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.
Courtright trout bite good, Chuck Crane said. Bass Lake putting out solid bass action, Dave Hurley reported. Shaver Lake kokanee and trout action ramps up, Dick Nichols said. San Francisco salmon still hitting, Roger Thomas reported. McClure bass action good, Mike Gomez reported. Delta bass on a tear, Randy Pringle said.
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2-Have to work hard
4-Fish jumpin’ in boat
Delta Mendota Canal and Sloughs
Stripers 2; Catfish 3; Bass 3
The Delta-Mendota Canal continues to be a good location for largemouth bass, with anglers punching the weeds with large creature baits and a heavy tungsten weight. Meng Xyong of the Fishaholics out of Fresno said, “Smaller fish continue to keep fishermen busy while soaking bait for stripers. The bigger fish are being caught earlier in the morning or later in the evenings. Anglers throwing lures such as SpeedLures, Duo Realis or Lucky Crafts continue to catch bigger fish. Catfish are being caught on night crawlers and anchovies. While fishing the aqueduct this weekend, I was able to troll my Dipsy Diver to a depth of about 8 feet for a few shakers. Not the easiest technique from shore, but when the fish are staging at a specific depth, it could make or break your fishing trip. The check gates are wide open with a fast flowing current. Water clarity is at a minimal with a lot of sediment being kicked up.” In the south aqueduct in Kern County, the new leader in Bob’s Bait July Striped Bass Derby is at 6.4 pounds. The entry fee is $1, and the winner takes the pool.
Bass 2; Trout 1; Bluegill 2; Catfish 3; Crappie 2
Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “The lake is releasing water, and bass fishing has slowed. The occasional big fish over 7 pounds is landed, but these are the exception.” Catfish are providing the best action with chicken livers or mackerel. The night bass bite is also slow. The lake dropped 4 feet to 28 percent capacity and 509.07 in elevation. The northeastern portion behind the buoy line is closed to all water recreation until Aug. 1 to protect the nesting bald eagles.
Call: Six Star Tackle Box 673-5688; Eastman Lake 689-3255
Bass 2; Trout 1; Catfish 3; Bluegill 2; Crappie 1
Catfish are the top species as the lake remains very slow for bass. Few fishermen are targeting the lake which is releasing water for irrigation purposes. The lake is 42 percent capacity, dropping 2 feet to 499.32 in elevation.
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 2; Trout 2; Kokanee 2; King salmon 1; Crappie 2
One hundred dedicated kokanee fishermen and women along with 11 juniors hit Don Pedro on Saturday to take a shot at the top prize at Kokanee Power’s annual Phil Johnson Memorial Team Kokanee Tournament, and the action was challenging for most participants. “There were a number of fishermen who came out to the lake early in the week to pre-fish for the derby, and they progressively found more difficult action throughout the week,” Kokanee Power President Gary Coe said. “Every day the bite declined, and by Thursday, trollers who were catching fish in certain areas were going back and getting skunked. I think it was the combination of the lunar cycle and the triple-digit temperatures at the lake. A large number of teams barely scratched out three-fish limits for the derby, but the kokanee were quality with the team of Sean McCardle and Mike Nichols taking first with a weight of 66.9 ounces for an average of three fish in the 22-ounce range. Their largest fish was at 16.3 inches, and most top fishermen were working in either Middle Bay or the Graveyard at depths from 30 feet in the morning to more than 80 feet in the afternoon. I landed my largest fish at 22 ounces on a Kevorkian Apex lure behind a Shasta Tackle Sling Blade at 97 feet. The team of Kenny McDonald and Gary Contero took second with 64.10 ounces with Eric and Tanner Travis third at 63.5 ounces. Jack Duvall was the junior winner with a single fish at 22.7 ounces.” Monte Smith of Gold County Sport Fishing confirmed the slowdown after posting limits by 10 a.m. Wednesday; they struggled for four kokanee Friday, losing another five at the boat. He said, “We have been finding quality kokanee to 16.75 inches, but they are scattered into a number of locations in the lake including Middle Bay, Big Oak Island out in open water, or at the Graveyard at depths from 45-80 feet with micro-squids in greens or orange behind Uncle Larry’s, Rocky Mountain Tackle, or Sep’s dodgers.” For bass, Mike Gomez of the Bait Barn in Waterford said, “The bite has been tough with a few large fish taken on Huddleston or River2Sea SWavers before heading to the bottom with jigs or plastics on the drop-shot at depths from 30-35 feet.” All three launch ramps are open with the lake at 77 percent capacity and 789.25 feet in elevation, dropping a foot Monday.
