BEST BETS Millerton and Pine Flat bass action has improved. ... San Luis stripers steady. ... Kaweah bass continue hitting ... Albacore action out of Morro Bay. ... McSwain trout bite good. ... Delta striper action heats up. ... New Melones bass feeding.
LAKE DON PEDRO Guide Monte Smith said you have to search for bait fish, but once you find them the rainbows won't be far behind. Unfortunately, the shad have scattered throughout the lake. "The rainbows will be moving up continuously as the water cools in the next month, and you will have to hunt them down," Smith said. Look for birds working (or even sitting on) the surface; that's a good indication of bait fish. Pay close attention to the mouths of coves. Manny Basi of the Bait Barn in Waterford said it's still difficult to catch bass, but recommended drop-shotting and dragging a Berserk Purple Hornet jig with a Yamamoto cinnamon/purple trailer at 30 feet. There is a top-water bite in the early mornings and it's best on Super Spooks or the River2Sea Rover. Call: Monte Smith (209) 581-4734; Danny Layne (209) 586-2383; Gary Vella (209) 652-7550; Bait Barn (209) 874-3011
McCLURE RESERVOIR Jason Mello of A-1 Bait caught and released a 4-pound largemouth from the banks at Barrett's Cove on Monday with a Robo Worm Warmouth. One angler caught 25 bass on live crawdads in Cottonwood Creek with five of them over 15 inches. Live crawdads have also been effective for crawdads. Heavy trout plants near the Barrett's Cove south ramp over the past two weeks have spurred bank action with Kastmasters or Panther Martins. Few king salmon or trolling trout reports have been coming in, but expect trout to leave the banks soon. Call: A-1 Bait (209) 563-6505; Bub Tosh (209) 404-0053
McSWAIN RESERVOIR Stephanie Powell at the marina reported very good action for trollers past the floating restrooms; it's best early in the mornings with blade/crawler combinations or Wedding Rings tipped with a night crawler behind a dodger. Silver spoons have also been very effective. Corn yellow, original garlic, or yellow garlic Power Bait have been working for shore anglers at the brush pile or handicapped docks. There was a Calaveras Trout plant last week and there's a DFG plant set for Wednesday or Thursday. Call: McSwain Marina (209) 378-2534
NEW MELONES RESERVOIR / TULLOCH Bass fishing has been good with Melanie Lewis of Glory Hole Sporting Goods in Angels Camp saying the fish are feeding on shad or crawdads, "fattening up for the cold winter months." Jigging with ½- to ¾-ounce spoons are working. She touted the California Reservoir Lures jigs in Melones Craw, Sculpin, Green Pumpkin or cinnamon/purple. Lewis said trout action is slow as the rainbows are transitioning from deep water toward the shallows. Shore anglers are starting to pick up a few fish. The river and stream season ends Nov. 15. There is no kokanee action. Catfishing is good with the whiskerfish moving into the shallows. Roy Grover of Manteca caught a 10¾-pound whiskerfish on red/yellow Power Bait. Crappie fishing remains slow, but Lewis said fish can be found from 15 to 40 feet in the backs of creek channels. Call: Glory Hole Sports (209) 736-4333; Monte Smith (209) 581-4734; Danny Layne (209) 586-2383; Sierra Sport Fishing(209) 599-2023
SAN LUIS RESERVOIR / O'NEILL FOREBAY Stripers are still biting continues, especially for those drifting jumbo minnows off of the trash racks or dropping 1½- to 1¾-ounce Duh! or P-Line Lazer Minnows in black/silver or chartreuse/white from 40 to 70 feet. Anthony Lopez of Coyote Bait in Morgan Hill said there's been good action from the banks near the Romero Visitor Center with 15- and 26-pound stripers being caught on successive casts. The angler was using grass shrimp. There is a small window for surface action with top-water lures, Umbrella rigs and jerkbaits. Lopez said there are smaller stripers in the Forebay for those throwing jerkbaits over the top of the grass, soaking blood worms or pile worms near Check 12 and around the Highway 152 bridge. Call: Ly's Fishing Goods (408) 629-9644; Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711; Roger George (559) 905-2954