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.
CHETCO RIVER, Brookings, Ore.—Early king salmon have been caught in the ocean right between the tips of the Chetco River jetties and the first buoy, and they were hatchery fish, which are the first kings to show in the river. Looks like things might be early this year, according to guide and WON Staffer Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing.
COOS RIVER, Coos Bay, Ore.–Fishing for king salmon has remained good on the lower half of the Coos River this last week. “Most anglers have been concentrating on the area around Roseburg Forest Products, better known as the Chip Mill, and continuing up to the Rail Road Bridge,” said WON Field Reporter Curtis Palmer of River Secrets Tackle Company. “Late last week I received news about how bad the weeds had become. Frustrated anglers said the weeds were so bad that they had to pull their gear in and clean it every five minutes. The same heavy tides that carried the trash and weeds upriver were the same ones that brought in a large number of fresh king salmon just before the rainstorms of the weekend.”
COQUILLE RIVER, Bandon, Ore.—“Most anglers were on the Coos River last week, leaving me with only a couple reports of action on the Coquille River,” said Curtis Palmer of River Secrets Tackle Company. “The boat traffic was light on the river, making it much more enjoyable for some, even though fishing wasn’t as good as other rivers in the area. Heavy tides brought plenty of trash piles moving with the currents and added another factor to the fishing conditions. Thursday was the best day last week for catching Chinooks. Trolling a tight spin on a plug cut herring just above the 101 Bridge at the top of the tide was the ticket for success. Most of the weeds and trash had moved upstream and cooler water temperatures could also have helped. I expect the big tide changes brought lots of new salmon into the river, so next week should be very good.”
ROGUE RIVER, Gold Beach, Ore.– Greg Kawaguchi of Sebastopol caught a 34-pound, 41-inch, in the Rogue estuary last week. The fish was caught on a Rogue Spinnerbait coated with Pautzke Liquid Krill. Greg was fishing with Tom Olsen, Paul LeFebvre, and Bobby Jones. The river was hit with a rainstorm over the weekend, and WON Field Reporter Curtis Palmer said, “I am curious what results from the weekend storms, high winds and barometric changes did on the Southern Oregon Coast. If the salmon ran up the rivers from where they have been holding due to warmer water conditions or if they held up in same area and will be ready for a healthy feeding? Next week will be here soon to let us know how the fish reacted to Mother Nature.”
ROGUE RIVER, Grant’s Pass, Ore.—“We’re seeing lots of salmon being caught, with plenty of fish moving up throughout the river,” said Troy Whitaker of U-Save Tackle in Grant’s Pass. “Boat anglers are scoring well on back-bounced roe, or sardine-wrapped Kwikfish. Action is pretty good at Finley Bend, off Galice Creek and near the Robertson Bridge. Some bank anglers are taking steelhead on casted spoons like Little Cleos. Lots of boat anglers are reporting steelhead action, too. Fish in the 8- to 10-pound range have been caught on plugs like Brad’s Wigglers or Wee Wigglers and also on crawdad-colored plugs. Bank anglers are scoring off most accessible areas. The river water has been cooling off the past few days and that has spurred the fishing a lot.”
UMPQUA RIVER, Reedsport, Ore.—“Salmon fishing has improved, and I am not sure anyone could ask for anything more,” said WON Field Reporter Curtis Palmer. “Chinook’s were being caught from Windy Bend in Reedsport all the way to the mouth of the Umpqua River at Winchester Bay. That helped keep the boats spread out a little more during the week. Some of the guides, along with the experienced local sportsman, found some short days on the water thanks to catching limits of salmon.”
KLAMATH RIVER, Iron Gate – Pressure has been light on the upper Klamath as anglers await the first kings of the year, which generally arrive around Sept. 15. Fishing for small steelhead has been good, although very few hatchery fish are showing up in the mix. Flows out of Iron Gate Dam were 907 cfs on Sunday.
KLAMATH RIVER, Happy Camp – Steelhead are arriving in greater numbers as water flows have risen and temperatures dropped in the lower river. Anglers are still awaiting the first salmon of the year. Flows at Seiad Valley were 1,020 cfs on Sunday.
KLAMATH RIVER, Klamath Glen – Salmon fishing has improved from shore near Klamath Glen, but is slow at the spit at the mouth of the river. Guides are catching a handful of adults and jacks each day side-drifting roe. There are no nets on the river Wednesdays and Thursdays. Flows Sunday at Terwer were 2,950 cfs. The Blue Creek section is closed until Sept. 14.
