Outdoors

Fish Report (5/20/09)

VALLEY

NEW MELONES RESERVOIR — Danny Layne of Fishn' Dan's Guide Service reported kokanee limits are the norm with the fish stacked up on Coyote Creek, the Spillway, off Rose Island and above the 49 Bridge. Layne has been scoring with Uncle Larry's Spinners, Shasta Tackle Wiggle Hootchies or Sockeye Slammers tipped with garlic-scented corn. Bruce Hamby of Sierra Sport Fishing also has been getting in on the action at 30-50 feet with a pink Shasta Tackle Pee Wee Hootchie behind a Vance's Dodger and Vance's Ball Trolls for 13- to 15-inch fish. Bank trout action has slowed, with the best fishing up in the creeks or under the Highway 49 Bridge with Power Bait or inflated crawlers. There have been rainbows in the 2- to 3-pound range landed on kokanee gear. Randy Pringle, the Fishing Instructor, reported a wide-open bite for spotted bass in the ½-pound range with ‹-ounce dart-head with the Berkley Hand-Pour Holo Shad pattern plastic or the 3-inch Berkley Gulp Minnow. They caught and released 50 fish at depths from 8 to 25 feet. Bass are spitting up small shad, so he matched the pattern. Bass are holding along rocky banks while largemouths can be found around wood. He advised a good supply of weighted hooks, as you will get hung up quite a bit. Catfishing is improving on anchovies, sardines or mackerel. Crappie fishing is improving with Len Johnson, Darrell Gordon and Zachary Fontain landing 15 crappie and three trout at night under lights with live minnows in Angels Creek. Lake is up a foot to 54 percent capacity. Call: 736-4333, Monte Smith 581-4734, Danny Layne 586 2383, Sierra Sport Fishing (209) 599-2023.

SAN LUIS RESERVOIR AND O'NEILL FOREBAY — Ly Tu at Ly's Fishing Goods in San Jose said the striper bite exploded over the weekend in the big lake, with boaters returning to the Dinosaur Point Ramp with limits of fish in the 4- to 5-pound range. Anchovy fillets mooched at depths from 40 to 60 feet in 100 feet with 2- to 3 oz. found the fish. A few fish have been located trolling, but the bait bite has been more effective. In the Forebay, white flukes are producing stripers in the 22 to 26-inch range under the bridge or at the east end near the Aqueduct. The bridge is still loaded with anglers, particularly in the evenings and on weekends. The lake dropped four feet to 438.10 feet elevation due to releases. For wind conditions, call 800-805-4805. Call: Ly's Fishing Goods (408) 629-9644; Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711

McSWAIN RESERVOIR — McSwain Marina reported good trout action with the lake full and clear. Recent plants from the DF&G and Calaveras Trout Farm are keeping anglers happy. Trollers are pulling red or chartreuse Wedding Rings tipped with a crawler or blade/crawler combinations from Gilligan's Island to the 2nd Fence Line at depths from the surface to 30 feet. Bank fishing has been good with white Power Eggs, rainbow Power Bait or inflated crawlers at the Handicapped Docks or the Brush Pile. A Calaveras Trout Farm plant is scheduled for this Friday. Call: 378-2534

McCLURE RESERVOIR — Manny Basi of the Bait Barn in Waterford reported good numbers of small bass can be had on ¼-oz. dart head Pro Worm #300 in shad/red flake, brown/purple jigs or 5-inch Hula Grubs in #330 on a ½-oz. jig head. There is a good topwater bite early, but the swimbait bite is slow. A 12-pound limit won a weekend tournament. Trout fishing is fair, but it progressively slower than previous weeks. Fish are from Barrett's Cove to Horseshoe Bend at the surface in the morning to 45 feet. Chrome/green or blue/chrome Kastmasters, Cop Car Needlefish, blade/crawler combinations, and Wedding Rings tipped with a crawler behind a dodger are all working. King salmon and kokanee fishing has been slow. Crappie are still biting best at night at depths of 40 to 45 feet in Barrett's Cove or the Houseboats near the Spillway with red/white minijigs or small minnows. The fish are still not schooled up. Catfish action should be heating up with the hot weather. The lake rose 11 feet to 797.34 elevation. Call: A-1 Bait 563-6505, Fishwrangler's Guide Service 604-8222, Bub Tosh 404-0053.

