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.
Delta bass bite good, Dan Mathisen said. Delta Mendota bass bite best in Valley, Steve Newman reported. New Melones kokanee fat and hungry, John Liechty said. Courtright trout continue hitting ways, Chuck Crane reported. San Francisco salmon on solid bite, Dave Hurley said.
Never miss a local story.
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 is the top producer for largemouth bass in the Fresno area, and Steve Newman of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis touted punching the weeds with creature baits under a tungsten punch weight or running a chatterbait over the edges of the debris. A few striped bass also are hitting these lures. Meng Xyong of the Fishaholics out of Fresno said, “Many anglers soaking bait continue to catch smaller fish. Fishermen throwing lures such as SpeedLures, Duo Realis or Luckycraft Pointers are landing bigger fish during low light hours. Some anglers are working the bottom using a jig paired with a fluke for success as well. Adding scent to your lure may increase your chances since most fish are honing in on smell. The water current continues to flow along the aqueduct.” In the south aqueduct in Kern County, hot temperatures over the past week have limited the number of fishermen working the aqueducts during the day. The best action has been at night for catfish with cut baits or stink baits. The aqueduct is starting to accumulate debris and moss.
Bass 2; Trout 1; Bluegill 2; Catfish 2; Crappie 2
Steve Newman of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “Quality largemouth bass are still possible with a topwater bite in the mornings before working with plastics on the drop-shot or dart head over submerged rockpiles by mid-morning. The lake continues to release water. Catfish can be taken on mackerel or chicken livers.” The lake is releasing water, and it dropped 4 feet this week to 26 percent capacity and 505.47 feet 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 2; Bluegill 2; Crappie 2
Few fishermen are heading to the lake, but Steve Newman of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “There is a crankbait bite along the rip rap at the dam for small spotted bass. Submerged rockpiles are the other area to target with plastics on the drop-shot or dart heat. Catfish are found on chicken livers or cut baits.” The lake is 39 percent capacity, dropping 2 feet to 497.01 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 2; Crappie 2
Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing took out Dan Bacher, managing editor of Fishsniffer Magazine, and the kokanee bite dropped with minimal action in the morning. They switched over to running Smith’s heavy custom spoons on a fast troll, and they put in kings to 5.2 pounds and rainbows to 2.8 pounds. Middle Bay, the Graveyard and around Big Oak Island remain the top locations. There is a small window for topwater lures in the early mornings before working the bottom with plastics on the Texas rig or drop-shot. All three launch ramps are open with the lake at 77 percent capacity and 789.45 feet in elevation, dropping 1 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 remained 95 percent contained as of Tuesday, but the fire has consumed most of the attention in the area and limited access to the lake and Kern River Canyon. The lake is starting to release water, and it dropped slightly to 2,558.95 feet in elevation and 28 percent capacity. The upper Kern River is receiving regular trout plants, but the fire has limited access there. In the lower Kern River below the dam, smallmouth and largemouth bass are the top species with plastics on the drop-shot or jigs. Hot temperatures have limited angling at the local impoundments.
Call: Bob’s Bait (661) 833-8657; North Fork Marina (760) 376-1812
Bass 2; Crappie 2; Trout 1; Catfish 2
The lake is releasing water, and it dropped 14 feet to 678.07 in elevation and is at 61 percent capacity. Recreational boating took over the lake during the holiday weekend, and the fish have moved out into deeper water during the day as the lake temperature continues to rise. There is a small window for topwater lures or reaction baits in the early mornings before first light, but the dropping water have the fish in flux. Catfishing is best at night with live crawdads, sardines or anchovies.
Call: Sierra Sporting Goods 592-5212
Bass 2; Trout 1; Catfish 2; Crappie 2
Recreational boating took center stage over the past weekend. Bass fishing remains slow. A few anglers are coming out in the early mornings or late afternoons into evening with Senkos, lizards or deep-diving crankbaits. The lake is releasing water, and it dropped to 637.99 feet in elevation and 64 percent capacity.