TRINITY RIVER – Flows at Lewiston Dam were 1,160 cfs Sunday and will remain at that level through Sept. 20, a federal judge ruled last week. Salmon fishing has been good for anglers running sardine-wrapped plugs in the flats. A few brown trout as well as early steelhead are showing up in the catch.
North Coast Lakes
CLEAR LAKE–The upper end of the lake is producing some frog action along the Nice shoreline. For the early birds there has also been a little bit of topwater action along the tules between Long Tule Point and the State Park during the first hour of light. On the Rattlesnake and Redbud arms the bite is on plastics, crankbaits, spinnerbaits and jigs in 10 to 15 feet on rock. All launching facilities around the lake are still in good shape. The algae and weeds have presented very little issue and overall, the lake is in good shape.
LAKE BERRYESSA—The Markley Cove, Steel Bridge and Putah Creek ramps are still open. Kokes are still in really good shape. Some days it was a pick bite and others they jumped into the boat. Fish were caught on structure and in suspended water. Troll RMT (Rocky Mountain Tackle) 5 1/2-inch dodgers coupled with Apex spoons, Radical Glow spinners or Uncle Larry’s spinners tipped with corn from 80 to 100 feet. Silver and blue crankbaits worked for bass over rock structures towards the Narrows.
LAKE ALMANOR—The lake is stabilizing and the bass are back on the bite. Use topwater early and plastic worms or grubs midday. Fish the flats in 6 to 12 feet and just keep moving until you hit a good spot. Dodger/’crawler combos and flashers trailing a smelt scent are picking up rainbows and browns from 12-inch planters to 4 pounds, but there were no salmon.
BAUM LAKE—Check DFW’s website for trout plant dates by the boat ramp. Go early if you want to use dry flies, although some days have been more productive than others. Generally the bite is best from the early morning until mid day. This lake will fish well, at least until October.
FALL RIVER—Trout fishing has been good, but you still need to keep moving around. Consider hiring a local guide, as their knowledge will pay off. A popular technique here is using black or olive colored leeches on a sinking line. Wild rainbow trout here range from 10 to 14 inches but there are also trout over 20 inches caught regularly.
UPPER HAT CREEK—There are lots of planted fish in this area but brook trout, brown and rainbow trout are also common. Most fish average in the 12-inch range. Spinners are a good bet on this part of the creek. The flat waters below the Power House No. 2 riffle has been producing some fish, but overall the fishing has been fair to good. Fish early before the sun gets high in the sky and then right at sunset.
MANZANITA LAKE—You can fish from a float tube, pontoon boat or even a drift boat or raft but no motors. Check the regulations for where you can fish and what you can use on this catch and release only lake. The fishing here has been fair for some and good for others. Callibaetis are coming off daily.
McCLOUD RIVER—The fishing here has been good for some and fair for others. The fishing will get better after the water cleans from the rain.
MCCLOUD RESERVOIR—The reservoir is silty in color but there is no fishing pressure here. Catch brown trout on a downrigger in the 20- to 40-foot depth range. Trolling slowly is an effective method and often provides constant action all day for all three species of trout. The fishing has been very good here and the ramp is in good shape.
PIT RIVER—The rainbows here will eat all day and can be found holding in both fast and slow water so move around. They hold close to the bottom of the river among the boulders and rocks.
SHASTA LAKE—Fish the upper third of the arms for rainbows and browns, but there were no salmon this past week. Watermelon, chrome and white or blue wiggle hoochies and shad patterned Humdingers are working well but they didn’t provide easy limits. There have been bass on topwater set-ups early and late afternoons. Jigs and worms work best during the middle of the day.
WHISKEYTOWN RESERVOIR—Work for kokes at 60 to 85 feet using UV pink Apexs and Hoochies behind Slingblades and beads with spinners. There are large plankton bait balls at 60 feet by the dam. Kokes now are running to 18 inches.
Sierra Lakes and Rivers
BOCA LAKE—The lake is at 11.8-percent capacity. Mountain Hardware and Sports still recommended wading out to the channel edge near the inlet and casting into deeper water for a chance at rainbows, browns, and the occasional mack in the early morning. Dropping a kayak or canoe in the water and drifting the channel was another option as the lake level continues to drop.
CAPLES LAKE—The lake is at 78-percent capacity. EID/KMPUD stocked 2000 pounds of 3-pound rainbows this past week as mitigation for their FERC permit. Shore anglers near the boat ramp were doing well. Trollers were doing better fishing 40 feet deep.
CARSON RIVER (East, West)—Todd Sodaro at Todd’s Bait and Tackle at the Creekside Lodge reported great trout action on the East Carson where flows were still good. Alpine County was scheduled to stock another 1800 pounds of trophy rainbows in the East Carson this week.