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 2; Trout 2; Crappie 2; Catfish 2; Bluegill 2
The Erskine Fire at the southern edge of Lake Isabella had burned more than 45,000 acres and was 45 percent contained as of Tuesday morning. The Fishing has clearly taken a back seat to the evacuation of residents. The lake rose slightly to 2,559.07 feet in elevation and 29 percent capacity. The upper Kern River is receiving regular trout plants, but most interest is in the lower river closer to Bakersfield for smallmouth and largemouth bass on plastics on the drop-shot or jigs. Triple-digit heat has limited interest at Buena Vista and the local lakes. Bob Rutledge of Bob’s Bait in Bakersfield said, “Most of our fishermen are heading to the ocean with blood worms or lug worms.”
Call: Bob’s Bait (661) 833-8657; North Fork Marina (760) 376-1812
Bass 2; Crappie 2; Trout 1; Catfish 2
The lake dropped 10 feet to 692.89 in elevation and 76 percent capacity. The rapid recession of the lake has slowed the bite. Triple-digit temperatures have limited bass fishing to the early mornings or at night. The fish have moved deeper, with a window for topwater lures in the mornings. Catfishing is best at night with live crawdads, sardines or anchovies.
Call: Sierra Sporting Goods 592-5212
Bass 2; Trout 3; Catfish 2; Crappie 2
Chuck Stokke of the Sequoia Fishing Co. said, “Bass fishing is slow due to hot weather as the bass are deep. The few fishermen are coming out in the early mornings or late afternoons into evening with Senkos, lizards or deep-diving crankbaits.” The lake held at 638.38 feet in elevation and 65 percent capacity. Stokke added, “The Tule River is fishing excellent. I fished the North Fork of the Middle Fork on Sunday and landed 109 natives, mostly browns and only two rainbows. There was a caddis patch explosion, and I fished with two dry flies on my leader and had double hook ups three times.”
Call: Sequoia Fishing Co. 539-5626, sequoiafishingcompany.com
Bass 3; Trout 2; King salmon 1; Kokanee 1; Crappie 2; Catfish 2
Not much change, with the lake holding at 60 percent and 696.69 feet in elevation despite water releases beginning in earnest. Mike Gomez of the Bait Barn in Waterford reported an excellent topwater bite in the mornings with the River2Sea Rover or the River2Sea SWaver before working the bottom by 10 a.m. with jigs such as the Berserk Purple Hornet or Sprayed Grass with a matching trailer. The McClure Point and Barrett Cove South launch ramps are open; the Barrett Cove North ramp remains under construction. The Bagby and Horseshoe Bend ramps remain closed, most likely for the season.
Call: A-1 Bait (209) 563-6505; Bub Tosh (209) 404-0053
The lack of plants since April has plagued trout fishermen, but a few rainbows are still taken in the early mornings off the brush pile, handicapped docks or along the peninsula at the Marina. Triple-digit temperatures further complicated the action. Four of the five planted gold-tagged rainbows have been brought in for the $250 reward.
