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North State Fish Report

By Western Outdoor News

Posted: 10/05/17

FEATHER RIVER >> The Outlet Hole closes Oct. 15. Fishing remains good at the afterbay outlet, with most boaters catching limits. Fresh salmon arrived at Boyd’s Pump and Live Oak last week. Trolling spinners is working best in the Boyd’s Pump area. Fishing for stripers has been slow.

SACRAMENTO RIVER, Redding to Red Bluff >> Salmon fishing is good at the Barge Hole, but the majority of the fish are jacks. Some kings are being caught in the canyon below the Barge Hole. FlatFish plugs with sardine wraps are working well at first light, while roe is working the rest of the day. Trout fishing is fair in the Redding area.

SACRAMENTO RIVER, Red Bluff to Colusa >> Fishing for salmon is fair in the Woodson Bridge area. Sardine-wrapped T50 FlatFish plugs have been working best at first light, while drifting roe also is taking kings. Guides are reporting a fish per rod.

SACRAMENTO RIVER, Verona to Colusa >> Salmon fishing is slow to fair. Trolling spinners has been working best for kings in the Verona area, while some fish also are being taken on M2 FlatFish in the mornings. Fishing for catfish remains good at Knights Landing and fair to good near Verona.

FRENCH MEADOWS RESERVOIR >> DFW will plant this week. Afternoon wind was a problem last week but Craig Newton at Will Fish Tackle in Auburn had customers report limits of trout between 2 and 3 pounds trolling F7 Rapalas just under the surface in 35 feet of water. “They started catching fish right off the boat ramp,” Newton said.

LAKE ALMANOR >> Anglers have been managing to pick up a few fish in deeper water (30 to 45 feet) fishing within 8 feet of the bottom, trolling 1 mph with Gulp! baits and ’crawlers. Best areas are Big Springs, Peninsula, Rec #1 and 2, A Frame and the East Shore. Bank fishermen are picking up a few fish in the coves and at Hamilton Branch.

BAUM LAKE >> The Fly Shop in Redding reports very good trout fishing on baits and flies, with most trout hovering around the weed beds.

BUCKS LAKE >> Trout fishing is perking up a little for trout, but the marina is now shut down for the winter and the boat docks have been pulled out. Boat ramps and camping facilities are still open.

EAGLE LAKE >> Trout fishing has been on the upswing, rated fair with a few fish up to 4 pounds recorded last week. The Eagle Lake rainbows are being caught on olive, black or fire tiger colored lures in waters 6 to 12 feet deep.

FALL RIVER >> Good for fly fishing with trout hitting on little Caddis flies.

HAT CREEK >> Fly action is good on Caddis flies.

LEWISTON LAKE >> Lots of trout limits are being caught on Power Baits and lures. Most of the rainbows are ranging from 1 to 2 pounds.

PIT RIVER >> Pit 3 area remains the best bet for fly and bait fishing.

SHASTA LAKE >> Bass fishing remains fair to good on plastics and jigs fished off most points in the main body of the lake. Trout anglers continue to score with blades and lures fished at depths of 80 to 100 feet deep, but occasionally the trout will be up on the surface along with bass chasing shad. Crappie fishing is good around most marina docks.

TRINITY LAKE >> Some kokanee salmon are being taken on trolled lures, but not much bass or trout action has been reported lately.

WHISKEYTOWN LAKE >> The kokanee fishing has slowed down with the fish moving into spawning areas. A few bass and trout are still being caught, but overall action has been slow.

AMERICAN RIVER >> Salmon are stacking up near Watt Avenue, where spinners and Little Cleos are working best. Bigger numbers of salmon appear to be staging near the mouth of the American.

FOLSOM LAKE >> Trout fishing is slow. Bass anglers are doing well from shore at Rattlesnake Bar, where they are throwing Senkos and other plastics and catching mainly smallmouths, but also some largemouth and spotted bass.

SACRAMENTO RIVER, Dunsmuir >> Flows at the Delta gauge dropped to 246 cfs. Trout fishing remains good.

SACRAMENTO RIVER, Sacramento >> Trollers are doing best from Miller Park to Garcia Bend. Fishing is good when schools of salmon move through, as guides reported a few double hookups last week. Jiggers are catching a few salmon at Freeport and the Minnow Hole.

