NORTH COAST RIVERS
North Coast streams and rivers are regulated by low flow closures. Always call ahead to determine the condition of the river you want to fish. If not mentioned, the river is closed or no reports. The DFG’s Low Flow Closure Hotline for north coast rivers is (707) 822-3164. For the Russian River and counties of Mendocino, Sonoma and Marin, call (707) 944-5533. South Central Coast streams number is (831) 649-2886. Many streams close, and others change to artificial/barbless only on, March 31 and others on April 25. Trouble identifying salmon or steelhead? Go to: http://www.swr.noaa.gov/fmd/identify.htm.
ROGUE RIVER, Gold Beach, Ore.—WON Field Reporter and guide Curtis Palmer of River Secrets said, “Over the past many years I have enjoyed late season springer fishing during the month of June while fishing on anchor in the first couple miles above the bay. Early mornings have always seemed to be my best opportunities to land a nice spring Chinook. Over the last week I haven’t heard of more than a few of fish being caught from Agness to Elephant Rock. With temperatures near 70 degrees it may be having an affect on fresh fish entering the river and there haven’t been many anglers putting in their time on the water. I haven’t heard of any kings being caught in the Rogue Bay yet, although there have been a couple boats trolling the bay. As soon as the first one or two king salmon are reported, I am sure that we will see the number of boats increase.
ROGUE RIVER, Shady Cove, Ore.–Last week ODFW trucked about 1000 salmon to be released so anglers can get one more shot at catching them as they make their way to the hatchery, according to guide Curtis Palmer of River Secrets Guide Service. “Water temperatures have been around 50 degrees, and the best bet is back-bouncing bait with longer leaders in holes that have hydrologic movements or are constantly swirling. There are surprisingly still bright springers being caught occasionally. I credit this to the recent removal of dams on the lower river, which seem to have the fish traveling upriver quicker. Even though water conditions seem to be prime, anglers are having to work hard to catch two or three fish in a day’s time. Guide Troy Whitaker at U-Save Tackle in Grants Pass said that Shady Cove is, indeed the place to be for springers. “Salmon are being taken on the same stuff we’ve been reporting for weeks: Kwikfish with a sardine wrap, or back-bounced roe or sand shrimp. Trout anglers are also reporting good action, as the salmon fly hatch is on, so try drifting flies below a bubble to catch rainbows. A few summer steelhead also are being caught from the dam down past the Shady Cove area. It’s just better water conditions, a better flow and cooler water. But there are also a few reports of springer action downriver from Grants Pass.”
RUSSIAN RIVER—Flows continue to maintain around 90 CFS in Guerneville, even with the bump of water coming out of Coyote Dam, according to Scott Heemstra at Kings Sport & Tackle in Guerneville. Bass fishing is producing the best results with lots of fish being caught both smallmouth and largemouth. Andrew Ahn caught a 3.2-pound largemouth on a Senko in the Monte Rio area with bass series Rogue Rod, and guide Dave Delmue also got into a bunch of smallies fun fishing with friends and managed two shad on lures. Be aware that on weekends from Mirabel to Monte Rio river traffic with paddlers is heavy from 10 am until 6 pm.
UMPQUA RIVER, North Fork, Glide, Ore.–Fishing conditions on the North Umpqua have remained good, according to guide Curtis Palmer of River Secrets. “Anglers are still catching nice fish. Bank anglers from Rock Creek to The Narrows have been doing well in the early mornings and the last few hours in the evening. Boat anglers fishing in the Glide area have been doing well fishing with divers and bait. One guide told me that he recently started side drifting for springers and has caught some very nice fish. I visited the viewing area at Winchester Dam and saw several summer steelhead mixed in with the last of the spring Chinook. The river has a great summer steelhead run, and this is a great vacation spot with 30-plus miles of fly fishing-only section. It’s seldom over-crowded.”