Call: McSwain Marina (209) 378-2534
Millerton Lake/San Joaquin River
Bass 2; Striper 1; Shad 1; Bluegill 2; Catfish 2
Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “Millerton is the best location for numbers of small bass – 30 to 40 fish days are possible with plastics on the drop-shot or dart head along the banks to 20 feet in depth. A better quality of bass is taken on reaction baits but putting together a 7-pound limit is a challenge.” The logjam in the river arm is around 80 yards in length, and few fishermen are working through it. Catfish to 3 pounds are taken near Finegold with chicken livers or live crawdads. The lake has risen to 87 percent capacity and 563.67 feet in elevation. In the San Joaquin River, there is minimal fishing interest with the exception of a few bass fishermen downstream of Sycamore Island. 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: Fresno Fisherman’s Warehouse 225-1838; Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474
New Melones Reservoir/Tulloch
Bass 2; Crappie 2; Catfish 2; Trout 2; Kokanee 2
Kokanee remain the top species for trollers, and although limits are not the rule, the quality is exceptional with some fish running from 15-17 inches. John Liechty of Glory Hole Sporting Goods in Angels Camp said, “The kokanee are scattered throughout the main lake, and most of the larger fish are landed near the dam, spillway, and in front of Rose Island with a few fish taken around Carson Creek. Many presentations are working, and the kokanee are found at depths between 25 and 40 feet with spinners or a bladed Super Squid behind a large Sling Blades in watermelon, blue, gold, or pink with a slight bend at speeds from 1.4-1.8 mph. Kokanee will bite out of aggression, it is very important to offer them a presentation that has an enticing action by adjusting the bend in your blade to get a wide side-to-side swing.” The trout bite is starting to heat up with the shad moving deeper. Kokanee trollers are picking up a few rainbows, and Liechty advised working intersections where creek channels meet the main lake and existing river channel with blade/’crawler combinations or shad-patterned Rapalas at depths from 25-40 feet. Benn Camicia of San Jose landed a 2-pound, 9-ounce rainbow and a kokanee that was in excess of 16 inches using Needlefish on leadcore. Night fishing under lights is also producing, and limits of quality rainbows have been taken by dropping down at submersible light at 20 feet in 40-80 feet of water and tying on a small minnow, nightcrawler or trout dough bait. The bass bite has slowed up since the fish have completed their spawn and moving out into deeper water. The topwater bite has tapered off, and most of the bass are taken on subsurface baits such as crankbaits, ripbaits or spinnerbaits along with soft plastics at depths from 5-25 feet. The bass are focusing on panfish around submerged timber or heavy cover. Weightless Senkos, California Reservoir jigs or plastics on the Texas-rig are working around the cover. There are big catfish taken on the main lake points and flat dirt banks with sardines or anchovies coated with scent. The dam and the southern end of the lake have been producing big whiskerfish. Crappie action is fair with the night bite “hit or miss” with Liechty advising fishermen to make multiple stops per trip until the slabsides are in isolated wood or standing time with mini jigs, live minnows or small plastic minnows. Despite inflow from the upper Stanislaus River, the lake dropped 1.5 feet to 884.44 in elevation and 26 percent capacity. Glory Hole remains the only launch available on the lake with two lanes and a courtesy dock.
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 2; Trout 2; King salmon 1; Catfish 2; Crappie 2
Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis reported, “Trout fishing is best in the upper river from Windy Gap to Trimmer with Needlefish, Apex lures, Rapalas or blade/’crawler combinations at 3-5 colors of leadcore. Fewer trollers have been heading to the lake with the hot temperatures. Boaters are anchoring near the headwaters with trout dough bait or nightcrawlers for a few planted rainbows. Catfish are taken on cut baits near Deer Creek. The bass bite is limited to a small window for topwater lures as well as with chatterbaits or spinnerbaits when the wind is blowing. Numbers are taken on the bottom with plastics. The night bite has been slow. Fishermen have to work hard for a limit in the 7 to 9-pound range.” The lake dropped several feet to 874.12 in elevation and 60 percent capacity. The lower Kings is running high, and few trout fishermen are targeting rainbows in the swift water. 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: 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 2; Catfish 2; Bass 2; Crappie 1
With the rapidly dropping water levels at the main San Luis Reservoirs, most Central Valley striper fishermen are heading to the aqueducts or tO’Neill Forebay for their striper fix. Roger George of Roger George Guide Service said that there was a fire caused by a car accident that burned about 1,100 acres on the west end of the lake near 152, but it was contained Sunday morning.” He added, “The Basalt ramp is down to the dirt ramp area, and rangers have had a hard time keeping up with the falling water since they have to reposition the dock out farther each day, so it might be key to have a four-by-four vehicle to launch. The lake may reach minimum pool sooner than anyone would have guessed this year. The fishing is sporadic, if you can get on the water between windy days.” Mickey Clements of Coyote Bait and Tackle in Morgan Hill said, “With the main lake slowing down for numbers, fishermen have been heading to the Highway 33 side of the forebay or near the old launch ramp with blood worms, pile worms, or blue bag Sea Wave anchovies for schoolie stripers. We have been selling boxes and boxes of worms every week. Check 12 is still a good location, but it gets crowded early on the weekends and stays crowded all day long.” The reservoir continues to recede, currently at 20 percent capacity.
