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North state fishing report

By Western Outdoor News

TRINITY RIVER >> Guides running plugs or roe from drift boats are now catching springers from just above Douglas City down to Junction City. Bank fishing is still slow because of high water. The Trinity is open to salmon fishing through Aug. 31.

FEATHER RIVER (MIDDLE FORK) >> River is getting low and planted trout are small. Limits of 8- to 9-inch trout are easy to come by, if you want. There are rainbows to 12 inches rising to dries in the evening.

GOLD LAKES BASIN >> Salmon Lake, Sardine Lake and Packer Lake all have been stocked and anglers are catching lots of rainbows in the 6- to 9-inch range. Larger fish can be caught at Gold Lake, but don’t expect numbers.

FEATHER RIVER >> Water releases jumped to 3,500 cfs the end of last week, giving the Feather a much-needed boost in flows for Sunday’s salmon opener. While conditions were good, fishing was still slow, mainly because the bulk of the run is still in the ocean. A few kings were caught near Boyd’s Pump on trolled spinners, while a few salmon also were caught at the outlet on FlatFish with sardine wraps. Shad fishing is slow. A few stripers are being caught near Boyd’s Pump.

LAKE ALMANOR >> A cricket and mealworm combo has produced some trout action, but the warm weather has pretty much slowed the action.

BAUM LAKE >> Trout fishing is fair to good for fly fishermen and bait anglers.

BUCKS LAKE >> Trout fishing is fair with browns, rainbows and brook trout being caught. Most of the fish are being caught on worms deep off of creek inlets.

EAGLE LAKE >> Trout fishing is slow.

FALL RIVER >> Fly fishing is fair on Hex hatches.

LEWISTON LAKE >> Good trout fishing on fish up to 4 pounds on orange Power Bait and nightcrawlers. The lake has been recently stocked and includes some 3- to 8-pound rainbow trout.

PIT RIVER >> Area 3 fishing continues to be good, but areas 4 and 5 are still running high waters.

SHASTA LAKE >> Bass fishing is fair to good early and late in the day on surface plugs and plastic worms. Crappie is fair on jigs 20 to 30 feet deep. Trout fishing is fair on deep trolled lures.

TRINITY LAKE >> Bass fishing is good early and late in the day on Senkos and Gitzits. Some kokanee are being caught on trolled lures along with a few trout. Water level has dropped down 21 feet.

WHISKEYTOWN LAKE >> Bass fishing is fair on surface plugs, but the kokanee fishing has fallen off a little bit as the water is warming.

AMERICAN RIVER >> Flows remained at 3,480 cfs over the weekend. Salmon season opened Sunday. Anglers concentrated on the mouth of the American at Discovery Park, where there were several salmon caught on trolled spinners. Shad fishing has slowed, but some trophy-size stripers are being caught.

FOLSOM LAKE >> Boat traffic is heavy. Bank anglers are catching smallmouth, spotted and largemouth bass in crawfish as well as live minnows or nightcrawlers. Boaters are finding the largest bass near submerged wood piles where drop-shot rigs are working best.

RANCHO SECO LAKE >> Trout fishing has slowed.

SACRAMENTO RIVER, Dunsmuir >> The river is in prime shape. Trout fishing is fair to good, with afternoon hatches for fly anglers. Caddis patterns are working well. Spinners and spoons are working for gear anglers.

SACRAMENTO RIVER, Redding to Red Bluff >> Flows from Keswick Dam remained at 10,500 cfs, where they have been running since June. The section of river between Keswick and the Highway 44 bridge is now closed. Trout fishing has been fair to good from Redding to Red Bluff, with the best fishing from the Highway 44 bridge to Anderson. Small plugs are working very well, although with Glo Bugs, crickets and roe. Fly anglers are using caddis patterns. Salmon season opens Aug. 1 between Anderson and Red Bluff.

SACRAMENTO RIVER, Red Bluff to Colusa >> The salmon season opener was very slow between Red Bluff and Chico, with DFW checkers only counting one king for 50 boats on Sunday. Conditions are good, however, and guides expect catch rates to improve as salmon move in from the delta and ocean. The river is clean and free of moss, which makes running FlatFish plugs easier. Stripers are being caught on cut sardines and anchovies. Several salmon anglers reported catching stripers while targeting kings on Sunday.

SACRAMENTO RIVER, Verona to Colusa >> The salmon opener was slow, although a few kings were caught on trolled plugs or spinners near Verona. Fishing for catfish has been good at Knights Landing and Verona. Striper fishing has slowed, but a few large fish, as well as shakers are still around.

SACRAMENTO RIVER, Sacramento >> Sunday’s salmon opener was slow throughout the Sacramento, but a decent number of kings were caught at Discovery Park near the mouth of the American. Trolling spinners worked best. Striper fishing is slow, but some keepers are still being reported at Bright Beach. Shad fishing is slow. Salmon are in the Delta, so they’re coming.