Call: Sequoia Fishing Co. 539-5626, sequoiafishingcompany.com
Bass 3; Trout 2; King salmon 1; Kokanee 1; Crappie 2; Catfish 2
The lake is showing signs of life for all species with the return of the houseboats to the lake. Terry Mello of A-1 Bait in Snelling reported night fishing under lights is producing crappie, bass, and trout. There is a topwater bite in the early mornings for bass before working the bottom with Berserk’s Purple Hornet or Sprayed Grass jigs. Plastics on the drop-shot also are effective for numbers. Live crawdads and large minnows are another productive choice for bass. The McClure Point and Barrett Cove South launch ramps are open; the Barrett Cove North ramp remains under construction. The lake has dropped to 58 percent capacity and 793.74 feet in elevation.
Call: A-1 Bait (209) 563-6505; Bub Tosh (209) 404-0053
The campgrounds were filled for the July 4 holiday weekend, but fishing remains slow with a few trout landed before first light with trout dough bait from the brush pile, the handicapped docks or along the peninsula at the Marina. The last trout plant occurred in May. The temperatures, ranging from 104-109 degrees have not been conducive to sitting on the banks during the day.
Call: McSwain Marina (209) 378-2534
Millerton Lake/San Joaquin River
Bass 2; Striper 1; Shad 2; Bluegill 2; Crappie 3
Steve Newman of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “A typical summertime pattern has emerged with small fish the rule by dragging plastic worms or drop-shotting with shad-patterned plastics along vertical walls and main lake points. The bite is consistent, but the majority of fish are in the 11- to 12-inch range. There has been a good crappie bite at Millerton with one-sixteenth-ounce minijigs, Crappie Magnets or Bobby Garland’s Shad Swimmers in the submerged trees. The key is working the lures through the branches in the trees. There are a lot of small slabs, but there are decent fish also in the mix.” Striped bass action at Millerton is limited to the very occasional lineside hooked up the river arm by bass fishermen fighting a small spotted bass. Millerton is starting to release water down the canals and the San Joaquin River, and it is currently at 86 percent capacity and 562.89 feet in elevation. In the San Joaquin River, not much change with 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. All wild steelhead or trout with an adipose fin present must be released immediately.
Call: Fresno Fisherman’s Warehouse 225-1838; Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474
New Melones Reservoir/Tulloch
Bass 2; Crappie 2; Catfish 3; Trout 2; Kokanee 3
Kokanee action improved and some of the largest landlocked kokanee in the state are coming out of New Melones. John Liechty of Glory Hole Sporting Goods in Angels Camp said, “The kokanee in New Melones are extremely fat and healthy this year, and we have measured fish up to 17 inches, weighing close to 2 pounds. We anticipate seeing some in the 19-inch range by the end of the season. The best fishing is in the main river channel and in the creek channels leading into the main body of the lake as the fish have moved down farther in the water column from 30-60 feet of water. Hoochies or Super Squids behind a leader measuring from 8-12 inches is working but don’t be afraid to downsize if the fish do not want a large offering. Teardrop dodgers with micro hoochies, Plankton, mini kokanee flies or Kokanee Bites will coax bites from finicky fish. Gold, watermelon, blue and pink are good color choices for blades while pink, purple and blue have been good color choices for lures. Garlic and Garlic Bloody Tuna have been two of the most productive scents.” Gary Burns of Take It to the Limit Guide Service added, “We had a number of kokanee from 15-17 inches in the box this past week, and New Melones is showing hope this year with larger fish. One day we put in two limits of kokanee weighing a total weight of 16 pounds, 3 ounces. It is not a fast bite, so it is important to get on the water early and work the middle of the lake from the dam to the spillway and back. The kokanee are not schooled up, and the best depth has been from 42-52 feet with pink hoochies, Uncle Larry’s spinners or Wedding Rings in pink behind 6-inch dodgers in varying colors with the hoochies from 6-8 inches behind the blade and spinners from 8-10 inches behind the dodger.” Trout action remains fair, but the few rainbows landed are loading up with shad. The shad are in deeper water, and the rainbows can be found around the shad schools in the main river channel and the intersection of creeks into the main