Call: Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711, Roger George of rogergeorgeguideservice.com (559) 905-2954
Bass 3; Trout 2; Kokanee 1
Few trout reports, but bass fishermen have been heading to the lake after 4 p.m. for solid action for up to 15 fish running spinnerbaits or topwater lures along with jigs or plastics on the drop-shot at depths of 20 feet. Recreational boating has taken over with the end of the traditional school year and the beginning of summer vacation; it gets crowded after 8 a.m. The lake is close to spilling at 98 percent capacity. Campground updates are available at 642-3212.
Call: Todd Wittwer 288-8100; Mike Beighey 642-3748; Bass Lake Watersports 642-3200
Brown trout 2; Trout 3
At Edison, there were few reports, but the trout action has been the best in several years with the lake filling past the halfway point and currently at 61 percent capacity. Bank fishermen are throwing Rapalas, nightcrawlers or trout dough bait. Florence rose again to 91 percent with Mammoth Pool at 92 percent. There are no reports from Mammoth Pool, but the trout action should be good in the wake of the lake’s recent reopening.
Call: Vermilion Valley Resort at Edison Lake 259-4000
Shaver Lake/Huntington Lake
Kokanee 3; Trout 3
The kokanee bite made a turnaround, and with triple-digit temperatures in the Valley the high country lakes are experiencing more and more fishing pressure. Dick Nichols of Dick’s Fishing Charters said, “After many days of hit-or-miss fishing, we have limited out with kokanee on all trips this week with the exception of one day. Earlier in the week, the bite was off and on with an average of a limit of kokanee along with a few rainbow trout, but the bite improved as the week progressed. I have been exclusively targeting kokanee with 22 hookups for 14 kokanee landed on Saturday using orange or pink Apex lures tipped with corn behind Captain Jack’s CJ Dodgers at 33 feet on the downrigger and 23 feet on side poles. Some fishermen are targeting rainbows, and there are plenty of trophies left from our first plant along with the follow up plant of 800 trophy rainbows on June 20. Seven-year-old Joshua D’Souza of Auberry landed a 3.8-pound rainbow on a Trout Buster with me on Sunday.” Todd Wittwer of Kokanee.net Guide Service has been working the Rocky Mountain double-pink hoochie behind pink/white UV splatter blade at depths from 24-36 feet, and he said, “The pink Radical Glow Tube behind a Tsunami dodger is also effective, but I haven’t had much luck with spinners so far this year.” Steve Santoro of Fish Box Charters took out Nick Koretoff and granddaughter Alex for the Scottish Rite’s Trout Derby on Saturday, and they boated three trophy trout for a total count of four rainbows and four kokanee working at depths from 20-30 feet with orange Apex lures behind a CJ dodger or a blade/’crawler combination at 4 colors of leadcore. He said, “We had a great day with Alex winning the Blind Bogie 50/50 raffle while Nick came in second in the Adult Division.” Santoro confirmed the amount of debris on the water, stating, “You must continually clear your lines.” The lake is nearly spilling. Contributions to the Shaver Lake Trophy Trout Project can be made to the SLTTP, P.O. Box 908, Shaver Lake 93664. At Huntington, kokanee in the 8- to 11-inch range are plentiful from the surface to three colors of leadcore with small spinners, hoochies, or Rapalas. Trout are also taken by trollers with spoons or spinners, while bank fishermen are soaking trout dough bait or nightcrawlers. The lake is nearly filled and launching a boat is no problem. Shaver is at 92 percent capacity with Huntington at 99 percent.
Call: Dick’s Fishing Charters 841-2740; Dinkey Creek Inn 841-3435; Rancheria Marina 893-3234; Shaver Lake Sports Inc. 841-2740; Fish Box Charters 871-3937
Both Courtright and Wishon are experiencing heavy fishing interest with the Valley cooking from triple-digit temperatures. The lakes are fluctuating in capacity given heavy demand for electricity, and Courtright remains the better of the two high-country options. Chuck Crane of Wishon Village RV Park and Store said, “Courtright remains close to filled, and bank fishermen are finding good action around the launch ramp with trout dough bait in orange or pink with some quality rainbows landed. Using a light treble hook on 4-pound mono will bring more hookups. There have been some browns taken by trollers using blade/’crawler combinations at 2-5 colors, while Speedy Shiners or Needlefish in brass or red are also effective.” Wishon has been rising and dropping every day, and the trout bite has been relatively slow with trollers working hard to scratch out a few rainbows. Running Needlefish or Speedy Shiners in brass or red along with blade/’crawler combinations at 3-4 colors of leadcore are producing a few fish. Bank fishing is best near the mouth of Short Hair Creek with trout dough bait in pink or orange.” Dick Nichols of Dick’s Fishing Charters out of Shaver Lake touted Courtright and Portal Forebay as the top locations for shore fishermen since both lakes have been heavily planted within the past week.
