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. South Central Coast streams number is (831) 649-2886.New low flow closures for Mendocino, Sonoma and Marin counties, Oct. 1-April 30, call (707) 822-3164 for Mendocino, (707) 944-5533 for Sonoma, Marin and Napa.
ROGUE RIVER, Gold Beach, Ore.—Temperatures hit 70 degrees in the Bay last week and Chinook trolling season has begun in the Rogue Bay. “It is a lot earlier than I have ever seen it start up,” said guide Curtis Palmer of River Secrets. “The first week of July: Yes, we see boats trolling the bay. First week of June? No, I don’t remember ever seeing this many boats trolling for king salmon in the Bay and catching fish. It has been an odd season and most likely Mother Nature will continue to have anglers guessing, what will it be like next? For instance, water in bay was warm and that had the salmon stacking up in the bay. Wind picked up last week, causing the water in the bay to cool on Friday and Saturday. Salmon liked the cooler water temperature and started moving upriver. Apporximate fish counts for a few days last week were, 25 to 30 fish on Wednesday, 30 to 35 fish on Thursday, 20 fish on Friday, and on Saturday only 7 kings caught.” Guide Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing said 6 to 8 boats a day combined to catch 10 to 15 salmon a day on anchovies and spinnerbaits.
ROGUE RIVER, Grants Pass, Ore.—“Fair salmon action is being posted overall, but the Shady Cove area has been good, with springers on back-bounced roe or back-trolled Kwiwfish with a sardine wrap,” said Troy Whitaker at U-Save Tacke in Grants Pass. “Trout and steelhead also being caught up there. I’ve heard of 10 steelhead caught up in the Shady Cove area, and a few caught in the Grants Pass area. The Gold Hill area is starting to happen on salmon, too. Keep one wild fish here, or two hatchery fish or one of each. Grants Pass salmon action has been slower. Lake Selmac bass and crappie are still hitting on nightcrawlers and plastic worms. Applegate Lake remains fair on smallmouth bass and a few largemouth bass. Trolling for trout is good with a wedding rig and nightcrawler combo.”
UMPQUA RIVER, Roseburg, Ore.–This last week has been full of suprises for the Umpqua River System for fishing. Spring Chinook is always hit and miss situation and anglers know this. “Just as quick as I thought the runs were turning out small this season, they showed up late!” said WON Field Reporter and guide Curtis Palmer of River Secrets. “Springer’s are turning up the North Fork right now. Cleaveland Rapids should be a good place to catch one from boat or bank. Forks River Park is another fantastic place to fish right now, however, I have not gotten any reports or seen much boat traffic at either location for salmon. The reason is that the shad are thicker than ever at Huntley. which is just downriver a little bit from Cleaveland Rapids. I was seeing up to 40 fish catches from boats and that is very good this late in the season. Smallmouth are being aggressive at times.”
UMPQUA RIVER, North Fork, Roseburg, Ore.–As of Saturday, the viewing windows at Winchester Dam were completely packed full of spring Chinook. This is a month later than what the usual dates on the calendar are for this to be happening. Very early morning Friday a couple driftboats caught a few nickel-bright salmon in front of Amacher Park. The Glide area has slowed down for the bank angling. Colliding Rivers down to Whistler Bend Park has been very slow over the last week. A few summer steelhead have been spotted in the shallow riffles and I was told spooked easily. There’s a very healthy number of springer’s coming over the dam now, so in two weeks it should be nets out in the Glide area of the North Umpqua River.”
KLAMATH RIVER, Iron Gate – The salmonfly hatch is in full swing, sparking good fishing for halfpounders and small adult steelhead near Hornbook. Flows out of Iron Gate Dam were 1,060 cfs on Sunday.
KLAMATH RIVER, Happy Camp – Conditions are good and anglers are catching a mix of spawned out adult steelhead and half pounder steelhead. Pressure is very light. Flows at Seiad Valley were 1,290 cfs on Sunday.
KLAMATH RIVER, Klamath Glen – Fishing for springers has slowed. Flows on Sunday at Terwer were 3,550 cfs. The water temperature is up to 72 degrees.
