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 firstname.lastname@example.org with “fish photo” in the subject line.
Delta bassing good, Randy Pringle said. Shaver Lake trout plant spurs on bite, Dick Nichols reported. Don Pedro trout hitting, Monte Smith said. New Melones trout and bass biting, Gary Burns reported. San Francisco salmon on the prowl, Jared Davis said. Wishon and Courtright trout active, Chuck Crane reported.
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2-Have to work hard
4-Fish jumpin’ in boat
Delta Mendota Canal and Sloughs
Stripers 3; Catfish 2
The northern section of the aqueducts, northwest of Fresno, is getting more play as evidenced by the increased number of Duo Realis jerkbaits and Lucky Craft Pointer in local tackle shops. Schoolie stripers are the rule, with daytime temperatures limiting most anglers to early morning or evenings. In Mendota Slough, bass fishermen are punching the weeds or tossing topwater lures for largemouth bass. In the south aqueduct in Kern and Kings counties, Pete Cormier of Bob’s Bait in Bakersfield reported a continued good striped bass bite for schoolies with lug worms, blood worms, sardines or anchovies. With the heavy moss, Cormier advises fishermen to go weightless and allow the bait to swing in the current. The August Carp Derby out of Bob’s Bait has started with 67 participants signed up; a 10-pounder is the current leader.
Bass 2; Trout 1; Bluegill 2; Catfish 2; Crappie 2
Dropping water levels and triple-digit temperatures have limited the bass bite to a few fish off the shore. Rockpiles have been the best location with deep-diving crankbaits or plastics on the drop-shot. Catfishing is the best bet with chicken livers or stink baits at night. The river arm is now open. The lake dropped 2 feet to 563.38 in elevation and 74 percent capacity.
Call: Eastman Lake 689-3255
Bass 2; Trout 1; Catfish 2; Bluegill 2; Crappie 2
Similar to nearby Eastman, hot temperatures and water releases have slowed the bass bite to a crawl. Catfishing remains an option from the shore in the evenings with chicken livers or cut baits. The lake is releasing water, dropping 4 feet to 502.44 in elevation and 45 percent capacity.
Lake Don Pedro
Bass 3; Trout 3; Kokanee 1; King salmon 2; Crappie 2
Quality rainbow trout loaded with fresh shad have been the story, with experienced guides finding solid action for clients using shad-patterned spoons. Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing was on the lake twice during the past week, reporting good action on both outings. “After finding quick action on Tuesday,” Smith said, “the bite slowed down on Thursday morning as we struggled during the first hour of trolling with a fish. The bite turned on after an hour, and within short order, we had nine fish in the box before the bite slowed down once again before heating up for a final count of three limits. We have been running my custom shad-patterned heavy spoons at depths at 35 and 50 feet, and one of our rods didn’t get hit all day long so we moved it up to 30 feet. Once it was raised in the water column, it started to pick up fish. I have been targeting areas that I know traditionally hold fish. There are some big bait balls in the lake, and you can see the trout and possibly king salmon below the bait balls. The trout are loading up on the shad, and they are healthy.” The surface temperature has heated up to 80 degrees as the outflow has dropped. For bass, there is a topwater bite with wake baits or the River2Sea Rover, but anglers will have to drop to as deep as 50 feet with plastics on light line by midmorning. Recreational boating remains heavy, particularly on weekends, likely through Labor Day. Anglers can access current weather conditions at https://map.bloomsky.com/weather-stations/gqBxp6apnJSmrqen with a live webcam at https://video.nest.com/live/tE7MzhI0BG. The lake dropped a half foot to 826.27 feet in elevation and 98 percent capacity because of controlled water releases down the Tuolumne River.