Call: Wishon RV Park 865-5361
Half Moon Bay
Salmon 2; Rockfish 3; Striper 2
Second Captain Michael Cabanas of the Huli Cat went out rock cod fishing south of Pillar Point. Rojo Chavez from Stockton landed a 5-pound vermillion on shrimp fly with Sydney McCarthy from Lake Tahoe landing a 6-pound vermillion. The ocean conditions were breezy with some choppy swell. He added, “Saturday's salmon trip off of Pedro Point was nonproductive. No scratched baits or a single bite all day, although there was plenty of bait marking along with lots of birds and whales.”The Dungeness crab season ends June 30.
Call: Happy Hooker (510) 223-5388; Roger Thomas, Salty Lady (415) 760-9362; Bait and Switch Sport Fishing Center (650) 726-7133726-7133; Emeryville Sport Fishing (510) 654-6040; Don Franklin, Soleman (510) 703-4148
Rockfish 3; Striper 2; Halibut 2
Chris Arcoleo of Chris’ Landing in Monterey reported the wind remains a limiting factor, and they haven’t been able to take their afternoon whale watching trips. Ling cod action remains outstanding at the local reefs, and they have been able to stay out until about noon before the wind becomes too much of a deterrent. The Check Mate returned with 43 ling cod and near limits of rockfish for 25 anglers Sunday; the Caroline had half limits of rockfish and 20 lings for 17 anglers. They have plenty of room throughout the week on rockfish trips, and fresh dead squid are still the bait of choice for the lings. Allen Bushnell of Santa Cruz Kayak Fishing Co. said, “Halibut reports are on the rise for both sides of the bay.” Kayak angler Josh Quinton from Pacific Grove tried trolling for salmon last Saturday for a few hours before paddling to fish inshore. Quinton says, “I dropped down my eight-ounce iron and started pounding the bottom. It wasn’t 10 minutes and something slammed my jig. A couple big head shakes and I knew what I had and it felt heavy – 40 1⁄2 inches long and 32 pounds! New personal best halibut and new personal best fish.” Capitola kicked out a few big halibut this week as well. Michel Mendez brought in a 31-pound flattie from the SC3 Buoy area with a Capitola Boat and Bait skiff, and kayak angler Aviv Ben-Dashan caught an 18-pounder in that same area using fresh squid on a stinger rig. More halibut were reported near Capitola, the Mile Buoy in Santa Cruz, and off the West Cliff kelp beds. As of last week, most of the big flatfish were still somewhat deep, in 60-65 feet of water. Rockfishing remains steady. Brian Cuttting, who skippers the Chubasco for Randy’s Fishing Trips in Monterey, says they are on a summer schedule now, with morning and afternoon trips. Cutting says even on these half-day trips, “We go where we need to find the fish, even as far as Carmel Bay.” The Chubasco is averaging three-quarter bags of rockfish and one keeper ling per rod, with multiple undersize ling released.
