Bass Masters at Lopez
- March 11-12: Addathon Ironman Sturgeon Derby at Delta/Pittsburg Marina
- March 12: Tracy Bass Club at Delta/Tracy Oasis; Riverbank Bass Anglers at New Melones; California Bass Federation at Don Pedro; Point Seekers Bass Club/Good Old Boys at Nacimiento
- March 18: Dan’s Delta Team Tournament Trail at Delta/Big Break Marina; Tracy Bass Club at Delta/Tracy Oasis; Manteca Bassin’Buddies at Camanche; California Bass Nation/El Dorado Bass at New Melones; Best Bass Tournaments at McClure; Taft Bass Club at Millerton; San Luis Obispo Bass Ambushers at Lopez
- March 19: Bass N’Tubes/Yak A’ Bass at Delta/Russo’s Marina; Central Valley Anglers Team Trout Derby at Camanche; California Bass Federation/Modesto Ambassadors at Don Pedro; Kings River Bass Club at Eastman; Porterville Bass Club at Success
- March 25: American Bass Association at Delta/Russo’s Marina; California Delta Team Trail at Delta/B and W Resort; Contra Costa Bass Club at Don Pedro; Golden Empire Bass Club at Pine Flat; American Bass Association at Success; Best Bass Tournaments at Nacimiento
- March 25-26: Sierra Bass Club at Don Pedro
- March 26: California Bass Federation at Don Pedro; Valley Hawg Hunters at Tulloch; Fresno Bass Club at Don Pedro
- March 31-April 1: Southern California Bass Club at Don Pedro
- April 1: California Delta Team Trail at Delta/Russo’s Marina; Nor Cal Fish Whispers Striped Bass Tournament at Delta/Brannan Island; Stanislaus County Employees at Don Pedro; Mid Valley Bass Club at Eastman; American Bass Association at Lopez
- April 2: California Bass Federation at Bass Lake; Success Bass Club at Kaweah
- March 10-12: Fred Hall Show, Bakersfield, www.fredhall.com/bakersfield/
- Fresno County: Avocado Lake; Kings River, below Pine Flat Dam
- Tulare County: Murry Park Pond
q = quarter moon