KLAMATH RIVER, Hornbrook >> Flows at Iron Gate Dam dropped to 1,033 cfs, perfect for summer steelhead and native rainbows. Fly anglers are doing well with caddis patterns. Bait anglers are running nightcrawlers behind divers or running 3.0 and 2.5 MagLip plugs.

KLAMATH RIVER, Happy Camp >> Flows Sunday at Seiad Valley were 1,604 cfs, while flows at Orleans were 3,124 cfs. The river is in prime shape for trout fishing, although hot weather has limited effort to the early morning hours. Fly fishing is good.

KLAMATH RIVER, Klamath Glen >> Flows are down to 5,791 cfs at Terwer, down from 6,792 cfs a week ago. Guides trolling spinners in the estuary are now catching some kings daily. Overall action is slow to fair, but the kings have arrived. Side-drifting for summer steelhead remains slow. The river is open to salmon fishing through Aug. 14.

BULLARDS BAR >> Kokanee bite is excellent and 10-fish limits are attainable. Guide Rob Reimers of Rustic Rob’s Guide Service has been finding kokes 35 feet deep and drawing strikes with pink Brad’s Kokanee Cut Plugs. Most fish are 12 inches long.

CAMP FAR WEST >> Fishing has been slow, but one youngster caught-and-released a pair of 5-pound catfish using hot dog for bait near the boat ramp. Bass are scarce. Lake is 85-percent of capacity.

ENGLEBRIGHT RESERVOIR >> Anglers soaking dough baits off houseboats are scoring trout. Bluegill are everywhere.

FRENCH MEADOWS RESERVOIR >> A recent trout plant has kept this lake productive. Troll flashers/nightcrawlers or employ nightcrawlers, Power Bait from shore. There’s a good population of browns here if you choose to target those.

FULLER LAKE >> Trout were delivered here last week but no word on results.

HELL HOLE RESERVOIR >> Everything is a rumor here since the road in and out doesn’t provide a spot to stop and share info. The unverified rumors are that kokanee and trout fishing is fair to good, but not great.

LAKE OROVILLE >> Early-morning topwater bite provides plenty of action for 1- to 2-pound spots. There are largemouth in the mix. Go to tubes after the sun hits the water and the bass have backed off the banks.

SCOTTS FLAT >> Generally slow.

STUMPY MEADOWS >> Fishing remains good here. Shore anglers and trollers can count on a couple of fish per rod.

LAKE BERRYESSA >> Bass fishing is fairly good and trout fishing has also improved.

BLACK BUTTE LAKE >> Bass and crappie fishing has been slow for most anglers.

CLEAR LAKE >> Fishing for bass continues to be good with most anglers getting large numbers of fish in the 2- to 3-pound range, with a few 5 and 6 pounders caught on jigs and deep diving crank plugs.

LAKE MENDOCINO >> Not much action reported from here.

LAKE PILLSBURY >> Fishing remains on the slow side.

LAKE SONOMA >> Lots of small bass are being caught in most shallow areas of the lake.

UPPER BLUE LAKES >> Fishing remains very slow for trout with the water still a bit murky, but a fair number of bass, including a couple of 6 pounders were caught this week.

CHETCO RIVER, Brookings, Ore. >> After a few weeks of good fishing in the estuary for feeder kings from the ocean, salmon fishing slowed down off the Chetco last week. A massive dieoff of anchovies in the harbor contributed to the slow fishing. Fresh schools of anchovies moved in over the weekend, according to guide Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing, and a few salmon were caught trolling along the jetties.

ROGUE RIVER, Gold Beach, Ore. >> The Rogue Bay is now producing peak-season type of action, with many guides reporting two to four king salmon a day. The water temperature in the river at Agness hit 72 degrees, causing salmon to hold in the bay. Trolling anchovies with gold spinner blades has worked best. Up to 40 salmon a day are being caught on the bay.

RUSSIAN RIVER >> Things are in their summer mode, according to Scott Heemstra of Kings Sport and Tackle, who said, “Water temps are getting close to 80 with the intense heat we are having right now, so the bite may slow. Flows are hovering around 170 cfs and the mouth of the river is currently closed as of Sunday July 16. If the swell isn’t too big the SCWA may breach the barrier beach at the river mouth some time this week.”

UMPQUA RIVER, Reedsport, Ore. >> The first salmon of the season have been caught in Winchester Bay and the lower Umpqua River near the Highway 101 bridge at Reedsport. Plug-cut herring trolled with Big Al’s Fish Flashers is working best.

BLUE LAKES >> Road to Blue Lakes opened last week. Fishing has been slow.

BOCA RESERVOIR >> Trout were planted last week, but it’s been a slow bite. Possibly due to hot weather and moon phases.

CAPLES LAKE >> This lake went from ice-out to summer slowdown in quick time. Some are catching small, planted trout with flashers/nightcrawlers or toplining plugs or spinners. A 15-pound Mack was caught last week, said Joe Voss of Caples Lake Resort. He also said a few in the 4- to 6-pound range were landed. Bank fish is slow.