TRINITY RIVER, Douglas City—Flows have been low, and salmon fishing has not taken off yet. A few fish are starting to come past the falls area, and there’s been a fish or two caught. Fishing should be starting any time soon, if it’s going to happen at all. If they show up, salmon will be showing up first around the falls area and above the North Fork. A few more spring run Chinook salmon showing up at lower end of Klamath, but fishing still very slow.
NORTH COAST LAKES
CLEAR LAKE—Clarity has improved a little. There will still be some spawning activity taking place through the month of June, but with water conditions the way they have been here, it has been very difficult to find all but the shallowest fish. The lake’s level has not affected any of the popular launching facilities around the lake with Redbud, Lakeport, the County Park, Konocti Vista Casino, State Park and Oaks ramps all still in good shape. The ramp in Lucerne is usable but approach is iffy.
LAKE BERRYESSA—The kokes are starting to school up and good action was found just below the Big Island on the east side in 80 feet of water and north. Don’t forget the California Inland Fisheries (CIFFI) derby on Saturday June 7th out of Markley Cove Resort and the “Park Party” in Winters beginning around 11. The Narrows produced some big smallies as well as largemouth bass on 6-inch Roboworms.
LAKE SONOMA—Head to the creek arms and target 5 to 15 feet of water with Senkos, Brush Hogs and Roboworms after a few casts with a LuckyCraft Sammy 125 for the topwater bite. Trollers are scoring on two to five fish per rod pulling Needlefish, Humdingers and trolling flies in shad patterns from the dam to the 5 mph buoys in 15 to 30 feet of water. And campers are reporting catfish from the banks in the 8- to 12-pound range hitting a variety of stinkbaits fished on a sliding sinker set up.
LAKE ALMANOR—The third annual Lake Almanor Team Trout & Salmon Fishing Derby is on June 14. Find info on the Almanor Fishing Association’s website. All proceeds go to the trout pen project there. The west side of the Almanor Peninsula has lots of insect activity and small schools of smelt scattered all over and fish are thick in that area. Some big kings are being caught now, too.
BAUM LAKE—This lake is a go-to spot with its cold, clean water and abundance of habitat and insects. Fish early and late when the sun is not high.
BUCKS LAKE—They are still catching a mix of rainbows, a few trophy brown trout, a few brookies and now also a few kokes that are getting larger in the top 10 feet.
EAGLE LAKE—Troll with Jay Fair trolling flies in Hot Orange, roughly 135 feet behind the boat with a floating fly line 3 to 5 feet deep. The bobberfishing was by Pelican Point and the Youth Camp.
FALL RIVER—The Fly Shop in Redding reported that the sunny warm days are the prelude to the Hex hatch that should be going by mid-June. Fish from 10:00 to 2:00.
UPPER HAT CREEK—As the weather warms up, so have lots of good salmon fly hatches. The Power House No. 2 riffle has been giving up fish, but it is crowded. Water conditions have been great.
MANZANITA LAKE— The fishing has been good with a decent dry fly bite late in the morning. Remember this is a catch-and-release, single hook, artificial lure only lake and check Lassen Park’s special regulations here.
McCLOUD RIVER—River conditions are good and the dry fly action has been good early and late. Nymphs are always an option here but now add salmon flies.
PIT RIVER—The best river conditions are going to be found below Lake Britton Dam at Pit No. 3 and it has been fishing well. Hatches have been going off mid morning to early evening.
SHASTA LAKE—For a ton of the little bass, throw Senkos and that big one still might bite. For a few larger ones, try the early topwater bite with swimbaits. The Bridge Bay area was good for some nice brown trout and salmon on rolled shad at 100 feet and limits were the rule. Same with rainbow trout. Fish the Main body on rolled shad at 100 feet.
TRINITY LAKE—Too windy to fish most of the week.
WHISKEYTOWN RESERVOIR—This lake is red hot for 12- to 14-inch kokes and easy limits. Troll both sides of the 299 Bridge at 40 to 60 feet. Anything pink worked such as Apexs, hoochies behind a Sling Blade tipped with Pro Cure Kokanee Special and white corn.