Lake Isabella/Bakersfield area
Bass 2; Trout 3; Crappie 2; Catfish 2; Bluegill 2
At Isabella, Pete Cormier of Bob’s Bait in Bakersfield reported a 4-pound rainbow trout was landed on a piece of mackerel as there are still planted rainbows holding over in the lake. Mice Tails, Power Bait and nightcrawlers are all working. Catfishing is the other solid option, with whiskerfish biting on frozen shad, clams, sardines or prepared stink baits. The Lake Isabella Bass Club is hosting a derby Saturday, but there have been no bass reports. The lake dropped 1 foot to 2,575.79 in elevation and 49 percent capacity with heavy water releases. In the upper Kern River above Kernville to the Johnsondale Bridge, trout fishing has been excellent with salmon eggs, crickets, nightcrawlers and Power Bait for recently planted rainbows. The water is still running a bit fast, so action should continue to improve as flows slow. Chuck Stokke of the Sequoia Fishing Co. in Springville said, “The Kern is just starting to be fishable for Kern rainbows, and the Golden Trout Pack Station is reporting golden and brook trout are plentiful in the tributaries of the Golden Trout Wilderness.” Local lakes are limited to bluegill, catfish and bass.
Bass 2; Crappie 2; Trout 1; Catfish 2
The lake is dropping rapidly, and bass fishing has been tough with the receding water levels. Larry Kerns of the Visalia Bass Club fished the club’s Friday night tournament and said, “It was tough out there, and the tournament was won with only 11 pounds. It took just over 10 pounds to take Sunday’s Success Bass Club event. There is a small window for topwater before working the bottom with jigs.” Crappie are still available for those soaking small minnows or minijigs at night under lights. The lake is at 658.85 feet elevation and 45 percent capacity.
Call: Sierra Sporting Goods 592-5212
Bass 2; Trout 1; Catfish 2; Crappie 2
Triple-digit temperatures have limited action for bass anglers. Success Club opted for nearby Kaweah as the site for Sunday’s tournament. Recreational boating is the top draw amid the high water levels and triple-digit temperatures. The Tule River is now open in all areas; campgrounds and Balch Park have been heavily stocked with planters. Success has receded 4 feet to 646.41 in elevation and 83 percent capacity.
Bass 3; Trout 2; King salmon 1; Kokanee 1; Crappie 2; Catfish 2
Bass fishing remains similar to Don Pedro, with a good topwater bite in the morning with Rovers before working the bottom with jigs or plastics on the drop-shot. The Pro Worm 124 p or 300 are top options for those working the bottom. The lake has dropped 2.5 feet to 855.76 in elevation and 92 percent capacity. Launch ramps at Barrett Cove and McClure Point are open.
With the triple-digit temperatures, fishing is limited to the early mornings or late evening hours at the normal locations of the brush pile, handicapped docks and peninsula near the marina with nightcrawlers, Mice Tails, Power Eggs and Power Bait. Scent is important given the limited number of rainbows. Trollers are working the deepest parts up the river arm, but action is slow.
Call: McSwain Marina 209-378-2534
Millerton Lake/San Joaquin River
Bass 2; Striped bass 1; Shad 3; Bluegill 2
At Millerton, Gilbert said, “The bass bite has been tough, and it took 13 pounds from Jason Horn and Dusty Martin to win the Bass 101 night tournament with a combined two weigh-ins. Steve Newman from our shop was up there on Sunday, and he finally found some small fish at depths from 20-30 feet. The topwater bite has been slow. There has been a good bite for American shad up the river arm with some anglers catching and releasing up to 50 fish using crappie jigs or Roostertails.” Roger George of Roger George Guide Service took Fresno State Athletic Director Jim Bartko and CFO Terry Donoho up shad fishing last week before the water started falling. They caught and released more than 50, then stopped counting. “The water is falling about a half-foot a day, which is changing the bite pretty quickly,” George said. Millerton dropped 4 feet for the week to 570.89 in elevation and 93 percent capacity. 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.