lake. Night fishing under lights continues to improve in 40-80 feet of water with live minnows, Gulp! Minnows, or spoons for a variety of catfish, bass, crappie or trout. Bass fishing is fair as the lake continues to drop in elevation and the water temperatures rise. The fish are in the shallows in the mornings before heading out into deeper water. Catfishing remains very good at depths from 5-20 feet along main lake points and sloping muddy banks with sardines, frozen shad, or anchovies. Crappie action is fair at best with the slabsides holding in a few selected submerged trees. Small minnows, mini jigs, or Beetle spins are producing a few slabs. The lake is releasing water on a daily basis and dropped 3.5 feet to 882.94 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
Water levels are beginning to drop at both central San Joaquin Valley reservoirs after reaching a high water mark going back to the start of the most recent California drought starting in 2011. Recreational boating has taken over both lakes by midmorning, with the heaviest traffic on the weekends. Pine Flat is receding 8-12 inches per day after topping 60 percent capacity a few weeks back. The reaction bite has improved at Pine Flat with Steve Newman of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis reporting a decent ripbait bite along vertical drop offices, and there have been spotted and largemouth bass in the 5- to 6-pound range taken on swimbaits. Newman said, “You have to work hard with the swimbaits, but if you pick up a fish, it will be quality. There is also a crankbait bite, but most numbers are taken on the bottom with plastics on the drop-shot or dart head. A week back, there was a halfway decent spinnerbait bite, but this has gone by the wayside with the triple-digit temperatures.” The trout bite has been slow at Pine Flat with most trollers heading for high elevation lakes. The majority of action remains around Trimmer with blade/’crawler combinations, Needlefish, or Thomas Buoyants. The lake dropped 9 feet to 865.57 in elevation and 56 percent capacity. Minimal change on the lower Kings with high water from the releases; 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
San Luis Reservoir and O’Neill Forebay
Striper 2; Catfish 2; Bass 2; Crappie 2
Hot temperatures and corresponding wind have been the limiting factors on the lake as well as the absence of jumbo minnows until August. Andrew Yeh of Coyote Bait and Tackle in San Jose said, “Trollers are working at depths from 60-80 feet in front of the dam for the occasional quality lineside, and P-Line Predator Minnows, broken backed Rapalas, or Lucky Craft Pointers are the top lures.” The lake is rapidly dropping, and it has receded to 17 percent capacity, creating a long walk to the shore for bank fishermen. Roger George of Roger George Guide Service said that the winds have kept most anglers off the water the past week. “The rangers told me they have moved the Dinosaur Point ramp down to the fourth-level position, like they did last year at the lowest level. The dropping water levels are already 2 feet lower than last season at 337,000 acre-feet compared to 347,000 acre-feet at the lowest pool last year. We are all scratching our heads because it’s been a great water year and now they’re draining the lake down further than during last years drought!” George said. In the Forebay, small striped bass in the 18- to 22-inch range are possible, but the majority of linesides are undersized. Rat-L-Traps, Speedlures, blood worms, pile worms, or anchovies are picking up stripers near Check 12. Jumbo minnows are scarce in area bait shops, and this will remain until August. Check 12 becomes crowded quickly in the mornings. The reservoir is currently at 17 percent capacity with the heavy water releases on a daily basis.
Call: Coyote Bait andTackle (408) 463-0711, Roger George of rogergeorgeguideservice.com (559) 905-2954
Bass 2; Trout 2; Kokanee 1
Fourth of July weekend is the zenith of boat traffic at the lake, and few fishermen were out trying. Bass fishing remains best after 4 p.m. around the docks with plastics. The lake is close to spilling at 97 percent capacity.
Call: Todd Wittwer 288-8100; Mike Beighey 642-3748; Bass Lake Watersports 642-3200
Brown trout 2; Trout 2
Portal Forebay on Kaiser Pass has been planted with rainbows, and it is a good place for bank fishing with Power Bait or nightcrawlers. At Edison, the lake is at 66 percent capacity, rising again during the past week. Bank fishermen are throwing Rapalas, nightcrawlers or trout dough bait. Florence rose once again to 92 percent, with Mammoth Pool at 89 percent.