BERKELEY—Berkeley boats primarily fished the Central Bay for bass and halibut. Then on Sunday’s rockfish opener, El Dorado and New Eldorado III went outside the Gate and racked up limits of rockfish in addition to lingcod to 15 pounds.
BODEGA BAY—Salmon counts were decent during the week, though fishing efforts were seriously hampered by winds and tall seas. The bite improved considerably from Friday to Saturday, aboard New Sea Angler. The boat fished Fort Ross area on the rockfish opener, Sunday. Limits of rockfish and good counts of lingcod were the much anticipated results.
EMERYVILLE—New Huck Fin, Sea Wolf and Tiger Fish ran out the Gate and scored high counts (mostly limits) of rockfish plus impressive counts of lingcod. C Gull II fished the Central Bay and caught stripers and a halibut. Other boats fished salmon with results varying from less than a half fish per rod, to better than a fish per rod.
EUREKA—Jumbo salmon are showing up, with a 30 pounder and several in the mid-20s being caught. Pacific halibut bit aggressively in 300 to 350 feet of water, but winds and seas prevented fishing for the big flatties for much of the week. Jetty fishers did well on kelp greenling and rockfish. A 10-pound lingcod was caught from the jetty by an angler who wished to remain anonymous.
FORT BRAGG—Salmon fishing was up and down like a yo-yo, with wind being the determining force. Rockfish limits seemed easy to come by and there were quite a few sizable lingcod that made it into fish boxes, including the one aboard Sea Hawk which tried all kinds of fishing during weather windows. Jetty fishers carried home crabs, perch, rockfish, lingcod and eel.
HALF MOON BAY—Salmon counts rose, but the number of keepers remained about the same because a big school of silver salmon moved in. Anglers aboard Queen of Hearts and Que Sera Sera were busy hooking and releasing silvers and shaker Chinook, yet catching enough keepers to keep them happy. Rockfish season opened very successfully, with bulging bags of fish. Stripers bit in the surf near Half Moon Bay and Pacifica.
SAN FRANCISCO—Wacky Jacky fished Central Bay and really whacked the bass. Argo and Bass Tub cleaned up on the bass and caught halibut throughout the Central Bay, despite wind and powerful minus tides.
VALLEJO— Napa River system produced great catches of both sturgeon and stripers. In particular, Cuttings Wharf was the spot within the spot, giving up large sturgeon and plenty of stripers to both shore and boat fishers. Along the Vallejo waterfront, 2 stripers (both better than 20 inches) and a 34-inch halibut were caught from shore.
BOCA LAKE—Not much change here, according to Mountain Hardware and Sports—try the campground at the Little Truckee River inlet area for rainbows.
CAPLES LAKE—Under extremely windy conditions, Dale Daneman at Dale’s Foothill Fishing service trolled the whole lake and managed to land three big trout—17- and 20-inch rainbows, and a 21-inch brown. The fish hit a Sep’s brown grub trolled 7 feet deep. The fish were stuffed full with black flying ants, which explained the slow action, only compounded by the wind. Let the ant hatch run its course over the next 2 weeks, get out on a calm day, and the fishing should be wide-open!
CARSON RIVER (East, West)—Todd Sodaro at Todd’s Bait and Tackle at the Creekside Lodge reported the East Carson was muddy due to runoff, Silver Creek was murky, but the West Carson and Markleeville Creek were running clear. Anglers were doing well on the West Carson using bait, spinners, and flies. Markleeville Creek deserves a closer look at the deeper pools and runs.
DAVIS LAKE—The lake is at 65-percent capacity. Ed Dillard at Dillard’s Guided Fishing reported trolling was fair with most trips only producing 5 to 10 fish. Trolling a copper/redhead Wee Dick Nite at 6 to 12 feet deep was producing rainbows from 10 to 20 1/2 inches. Flyfishing was fair along the west side for float tubers stripping nymphs in 5 to 15 feet of water.
