The Striped Bass really seem to be scattered right now. Anglers are having a tough time pinning them down with one specific pattern. Those having the most luck are moving from spot to spot while covering a lot of area. The techniques being used are both live and artificial baits. It’s really just a matter of finding the fish. Bass fishing is tough right now as anglers are advised to use lighter lines and smaller baits as the water has gotten real clear in a lot of areas. Most anglers are choosing to use a drop shot rigged worm along deep weed edges.
Lake New Melones:
A new lake record brown trout was caught on Dec. 30, 2011. Michael Oliveira caught this massive 13-pound 4-ounce fish while fishing for bass. He was fishing near the dam with a small (similar to a Rapala Shad-Rap SR-5) shad-patterned crank bait. This is considered to be the best time of the year to target the big brown trout. Anglers fishing off the bank are doing well for trout while fishing with Power Eggs or Power bait in rainbow or chartreuse colors. Anglers trolling are doing well while top-lining and using side planners. A single night crawler threaded onto a Wedding Ring behind a Sling Blade is hard to beat. Bass fishing remains consistent as the bass have moved deeper. The bigger bass are being caught by swimbaits as they are definitely following the trout up shallow. For numbers try targeting points and backs of creeks with soft plastics and jigs.
Lake Don Pedro:
Trout fishing continues to be great for both trollers and bank fishermen. Mexican Gulch seems to be the hot area right now for anglers trolling down to 30’ deep with shad-patterned ExCels. The salmon bite is expected to improve as we get closer to February. Bass fishing has slowed right now as anglers are struggling to find a consistent bite anywhere on the lake. There have been a few anglers that have been able to catch fish on spoons while searching for schooling fish.
The Lockhart family continues to plant between 800 and 1000-pounds per day every weekday with 4000-pounds of fighting cuttbows. Anglers having luck are either trolling the top ten feet of water or fishing with power bait.
Lake Pardee is scheduled to reopen February 16th and for recreational vehicles and the 17th for fishing.