Call: Vermilion Valley Resort at Edison Lake 259-4000
Shaver Lake/Huntington Lake
Kokanee 2 Trout 2
Heavy boat traffic was the story at Shaver Lake over the holiday weekend, leaving a shorter window for trollers before the lake was invaded by recreational boaters. Dick Nichols of Dick’s Fishing Charters said, “The kokanee bite was good to very good all week long until Friday when it fell off to a limit. Saturday’s action started slow, but we ended up with a limit of kokanee, and we were very fortunate to get a limit of kokes with the fish being scattered, perhaps due to the heavy boat traffic. Our best action has been at the point, the island, and the Boy Scout Cove at depths from 23-33 feet with orange Apex lures behind a CJ Dodger. There have been a few of the trophy trout caught recently, and despite lots of debris on the surface, the water level is stable. I think the trout bite will pick up once again with the stable lake levels. Most bank fishermen are heading to Portal Forebay or Courtright, but a few trophies have been caught on the east side of the Edison Campground near the mouth of Dorabella Cove.” Todd Wittwer of Kokanee.net Guide Service had a similar report with the kokanee bite slowing down every day after the start of the week. He has been finding his best action with Rocky Mountain Tackle’s double pink hootchie behind a 5.5-inch blade or with a Radical Glow Tube behind a Tsunami blade. He said, “We have been catching mostly female kokanee this past week with the male going MIA. The night bite has also been slow with the rainbows only picking at the bait. The fish have been spread out at depths from 25-125 feet.” Steve Santoro of Fish Box Charters said, “Recreational boat traffic is crazy, and if you are not on the lake at first light, you only have a few hour window of unrestricted trolling. The kokanee are still biting at depths from 25-30 feet with Apex lures or hoochies behind a gold CJ Dodger. We have been averaging from 6-8 fish per trip with 2-3 clients on board. The smallmouth bass are starting to bite, and the fish are in the 12- to 13-inch range, biting soft plastics around rocky areas.” The lake is nearly spilling, and there is a large amount of debris on the surface, requiring regular cleaning of lines and downriggers. The Shaver Lake Trophy Trout Project’s annual Sportsmen’s Dinner is sold out. Contributions to the program can be made at SLTTP, P.O. Box 908, Shaver Lake 93664. At Huntington, the lake remains high, and launching a boat is not a problem. The sailboat regattas canceled for the past few years will be occurring this month. Small kokanee to 11 inches are still possible with small spinners, hoochies or Rapalas. Trout trollers are roking spoons or spinners for rainbows while bank fishermen are targeting the Auxiliary Dam or Rancheria Creek with trout dough bait or nightcrawlers. Shaver is at 92 percent capacity and 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
Courtright and Wishon remain very high providing easy launch ramp access. Courtright remains the far better option for trout action from the banks and for trollers, while Wishon has been slow from both areas for the past two weeks. Hopefully the action will improve since the annual Kiwanis Special Olympics Trout Derby at Wishon is Saturday. Chuck Crane of Wishon Village RV Park and Store said, “At Courtright, trollers are doing best with blade/’crawler combinations, Needlefish, or Thomas Buoyants at 2-4 colors of leadcore while running at a very slow speed. Bank fishermen are finding fair action near the Day Use Area and near the launch ramp with Captain America trout dough bait or inflated nightcrawlers off of the bottom.” At Wishon, Crane reported slow action for both trollers and bank fishermen with anglers struggling for 2-3 fish per rod. Trolling is the best option, but anglers have to work all day long for a few fish. Blade/’crawler combinations or lures such as Thomas Buoyants or Needlefish in red or gold are best at 3-5 colors of lead core on the far side of the lake. A slow troll is necessary. Shore action is very slow with a few fish found at the mouth of Short Hair Creek or along the far side of the dam with trout dough bait in orange or pink. Inflated nightcrawlers near the bottom are also effective. Crane added, “The river inlet is getting better and better as the water is slowing down, and fly fishermen should find good action up the river with dry flies.”