DONNER LAKE—The lake is at 98-percent capacity. Rick Kennedy at Tight Lines Guide Service scratched out two limits of 12-inch kokanee from the Loch Leven Lodge area at 35 feet deep using Sep’s watermelon 4/0 dodger with a RMT Assassin spinner tipped with shoepeg corn cured in Pautzke’s Fire Cure. Very windy conditions slowed the fishing from the previous trip.
FEATHER RIVER CANYON—Mike Hanson at Caribou Crossroads Resort reported that fishing was slow in the North Fork above Hwy 70, since it has been a few weeks since it was planted by the DFW. Butt Valley Lake was good for smallmouth bass up to 5 pounds. Sight fishing beds was good using drop-shot worms in bright colors.
FRENCHMAN LAKE—The lake is at 47-percent capacity. Wiggins Trading Post reported that fishing was improving for both shore anglers and trollers. Nightcrawlers were producing 16- to 18-inch rainbows at the dam and off the Frenchman ramp.
GOLD LAKES BASIN—Gold Lake was producing 5- to 7-pound macks on 4-inch blue/white J-Plugs trolled 30 feet deep over 40 feet of water in the main body of the lake. The north shore along the private homes was still kicking out a mix of rainbows and browns on white trolling flies at 5 feet deep in the early morning. Salmon Lake, Sardine Lake, and Packer Lake were all still producing quick limits of planters on bait and spinners.
ICE HOUSE RESERVOIR—The lake is full. Kyle Neeser at Crystal Basin Tackle and Guide Service reported that the trout bite had slowed. Dale Daneman at Dale’s Foothill Fishing Service concurred that fishing was slow for most anglers, but an experienced troller he knew fished this past week and caught two limits of planter rainbows.
INDIAN CREEK RESERVOIR—Shore anglers were picking up a few rainbows at the dam and at the campgrounds. Float tubers were catching some rainbows stripping nymphs and blood midges.
JACKSON MEADOW RESERVOIR—With the rainbow spawn over, the fish have moved back out into the lake from the Yuba River and were being caught off the dam and near the boat ramp by trollers using flasher/worms and small Rapalas.
JENKINSON LAKE (Sly Park)— A lucky troller caught a 31-inch, 11-pound, 6-ounce brown this past week. Anglers were still picking up good numbers of smallmouth bass on the east side of the lake. The dams were producing planter rainbows on Power Bait and worms.
LAKE TAHOE—The Jake’s On The Lake Derby categories were won on June 1 with a 13.31-pound mack ($1000), a 4.82-pound brown trout ($1000, with $500 carried over from last year), and a 4.38-pound rainbow trout ($250) on a beautifully sunny, calm day. 135 contestants vied for the $2250 in prize money. Chuck Self at Chuck’s Charter Fishing reported good action for 4 to 6 pounders at 400 feet deep off Dollar Point and Tahoe City. Mike Nielsen at Tahoe Topliners Sportfishing reported good trolling for browns in the early morning on breezy days near Emerald Bay, and good jigging for macks in 120 to 180 feet of water off South shore
LOON LAKE—The lake is at 89-percent capacity. Dale Daneman at Dale’s Foothill Fishing service reported wide-open trolling for 12- to 16-inch rainbows using a Sep’s brown grub, with or without a dodger, from 2 to 12 feet deep all over the lake. Be sure to check the incoming water at the east end of the lake.
PROSSER LAKE—The rainbow trout fishing was best at the Prosser Creek inlet off Hobart Mills Road. Try the dam for a chance at a smallmouth bass using a tube or small jig.
PYRAMID LAKE—Trollers and shore anglers scored some big fish this past week and the cutthroats began feeding again after the spawn. Crosby’s Lodge reported that Jim White picked up a 14 1/4 pounder trolling a FlatFish at Separator. George Molino at Cutthroat Charters said Michelle Johnson of Santa Rosa caught an 11 1/2-pound trout at Warrior Point on a bloody frog Apex at 50 feet deep. Molino’s half-day trips this past week were producing 10 to 12 fish, with limits of keepers. Joe Mendes at Eagle Eye Charters was catching 20 to 26 fish per trip trolling Apex and FlatFish at 35 to 45 feet deep from spider Point to Pelican.