Call: Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474
New Melones Reservoir/Tulloch
Bass 3; Crappie 2; Catfish 2; Trout 3; Kokanee 2
Big rainbow trout have been the story for the few anglers targeting the fish at New Melones. The possibility for a huge kokanee remains, but the landlocked salmon are few and far between. Gary Burns of Take It To The Limit Guide Service said, “New Melones is sure looking good this year with all of the water and the big trout, and the only thing missing are the kokanee. The big rainbows are making up for the lack of kokanee, and we have put several trout in the 3- to 5-pound range within the past week in addition to a big fish at 6 pounds. The bigger fish are staying deep when hooked, and about the time you get the fish close to the boat, they take off again stripping line. In order to land these fish, keep your drag loose and wear out the fish away from the boat, instead of close to the boat. We are still using all kokanee gear with spinners, hoochies and dodgers all in either pink or blue as our hope is to land a big kokanee. The trout are all coming on the kokanee gear at depths from 62 feet in the mornings before dropping as deep as 72 feet at 1.5 mph. The south side of the Highway 49 Bridge and the spillway have been the top two areas. If you do hook a kokanee, it will be a good one, and our biggest kokanee this week was 2 pounds, 1 ounce.” Bill Llewellen of Glory Hole Sports in Angels Camp said, “The lake is just beginning to show a slow retreat from the high water mark that was left on the shoreline on July 6, and the water temperature ranges from 78-84 degrees. Trout fishing has been good between the two bridges, and people are weighing in big numbers of fat, healthy rainbows on pink or purple hoochies behind a Rocky Mountain dodger.” For bass, Llewellen said, “Fishing the post-spawn bass is best with River2 Sea’s Whopper Ploppers in the morning along with plastics on the drop-shot. Using live minnows on a wacky-rig is another option for largemouth bass for those actually keeping the fish.” Catfishing is best at night with the hot weather with live minnows, cut baits or a ball of nightcrawlers. The lake has dropped 2 feet to 1,062.98 in elevation and 88 percent capacity.
Pine Flat Reservoir/Kings River
Bass 2; Trout 2; King salmon 1; Catfish 2; Crappie 2
The Central California reservoirs of Pine Flat, Millerton, Eastman and Hensley have slowed down considerably for spotted bass during this extended period of triple-digit heat, and night tournaments have been the way to avoid the really hot weather. There are several tournaments in the months ahead at Pine Flat, but limited parking continues to limit interest. Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “The dropping water level has slowed down the bass bite along with the heat. There is still a reaction bite early or later, but once the sun hits the water, you have to drop down to the 20- to 30-foot range with plastics on the drop-shot, Texas-rig, or dart head. Quite a few anglers have been targeting bass at night with this heat, and this is the most productive time right now. Crappie are taken off of the docks at both Deer Creek and Lakeview.” Few, if any, trout fishermen have been trolling with the hot weather. The lake has dropped 8 feet to 926.40 in elevation and 86 percent capacity. There are some locations on the lower Kings that are accessible for fishing, but caution is necessary with the high water flows. 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.
San Luis Reservoir and O’Neill Forebay
Striper 2; Catfish 2; Bass 2; Crappie 2
Striped bass fishing remains best off the shore at Dinosaur Point or the Basalt Recreation Area with blood worms, pile worms or anchovies. Night fishing remains the best time to target the schoolie stripers. There are a few stripers taken on jerkbaits or topwater lures. Experienced trollers continue to find action for schoolie stripers, but the wind has been a limiting factor. Jesus Reyes Silva of How To Fish said, “Umbrella rigs and jerk baits on the troll at depths from 20-35 feet are working along with bank fishing around sunset at Dinosaur Point and close to the coves near Dinosaur with jerkbaits, swimbaits, or topwater lures. Bait fishermen are using live silversides, minnows or cut anchovies.” Roger George of Roger George Guide Service said that the trolling bite has been slow to decent, but that the wind is the key issue. “I’m hearing about some topwater action early,” George said, “but I expect the troll bite to begin to turn on again with the cooler nights and September not far away.” A Department of Water Resources health advisory remains in effect, urging anglers to avoid contact with the lake’s water or consuming fish from the reservoir because of the presence of toxic blue-green algae has not been lifted, and there are areas of algae in the lake. The lake has dropped to 93 percent capacity. In the forebay, small striped bass to 25 inches are the rule with anchovies or nightcrawlers, but largemouth bass are showing up for those throwing ripbaits or topwater lures while targeting stripers. The California Aqueduct is also receiving increased interest for schoolie stripers with Duo Realis jerkbaits or Lucky Craft Pointers. In nearby Los Banos Creek Reservoir, Silva said, “The largemouth bass bite is on fire with Senkos, Poppers, or topwater Spooks for bass in the 3- to 5-pound range along with bluegill near the boat ramp with red worms.”