Call: Wishon RV Park 865-5361
Half Moon Bay
Rockfish 3; Striper 3
Half Moon Bay’s Huli Cat was rockfishing from Martins Beach to Pigeon Point. Capt Tom Mattusch says, “The schoolies aren’t biting well yet, which makes easy limits difficult. The good news is the bottom fish such as vermillion, brownies, coppers and gophers are biting well. The blacks are doing well, the boat usually has to run away from nice quality black rockfish, as anglers are only allowed five. A few lingcod are showing every trip.” Capt Tom says next year will be interesting in that the limit on black rockfish will probably be cut to three, however, it looks like anglers will get to keep a canary. The last week showed anglers sloppy weather and difficult conditions. Along the beaches, Rob Chaney of the Rusty Hook in Pacifica reported excellent striped bass action with white/white hair raisers in the mornings before switching to Diawa SP Minnows in the afternoons. Kayakers are scoring off Rockaway and Linda Mar beaches with the SP Minnows, and the stripers range from Ocean Beach in San Francisco south to Pescadero.
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 3; Halibut 2; Salmon 2
Chris Arcoleo of Chris’s Landing in Monterey said, “We took a group of holiday anglers south to Point Sur on Sunday for limits of rockfish on both the Check Mate and the Caroline. With the crew on board, we decided not to concentrate on the lings, and we didn’t put together any live bait. We ended up with 8-10 lings per boat anyway. We have room throughout the coming week with the exception of next Saturday.” Allen Bushnell of Santa Cruz Kayak Fishing Co. said, “It’s July. High season for sport fishing on the Monterey Bay. Winds, swells and other weather conditions have made things a bit tough for boat-based anglers on the bay so far this year. The less-than-stellar boat-based fishing is balanced nicely by fantastic surfcasting action, with more stripers being caught up and down the coast than we have ever seen. Capitola Boat and Bait reports multiple hookups of bigger stripers from the wharf, with the best chance for bass around sundown. Jig up small mackerel, and deploy on a Carolina rig or the “Dead Man” rig, with a leader attached via slider to the main line, and a pyramid weight to hold the main line on the bottom. An increasing number of legal lingcod being caught by the skiffs working the local reefs outside Capitola and up toward Pleasure Point. Halibut are also coming on the bite in Capitola in 50-70 feet of water, and by the Mile Buoy, according to Todd Fraser at Bayside Marine. Fraser also has good news on the king salmon front, “The salmon are still around in 220 feet of water near Pajaro and up by Natural Bridges. The wind has settled and the marine layer is staying around in the morning. The swell has dropped and the fishing is bound to improve!” Bottom fishing near Santa Cruz remains steady as well. Santa Cruz Port District successfully launched its new dredge Twin Lakes on Thursday. The new dredge is about the same size as the old one, but being new and capable of higher RPMs should prove to be much more efficient in keeping the harbor channel clear during winter. Further information, including plans for an official christening of the Twin Lakes, is available on the Santa Cruz Small Craft Harbor website.”
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
Salmon fishing was solid on Sunday along the Marin coast with the three Sausalito boats returning with over a fish per rod with 52 salmon to 23 pounds for a combined 48 anglers. Out of Emeryville Sport Fishing, the New Seeker and New Salmon Queen combined for a fish per rod on salmon on Sunday with 21-24 for 21 fishermen. On Friday, Second Captain Jerad Davis on the Salty Lady trolled off Duxbury for 15 salmon to 25 pounds for nine anglers with more than a few lost opportunities for full boat limits. The Salty Lady will be running open load salmon trips throughout the week. For rockfish, the New Huck Finn, Tigerfish, Sea Wolf, and Superfish out of Emeryville Sport Fishing combined for 96 limits of rockfish and 73 ling cod to 19 pounds. Captain Jim Smith of the Happy Hooker stayed in the bay for most of Sunday for a count of mid-20s on the striped bass only with three halibut. He also made a run outside for three quality rockfish per angler along with a single ling cod. He said, “It was rough outside, but we landed all big black and Bolinas rockfish.” Shark fishing in the south bay remains outstanding with Captain Jay Lopes of Right Hook Sport Fishing putting his clients onto as many shark as they wanted Sunday.