Call: Chris’ Landing (831) 375-5951; Bayside Marine (831) 475-2173; usafishing.com
San Francisco Bay
Halibut 2; Striper 3; Rockfish 3; Leopard shark 3; Sturgeon 1; Salmon 3
The wind has been the big factor the past several weeks, but party boats snuck around the corner to find limits of salmon Monday inside Duxbury Reef. There were not big loads, and two Sausalito boats combined for 18 limits of salmon. On Sunday, three Sausalito boats returned with 46 salmon to 22 pounds for a combined 57 anglers. Earlier, the Salty Lady out of Sausalito found six limits of salmon to 22 pounds plus a crew fish Wednesday inside Duxbury Reef. Captain Roger Thomas said, “There were some fish taken south of the Gate near Pacifica, but with the weather conditions, we decided to head north, and we found a spot of salmon inside of Duxbury. There are 21-inchers in addition to the larger fish, and it looks like a new bunch of fish in the area.” Captain Jim Smith of the Happy Hooker was out in the bay Saturday and Sunday, and he said, “We ended up with around 40 fish for 23 anglers, but the bite was slower for striped bass today. We have been pounding the rockpiles in the central bay for limits to near limits on most trips.” Captain James Smith of the California Dawn continues to find solid striper counts along with some big halibut on his regular ventures into the bay. The larger minus tides this week will be a limiting factor for halibut as well as shortening the window for working the bass on the rock piles. Keith Fraser of Loch Lomond Bait and Tackle in San Rafael reported numbers of undersized striped bass and halibut are the rule with the occasional legal fish taken in San Pablo Bay.
San Luis Obispo
Rockfishing continues to be solid with Virg’s Landing in Morro Bay sending out two boats Monday with 54 anglers for 39 ling cod to 14.9 pounds, 83 vermilion rockfish, 27 copper rockfish, 335 assorted rockfish and three cabezon for four-fifth limits of rockfish. The jackpot on the Fiesta was taken by Larry Tuck of Shafter. Virg’s continues to take reservations for this year’s two-day trips aboard the Princess along the Big Sur coast. The trips leave Friday night and return Sunday evening at $295 angler for the boat, bait and bunk on limited loads of 24 fishermen. Two limits are possible and generally the rule on these trips. The trip dates are available at virgslanding.com. Out of Patriot Sport Fishing in Port San Luis, the Patriot and the Avenger combined with 68 anglers Sunday for 50 vermilion, 220 assorted rockfish, 10 bolina and seven ling cod to 7 pounds on half-day trips for half limits.
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 3; Striper 2; Sturgeon 1; Catfish 3; Bluegill 3
The Sacramento River-Delta is in the summer mode with catfish, smallmouth bass taking top draw along with the occasional striped bass. The combination of high winds and triple-digit temperatures have been a deterrent to solid action. Johnny Tran of New Romeo’s Bait and Tackle in Freeport reported, “Most fishermen are heading into the American River for shad as the bite has all but died up in the Sacramento River. Local fishermen are starting to gear up for the July 16 river salmon opener, and there is optimism for a solid season with the high water flows in the Sacramento River. Smallmouth fishing is best along any of the rocky areas with large minnows if you can find them, Senkos, plastics on the drop-shot, or deep-diving crankbaits. The channel catfish have moved into the Sacramento River, and chicken livers or mackerel are working in the main river or the Deep Water Channel as they are everywhere right now. Bluegill fishing is best around Locke on the Old Sacramento River or along the Delta Loop on the Mokelumne with red worms or wax worms.” Alan Fong of the Fisherman’s Warehouse in Sacramento reported there has been striped bass of the large variety taken on topwater lures in Sherman Island, but these fish are limited to experienced fishermen with an extensive knowledge of the habits of Delta stripers. Randy Pringle, the Fishing Instructor, went out as part of three boats of tackle executives to film their products out of Ladd’s Marina on the San Joaquin. Pringle said, “We must have caught and released over 50 bass to 6 pounds using a variety of techniques including spinnerbaits, the new Berkley deep- diving and shallow-diving crankbaits, the Havoc Flat Dog, and the Chigger Craw in black/red or watermelon candy. The bass are focusing upon either bluegill or crawdads, and the fish are coming up with their antennas sticking out of their mouths. The big minus tides allowed for a window of topwater action in the afternoon on the outgoing tide, and the key is finding areas with the weeds exposed, and the fish will be holding off of the weeds. There is a topwater window in the mornings, but we also picked up a quality bass on the ima Little Stick in the afternoon. There are green-eared perch moving through the shallows, and two of our boats landed big perch on bass gear.” Alan Fong added, “The hot temperatures are driving the bass under the weeds, and my nephew, ‘Bub’ Fong, continues to score quality largemouth bass with Missile’s D Bomb’s under a 1.5- to 2-ounce tungsten punch weight.”
