Fish Report (8/12/09)


New Melones Reservoir — Melanie Lewis of Glory Hole Sporting Goods reported kokanee are developing hooked jaws and losing their scales but aren't showing much color yet. The bite is tough and most anglers are having a hard time finding limits unless they spend quite a bit of time trolling. Best bite are for those who are on the water at dawn and who bottom bounce with a downrigger. Main lake most popular place for trollers, but action is picking up above the Highway 49 Stevenot Bridge and at the mouth of Carson Cove. Kokanee are at 80-120 feet deep — deeper as it gets hotter. Glitterbugs, micro hootchies in orange or pink, R & K pink Hootchies and Apex in pink, orange or blue are working. Try adding a bit of Bang crawdad scent when kokanee get close to spawning; the scent of crawdad sometimes incites a bite, since crawdads eat their eggs. Jo Sanders of Murphys landed a 3-pound, 11-ounce rainbow she caught while night fishing with a crawler/Power Bait combo at 80 feet near the spillway. Trollers are mainly catching kokanee, but are seeing nice rainbows in mixed trout/kokanee limits. Most have been caught on kokanee rigs. As a rule, trout are 10 feet shallower than kokanee in the main lake and upriver,and are hitting brightly colored lures. For browns, troll Rapala Countdowns or Trophy Sticks in rainbow trout or shad patterns, or rolled shad at 50-60 feet (in the same areas, but closer to structure). The bass bite is fair with a good top-water bite at dawn and dusk with Zara Spooks, buzz baits, or Pop-Rs. When sun is up, crawdad or shad-colored Carolina-rigged 6-inch worms, rip-baits, spinnerbaits, Zoom Baby Brush Hog or Senkos are working along the mud. Night fishing with a dark Power Worm is also good for bass. Catfishing is excellent with anchovies, mackerel, sardines, chicken liver or a ball of nightcrawlers. Crappie and bluegill action best under lights at 10-30 feet around submerged trees with small live minnows, or crappie jigs with jigs in red/white, black/chartreuse or purple/white in Bear, Carson or Mormon creeks. Lake at 50 percent. Angels Cove Launch Ramp closed, Tuttletown is on the low water ramp and Glory Hole is at the mid-ramp. Call: 736-4333; Monte Smith 581-4734; Danny Layne 586-2383; Sierra Sport Fishing 599-2023.

San Luis Reservoir / O'Neill Forebay — Ly Tu of Ly's Fishing Goods in San Jose said a 46-inch, 42-pound striped bass was landed at Check 12 on a pile worm. The angler worked hard, staying put all day with no bites before hooking the fish in the evening. A 40-inch catfish was also taken off the shoreline after biting an anchovy. In the main lake, mooched anchovies are working at 60-80 feet for keepers to 24 inches. Anglers are reluctant to walk through the mud to reach the water with the lake extremely low. Anglers are working the Forebay under the bridge for stripers to 26 inches. Call: Ly's Fishing Goods (408) 629-9644; Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711.

McSwain Reservoir — Diana Mello of A-1 Bait in Snelling reported a good early morning bite for limits on chrome or chrome/blue Kastmasters from the banks. Trollers have to work hard for limits at depths to 30 feet with Kastmasters or green Wedding Rings tipped with a crawler from the dam to the second fence line with chrome Ford Fenders trailed by a crawler. Call: 378-2534.

Lake Camanche — Catfish still hot with lots being caught from boats and banks. A 16-pounder was caught Sunday on mackerel in a rocky area about 20 feet. Trout trollers had a pretty good time if they were in the right place. Regulars Randy McCutcheon and Tim O'Connor, from Fremont, caught limits by trolling in the main lake with small minnow imitation lures at 25-35 feet early in the morning, and deeper later. They also caught and released 30 to 40 bass which were hitting their trout lures. Also reported that downriggers set 25-35 feet were working well near the dam. For bass try Senkos, Robo Worms or Baby Brush Hogs in smoke, purple, green pumpkin or natural shad. Top water baits effective early or late along with crankbaits in crawdad color or spinners in chartreuse, white or yellow.

McClure Reservoir — Manny Basi at Waterford's Bait Barn said spotted bass fishing is "on fire" with PopR's in the morning with shad-patterned worms on the dart head, drop shot or Carolina-rigged from the banks to 20 feet working after the sun hits the water. A small-profile jighead on a brown/purple jig with a brown/purple Yamamoto twin-tail trailer are also working. Live minnows or crawdads are working from the banks at Barrett's Cove or McClure Point. Trout limits are possible early at 30-40 feet with green Wedding Rings tipped with a crawler behind a dodger or shad-patterned lures at the dam or up the river arm. Night anglers are using live minnows near the houseboats at 25-30 feet for trout and occasional crappie. Anglers are also drifting in the coves and tossing chrome/blue Kastmasters in the early mornings. Slow for kokanee. Catfishing is excellent in Piney or Barrett's Cove with anchovies or live minnows along steep, sloping drop offs. Call: A-1 Bait 563-6505; Fishwrangler's Guide Service 604-8222; Bub Tosh 404-0053.

Lake Don Pedro — Manny Basi said bass fishing is best with watermelon red Brush Hogs dragged along the bottom from the banks to 40 feet deep. Brown/purple jigs followed by a brown/purple trailer on a small profile jig head is also working. Drop shotting, dart heading or Carolina-rigging shad-colored worms are also good techniques. No trout, salmon or kokanee reports. Call: Monte Smith 581-4734; Danny Layne 586-2383; Bait Barn 874-3011.


Stockton — Stripers continue to move into the rivers in small groups, perhaps due to high water releases upstream from the American, Feather and Sacramento Rivers. Bank action in Benicia better for fish to 32 inches on small bullheads or anchovies along the Dillon Point State Park or 9th Street. Dockside Bait in Pittsburg said the overall quality of bass is improving with a 15-pound striper and a few in the 8-pound range found on grass shrimp or bullheads. Unfortunately, grass shrimp was in short supply over the weekend in the east Delta. Fresh shad continues to be difficult to obtain with only a few bait shops consistently supplying a generally small grade of bait. The San Joaquin River near Lights 33A to 38 is giving up a few stripers to 6 pounds on red/chartreuse Rebels, particularly on the incoming tide. Randy Pringle, the Fishing Instructor, said Monday's heat turned on the top water bite with Poppn' Furbet the Frog along the weedlines and the weeds. The fish are dropping deeper in the afternoons, and the Chigger Craw in green pumpkin or brown or Persuader E-chip jig in black/red or brown are working along the outside weed lines. Call: Randy Pringle 543-6260; Kevin Yost (707) 301-8050; Mark Wilson Sport Fishing (916) 682-1630; Fin Addict Sport Fishing 367-4665; Jolly Jay 478-6645.


San Francisco Bay — The winds ramped up a bit over the weekend, and rockfish counts diminished with the rougher offshore conditions at the Farallons. The Captain Hook and the New Super Fish out of Emeryville combined for 232 rockfish for 30 anglers to go with a dozen lings to 12-pounds after five of their boats posted scores 135 limits of rockfish and 23 lings to 12-pounds Saturday. Inside the bay, tides dropped a bit and the striper counts dropped from Fridays limits. Jim Smith on the Happy Hooker boated 27 limits Friday, 42 fish Saturday, and 20 bass to 16-pounds Sunday. Smaller tides and heavy boat traffic depressed the scores of linesides.