Bass 2; Trout 2; Kokanee 1
Trout fishing remains very slow with Mike Beighey of Kokanee.net Guide Service working for two quality rainbows in the early morning on a recent trip. Recreational boating remains high, and it will stay this way until after the Labor Day weekend. The Sheriff’s Motor Fee is enforced until after the holiday, and bass boats are keeping off the lake. Webcams of the lake are available at http://basslakeca.com/. The lake remains at 101 percent capacity.
Brown trout 2; Trout 3
Edison remains the best trout lake in the Kaiser Pass area with Power Bait or inflated nightcrawlers from the banks. Several fishermen headed over the pass, but there were few reports on the return. Creeks are starting to slow enough to target native trout with dry flies.
Call: Vermilion Valley Resort at Edison Lake 259-4000
Shaver Lake/Huntington Lake
Kokanee 2; Trout 3; Smallmouth 3
A trout plant was all that was needed for Shaver to turn on; guides were having a field day with easy limits of rainbow trout along with some quality kokanee. By week’s end, though, the trout bite had started to slow as the fish are moving out into different locations in the lake. Dick Nichols of Dick’s Fishing Charters said, “After weeks of picking up a limit or so of kokanee, the Department of Fish and Wildlife planted a load of three-quarter-pound fish, and the results have been limits of rainbows. We have been scoring the rainbows at depths from 20-28 feet in front of the dam, and we are putting in limits within an hour or so every day. By the end of the week, the trout did scatter out from the dam area and are moving toward the point. They will eventually make their way to the island. My problem this week has been keeping the rods baited and out since multiple hits have been the rule since the plant. I took out John Alkire, CEO of the Fresno County Fair, along with his grandson, Cael from Porterville, and we limited out quickly, releasing another six rainbows within a few hours.” Todd Wittwer of Kokanee.net Guide Service reported the trout bite has started to slow with the fish scattering, but his clients ended up with 14 fish on Sunday composed of 10 rainbows and 4 kokanee to 14 inches. He said, “The Rocky Mountain green Signature Squid behind a Moonshine spinner has been hot most days, and we are also scoring with the Assassin Spinner in chartreuse/blue or pink/blue behind a Tsunami dodger at depths from 27 to 40 feet. The trout have been down as deep as 50 feet, and Rich Christensen landed a 17-inch kokanee on a pink wiggle hoochie at 53 feet. The kokanee are scarce, but we have been averaging around 4 per trip with some solid two-year old fish to 14 inches.” Steve Santoro of Fish Box Charters reported a slower bite on Saturday for near mixed limits of trout and kokanee. He said, “It is an early bite, and once the recreational boat traffic starts, the bite slows and the fish scatter. Gilberto Garcia and his son Gil and grandson Eric of Chino Hills and Aliso Viejo put in near limits using orange Apex lures tipped with corn behind a gold Captain Jack Sling Blade at 20-25 feet or a orange Needlefish at 4-5 colors of leadcore.” The Shaver Lake Trophy Trout Project will hold its seventh anual Sportsman’s Dinner on Saturday night. As in previous years, the event sold out well in advance. Last year’s dinner raised $39,000, of which $35,000 went toward two trophy plants this spring/summer as well as several substantial donations for youth projects. Kokanee Power will be holding its final derby of the season at Shaver Lake on Sept. 9 with a three-fish weigh-in for teams and a one-fish weigh in for juniors. Registration is $45 for members and $55 for non-members. Information and registration is available through Frank Bernard 871-3270. At Huntington, small trout are the rule with trollers working from the surface to 20 feet with blade/’crawler combinations or Wedding Rings tipped with a nightcrawler behind a dodger. Small kokanee in the 10-inch range are also a possibility with small spoons or spinners. Bank anglers continue to catch rainbows near the inlets trout dough bait or inflated nightcrawlers..