Call: Randy Pringle (209) 543-6260; Captain Stan Koenigsberger – Quetzal Adventures (925) 570-5303; Intimidator Sport Fishing (916) 806-3030
Lake Nacimiento/San Antonio/Santa Margarita/Lopez
Bass 2; White bass 3; Catfish 2; Crappie 3
At Nacimiento, recreational boating has taken over the lake, but limits of crappie can be taken out by anglers desiring to consume the mercury-laden fish. White bass are getting active in the early mornings in the Narrows and around Las Tablas with small white spoons. There is a small window for topwater lures in the early mornings before working the bottom in protected areas away from recreational boaters. At Lopez Lake, bass fishing is best in the mornings and evenings with reaction baits before working the bottom with plastics. At Santa Margarita, catfishing is best with Sonny’s Dip Bait or similar prepared catfish baits. There is an early morning topwater bite for bass. Launching a boat is not an option, but the marina has rentals available. San Antonio remains closed indefinitely as a result of extremely low water conditions at 4 percent capacity and high operating expenses.
Call: Lake Nacimiento (805) 238-1056, ext. 3; Lake San Antonio Marina (805) 472-2818; CentralCoastBassFishing.com (805) 466-6557
- Bass 101 Father’s Day Tournament on June 19 at Millerton: 1, Timmy and Reece Wells 11.13 pounds; 2, Bee/Bishop 10.02 (big fish 4.25); 3, Kerber/Kerber 10.02
- Kokanee Power Phil Johnson Memorial Team Kokanee Derby/Adult Division on June 25 at Don Pedro: 1, Sean McCardle/Mike Nichols 66.9 ounces; 2, Ken McDonald/Gary Conterno 64.10; 3, Eric and Tanner Travis 63.50
- Kokanee Power Phil Johnson Memorial Team Kokanee Derby/Junior Division on June 25 at Don Pedro: 1, Jack Duvall 22.7 ounces; 2, Dane Duvall 16.95 ounces; 3, Quinn Illingworth 16.60 ounces
- Best Bass Tournament/Central Division on June 26 at Delta/Russo’s Marina: 1, Martino Adra/Scott Bern 22.36 pounds; 2, Mike Martinez/Brian Orange 20.62; 3, Kenny and Kolby Warnock 20.20 (big fish 10.38 pounds)
- July 8: Poe Man’s at Don Pedro
- July 8-10: American Bass Association at Delta/Russo’s Marin
- July 9: California Team Trail at Delta/B and W Resort; Bakersfield Bass Club at Isabella
- July 15: Poe Man’s at Don Pedro; Jim’s Pro Bass Tackle at Nacimiento
- July 16: American Bass Association at Delta/Russo’s Marina; Riverbank Bass Anglers at Don Pedro; Kings River Bass Club at Eastman; San Luis Obispo Bass Ambushers at Nacimiento
- July 16-17: Fresno Bass Club at Don Pedro; Success Bass Club at Success; Kern County Bass Masters at Isabella
- July 23: Dan’s Delta Outdoors at Delta/Big Break; Bass Anglers of Northern California at Delta/Russo’s Marina; Taft Bass Club/Tri Valley Bass Club at Nacimiento
- July 23-24: Mid Valley Bass Club at Delta/B and W Resort, Sierra Bass Club at Pine Flat; Golden Empire Bass Club at Isabella
- July 24: California Delta Team Trail at Delta/B and W Resort
- July 30: American Bass Club at Delta/B and W Resort; American Bass Club at Isabella
- July 30-31: Angler’s Press at Delta/Russo’s Marina
- Fresno County: Bearskin Creek; Dinkey Creek; Tenmile Creek, Upper
- Kern County: Kern River, sections 1-5
- Madera County: San Joaquin River, Middle Fork; Starkweather Lake
- Mariposa County: Merced River, Section II
- Tulare County: Balch Lake Upper and Lower; Big Meadows Creek; Bone Creek; Dry Meadow Creek; Hedrick Pond (Redwood Lake); Kern River, sections 5-6; Nobe Young Creek; Peppermint Creek, Lower; Stony Creek
- Tuolumne County: Herring Creek; Lyons Canal (Columbia Ditch); Moccasin Creek; Pinecrest Lake; Powerhouse Stream; Stanislaus River Clarks Fork; Stanislaus River Middle Fork; Stanislaus River North Fork; Stanislaus River South Fork; Tuolumne River Middle Fork; Tuolumne River North Fork; Tuolumne River South Fork
f = full moon > = peak activity