TRINITY RIVER – Spring salmon fishing is still slow, although fish are expected to begin showing up. Some springers have been caught at first light on roe.
NORTH COAST LAKES
CLEAR LAKE—Most anglers are working hard to get 5 to 8 bites from keeper-sized fish. There are still good numbers of smaller 8- to 10-pound bass. Topwater, crankbaits, sightfishing, Senkos, plastic worms and swimbaits were all reported to be effective. Or try fishing the deeper water with drop-shot and shaky head jigs as well as nail weighted worms.
LAKE BERRYESSA—There is still some pretty good bass fishing to be had for all three species of smallmouth, largemouth and spotted bass. Just get out early and late to avoid the boaters. There were still some smallmouth bass at the north end on the rest were caught all over the main body from 5 to 25 feet deep. With the weather stabilizing again, look for the koke bite to pick back up.
LAKE ALMANOR—Trout continue to frequent areas that are producing bug hatches along the west shore, although it is dying off. Fish are from all depths from the surface to the bottom since the hatches are off the bottom. Ben Williams from Fish Dog Outdoors said another wave of bass has moved up to spawn while a post spawn bite is on as well, and that right now it’s hard not to catch bass. Fish anywhere on the lake in 4 to15 feet of water with a drop-shot rig.
BATTLECREEK RESERVOIR—Kastmasters and worms always do well here. Fishing has been best early in the morning. Check special regulations here.
BAUM LAKE—Expect more good fishing here with more hatches, which are going off before the sun is high. Fishing should be good here all summer.
BUCKS LAKE—Fishing for trout has been a little slow. But there has been by a wide open koke bite from 25 to 35 feet. They are still only 12 or 13 inches but healthy, thick fish. There are still some 2- to 4-pound Macks on koke gear and you can find 1 to 3 fish up to 18 pounds if you are working for them.
CASSEL FOREBAY—Power Bait, worms and eggs are good go-to baits here. There is always more pressure on the weekends, but there are plenty of fish for everyone. An overcast sky will help the bite here.
EAGLE LAKE—The fishing has been hot, and with all the drought concerns, Eagle Lake is still the place to go. Anglers are allowed to keep two fish per day with a total of four in possession. Limits are being caught and anglers have been finished and off the water by 11:00. Fish ranged from 1 1/2 to 2 pounds and a few trout were 3-plus pounds. Bait and bottom anglers are doing well the first hour of light in the Eagle’s Nest area fishing down 10 to 20 feet with slip bobbers anchored at 50 feet. Trollers are working from the Eagle’s Nest area to Shrimp Island at 15 to 25 feet in 40 to 50 feet of water.
FALL RIVER—The Fly Shop in Redding continued to rate the fishing as good here. There are lots of big rainbows and good hatches along the upper river, but the lower section is also starting to produce from Island Drive all the way to the confluence.
UPPER HAT CREEK—Worms, eggs, dry flies and lures all work well here. Fishing is at its best early before the sun gets high in the sky and then right at sunset. The Power House No. 2 riffle has been hot, but expect company there. There are still hatches going off.
MANZANITA LAKE—Fish the shoreline and structure for better action. Remember that this is a catch and release, single hook, artificial lure only lake. Remember to check Lassen Park’s special regulations for this lake. Fishing has been fair for some and great for others. Go early or late to avoid the kayakers and other boaters.
McCLOUD RIVER–River conditions are excellent and so is the brown and rainbow trout fishing thanks to all of the hatches. The fishing continues to be good here, but it may be getting a little more crowded.
PIT RIVER—Water conditions are good and with plenty of hatches going off, the fishing has been great. This is a go-to river in the springtime, so expect some company at the popular spots.
SHASTA LAKE—Remember to fish early and late, as there is a lot of traffic out there now. The trout fishing has been slow. This is the time of year when the trout will go down 40 to 60 feet. Always have one rolled shad onboard, an Apex, Wiggle Hoochies and spoons such as a Humdingers. Don’t waste your time trying for salmon. Not much bait in the main body but hopefully it will start to show up over the next few weeks.
