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Salmon run builds in Sacramento metro area

WON Staff Writer
Published: Sep 28, 2017
SACRAMENTO — Cooler water temperatures have improved salmon fishing in the Sacramento River metro area between Miller Park and Garcia Bend, where a few guides are now reporting impressive catch totals. While the fishing is still not red-hot, some guides are averaging a fish per rod or better.

THE SAC METRO area of the Sacramento River has steady salmon fishing now, with guides scoring well. Chris Sanders, Stan Ricoli and Jose Gonzalez, all of Stockton, caught these king salmon while fishing with Captain Monte Smith of Gold Country Sportfishing on Saturday, September 23, on the Sacramento River in the metropolitan area of Sacramento.

“Today, quite a few people caught fish,” guide James Netzel of Tight Lines Guide Service said Sunday evening after getting off the water. “There were a lot of boats that had at least one fish.” Netzel began fishing the Sacramento last Monday, when he boated four kings. “Wednesday we got three, Friday we got four, Saturday we got one and today we got three,” Netzel said.

He has been focusing on the Miller Park to Garcia Bend stretch of river.

Cooler water temperatures have slowed down the movement of incoming kings, Netzel said, allowing anglers to have a longer window to get lures in front of the fish. “It has slowed the fish down,” he said. “During the drought years, the fish would just streak through. Now they will hold up.”

The water temperature over the weekend was 62 degrees, down from 70 degrees the week before. The salmon tend to hold up better when the water gets to 65 degrees or cooler. Netzel is fishing Pro Troll flashers with a Brad’s Cut Plug lure. “Black Magic has been the best this week,” Netzel said of the black and silver Brad’s Cut Plug. He is using the 11-inch h Pro Troll E-Chip flasher.

Guide Monte Smith of Gold Country Sportfishing confirmed reports that salmon fishing has improved between Miller Park and Garcia Bend. Smith ran his first trip on Saturday and got his crew into three kings.

“I’m running Pro Troll flashers and those Brad’s Cut Plugs,” Smith said.

He scouted the river earlier in September and didn’t see anyone hooking up. On Saturday, fishing was much better, he said. “I launched at Miller Park and fished from there down past Garcia Bend,” Smith said. “There were a lot more signs of fish. The water temperature is 62 degrees. That is pretty decent. There were fish holding. They are coming through. It looks pretty promising.”

Larry Barnes of Sacramento Pro Tackle said he has heard scattered reports from bank anglers at the Minnow Hole and Freeport who are fishing jigs. “It is improving from shore,” Barnes said.

Anglers tossing spinners are reporting decent action, Barnes said.


SAC METRO KING — More and more fish are pouring into the Sacramento River, enough so that guides are now beginning to fish the Sacramento metro area of the river. Steve Globe caught this nice buck trolling a Silvertron, and his client, Richie Riboli of Novato, caught one, too.

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