The high-elevation lakes of Courtright and Wishon are again producing rainbow trout after a few weeks where one reservoir would be productive while the other was slow. After alternating the hot bite for a few weeks, both reservoirs are kicking out fish. Chuck Crane of Wishon Village RV Park and Store said, “Wishon has clearly improved for trollers, and blade/’crawler combinations are working best at depths to 40 feet. The fish are deep now, and Speedy Shiners or Needlefish in blue/silver are also a good option. Shore fishing has also improved with inflated nightcrawlers or trout dough bait at the mouth of Short Hair Creek or in the river arm. The upper Kings is now fishable after months of high water, and fly fishermen are catching and releasing native rainbows and browns with mosquito or ant patterns.” Tagged fish No. 1006 remains in Wishon and is worth $1,000 if landed by a derby participant by the end of August. At Courtright, Crane said, “Trollers are ‘knocking them dead’ in the main part of the lake with blade/’crawler combinations at depths from 30-50 feet. The fish are deep, and small flashers behind a nightcrawler are working best. Leadcore line is also working, but you have to let out 6-7 colors. Shore fishermen are on the top of the dam in the full lake, and they are dragging rainbows up the side of the dam. The fish are big at 14-16 inches.” Both reservoirs are nearly full, but there is some fluctuation due to power generation from pumping water back and forth between the two reservoirs.
Call: Wishon RV Park 865-5361
Half Moon Bay
Salmon 3; Albacore 2; Rockfish 3; Striper 2
After an amazing run of salmon southwest of the harbor off the Deep Reef, the salmon schools have moved up off the Pacifica coastline, and boats from Pillar Point and San Francisco Bay are meeting off Pedro Point for up to limits of salmon. The Farallons have been outstanding for rockfish and ling cod, and the islands are only an 18 mile run from Pillar Point. The flat calm weather has led to excellent ocean conditions during the past week. On Sunday, both Captain Dennis Baxter of the New Captain Pete and Tom Mattusch of the Huli Cat went north to the Pedro Point area for near-limits of salmon with plenty of opportunities for two fish per customer. Baxter said, “We came up a few fish short of 16 limits with 26 salmon working from Egg Rock north to Mussel Rock, and the overall bite was slower today as the salmon have gone deeper with the water temperature rising to 60 degrees. Most of the Bay Area fleet was there with us, and a number of party boats were able to scratch out limits.” Captain Tom Mattusch returned with 19 salmon on Sunday with a number of missed opportunities, and he confirmed the slower overall action after easy limits of salmon on previous trips. Mattusch is running rockfish research trips to the Farallons and off of Ano Nuevo during the current week. Sherri Ingles of Half Moon Bay Sport Fishing reported outstanding action for salmon north of the harbor, stating, “If you can hang onto your fish, you will come home with a limit. Rockfishing remains excellent with the access to deeper water, and the ocean has been flat calm for the past week.” The warm water has led to private boats running offshore for albacore, and one private boat found a school of bluefin tuna offshore, but the anglers on the Sea Angel decided to leave them alone since they were in the 12- to 14-pound range.
Rockfish 3; Striper 2
Chris Arcoleo of Chris’ Fishing Trips reported continued outstanding rockfish action with limits of rockfish and a ling per rod for a 62-person charter from Fresno housed on the Check Mate and the Caroline. The boats went south to Little Sur and didn’t use live bait. They have some room Thursday, but the weekend is sold out. Whale watching remains outstanding, with humpbacks feeding throughout the bay.