San Luis Obispo
It’s all about rockfish along the San Luis Obispo coastline, and out of Patriot Sport Fishing at Port San Luis, the Patriot and the Avenger went out on three-quarter and halfd-day trips Monday with a combined 65 anglers for 144 vermilion rockfish, 12 coppers, 84 bolina, 373 assorted, and 37 ling cod to 12 pounds. Children 12 and younger are half price on Wednesday’s half-day trips. Out of Virg’s Landing in Morro Bay, the Rita G went out out with seven anglers on Monday for limits of rockfish composed of 49 vermilion and 21 assorted along with a solitary ling cod. Their next open two-day trip is Nov. 18-20, and these trips have been selling out quickly. The trips leave Friday night and return Sunday evening at $295 per angler for the boat, bait, and bunk on limited loads of 24 fishermen. Two limits are possible and generally the rule on these trips. Trip dates are available at virgslanding.com.
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 has moved into full summertime mode with catfish, smallmouth bass, and panfish taking the top spots for the next month. High winds have been the rule along with very hot temperatures. Striped bass should start moving through the system in August, and generally some of the largest stripers of the year are taken along the West Bank by trollers in that month. A few shad are coming from the Freeport area, but most shad fishermen are working the American River around Sunrise and Goethe Park. Catfishing is best for channel cats and mud cats with chicken livers or nightcrawlers in the Sacramento Deep Water Channel or along Eight Mile Road. Do Doung of Dockside Bait in Pittsburg said, “The wind was blowing hard on Sunday after several days of very hot temperatures, and the small stripers are still the rule with limits in the 18- to 22-inch range possible on anchovies, sardines, or frozen shad.” At the Dillon Point State Park, salmon are being thrashed around by sea lions, and the river salmon season will open July 16. A few sturgeon have been taken off of Eckley Pier in Crockett with pile worms as the river has been far too windy to anchor most of the time. The combination of high winds and hot temperatures are limiting factors for anglers in the San Joaquin-Delta, but the largemouth bass bite remains solid. Craig Kamikawa of the Fisherman’s Warehouse in Sacramento reported a solid punch bite with the weed growth growing steadily in the San Joaquin sloughs. Anglers are using the Double-wide Beaver or Missle’s D Bombs behind a 1- to 1.5-ounce tungsten punch weight. Dan Mathisen of Dan’s Delta Outdoors in Oakley said “The frog and punch bite has been very good, and we have been using the Pro-Z frog along with the California Craw Beaver or the D Bomb with a 1-ounce weight around current. The fish are all under the mats, but you have to have current moving through the area as the bass are in the full summer pattern.” Mathisen hosted a tournament out of Big Break Marina last weekend, and Marc Young and Dave Newton took the top place with a 25.24-pound limit including a kicker at 7.75 pounds using frogs. The Ultimate Frog Challenge is July 30-31, with the Snag Proof Open the following weekend. Brandon Gallegos of H and R Bait in Stockton confirmed the improvement in the striped bass bite with three anglers bringing in limits from 4-8 pounds using live bluegill in Whiskey Slough.
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 3; White bass 2; Catfish 2; Crappie 2
Nacimiento was swarmed with recreational boaters over the holiday weekend, but anglers willing to get on the lake before first light are finding some spotted bass on topwater lures. Numbers of smaller bass are always available on plastics on the drop-shot or dart head. Roostertails and Kastmasters are the key for the white bass, which are boiling on the surface near Las Tablas and the Narrows. At Lopez, there is also a topwater bite in the early morning or late afternoons, but working the bottom with plastics or jigs is producing the greatest numbers. The heat wave has slowed action for the recently planted trout, and the rainbows have moved to the deepest portion in the lake. At Santa Margarita, the water temperature is rising, and the bass are actively chasing shad. Swim baits, spinnerbaits, shad-imitation rip baits or Senkos are all working for quality bass. Catfishing is best with Sonny’s Dip Bait or similar prepared catfish baits in the evenings. 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
- July 8: Poe Man’s at Don Pedro
- July 8-10: American Bass Association at Delta/Russo’s Marina
- 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
- Kern County: Kern River, sections 4-5
- Tulare County: Kern River, sections 5-6
- Tuolumne County: Herring Creek; Lyons Canal (Columbia Ditch); Moccasin Creek; Powerhouse Stream; Stanislaus River Clarks Fork, Middle Fork, South Fork, North Fork
f = full moon > = peak activity