WHISKEYTOWN RESERVOIR—Kokanee fishing is starting to improve, which means they are catching a few more quality fish in the 13- and 14-inch range, although the majority are little kokes measuring 8 to 10 inches. Fish the Curtain and both sides of the 299 Bridge. The larger fish seem to be deeper like 60 to 80 feet. Pink Apexs and occasionally pink Scorpion spinner with beads have been working. The smaller ones (for kids) are in the 30- to 50-foot range. Most anglers leave around 11:00 with limits and then it’s the skiers turn.
AMERICAN RIVER—The South Fork at Coloma was stocked by the DFW this past week.
BULLARDS BAR—The lake is at 58-percent capacity. Brett Brady at Bare Bones Guide Service reported 12-inch kokanee were hitting dodger/spinners at 30 to 40 feet deep at the dam and from Dark Point up into Willow Creek. Emerald Cove Marina said lots of small bass were hitting, but big fish were far and few between. Try shad Senkos on steep walls and points.
CAMP FAR WEST—The lake is at 71-percent capacity. Recreational boat traffic was getting very heavy, so fish for bass during the week using plastic worms and lizards in the Bear River arm.
COLLINS LAKE—The lake is 33 feet from full. With the warmer weather, 2 or 3 rainbows per person was a good average, though a few folks were scoring limits. Lots of 2 to 5 pounders were seen this past week with the biggest trout weighing 5 pounds, 14 ounces. Catfish to 5 1/2 pounds and bass to 3 pounds were also showing.
ENGLEBRIGHT RESERVOIR—The lake is at 96-percent capacity. With the lake level so consistently high, recreational boat traffic was very heavy. Fishermen were advised to try for trout in the marina or in the 5 mph zone on the upper end of the lake
FRENCH MEADOWS RESERVOIR—The lake is at 44.6-percent capacity. The Foresthill Ranger Station reported all the campgrounds were open and the French Meadows boat ramp was operational. Without a recent DFW plant, fishing was only fair.
HELL HOLE RESERVOIR—The lake is at 52-percent capacity. The campgrounds were open and the launch ramp was still in operation. Kokanee, macks and trout were all hitting for trollers.
LAKE OROVILLE—The lake is at 43-percent capacity—down another 3 feet this past week. Bass fishing was good using tubes and darthead worms on steep walls, especially those in the shade, at 5 to 30 feet deep. The topwater bite in the early morning was very sporadic. King salmon up to 6 pounds were hitting dodger/hoochies at the dam and Green Bridge at 30 to 60 feet deep.
ROLLINS LAKE—The lake is at 95.8-percent capacity. Greenhorn Resort reported bass fishing was good and rainbow trout action was slow. Recreational boat traffic was ramping up with schools out for summer vacation.
SCOTT’S FLAT LAKE—The lake is at 61.2-percent capacity. Mike Dowd at the marina reported fishing was slow with light angling pressure. Recreational boat traffic was getting heavier, especially on the weekends.
SUGAR PINE RESERVOIR—The Foresthill Ranger Station reported the campgrounds, day-use area, and boat ramp were all open. Fishing was fair at best.
STUMPY MEADOWS RESERVOIR—The lake is at 60-percent capacity. The Georgetown Ranger Station reported the lake was dropping and use of the boat ramp was not advised. One boater tried to launch a fiberglass boat with a 75-hp outboard and wound up flipping the boat over and sinking it trying to get it on the trailer, so cartoppers only!! Shore fishing was okay according to the camp host.
THERMOLITO AFTERBAY—The lake was at 134.5-foot elevation at press time—85.4-percent capacity. Bruce Gibson at the Paradise Tackle Company reported bass fishing was good for fish to 8 pounds. Smaller fish were on the tule banks hitting Senkos and jigs. The bigger fish were offshore on the rocky humps and drop-offs in deeper water using jigs, Senkos, spinnerbaits, and crankbaits. An 8 pounder came off a rocky bank on a crankbait.
AMERICAN RIVER – Shad fishing improved last week on the American, as big numbers of fish showed up. Anglers are using 1-inch grubs and shad darts.