San Francisco Bay
Halibut 2; Striper 2; Rockfish 3; Leopard shark 3; Sturgeon 2; Salmon 3
The salmon continue to bite off the Golden Gate amid great weather and from all appearances there is more great action to come. On Sunday, Emeryville Sport Fishing had several boats out for salmon with all boats returning with limits of salmon, even the large party boats. The fleet has been finding good counts off Thornton Beach and Mussel Rock, but there are other areas to target. There also have been some good scores reported by private boaters fishing up at Duxbury, the Towers and northwest of the channel buoys. The highest counts remain in the south, but there are some bigger fish lurking off the Marin coast. With multiple schools of salmon off the Gate and river-bound salmon sliding down along the coast, we expect more continued great action in the weeks ahead. On Monday, Captain Jerad Davis of the Salty Lady posted 33 limits of salmon to 15 pounds. They just had a charter cancel for Aug. 18, so they are open for this date. Additional openings start Aug. 21. The Happy Hooker out of Berkeley went to the Farallons on Sunday with 21 anglers for limits of rockfish and 29 lings to 17 pounds. Both the Happy Hooker and the California Dawn have been running to the Farallons for limits of big rockfish along with at least a ling or more per rod for the past 10 days. Inside the bay, a few keeper halibut have been coming out of the south bay along with San Pablo Bay, but with the great salmon bite and flat weather offshore, anglers are eschewing the bays for the ocean. Keith Fraser of Loch Lomond Bait and Tackle in San Rafael reported small halibut remain the rule with 4 of 5 or more being undersized flatties. He said, “The weather was supposed to be windy on Sunday, and a number of fishermen didn’t go out. With the great salmon fishing in the ocean, few fishermen are in the bay. Normally at this time of year, you will see a number of boats at California City along with party boats trolling for salmon, but they are still out in the ocean.” Live Loch Lomond shiners are hard to obtain, but they have live anchovies and mudsuckers with pile worms coming in Tuesday..
San Luis Obispo
Albacore are starting to make a solid showing off Northern California ports out of Fort Bragg and Shelter Cove, but they have yet to emerge in this section of the coast. At some time in the future, the longfins may make a spirited showing off San Luis Obispo County. In the meantime, rockfish and ling cod will have to fill the bill. Out of Morro Bay Landing, the Endeavor had a great trip on a full-day venture on Saturday with 35 anglers for full limits of rockfish consisting of 210 vermilion, 60 Boccaccio, 10 copper, 70 assorted rockfish and 42 ling cod to 16 pounds. Out of Virg’s Landing in Morro Bay, the Fiesta and Rita G went out on three-quarter and half-day trips on Monday with 55 anglers for a total of 58 vermilion, 472 assorted rockfish, 10 coppers, 10 canary, one cabezon and 15 ling cod to 18.2 pounds with the big fish taken on the Rita G by Christina Hernandez of Bakersfield. Randy Martinez of Fresno took the jackpot on the Fiesta with a 6-pound ling. Out of Patriot Sport Fishing at Port San Luis, the Phenix and Flying Fish returned with 32 limits of rockfish and 12 lings to 12 pounds with mostly bottom-grabbers of 77 vermilion, 131 copper, 100 assorted, and 10 Boccacio with a jackpot landed by Wyatt Byrd of Clovis. Both harbors have a variety of trips running from half-day through two-day trips in the upcoming weeks. Surf perch fishing is decent along the beaches with blood worms or lug worms.
