NEW MELONES RESERVOIR — Kokanee are on the bite, and Danny Layne of Fishn' Dan's Guide Service found quick limits in Coyote Creek and off of the spillway at 38 feet with Vance's Sockeye Slammers, Uncle Larry's Pinkie, and Glitterbugs orange hootchies behind a Vance's Gold Dodger or Shasta U/V Sling Blade. Melanie Lewis of Glory Hole Sporting Goods in Angels Camp recommended bank anglers head up the canyon to streams and creeks, but an occasional trout has been taken off the bank. Trollers are advised to target the main lake and upriver at 20-40 feet with shad- or rainbow trout-patterned lures or spinners tipped with a crawler. Lewis said fishing continues to be excellent for spotted bass upriver with Oxblood plastics on a split-shot around rocky points from the banks. Catfishing is improving with anchovies, mackerel, sardines, chicken livers or a ball of night crawlers from the banks. Crappie and bluegill remains best at night under lights in Bear Cove, Mormon Creek or Carson Creek. 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 said the majority of anglers are still along the banks at the forebay under the bridge or at check 12 for stripers. The main lake continues to be slow for the occasional fish landed by trollers pulling hootchies or drifting jumbo minnows. Small stripers are still found around the Basalt Launch Ramp with anchovies or pile worms. The main lake released 11,253 acre-feet of water into the aqueducts, and the lake dropped to 76 percent capacity. Wind conditions: (800) 805-4805. Call: Ly's Fishing Goods (408) 629-9644; Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711.
McSWAIN RESERVOIR — Diana Mello at A-I Bait in Snelling reported great trout action for bank and boat anglers. Trollers have been pulling chrome Kastmasters, blade/crawler combinations or Wedding Rings tipped with a crawler at 30 feet deep along the regular pattern to the Dam. Bank anglers are scoring with Bubble Gum Power Eggs, various colors of Power Bait or night crawler/marshmallow combinations at the Brushpile or the Handicapped Docks. Call: 378-2534.
McCLURE RESERVOIR — Bruce Hamby of Sierra Sport Fishing reported the trout and king salmon action broke out, and the rising water pushed the newly-hatched shad to the surface. Both the kings and rainbows are holding from McClure Point to the Dam. He put clients Bruce and Najah Baron of Sonora on to 20 rainbows and 14 king salmon. Hamby has downsized to smaller lures to match the size of the shad, using Sockeye Slammers, Cop Car ExCel spoons or Crystal Basin Wiggle Hootchies. Diana Mello of A-I Bait in Snelling said the crappie bite has slowed. Manny Basi of the Bait Barn in Waterford said bass fishing is decent with Yamamoto Twin-tail Hula Grubs in greenpumpkin/purple flake (Color 330) with a cinnamon/purple trailer. The lake rose to 69 percent capacity. Call: A-1 Bait 563-6505; Bub Tosh 404-0053.
LAKE DON PEDRO — Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing reported great king salmon action for easy limits. Robert and Maria Hernandez of Clovis fished with Smith and boated eight kings and two rainbows. Smith continues to fast-troll homemade spoons from the Dam to Big Oak Island on lead core lines for the rainbows before targeting salmon in front of Big Oak Island or Jenkins Hill with rolled shad. Manny Basi of the Bait Barn said the best bass fishing remains on Senkos in greenpumpkin/purple, drop-shotting Reaction Innovation's Bad Shad Green or Pro Worms in ProGold/redflake, or Carolina-rigged Brush Hogs or lizards in watermelon/redflake, watermelon/candy or watermelon/purple. There is a window just before first light for top-water lures. The lake rose to 90 percent capacity. Call: Monte Smith 581-4734, Danny Layne 586-2383, Bait Barn 874-3011.
DELTA — Pam Hayes at Benicia Bait reported a good sturgeon bite in response to the large outgoing tides with grass shrimp near Ozol Pier, Buoy 2 at the Mothball Fleet and in Montezuma Slough. Anglers are anchoring in shallower water on the outgoing before moving out to deeper water on the smaller incoming tide. Stripers to 26 inches have been landed from the shorelines from under the Benicia/Martinez Bridge to the State Park on blood worms, grass shrimp or anchovies. There are still flounder biting grass shrimp or pile worms under the bridge. Jay Sorensen of Jolly Jay's Guide Service thought the striper bite in the Delta should stay good through June with all of the water coming down the rivers. Mark Wilson said a new batch of stripers have moved into the Delta, and he has been picking up linesides in the 6 to 8-pound range from the Rio Vista Bridge to Walnut Grove on shallow-running Bombers B16's in redhead/white body or deep-diving P-Line Predators in greens. Call: Randy Pringle 543-6260; Mark Wilson Sport Fishing (916) 682-1630; Intimidator Sport Fishing (916) 806-3030; Jolly Jay's Guide Service 478-6645.
SAN FRANCISCO BAY — Salmon fishing has finally picked up for the Golden Gate and Half Moon Bay fleets. The action has been southwest of the gate in the deep reef with party boats coming home with up to 11 limits of salmon. The halibut bite came on in south bay over the weekend. Live bait really has made a tremendous difference as evidenced by the good scores despite the minus tides. There were a couple of sturgeon brought in from San Pablo Bay, although the best location for sturgeon is in the Napa River from Cuttings Wharf to the Highway 29 Bridge.
HALF MOON BAY — The weather has turned flat and salmon counts came alive. Boats are reporting huge numbers of undersized salmon in the 20- to 23-inch range. The fish are on top feeding on krill and everything from straight bait to watermelon Apexes to Rotary Salmon Killers have been effective. Private boaters reported finding brown water in the 20/40 area with frequent sightings of bait, and salmon to 17 pounds were landed on anchovies. Sheryl Jimno of the Rusty Hook reported good crabbing off of the end of the pier with a few stripers also taken off of the pier on blood worms, pile worms, anchovies or sardines. Striper fishing continues to improve with hair raisers at Linda Mar, Mori's Point, Rockaway Beach or Mussel Rock. Call: Happy Hooker (510) 223-5388; Huck Finn Sport Fishing Center (650) 726-7133; Emeryville Sport Fishing (510) 654-6040; Don Franklin (510) 703-4148.
MONTEREY — Sonny Arcaleo at Chris' Landing in Monterey said salmon fishing was slow on Sunday after a really good day on Saturday in which the majority of skills produced fish. All three of their boats went to Point Sur on Saturday, and they all came home with limits of a mixed quality of rockfish with vermilions, yellows and blues plus a few lings. Rockfishing is decent near Natural Bridge and South Rock, while the halibut bite may have been affected by the small swell. Bait fish are slowly moving into the beaches, and stripers have been taken from the surf at Manresa or Marina Beaches as well as the Cement Boat in Capitola with white hair raisers with a bucktail jig. Call: Chris' Landing (831) 375-5951, Bayside Marine (831) 475-2173, usafishing.com.
Reservoirs and lakes that will be planted with trout during the week of May 23:
- Fresno County — Big Creek near Kings; Dinkey Creek; Kings River below Pine Flat Reservoir; San Joaquin River below Friant Dam; Shaver Lake.
- Madera County — Corrine Lake; Fish Creek; Lewis Creek; lower Chiquito Creek; West Fork Chiquito Creek.