CARSON RIVER >> East Carson this week is receiving a plant from DFW and a private plant from Alpine County Fish & Game. Over the next two weeks, the East Fork, West Fork, Silver Creek and Markleeville Creek will receive 3,600 pounds of purchased trout on top of state plants. Most of the fish will go to the East Carson, which has yet to be planted this year. A 5-pound plus rainbow was caught last week in Markleeville Creek.

DAVIS LAKE >> Trout bite remains very slow with surface temps in the high 70s. Best action is for panfish and bass near Camp 5.

DONNER LAKE >> Mackinaw bite is showing life after a two-week slump. Guide Shaun Rainsbarger said macks can be found from 20 feet to 110 feet. Kokanee bite is good but a lot of small fish are in the mix.

CRYSTAL BASIN >> Union Valley kokanee are a tough problem to solve. Mixed reports are coming back. Those who catch them report kokanee to 15 inches. Action is over by 11 a.m. Loon Lake fishing is slow. Ice House is full of small planters.

INDIAN CREEK RESERVOIR >> With focus back on both forks of the Carson and Markleeville Creek, pressure has been light. Good spot for evening float tube fishing.

JACKSON MEADOWS >> It’s slow fishing from shore and boat.

LAKE TAHOE >> Kokanee began showing last weekend. Most were 10 to 12 inches long. Mack bite is a challenge but quality has been outstanding. North Shore and South Shore hold fish but each offer different challenges.

PROSSER RESERVOIR >> This has been a solid bet in the Truckee area. Find trout in the creek arms and smallmouth bass near the dam.

PYRAMID LAKE >> Lake will open to cutthroat fishing on Oct. 1.

STAMPEDE RESERVOIR >> Kokanee bite is very good here. Fish remain shallow (less than 40 feet deep) and scattered throughout the lake. Most are 12 to 13 inches.

TRUCKEE RIVER >> Fishing is best through town and near Hirschdale. It’s slow along Highway 89. There are caddis hatches in the evening and some green drakes. Canyon is accessible. Flows are around 800 cfs.

WEBBER LAKE >> Warm weather has sent the trout deep and fishing has been slow. Campground opens to the public on August 1 for the first time, from private ownership.

WEST WALKER RIVER >> River is rounding into fishable shape for the first time in weeks. It’s running fast, but the water is clear. A plant that included trout larger than five pounds went in this week to draw participants to the fishing derby at Walker General Store. 

BERKELEY >> Berkeley boats spread out and came back with salmon from just about every direction. Salmon action was hot. El Dorado, New El Dorado III and New Easy Rider had combined averages of about 100 salmon per day. New Huck Finn tried fishing bass off of Ocean Beach and came back in early with full limits. California Dawn put full limits of salmon aboard at mid-week and otherwise went far variety including halibut, bass, lingcod and rockfish. Passengers aboard Ms. Marin caught halibut and bass inside the Bay. Happy Hooker posted bass counts as high as full limits, boated a few halibut, had lingcod counts higher than a fish per rod and filled sacks with rockfish.

BODEGA BAY >> Salmon showed in good numbers and limits were taken straight out from Tomales Point in 200 to 240 feet of water. The grade of fish was good, with specimens up to 22 pounds coming aboard New Sea Angler. In Tomales Bay the halibut bite around Hog Island had slowed but was still viable. In the mouth of Tomales Bay, striped bass were active and an 8-year-old lad caught a 21 pounder while fishing on a private boat with his grandfather who gave him just a little bit of help.

EMERYVILLE >> Fish Emeryville boats averaged 1.5 to 2 salmon per rod fishing off of Mussel Rock and points south. A 27 pounder was caught aboard Sundance at Marin Beach. Sea Wolf fished the deeper spots around the Farallones, sacking up full limits of both lingcod and rockfish. Shore fishers along the Emeryville shoreline and nearby managed to catch striped bass.

EUREKA >> Bigger California halibut moved in and spiced things up for drifters and trollers in the upper Humboldt Bay. Inside the jetties, boaters drifted live baits freshly jigged up and scored some lingcod. Local beaches gave up good catches of red tail perch.

FORT BRAGG >> Wind prevented boaters from blasting out to a well-defined SST break just 25 miles out for tuna, but boaters remain at the ready for the first window of weather opportunity. Party boats got lingcod and rockfish at local reefs, with limits reported daily aboard Sea Hawk. Shore fishers did well on lingcod and rockfish at The Mill and also caught perch up at Westport.

HALF MOON BAY >> Salmon fishing or rockfish and lingcod trips were both viable options. New Capt. Pete posted limits of salmon. Huli Cat and Queen of Hearts chased lingcod to 14 pounds and plenty of rockfish at Deep Reef and also at points south toward Pescadero. Striped bass were very active in the surf, with night time bites proving the best.

SAN FRANCISCO >> Wacky Jacky stayed on top of the salmon movements and shared the success with Lovely Martha, who also spent some of the week inside the Bay working on bass and halibut. Bass Tub fished rockfish and lingcod then came inside to finish up with leopard sharks. Then on Sunday the boat had success on salmon. Flash worked at halibut, bass and leopard shark, while Flash II found willing flatties just inside the Gate.

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