Bass 3; Striper 3; Sturgeon 2; Catfish 2; Bluegill 3; Salmon 2
Hot weather has kept the salmon moving quickly up the Sacramento River, but there has been the occasional fish taken off the Suisun Bay or Freeport shoreline. Striped bass should be arriving in force within the next few weeks, and a few linesides are starting to trickle in despite the warm water. Johnny Tran of New Romeo’s Bait and Tackle in Freeport said, “There have been a few more salmon landed from the shoreline including a 10-pounder on a Flying C on Sunday morning, but the action remains slow for the most part. It will start picking up as soon as the water cools down. Stripers are still around with sardines or anchovies coated with garlic spray, but smallmouth have been the best bite in our part of the Delta with Senkos on a Texas-rig or live large to extra-large minnows over the rockpiles in the sloughs. Catfishing is also good in the Sacramento Deep Water Channel or in Lisbon Slough with chicken livers or nightcrawlers.” Tony Lopez of Benicia Bait reported a 40-pound striped bass was landed off Ninth Street on either anchovies or grass shrimp, but a huge fish such as this has been the exception from the banks. Most of the shoreline stripers have been schoolies, and pile worms have been a hot bait from under the Benicia/Martinez Bridge west toward the Dillon Point State Park. There were five salmon landed on Vee-Zee or Flying C spinners during the week, but the salmon bite has yet to take off from the shorelines. Steve Santucci of Steve Santucci’s Fly Fishing Guide Service said, “Smallmouth bass are plentiful in the North Delta. It’s that time of year when you should at least plan a couple of days to enjoy the vast resource of the Delta.” The original specialty frog tournament, the 16th annual Snag Proof Open, was held out of Russo’s Marina this past Saturday and Sunday, and 227 teams participated in divisions for amateurs and professionals. Dan Mathisen of Dan’s Delta Outdoors fished the tournament and said, “The event was extremely well run and organized, and the tournament director, Randy Pringle, and the Russo’s Marina staff did an outstanding job of making sure that all was taken care of. I haven’t fished a tournament in a long time, but I had a great time with my partner although the fishing was tough for us.” Randy Pringle, the fishing instructor, said, “We had an amateur and pro division with separate money and trophies in each division” The first-day results listed the professional team of Richard Dobyns and James Avalos is first place at 17.7 pounds while the amateur team of John Clark and Tri Dang came in at 22.41 pounds. Vince Borges of Vince Borges Outdoors said, “The bass bite has been outstanding with 50-fish days possible, and we have had the opportunity for a 30- to 40-pound limit our last four trips on the Delta. There have been several occasions when a huge fish has blown up on a buzzbait or a Whopper Plopper, but the fish are just slapping at the topwater baits. These are giant fish, but they haven’t been willing to eat the frog. Any style you want to fish right now is working, and the punch bite is phenomenal.” Steffan Masters of Lost Anchor Bait and Tackle said, “A few salmon have been landed off of Humphrey’s Pier in Antioch with either Flying C or Vee-Zee spinners, and striped bass in the 25- to 30-inch range continue to be caught weekly off the Antioch Fishing Pier with fresh shad or sardines.” The City of Oakley’s Chapter Kid’s Fishing Derby will be Aug. 12 on the Antioch Fishing Pier. Alan Fong of the Fisherman’s Warehouse in Sacramento reported good bass action with topwater lures such as the River2Sea Whopper Plopper. In the south Delta, Steve Johnson at H and R Bait in Stockton reported a good catfish bite on the San Joaquin River and in the Old River with fresh shad or nightcrawlers. Schoolie stripers in the 4-pound range are found in the Middle River. They have been receiving up to 100 pounds of fresh shad on a daily basis.
Lake Nacimiento/San Antonio/Santa Margarita/Lopez
Bass 3; White bass 2; Striper 2; Catfish 2; Crappie 2
Lopez remains the best option for largemouth bass with a brief window for topwater lures in the early, early morning or late afternoons toward dusk. Small topwater lures or buzzbaits are working along with wake baits while there is a subsurface bite by midmorning with chatterbaits or crankbaits. Bluegill and redear perch are still holding around structure on red worms, wax worms, or meal worms. Lopez Lake Marina is open until summer hours to 9 p.m. A webcam of the lake is available at http://805webcams.com/lopez-lake-webcam/. At Nacimiento, white bass are starting to break the surface in order to gorge on shad, and the normal locations of Dip Creek, Las Tablas and the Narrows are good locations to seek the boils. The white bass have been reluctant to hit lures with the abundant shad, but small white Roostertails or Kastmasters are the best bet. Spotted bass in the one-pound range are abundant with a reaction bite in the mornings with small versions of crankbaits or jerkbaits while the best action is working the bottom with plastics on the drop-shot or dart head. A webcam is available at http://www.lakenacimientolive.com/. At San Antonio, the algae bloom has primarily vanished with the increased water releases into the river, and catfish remain the top species with sardines, anchovies, or mackerel from the banks. The fish are moving into the shallows with the warming water temperatures. Trolling swimbaits in the deeper portions of the lake are working for the occasional striped bass, but there is a small window in the early morning or evening for the linesides.. Santa Margarita has been fair at best with only a few largemouth bass on topwater lures, and the best tactic remains working the bottom with plastics or Senkos. Catfish and pan fish have been difficult to locate. Quagga mussel inspections are now required before boat launching is allowed.