LAKE DON PEDRO — Monte Smith reported outstanding action on kokanee, king salmon and rainbows with two mixed limits on a recent trip. They landed three king salmon rolling shad at depths from 90 to 110 feet. The salmon did the opposite pattern than normal, holding in open water in the late morning, as they are usually tight to the banks along ledges after starting in open water. He watched the salmon run up from 130 feet to check out the ball trolls at 110 feet. Layne has landed salmon to 5-pounds with rolled shad or anchovies. Kokanee are found from 40 to 45 feet with a separate school of fish also holding at 65 to 70 feet. Uncle Larry's spinners behind a Shasta Tackle Sling Blade or Vance's Dodger tipped with Pautske's Fire Corn are working for kokanee. The surface bite for rainbows is done for the season with water temperatures hitting 75 degrees. Basi reported a continued slow bass bite with finesse fishing techniques working the best at depths from the bank to 40 feet. ¼-oz. dart-head or Carolina-rigged plastics in watermelon/red or shad/purple or red flake have been the best as well as Brush Hogs in similar colors. The swimbait bite is slow. Live minnows or crawdads continue to produce. The lake is rising rapidly due to heavy snowmelt. Call: Monte Smith 581-4734, Danny Layne 586-2383, Bait Barn 874-301.

DELTA/STOCKTON — The Delta is moving into the pre-summer pattern with warming water, but there are still striped bass moving through. Though interest in sturgeon has waned with striper fishing taking center stage, Kevin Yost of Lucky Strike Fishing in Pittsburg worked the Big Cut and Montezuma Slough for 2 keeper sturgeon, 2 oversized at 89 and 72-inches. The fish came on Capt. Kev's Stingem Sturgeon leaders with an Anise scent on the FishTickle at depths to 30 feet on both the incoming and the outgoing tides. Dockside Bait in Pittsburg said the triple-digit heat didn't slow down the sturgeon and striper bite over the weekend with several quality sturgeon weighed in. One boat picked up four legal fish in shallow water nearby the Marina on grass shrimp. Trollers have been working inside Montezuma and Broad Sloughs and along the Collinsville Rockwall for male stripers in the 5 to 8-pound range. Farther upriver, Jay Sorensen of Jolly's Jay's Guide Service picked up a couple of limits of stripers to 20-pounds on fresh shad at the Santa Clara Shoals off of Twitchell Island at 28 feet on the incoming tide. After the tide changed to the outgo, the bite died. Mark Wilson of Mark Wilson's Sport Fishing trolled in the Sacramento River system for 14 legal fish Monday. He has been experimenting with the prototype P-Line Predator lure with excellent results. However, most trollers in the Rio Vista area were crying the blues with the hot weather and a slow striper bite. Most reports ranged from a fish or two in the 5 to 8-pound range. The best action has been in the north Delta near Viera's Resort, the Deep Water Channel and in Steamboat Slough. Bank anglers have been scoring along Highway 160 with blood worms. This weekend's minus 1.9 foot tide should slow down the troll bite. The results from the Department of Fish and Game's spring striper tagging are still a concern as only 409 legal fish were trapped at Knight's Landing. Pringle said the water temperature has risen with the hot weather and top-water lures of Furbet the Frog and the Persuader Double Buzz Bait are working for quality fish. He has been throwing the frog in cranberry/marble or white/marble in the wind at low tide above the weed beds. Call: Happy Hooker (510) 223-5388; Randy Pringle 543-6260; Kevin Yost (707) 301-8050, Mark Wilson Sport Fishing (916) 682-1630, Fin Addict Sport Fishing 367-4665.

OCEAN

San Francisco Bay — Live bait is still not available in the bay, and the hot weather limited the number of live shiners in the traps over the weekend, so most party and private boats either trolled or drifted dead bait. Despite the lack of live bait, halibut counts are picking up. Both bait boats have been scouring the bay, and the recent signs have been a bit more optimistic. There were scores of boats on the Berkeley Flats over the weekend with a mixture of party and private boats. Bob Wright, second captain of the Happy Hooker, worked hard to surpass Friday's excellent score of 24 halibut, for a total of 17 for 16 anglers on a combination of trolling and drifting dead bait with the larger fish coming on the dead bait. Sunday, they searched on the Berkeley Flats and in shallow water near the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge for a fish a rod — 24 halibut to 16-pounds for 24 anglers. They had to work hard, picking up a fish or two here and there, as there are no large accumulation of bait to stop on. Jay Lopes of Right Hook Sport Fishing put near-limits with 17 halibut to 13-pounds on Sunday for his 6 clients to go with 9 shakers released. Lopes has been trolling the Berkeley Flats and the South Bay.

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