Several weeks ago I ran into an angler that I haven’t seen in a few years. He’s got to be in his 70’s by now. As we were catching up, the excitement in his voice when talking about fishing was like if he was a kid again. He seemed excited about his next trip out and having a bead on the current fishing conditions. I couldn’t help but think to myself how strong a passion for fishing can really be. I’ve got friends who’ve sacrificed it all to fish professionally. Unfortunately for them, things didn’t work out but they gave it a chance and lived out their dream. Fishing like any other activity can become an obsession. There’s definitely a balancing act that must take place, especially when other people rely on you. Every once in a while I see a young team of angers enter a tournament for the first time. My thoughts are always the same, I hope they don’t win the first one. Not because I wish them bad luck but because winning right away almost guarantees they’re not going to be able to stop until their money runs out. Fishing competitively is a lot like gambling, in the end the house always wins.
Water temperatures have been in the high seventies to low eighties. The reaction bite for largemouth bass has been good lately especially when the wind breaks up the surface. There are also a lot of small schools of striped bass found working throughout the sloughs right now. Make sure to have your favorite topwater bait ready in case you encounter an active school of fish. Catfishing remains good during the evening hours and bluegill can still be found in bunches along the shallows.
New Melones Lake:
Kokanee fishing continues to be good along with the bluegill and catfish bite. Anglers fishing for kokanee are trolling as deep as 60 feet during the day. At night the rainbows are being caught by those fishing around submersible lights with live minnows and power bait. Bluegill are being found right now in the backs of coves and caught by those using worms for bait. Catfish are being caught all over the lake right now but mostly from the shore during the night on anchovies and clams. Bass fishing continues to be good for numbers as many bass can be found in schools off points and main lake structure.
Bass are being caught in the top 10 feet of water on jigs during the day and on top water baits early in the morning as well as in the evening. Kokanee are being caught as deep as 110 feet during the day by trollers. Bluegills continue to provide steady action for those fishing small worms under a bobber around shoreline cover.
Fishing for bass has been fair to good as there are still a lot of fish to be caught up shallow on shaky head worms. There is also a lot of schooling activity to be found on the lake right now as a drop shotted Robo Worm through visible schools of fish has been producing numbers. The water clarity is great right now and the water level is higher than all its neighboring lakes.
Fishing continues to be slow during the day for anglers fishing for bass and trout. Bluegills have been biting during the day on small worms in the backs of coves and around the dam area. Bass have been pushing the shad into the backs of coves and can be found feeding close to the bank. Bass are being caught at night on spinnerbaits, buzz baits, jigs, and brush hogs. At night some trout are being caught near the dam while fishing under a submersible light.
There are more and more solar chargers out there now than ever. If you’re planning on fishing or camping somewhere where there isn’t any available electrical hookups, I strongly suggest you look into purchasing a solar unit. Some of the best deals that I’ve been able to find have been through Harbor Freight. The unit that I have is a little heavy but is worth its weight as it has kept my batteries fully charged for the past two years.