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New Melones Lake

  • Tuolumne County

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      Water Temp: 57

      Water Clarity: Stained (2-4 foot visibility)
      By: Gene Hildebrand
      New Melones Lake level is currently at 1050.75 and 37.25 ft. from full. Water level had dropped to the year low of 1050.00 before rising to current level. Water temperature is 56 d. clarity is good. We like to promote catch and release on New Melones. If you do so, provide us a picture and bring it in for a copy or email it to us at so we can put it on the board or in the newsletter.
      (January 2018 has showed that if 2017 was a great year for trout, then it should carry well on into this new year.) Posted that two weeks ago! Here we are at the end of January with a record Rainbow trout that has blasted the Melones Lake record by 4 lbs 6 oz. I've heard many a angler commenting that Melones holds some huge bows and this one proves all that chatter. Chris Peterson of Folsom was on the main lake Jan. 25th at 9:00 am bass fishing with one of our veterans, which had just brought in a 4+ lb bass. Chris saw some shad on the surface of the cove that they were in so motored over and came up with a plan to bring his presentation from the shore in towards the shad. Dragging the bladed chartreuse voo doo into the water and 3 ft. in line began peeling off his reel. After setting his hook Chris was thinking I've got a really nice bass on the end of my line, turning his pole into a circle hook. As he brought her in closer and seeing color he realized a nice size trout was on his line. After landing her, Chris thought he may have a record but wasn't sure so had his partner look up the records for the lake and told him 9 lb. 10oz. is the current record. So he says hey Chris, you just landed a New lake record!
      14lbs. 04oz, 27" length, with a 21" girth.
      Power bait is working excellent for shore fishermen, speedy shiners for trolling anglers, Tazmanian Devil can be cast/trolled.
      Anglers report bass fishing has been doing good with the finesse setup, Texas rig and dropshot using senkos cinnamon blk flake, pumpkin, robo worms in oxblood/red flake.
      The bass on New Melones are being caught in both deep and shallow water. It can take a little time to locate actively feeding fish. Once you do find a productive depth, catching fish has not been a problem. On an average day we will put 20 to 30-quality spotted bass and largemouth in the boat. On good days we are landing over 50-fish. Many techniques have been working and some better than others. Mostly using finesse tactics to get plenty of bites and tossing large baits in search of a big bite. The dropshot rig continues to work. Small shad or crawdad patterned soft plastics are a good choice. Also, bottom bouncing baits have been a key player. The flooded grass from last year's downpour has almost completely deteriorated and grinding baits on the rocks will trigger fish. Jigs, shakeyheads, dartheads and a good ol' Texas rig will do the trick.
      Stick with natural colors when fishing in clear water and you find success.
      No reports of Catfish caught
      Officially or not officially GHS has no recorded lake record for Crappie so to bring in the new year, we are hereby crediting Roger Stewart with owning the newly classified Crappie record for New Melones Lake. Roger of River Pines caught a 2 lb.6 oz. Crappie on January 1, 2018. Roger reported catching the sunfish on a Rapala in a Rainbow Trout pattern. Thanks for bring this nice Crappie in and sharing it with us Roger!
      Anglers FYI; for anyone with a potential lake record please call us at the store and hopefully we can send someone to weigh, photograph and measure the catch at the lake. GHS is the unofficial recorder of lake records for New Melones, and we understand there is sometimes conflicting interest in the welfare of the catch, whether or not to release the potential record, sacrificing your place as a record holder for the lake.

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