RED LAKE—Shore anglers have the best and easiest access at the dam where worms will work for a mix of brookies, cutthroats, and rainbows.
SILVER LAKE—The lake is full. A friend of Dale Daneman of Dale’s Foothill Fishing Service reported catching easy limits of 11- to 12-inch rainbows while trolling all over the lake.
STAMPEDE RESERVOIR—The lake is at 33-percent capacity. Rick Kennedy at Tight Lines Guide Service fished this past week and caught limits of 13- to 14-inch kokes at 30 to 60 feet deep at the island on Sep’s watermelon dodgers with RMT Assassin spinners tipped with shoepeg corn cured with Pautzke’s Fire Cure. Smaller fish were at 30 feet, bigger fish at 60 feet deep.
TOPAZ LAKE—The lake level rose a foot over the past week making it possible to launch 16- to 18-foot boats on single-axle trailers with 15-inch wheels—an 18-foot I/O made it in this past week. Trollers were still catching limits of rainbows using flasher/worms and Rapalas. Smallmouth and largemouth bass were spawning in the shallows all over the lake, and sight fishing would be a good choice now!!
TRUCKEE RIVER—Mountain Hardware and Sports reported that caddis, PMD, and golden stone hatches were increasing as the March Browns and winter hatches diminished. Look for good caddis hatches in the evenings. With the warmer weather, the fish were already moving into the faster water.
UNION VALLEY RESERVOIR—The lake is at 96-percent capacity. Limits of 12- to 14-inch kokanee were hitting dodgers and hoochies or spinners in orange, purple, or pink at 35 feet deep in the first two hours of the morning according to Ken Mathis at Ken’s Custom Tackle and Guide Service.
WEST WALKER RIVER—Fishing pressure was very light this past week, according to the Toiyabe Motel, but the river flows were beautiful and there were still plenty of fish to be caught.
AMERICAN RIVER—The North Fork was producing small rainbows at access trails along Foresthill Rd. The Middle Fork below Oxbow Reservoir produced a 20-inch-plus brown for a hiker, as observed by Kyle Neeser of Crystal Basin Tackle. SMUD opened the boat ramp at Slab Creek Lake on the South Fork—with the steep, windy, narrow road to the ramp, boats no bigger than a16-foot aluminum are recommended.
BULLARDS BAR—The lake is at 67-percent capacity. Emerald Cove Marina said they had heard rumors of small 10- to 12-inch kokanee being caught by trollers up in the North Fork arm of the lake using dodger/hoochies. The larger bass have moved back into deeper water off the walls and points, with smaller bass still being found in shallower water.
CAMP FAR WEST—Lots of recreational traffic including wake board competitions made for poor fishing on the weekends. Fish during the week for the best chance at success on bass on the steeper walls in the creek arms and on the deeper main points using worms, jigs and Senkos.
COLLINS LAKE—The lake was 21 feet from full. Trout fishing slowed for bank anglers due to warmer water temps. The dam was still the most productive for shore anglers using Power Bait. Trollers did well in the main channel from the bridge to out in front of the marina for rainbows to 4 3/4 pounds on Apex and flasher/worms. A few catfish and redear sunfish showed up on stringers, too. Try night fishing off the rental dock for a mix of trout, catfish, crappie, and bass.
ENGLEBRIGHT RESERVOIR—The lake is at 92-percent capacity. Boaters running threaded nightcrawlers 10 feet deep off the rock walls near Black’s Ravine were picking up 15- to 19-inch rainbows. A few small rainbows were being caught off the houseboats moored in the marina using worms.
FRENCH MEADOWS RESERVOIR—Will Fish Tackle in Auburn reported that trollers were still doing well on a mix of browns and rainbows on Needlefish/dodgers run 20 feet deep at the creek inlet north of the dam.
HELL HOLE RESERVOIR—The Georgetown Ranger Station reported trollers were picking up limits of kokanee on dodger/hoochies at the powerhouse at 25 to 35 feet deep. Macks were hitting Lyman plugs trolled at the dam at 90 feet deep.