KLAMATH RIVER, Hornbrook >> The river is closed to salmon fishing, just as the first fall kings would be arriving below Iron Gate Dam. Trout and steelhead fishing is good.

KLAMATH RIVER, Happy Camp >> Salmon season is closed. Flows Sunday at Seiad Valley were 1,470 cfs, while flows at Orleans were 2,150 cfs. Fresh steelhead have been staging near the mouth of the Trinity River. Side-drifting roe has been good for half-pounders near Happy Camp, while adult steelhead are being caught on small MagLip plugs.

KLAMATH RIVER, Klamath Glen >> The river is now closed to salmon fishing, but remains open to summer steelhead fishing. Steelhead are spread throughout the lower river, but fishing slowed last week.

TRINITY RIVER >> Salmon fishing is closed. Fresh steelhead are stacking up at the mouth of the Trinity. Plugs are tricking steelhead in the Lewiston and Junction City areas. Pressure has been light..

CAMP FAR WEST >> Fishing continues to be slow here. A few small bass are being caught, but “people have been going all over to catch them,” said Kathy DeRossett from the North Shore Resort. “It’s been slow.”

COLLINS LAKE >> Small bass to 2 pounds can be caught with jigs and Senkos off structure in 5 to 15 feet of water. Surface temperature last week dropped 2 degrees to 71 degrees, but trout action remains slow.

ENGLEBRIGHT RESERVOIR >> Trollers can catch trout 15 to 20 feet deep with flashers and nightcrawlers said Lisa Rogers from Skipper’s Cove Marina. She said one customer trolled for four rainbows and another reported a pair of trout and a bright kokanee.

HELL HOLE RESERVOIR >> Customers of Will Fish Tackle in Auburn fished here last week and reported very good trout fishing. Rainbows between 15 to 17 inches were caught using GVS bugs and Mad Action Dodgers. The trout were in the top 35 feet and in the far end of the lake. Afternoon wind was stiff.

LAKE OROVILLE >> Lake is 38 percent of capacity. The launch at Lime Saddle Marina closed last Tuesday so Bidwell Marina is the access point for boaters.

ROLLINS LAKE >> Cold weather late in the week snapped a solid bass bite. Action dropped dramatically since Thursday.

SCOTTS FLAT >> Light pressure, slow action. Anglers were able to pick a few smallmouth, but none of any size, said Jim Caldwell, Nevada Irrigation District supervisor.

STUMPY MEADOWS >> There are a lot of deer hunters in this area, many more than anglers, said Pete Robinson from the Foresthill Ranger Station.

LAKE BERRYESSA >> Dropping water temps should have all three species of bass — largemouth, spotted and smallmouth bass — pushing bait in the back of creeks, bays and small cuts to feed. The east shoreline is getting the most pressure as anglers wait for the fall bite to pop. Others are bouncing point-to-point, fishing many depths in the water column with drop-shot, jigs, Senkos and tubes to fill limits.

BLACK BUTTE LAKE >> Some bass and crappie continue to be caught, but angler pressure is light.

CLEAR LAKE >> The reaction bite throughout the recent bass tournament was almost nonexistent and everyone reported that the drop-shot accounted for practically all of their fish. Anglers had to cover as much water as possible as the fish are not bunched up and they also had to try and fish as slow as possible with pin-point accuracy, placing their baits as tight to cover as possible. The fall bite is a couple of weeks off from improving and anglers are hoping that the bigger fish will start to show up.

LAKE MENDOCINO >> Not many anglers are out here, but the fishing has been productive on shallow-running crank plugs for both largemouth and smallmouth bass.

LAKE PILLSBURY >> Fishing is still slow with not many anglers on the lake.

LAKE SONOMA >> The early morning topwater bite is sporadic with a few nice fish being caught on Whopper Ploppers and Sammy’s, while angles are point-hopping the main body outside the bigger creek channels. When the sun comes up, the bass bite gets tough.

UPPER BLUE LAKES >> Still awaiting the first trout plant of the season, so not much is happening as of now.