DAVIS LAKE—The lake is at 48-percent capacity. Trout fishing was slow with only a few trout coming in for flyfishermen in the early morning a Jenkins Point, and trollers at Honker Cove running Dick Nite spoons at 18 feet deep. Boats less than 20 feet long were still able to launch at the Honker Cove ramp—any longer and the trailers were dropping off the concrete and getting stuck!! Bullhead catfish were hitting worms at Fairview.
DONNER LAKE—The lake is at 63-percent capacity. Experienced trollers were catching the 10- to 12-inch next year’s kokanee over the hump between China Cove and Loch Leven at 80 feet deep. Roving schools of rainbows were hitting for anglers in the right place at the right time along the north side docks, the west end beach, and boat ramp dock. The best fishing has been in the early morning or late evening
FEATHER RIVER CANYON— Mike Hanson at Caribou Crossroads Resort reported experienced flyfishermen were picking up some native rainbows in the North Fork below the Caribou Powerhouse. The water in the North Fork and East Branch were getting mossy due to the warm water temps.
FRENCHMAN LAKE—The lake is at 25-percent capacity. Wiggins Trading Post reported trout fishing was slow with a rainbow or two coming in at the dam for shore anglers using inflated nightcrawlers. Bullhead catfish were hitting worms at Big Cove.
GOLD LAKES BASIN—Mark Tieslau at Mountain Hardware and Sports in Blairsden reported fishing for DFW planters was good at Packer Lake, Lower Sardine Lake, and Upper Salmon Lake.
ICE HOUSE RESERVOIR—The lake is at 73-percent capacity. Kyle Neeser at Crystal Basin Tackle and Guide Service reported trolling for planter rainbows to 16 inches was good using dodger or flasher/nightcrawler combos at 20 to 30 feet deep.
INDIAN CREEK RESERVOIR—With the great trout action in the East Carson, there was little interest in fishing here, according Todd Sodaro at Todd’s Bait and Tackle at the Creekside Lodge.
JACKSON MEADOW RESERVOIR—The lake is at 54.8-percent capacity. Brett Brady at Bare Bones Guide Service reported a slower bite for rainbows. Rainbows to 16 1/2 inches were hitting a dodger/nightcrawler trolled 0.8 to 1.2 mph at 45 feet deep. The Pass Creek boat ramp was still good for launching.
JENKINSON LAKE (Sly Park)—The lake is at 72-percent capacity. Denise Cole at Sly Park Resort reported lots of fishermen were out but few were seeing much success. A few rainbows were hitting at the dam and some smallmouth bass were hitting worms and tubes on rocky banks near the Narrows.
LAKE TAHOE—Chuck Self at Chuck’s Charter Fishing reported an incredible bite for 3- to 9-pound macks trolling 200 to 400 feet deep from Tahoe City to Crystal Bay Point. Self was getting limits of macks by 7:00 to 7:30 a.m. and then switching over to rainbows and scoring 1 or 2 trout to 3 1/2 pounds at 15 to 45 feet deep on rocky flats. Mike Nielsen at Tahoe Topliners Sportfishing was catching mixed limits of 3- to 6-pound macks and 12- to 14-inch kokanee jigging and trolling at Camp Richardson. The kokes were 70 to 110 feet deep with the best action at 85 to 90 feet, while the macks were under the kokanee at 140 to 170 feet deep. Zach Gordon at Tahoe Sportfishing reported the fleet was catching mixed limits of macks and kokanee in the SW corner of the lake. The kokanee were still hitting flasher/Wedding Rings at 80 to 90 feet deep and macks to over 15 pounds were hitting a dodger/minnow trolled below the kokes at 150 to 200 feet deep. Gordon said the typical limit was 3 or 4 kokes and 1 or 2 macks per person.
LOON LAKE—The lake is at 49-percent capacity. Shore fishing was slow according to Kyle Neeser at Crystal Basin Tackle and Guide Service. Boat launching was restricted to small aluminum boats due to the poor condition of the lower part of the ramp.
PROSSER LAKE—The lake is at 25.4-percent capacity. Smallmouth bass fishing was still the best bet, especially in the early morning or late evening. Fishing the Prosser Creek inlet area in the early morning could produce the occasional rainbow.
RED LAKE— Fishing here was slow with a few cutthroats being caught near the dam.
SILVER LAKE—The lake is at 70.9-percent capacity. It’s a good possibility that EID/KMPUD stocked some 3-pound average rainbows here as mitigation for their FERC permit, since they stocked Caples Lake. Look for improved action here near the boat ramp.