LAKE OROVILLE—The lake is at 49-percent capacity. Guide Ron Gandolfi reported that the bass bite was “crazy good” with 80 to 100 fish days possible for a full day of casting tubes, drop-shot worms, Senkos, spinnerbaits, and Keitech 3.8 swimbaits on steeper walls, main points and mudlines. Gandolfi went out for 4 hours one afternoon this past week and caught 70 bass to 3 pounds in the West Branch, North Fork, and the Slot. Rick Kennedy of Tight Lines Guide Service reported slow trolling for salmon. The North Fork and the buoy line at the dam produced a nice king and a 23-inch coho on ProTrol Flashers and Gulp! Minnows at 35 to 45 feet deep.
ROLLINS LAKE—Ryan Drake at NID said bass fishing was very good with some anglers reporting 80 fish days on drop-shot Roboworms in morning dawn and tequila sunrise. Mornings and evenings were best in the coves for mostly 12- to 14-inch spots with a few fish to 3 1/2 pounds.
SCOTT’S FLAT LAKE—Scott Gomes at the marina reported bass fishing was good for largemouth bass to 18 inches and 12- to 16-inch smallmouths using worms and jigs. The best action was near the pier by the dam and the Hensley House area.
SUGAR PINE RESERVOIR—Fishing was slow with no DFW trout plants in weeks. All the campgrounds and day-use facilities were open according to the Foresthill Ranger Station.
STUMPY MEADOWS RESERVOIR—The Georgetown Ranger Station reported that shore anglers were catching 4 to 5 fish each at the beach near the boat ramp using Power Bait. The rainbows were all 10- to 12-inch planters.
THERMOLITO AFTERBAY—Guide Ron Gandolfi reported that bass were hitting buzzbaits in the shallow coves and in front of the tule banks. Senkos and jigs pitched to the pockets in the tules were working well, also.
AMERICAN RIVER—Flow have increased to 1,750 cfs. That’s great for fishing the American River, but it’s short term, and the lake is dropping earlier than usual. Striped bass will be heading out to deeper water when flows ultimately have to drop later this summer. Shad fishing is good, particularly above Sunrise Blvd. and many of the shad are big females weighing up to 4 pounds or more. Fish late in the afternoon, after 5 p.m. for the best action.
FEATHER RIVER—It may take a trip or two to hook up, but a few nice big striped bass are being caught around Shanghai Bend and downstream. The mouth and Beer Can Beach have produced stripers on swimbaits and topwater plugs in the morning. A few small steelhead have been taking nymphs under indicators in the Low Flow Section.
FOLSOM LAKE—The lake is starting to drop because of higher flows down the American River, and fish are moving out to deeper water. Carolina rigged jigs, drop-shotted Robo-Worms have been getting a few strikes. Live minnows have been effective, too. Trollers using Speedy Shiner had been catching some bigger fish trolling near the surface.
RANCHO SECO LAKE– Trout fishing is over. A few topwater plugs worked late at night or early morning might get a strike or two from the big bass that hang out at Rancho Seco.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Sacramento—Striped bass fishing continued to be slow, with lots of shaker caught for every keeper fish. Try bloodworms and sardines. A few larger fish were being caught on swimbaits and topwater plugs.
SACRAMENTO, Tisdale—A few striped bass, largely spawned out, are being caught from Verona to Colusa, mostly on minnows. Shad are providing some good action, too.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Redding—Trout fishing was good from Redding to Red Bluff, and some nice shad are present at Los Molinos and downstream from Corning, making combo trips a productive outing. Fishing was still good for fly fishers dead-drifting small caddis nymph imitations as well as spin fishermen drifting nightcrawlers and Glo-Bugs.
YUBA RIVER—Fishing was mostly for shad down in the lower half of the river below Matthews Avenue. Trout fishing was slow, mostly on nymphs below indicators. Some nice shad were being caught at DeGuerre Dam, as well as trout. It’s still mostly nymphs, but dries should be good, very soon.