CHETCO RIVER, Brookings, Ore. >> Anglers trolling the jetties at the mouth of the Chetco estuary last week caught plenty of king salmon, according to WON Field Reporter and guide Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing. “Peak season here isn’t until late October, early November, but salmon are already staging in the estuary and the ocean just outside the mouth. The ocean “Bubble Season” runs Oct. 7-8 and Oct. 14-15.

ROGUE RIVER, Gold Beach, Ore. >> The estuary fished well again last week, especially on Tuesday and Wednesday when most guides limited out. It was fair over the weekend, but a 45.5-pound king was landed, the largest of the season. Trolling anchovies has been the best bet.

ROGUE RIVER, Grants Pass, Ore. >> Steelhead fishing is good in most areas around Grants Pass, with the steelies hitting well on side-drifted small plugs and spinners, but the salmon season has now shut down on the upper river and down to Hog Creek, where you can still keep fish caught below that area.

RUSSIAN RIVER >> Water is cooling a bit, boosting the bass bite, but catfish are also still on the prowl and biting. The summer crowds are thinning out some from water activities.

SMITH RIVER >> Now closed to fishing due to low flow closures that came into effect Oct. 1. The flows were down to 278 cfs. Fishing is limited to those areas below the Hwy. 101 Bridge like the Piling Hole, Sand Hole and mouth until it reopens after rains. For the latest flows on the Smith, and current low-flow status, call the Department of Fish and Wildlife hotline at (707) 822-3164. A few kings are being caught at the mouth by anglers tossing spinners or anchoring and running anchovies. Flows must reach 600 cfs at Jed Smith to open above Rowdy Creek.

ALPINE LAKE >> Alpine County Fish and Game last week planted 1,800 pounds of trout.

BOCA RESERVOIR >> Trout bite is very good here. Guide Marc Christophel fished twice and trolled for nonstop action for rainbows measuring 13 to 16 inches.

CAPLES LAKE >> The weather got better and the fishing dropped off, said Joe Voss from Caples Lake Resort. No big fish reported and anglers did not report much success.

CARSON RIVER >> The east and west forks of the Carson next week will each get 900 pounds of trout. Plus the west fork and Markleeville Creek will receive plants from DFW. East is in great shape and trout to 7 pounds were caught last week.

CRYSTAL BASIN >> Water temperature at Ice House is 62 degrees. The dock is out of the water and campground host is gone. Trout are active but majority are between eight and 11 inches. Trout are in the top 17 feet of water, said guide Dale Daneman. He used frog-patterned Super-Dupers, brown grubs with and without a watermelon dodger to attract trout.

DAVIS LAKE >> Water temp is holding in the high 50s. Trout are starting to come to the surface so those using rust wooly buggers or brown trolling flies are having some success from Lightning Tree to Mosquito. Bank anglers have been congregating at Mallards but having little success, said Jeanne Graham from J&J’s Grizzly Store.

DONNER LAKE >> There are plenty of bright kokanee throughout the lake, said guide Shaun Rainsbarger. Mackinaw fishing also remains solid for fish weighing 3 to 4 pounds.

FRENCHMAN LAKE >> Turkey Point remains the best spot to cast bait for shore to rainbow trout. A 22-incher was reported last week, said Mark Tieslau of Mountain Hardware & Sports in Blairsden. Nightcrawlers are the most effective bait.

GOLD LAKES BASIN >> Brown trout are starting to come into the shallows at Gold Lake. Mark Tieslau of Mountain Hardware & Sports in Blairsden caught a 3-pound brown trolling a Scatter Rap on the north side of the lake. Salmon Lake has been producing limits for anglers using Power Bait or gold Kastmasters. Sardine and Gold Lake will get trout plants next week.

HEENAN LAKE >> Lake continues to fish well despite a lot of pressure. Parking lot is full on Fridays and Saturdays, said Todd Sodaro from Creekside Lodge in Markleeville. Cutthroat to 26 inches were reported last Friday.

JACKSON MEADOWS >> Another trout plant, the second in three weeks, went in this week. Critical mass should brighten prospects.

LAKE TAHOE >> Kokanee are in the creeks, but there is a solid morning Mackinaw bite. Charter boats report solid action on the South, West and North Shore. Macks are in various stages of spawning and can be found stacked up in numerous spots.

PROSSER RESERVOIR >> Slow week here. Small bass can be caught near the dam. DFW will stock here this week.