FEATHER RIVER – A few shad are still being caught, but overall action is slow. Some stripers also are being caught, but the spring run is practically over.
FOLSOM LAKE – Spotted and smallmouth bass are suspending off the points in 20 to 30 feet of water. Anglers using drop-shot rigs are doing well in the mornings. Trout and salmon fishing was hit and miss last week.
RANCHO SECO LAKE – Bass and trout fishing is slow to fair.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Dunsmuir – Trout fishing is very good from Dunsmuir to Shasta Lake, where numerous hatches have sparked good nymph and dry fly action. Gear anglers also are catching fish. The town of Dunsmuir is starting up their trout planting program.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Redding to Red Bluff –The river is closed to all fishing between Keswick Dam and the Highway 44 bridge from April 27 to July 31. Trout fishing has been good below the Highway 44 bridge, although the river stretch between the bridge and Anderson is crowded. Salmon season opens July 16 below the Red Bluff Diversion Dam and Aug. 1 above it. Shad fishing is fair to good near Red Bluff.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Red Bluff to Colusa – Shad fishing has been good. Chartreuse, orange and hot pink 1-inch grubs are working well. Stripers feeding on out-migrating salmon smolts are being caught in the evenings on small swimbaits. The majority of the fish are shakers.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Knight’s Landing to Colusa – While shad fishing has begun to slow, some stripers are still being caught as small schools of fish move through the river. Anglers are using cut bait, as no large or jumbo minnows have been available.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Sacramento – There has been a fair topwater bite for undersize stripers in the deepwater channel at the Port of Sacramento in the evenings. Crappie fishing is very good in the sloughs and ditches near Sacramento for anglers using small minnows and wax worms. Shad are present near Freeport.
BERKELEY—Striped bass fishing went ballistic. Happy Hooker limited out by about 9:30 each morning. California Dawn did similarly and both boats nailed some thick halibut. Jilly Sea worked Raccoon Straits and made passengers happy with catches of both stripers and halibut.
BODEGA BAY/LAWSON’S LANDING—The first jumbo halibut was caught in Tomales Bay, kicking off the late spring season. Rockfish and lingcod bit with authority at all local stones from Point Reyes to Fort Ross… a very wide area. Crabbing was amazingly good for skilled trap designers like Capt. Rick Powers aboard New Sea Angler.
EMERYVILLE— Pulling away from the Landing’s docks, some Emeryville boats headed out the gate to chase salmon from Muir Beach to Duxbury. A 25 pounder was taken aboard C-Gull II and a 22 pounder came aboard New Seeker. Other boats headed for the productive bass and halibut spots in the Bay or to rockfish spots on the Marin Coast. Bass bit like fleas and some halibut were taken, mostly under 10 pounds.
EUREKA—Salmon fishing was generally slow due to rising water temps driving the fish deeper. Cape Mendocino produced limits of lingcod and rockfish when the weather allowed boats to be there. Lingcod to 30 pounds were taken. Three Pacific halibut were caught out of Trinidad and also a few were taken out of Crescent City.
FORT BRAGG—Telstar hammered the rockfish and lingcod and it didn’t seem to matter whether it was a short distance or a longer run. The fish were just hungry. Shore fishers found perch, rockfish and cabezon along the jetty. The Old Mill produced nicely for shore anglers. Some folks fished down the coast at Jughandle or up the beach at MacKerricher, with good results on kelp greenling, rockfish and cabezon.
HALF MOON BAY/PACIFICA—Party boats Huli Cat, Queen of Hearts and Riptide tore up the rockfish and lingcod on both local trips and runs out to the Farallon Islands. Shore fishers grappled with aggressive striped bass along all sandy beaches from Ocean Beach to Half Moon Bay. Mackerel showed up inside Pillar Point Harbor.
SAN FRANCISCO—Salmon fishing remained on the list of things to do, with a local bite ranging from Muir Beach to Duxbury. Bass Tub showed that catching limits of bass in the Bay was easy in mid-June and with some nice halibut to go with them. Outside the Gate, surf fishers laid into the striped bass in the surf.