NEW MELONES RESERVOIR and LAKE TULLOCH — Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing reported kokanee to 14.5-inches on T pink Uncle Larry's Spinners or hootchies after two trips on the lake. He said the kokes were stuffed with plankton and were ripping the lines off the downriggers. Rainbows are on the surface, but both can be found at 30 feet. Smith said fish are scattered, but he found three schools of kokanee. Danny Layne said rainbows to 3 pounds are holding in the top 20 and hit rolled shad, ExCel lures, Uncle Larry's spinners or blade/crawler combinations off the spillway and at Glory Hole Point. Melanie Lewis of Glory Hole Sporting Goods in Angels Camp said bass are biting but most are small spotted bass. Male largemouths are starting to move into the beds. Try wacky-rigged Senkos, Carolina-rigged Creature baits such as Zoom Baby Brush Hogs or Yamamoto Creatures at 10 to 20 feet. Larger fish are still deeper but biting brown/purple jigs or larger creature baits. Catfishing is improving with anchovies, mackerel, sardines, chicken livers or a ball of night crawlers from the banks. Crappie and bluegill remain best under lights with small or medium minnows in Bear Cove, Mormon Creek or Carson Creek. The lake rose less than a vertical foot this week. Layne touted Lake Tulloch for excellent rainbow bite from the South Shore ramp to the resort with blade/crawler combinations, rolled shad, rainbow ExCels or Uncle Larry's spinners at 5 to 30 feet. Call: 736-4333, Monte Smith 581-4734, Danny Layne 586 2383, Sierra Sport Fishing 599-2023.
SAN LUIS RESERVOIR / O'NEILL FOREBAY — With high water in the main lake, the majority of action is in the Forebay. Ly Tu of Ly's Fishing Goods in San Jose said pile worms, frozen shad or jumbo minnows are producing limits of stripers from 22 to 24-inchs under the bridge in the forebay or near Check 12. A few anglers have been trolling the main lake for an occasional fish to 3-pounds at 40 to 60 feet. Jumbo minnows have pulled a few fish out of Portuguese Cove. Call: Ly's Fishing Goods (408) 629-9644; Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711.
McSWAIN RESERVOIR — The lake was crowded with 150 boats over the weekend for the Merced Irrigation District Trout Derby. The banks were lined with the rest of the 500 entrants. Two money fish landed at $1,000 each. The $3,000 fish is still in the lake, and is worth $500 until July 1 to anyone who had entered the derby. Boaters were scoring with Thomas Buoyants, blade/crawler combinations, Wedding Rings or small spoons from the surface in the mornings to depths of 20 feet on the normal trolling path. Night crawlers or various colors of Power Bait have been effective from the Handicapped Docks or the Brush Pile. There will be a trout plant this week, in addition to the heavy plants prior to the derby. Ospreys were seen picking fish from the surface of the lake. Call: 378-2534.
McCLURE RESERVOIR — Manny Basi of the Bait Barn in Waterford says bass can be found at 10 to 12 feet and caught by drop shotting Reaction Innovation Flirt in Sprayed Grass or dart heading a 300 Pro Worm in purpleflake. There are also fish at 50 to 65 feet biting on 4 to 6-inch Robo Worms in brown/redflake on the drop shot. Crappie bite has been slow with some action around Horseshoe Bend near the boat launch. Diana Mello of A-1 Bait in Snelling reported a 15.5-pound largemouth landed by Doyle Perry of Modesto on a Senko in Cottonwood Creek. There have been some trout in the Cottonwood area and near the dam at 35 to 50 feet on ExCel lures or Needlefish. Water temperature ranges from 58 to 61 degrees. Call: A-1 Bait 563-6505, Bub Tosh 404-0053.
LAKE DON PEDRO — Monte Smith landed seven kings and three trout Sunday. He found the salmon found at 50 to 85 feet with either rolled shad or anchovies in open water. The trout were near the surface to 28 feet on large spoons. Smith said there is a thermocline forming at 25 to 30 feet. Danny Layne also reported good action for small kings on Vance's Slim Fins, ExCels or Shasta Tackle Cripplures at 35 to 100 feet. Kokanee are showing up off of Jenkins Hill, Big Oak Island or in Graveyard Bay at 20 feet with Uncle Larry's spinners behind a Vance's Watermelon dodger. Manny Basi said the fish are on their beds, and anglers are pulling them off with Carolina-rigged Lizards or Baby Brush Hogs in watermelon/red or watermelon/purple. Large minnows continue to provide unlimited action from the banks. Call: Bait Barn 874-301.
DELTA/STOCKTON — Mud came down from the north into the Rio Vista area Saturday, shutting off the trollers through most of the upper stretches of the Delta. In Suisun Bay, Tony Lopez at Benicia Bait said sturgeon fishing has been decent near Garnet Point at 20-23 feet with the best action at the beginning of the incoming tide with pile worms or ghost shrimp. Guide Jay Sorensen reported fair action for stripers on the San Joaquin in the clearer water with fresh shad. He was concerned about muddy water coming through the Delta this late in the spawn. The water was muddy all the way up the Sacramento to Walnut Grove and into Cache and Miner sloughs. The mud also made its way down the Mokelumne into the San Joaquin to the lower shoals by Sunday. Randy Pringle put in a limit of largemouth over 30-pounds Monday with two fish over 8-pounds landed on Berkley Hollow Belly swimbaits in bluegill. There were some heavy limits in Sunday's Western Rookie League out of Russo's Marina led by a 13-pound bass and several others in the 9-pound or larger category. Call: Randy Pringle 543-6260; Mark Wilson (916) 682-1630, Intimidator Sport Fishing (916) 806-3030, Jolly Jay's Guide Service 478-6645.
SAN FRANCISCO BAY — Party boats have had a hard time since the salmon aren't biting except near Bodega Bay and south at Monterey Bay. Inside the bay, big tides slowed the halibut bite, but bass have been pushed into the rockpiles in the central bay by the strong currents. The Happy Hooker worked the Brothers on Saturday, and 18 passengers got 13 striped bass. Live shiners were the key. The bass are hungry because they were inhaling dead bait.
HALF MOON BAY — It's still a mystery why so few salmon have been caught here. The six packs have run south 35 miles to Davenport without landing a salmon despite good conditions. Sheryl Jimno at the Rusty Hook in Pacifica said there have been more stripers taken from the beaches with most of areas yielding two to three linesides per day. Call: Happy Hooker (510) 223-5388; Huck Finn Sport Fishing Center (650) 726-7133, Don Franklin, Soleman (510) 703-4148.
MONTEREY — Sonny Arcaleo at Chris's Landing reported a steady pick Sunday with all three of his boats landing a fish per rod. They have been fishing from Cypress Point up the coast to off of Elkhorn Slough near Moss Landing. Those working the bottom have gotten some nice salmon. Water is warming on the inside and anglers have been catching a few halibut by drifting dead squid. Call: Chris' Landing (831) 375-5951, Bayside Marine (831) 475-2173.
Reservoirs and lakes that will be planted with trout during the week of April 25:
- Fresno — Kings River below Pine Flat Reservoir; San Joaquin River below Friant Dam.
- Tulare — Kern River from Brush Creek to Fairview Dam; Kern River from Fairview Dam to Falling Waters Lodge.