PYRAMID LAKE >> A 22 1/2-pound cutthroat landed by a fly fisher at Warrior Point highlighted Sunday’s opening day. Boaters faced stiff winds and swells to three feet, limiting the fishing area. Guide Marc Christophel was able to reach the far north end of the lake and landed 40 cutts and reported the fish to be quite thick and healthy. “They have been eating well,” Christophel said.

SLY PARK >> No big fish this week but those going back in the narrows where the creek enters are able to entice rainbow trout with Power Bait. Not many limits, but anglers can get a trout or three.

STAMPEDE RESERVOIR >> Time to transition from kokanee to trout. Trout can be found outside creek arms behind the soon-to-spawn kokanee.

TOPAZ LAKE >> Lake closes to fishing on Sept. 30. It will reopen Jan. 1.

TRUCKEE RIVER >> Trout fishing is very good, especially beneath the Boca Outlet. Streamers produce action as does nymphing. There are hatches of October caddis below Boca. The key to success is getting a good drift, said Brian Nylund of Mountain Hardware & Sports in Truckee.

WEBBER LAKE >> Little change here. Anglers can troll outside drop-offs. Fly fishers work the weed lines.

WEST WALKER RIVER >> River is in excellent fishing shape and also producing great results for those drifting nightcrawlers near the bridges near Walker. Quality has been good with a lot of trout in the pound-plus range. DFW will be planting this week and next week.

BERKELEY >> New Easy Rider from Berkeley Charter Boats put some salmon on the boat but had to work hard for them. Happy Hooker ran her 5th annual Ego Lingcod Tourney and fishing at the islands was spectacular. On Sunday the boat fished the Bay for a halibut per rod and some bass. Capt. Bill Clapp on Jilly Sea reported very good Bay fishing for leopard sharks and rays. Ms. Marin found hungry halibut. California Dawn hammered the rockies and lings Friday at the Farallones, then on Sunday fished the Bay for 25 halibut, 2 striped bass and a white seabass.

BODEGA BAY >> Salmon hung around Ten Mile Beach, providing nice icing for a cake of rockfish and lingcod taken from Fort Ross or Point Reyes areas on combo trips aboard New Sea Angler. Huli Cat came up from Half Moon Bay to run a research trip to Stewarts Point MPA and pulled up hundreds of exceptionally large groundfish. Surf fishers enjoyed surf perch at Doran and Dillon Beaches.

EMERYVILLE >> Bouts of weather dictated to a degree the destination of Fish Emeryville boats. Wet Spot, Tigerfish and New Salmon Queen spent time fishing for bass and halibut inside the Bay and at times the bass were coming up in limit quantities.

EUREKA >> Albacore remained on the menu for boats out of Eureka. Reel Steel put 25 longfin onboard. Out of Shelter Cove, Sea Hawk brought 8 albies over the rail and the biggest was an impressive 35 pounds. Trips from Eureka to Cape Mendocino were highly productive for lings and rockies when the weather was nice. Inside Humboldt Bay the California halibut kept busy scarfing up the big schools of baitfish and falling prey to anglers drifting and bounce-balling.

FORT BRAGG >> Most action was for lingcod and rockfish, with party boat Sea Hawk turning in fairly regular limits of lingcod and rockfish without having to travel very far to fill the sacks. A few private boaters made long runs for albacore and there were reports of limited success. Shore anglers had nice days to pull lingcod and cabezon from MacKerricher and Mendocino Headlands, but on windy days with high seas, Noyo Jetty was the safe place to be.

HALF MOON BAY >> Party boats Queen of Hearts and Huli Cat worked the deeper stones at Deep Reef and down the coast to fill sacks with high-grade groundfish. Salmon swarmed both inside and outside the outer breakwater where kayakers and skiff anglers got them. Shore fishers inside Pillar Point Harbor caught the returning pen-reared salmon with barbless spinners.

SAN FRANCISCO >> On a swim charter, a couple of guys aboard Bass Tub had a chance for a couple of quick drifts and put two nice halibut on the boat. The Flash boats tamed bass and halibut in the bay and rockfish outside. Lovely Martha pulled 16 bass plus a couple of halibut. Wacky Jacky pulled the “hat trick” by catching salmon, halibut and bass in one trip.

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