- 16th annual Snag Proof Open Professional Division on Aug. 5-6 at Delta/Russo’s Marina: 1, Austin Wilson/Kirby Wallace 25.18 pounds; 2, Rich Degaetano/Tom Trayer 23.98; 3, Richard Dobyns/James Avalos 23.97
- 16th annual Snag Proof Open Amateur Division at Delta/Russo’s Marina: 1, John Clark/Tri Dang 37.19 pounds; 2, Mark and Sam McVay 23.54; 3, Matt Larson/Douglas Olson 21.98
- Bass 101 Open Night Tournament on Aug. 5-6 at Millerton: 1, Dusty Martin/Jason Horn 13.23 pounds; 2, Mike Alvarez 12.62; 3, Mark Corrente/John Albidrez 12.42; big fish, Ralph Encizo 3.97
- Success Bass Club on Aug. 6 at Kaweah: 1, Pops Gonzalez/Sergio Mendoza 10.01 pounds; 2, John Barron/Rodger Patterson 9.03; 3, Nai Saeleaw/San Saechao 8.93
- Aug. 10: Delta/Tracy Oasis, Tracy Bass Club
- Aug. 11: Lopez, 101 Bass
- Aug. 12: Delta/B and W Resort, California Delta Team Trail; Delta/Ladd’s Marina, Tri Valley Bassmasters/Bass Anglers of Northern California; Amador,Manteca Bassin’ Buddies; McClure/Barrett’s Cove, RiverRat Bass Tournaments Open; Eastman, New Jen Bass Tournaments; Success, Porterville Bass Club; Isabella, Lake Isabella Bass Club
- Aug. 12-13: Delta/Russo’s Marina, Hook, Line, and Sinker
- Aug. 13: Pine Flat, Fresno Bass Club; Santa Margarita,Good Old Boys
- Aug. 16: Delta/Ladd’s Marina, Good Old Boys
- Aug. 17: Delta/Tracy Oasis, Tracy Bass Club
- Aug. 19: Delta/Big Break Marina, Dan’s Delta Outdoors; Delta/B and W Resort, American Bass Association/Mid Valley Bass Club;
- Camanche, Outlaw Bass Club; Nacimiento,Taft Bass Club; San Antonio, Kayak Bass Club
- Aug. 20: Delta/Ladd’s Marina, Bass N’ Tubes
- Aug. 26: Delta/Russo’s Marina, Best Bass Tournaments; Delta/Ladd’s Marina, Oro Madre Bass Club;
- Sept. 2: Delta/Tracy Oasis, Tracy Bass Club
- Sept. 3: Delta/B and W Resort, Valley Hawg Hunters; Nacimiento, Good Old Boys
- Fresno County: Big Creek, Huntington; Kings River, Below Pine Flat Dam; Rancheria Creek; San Joaquin River, South Fork; Ward Lake; Wishon Reservoir
- Madera County: Chiquito Creek, Lower; Granite Creek (West Fork); Manzanita Lake
- Tulare County: Peppermint Creek, Upper; Tule River North Fork, Middle Fork 1; Tule River South Fork, Middle forks 2-3
- Tuolumne County: Lyons Canal (Columbia Ditch); Moccasin Creek; Pinecrest Lake; Powerhouse Stream; Stanislaus River Clarks, Middle and South forks; Tuolumne River Middle, North and South forks
q = quarter moon > = peak activity