STAMPEDE RESERVOIR—The lake is at 14-percent capacity. The lake surface temp was still high and algae was forming a green sheen on the water—not healthy. The kokanee were still stacked up in front of the dam in deep water and tough to catch, so most local anglers had given up on them, according to Mountain Hardware and Sports.
TOPAZ LAKE— The Douglas County Park reported there was only 1 feet of concrete left in the water at the main launch ramp though all size boats were still launching. Most folks were launching their bigger recreational boats off the shore in the “primitive area”. Fishing was still very slow.
TRUCKEE RIVER— Nothing has changed here–Mountain Hardware and Sports reported the river flows were way too low and much too warm to support any ethical fishing, so leave this precious resource alone!! Flows were dropped to a minimal level in the Little Truckee this week to do a stream restoration project.
UNION VALLEY RESERVOIR—The lake is at 61-percent capacity. According to Kyle Neeser at Crystal Basin Tackle and Guide Service, fishing here was very slow for trout, kokanee, and macks.
WEST WALKER RIVER—The DFW stocked the Little Walker River and West Walker River at Pickel Meadows and the Canyon this past week like it has done weekly since June and will do the same this week—that’s a lot of trout!! Sam Foster at the Toiyabe Motel, flows were good with lots of long deep channels and pools still showing in the Canyon. Flyfishermen were catching-and-releasing lots of 9- to 12-inch DFW planters with 20 to 30 fish days common. As the water temp continues to drop as fall arrives, look for the fishing to improve.
AMERICAN RIVER – Steelhead are present throughout the American, and are biting worms, roe and Glo-Bugs drifted through the riffles. Salmon fishing has been slow.
FEATHER RIVER – Salmon fishing remains slow, although some kings were caught near Shanghai Bend and the Outlet last week.
FOLSOM LAKE – The Brown’s Ravine boat launch is now closed, leaving Granite Bay as the only option for launching boats. Panfish are biting well near the dam. Bass fishing has been good with drop-shot rigs.
RANCHO SECO LAKE – Bass and trout fishing is slow.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Dunsmuir – The city of Dunsmuir has stocked hundreds of 14- to 22-inch rainbows. 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.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Redding to Red Bluff – Trout fishing is excellent from Redding to Red Bluff. Salmon are biting best at the Barge Hole, where most of the fish are bright, but some have started to turn darker. Fresh schools of fish moved through the canyon last week. Guides are reporting a fish per rod.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Red Bluff to Colusa – New salmon moved through last week, but action slowed over the weekend. Anglers are awaiting big numbers of salmon reported off the Golden Gate to move into the river in the next couple weeks.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Knight’s Landing to Colusa – Catfishing remains very good from bank and boat. Pile worms and nightcrawlers are working well. Salmon are moving through the river, but not biting well in the warm water. Anchoring and running small plugs, such as M2 FlatFish or K14 Kwikfish are working best.
SACRAMENTO RIVER, Sacramento – Stripers are once again being caught in the deepwater channel at the Port of Sacramento.
AMERICAN RIVER—According to the Georgetown Ranger Station, the river was low and clear with heavy recreational traffic at the Hwy 49 confluence. The best bet for fishermen was to hike to the remote sections of the North Fork above Foresthill and try for rainbows in the deeper pools
BULLARDS BAR—The lake is at 46-percent capacity. Emerald Cove Marina reported kokanee were still hitting at the dam. Lots of small spotted bass were hitting drop-shot worms on steeper points.
CAMP FAR WEST—Boats are now launching on the gravel ramp near the concrete ramp at North Shore Resort. Bass fishing was good in the early morning on the main body and Bear River arm. One angler cranked up 18 fish on Shad Raps in 10 feet of water. Ron Franks of Folsom caught 28 bass that included a dozen 2 1/2 to 3 pounders. Franks used oxblood and green pumpkin lizards on points at 10 to 20 feet deep in 77- to 79-degree water.
COLLINS LAKE—The lake is 51 feet from full. Collins Lake Resort reported that anglers were catching a few catfish to 9 1/4 pounds at the Open Area on nightcrawlers and floating dough bait. Boaters were launching at the auxiliary concrete ramp at the dam.
ENGLEBRIGHT RESERVOIR—The lake is at 98-percent capacity. Skippers Cove Marina reported houseboaters were catching 12- to 14-inch planter rainbows off the back of their boats in the marina using worms.
FRENCH MEADOWS RESERVOIR—The lake is at 33.4-percent capacity. The Foresthill Ranger Station reported small boats could still launch at their own risk on the dirt below the French Meadows ramp—4-wheel drive was strongly recommended!! Fishing was slow.
HELL HOLE RESERVOIR—The lake is at 31.2-percent capacity. The Georgetown Ranger Station reported shore anglers were catching good numbers of rainbows at the powerhouse in the out flowing current. One troller reported catching a nice fish at the dam at 60 feet deep.
LAKE OROVILLE—The lake is at 30-percent capacity—down 225 feet and still dropping! Guide Ron Gandolfi reported the bass bite was still very good with little boat traffic on the lake. Drop-shot worms and tubes were working well for 1 1/2- to 3-pound spots in 10 to 20 feet of water. Lots of fish were suspended off the bank and hitting lures being reeled back to the boat. Steeper rocky points and walls in the main body and the Slot were still the most productive structure. Launching was good at Bidwell on a dirt ramp for 2- and 4-wheel drive vehicles. Launching at the gravel road at the Spillway was 4-wheel drive only.
ROLLINS LAKE—The lake is at 93.5-percent capacity. Clyde Crow at NID reported a good topwater bite using Pop-R’s for small bass in the very early morning at the reef at the inlet. Drop-shot Power Minnows were working well at 10 feet deep on points near the river inlet. Trout fishing was slow. Launching was good at all the resorts with the high water level.
SCOTT’S FLAT LAKE—The lake is at 43.8-percent capacity. Clyde Crow at NID reported smallmouth bass to 4 pounds were hitting Pop-R’s in the early morning from 5:30 to 7:30 a.m. Drop-shot Power Minnows were working on points at 10 feet deep. Flukes cast into surface boils were productive though the surface activity was sporadic. Trout were deep at the dam. Launching was okay at the marina ramp with 55 feet of concrete still in the water with 7 feet of water over the end of the ramp.
SUGAR PINE RESERVOIR—The Foresthill Ranger Station reported the lake was low and fishing was slow.
STUMPY MEADOWS RESERVOIR—The lake is at 43-percent capacity. The Georgetown Ranger Station reported fishing was slow with the low lake level and warm water temps.
THERMOLITO AFTERBAY—The lake was at 133.3-foot elevation at press time—77-percent capacity. Steelhead were hitting drifted nightcrawlers in the canal at Wilbur Rd. Bass fishing was good in the early morning using topwater and jigs on the rocky banks. Pitching Senkos to the edges of the grass beds was producing also. In the evenings, crankbaits and swimbaits were working on the rocky banks.
BERKELEY—California Dawn, Happy Hooker and other boats worked at chalking up plentiful rockfish and good lingcod counts along the Marin Coast, though the ongoing striped bass bite tempted some skippers. Berkeley Charter Boats vessels enjoyed a much better week of salmon fishing, with a fish per rod or limits fairly common.
BODEGA BAY/LAWSON’S LANDING—A few salmon showed up and were enthusiastically received by local anglers. It was enough to get PBers out but not really enough to keep the party boats busy. Rockfish and lingcod trips filled sacks to bulging. Tomales Bay held halibut, with Hog Island and the mouth of the Bay getting a lot of attention.
EMERYVILLE—Most Emeryville boats went out after rockfish and lingcod. There were a sprinkling of hefty halibut on Sea Wolf and New Salmon Queen. Sundance slugged the salmon, reporting back in with limits for all passengers.
EUREKA—Salmon spread out from their recent stronghold at Cape Mendocino. Now they are more readily accessible to a variety of boaters who trolled or mooched baitballs to pick up the salmon. A 300-pound (estimated) thresher busted off and a few others were caught. A California halibut was caught inside of Humboldt Bay. Live anchovies are available at Woodley Island.
FORT BRAGG—A salmon bite picked up steam, with at least 1 released on each Telstar trip and a 31 pounder on Bragg’n, when the boats were looking for bottomfish. Private boats went after the salmon with some success. Rockfish ran very large at Cleone Reef and there were plenty of lingcod and cabezon caught.
HALF MOON BAY/PACIFICA—Salmon action picked up and most party boats picked up a few before switching over to rockfish and lingcod. Private boaters stayed with the salmon and scored decently. Rockfish and lingcod, down the coast from Half Moon Bay bit exceptionally well for New Capt. Pete, Huli Cat, and Queen of Hearts.
SAN FRANCISCO—Flash and Flash II split their time between rockfish/lingcod and leopard sharks. Bass Tub took people out to load them up with rockfish and lingcod on the Marin Coast. John Dresser aboard Wacky Jacky caught a 20-pound white seabass at Buoy 1.
VALLEJO—Striped bass were pretty much everywhere, on both sides of Vallejo. Some of the hotspots were under the Hwy 37 Bridge, up the Napa River and along the Vallejo Waterfront.