Aug
18

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The ocean still has the top fishing in the region right now. While there are a number of good bites (corbina in the surf, bass and bottom fish along the coast, yellowtail at the islands and along the coast), the San Diego overnight to two-day fleet continues to find very good fishing. Last week it was yellowtail; this week, the yellowfin tuna have again massed just 20 to 40 miles from Point Loma and most boats have been reporting two to four fish per rod. Check with 976-Tuna.com for an update on this action and information on San Diego landings running these trips.

2. Crowley Lake in the Eastern Sierra has been shining brightly for the past two months, but it is the massive hatch of perch minnows that has really turned on this bite. While many anglers are still getting a lot of fish on midges, the big rainbows, cutthroats, and brown trout are starting to really focus on the minnows. Fly anglers are getting a lot of 20 to 24-inch fish. For an update on the bite, call The Troutfitter at 760-934-2517 or Sierra Drifters Guide Service at 760-935-4250.

3. With the bluestone hampering the bluegill bite at Skinner, Lake Perris moves into the top spots with its bluegill bite. Lots of fish in the one-pound and bigger class and the fish are stacked up along the dam in 12 to 30 feet of water. The best action is on crickets, wax worms, red worms, or micro jigs tipped with these baits For an update on this bite check with the marina at 951-657-2179 or Last Chance Bait and Tackle in Hemet at 951-658-7410.

Aug
18

FRESHWATER HOT SPOTS

TROUT: The Sierra Nevada has some bright spots for trout, but overall, it is just fair. The top bets include the West Walker River, Bridgeport Reservoir, Virginia Lakes, Crowley Lake (the fly anglers are just hammering ëem), Silver and Grant lakes in the June Loop, Convict Lake, and Lake Sabrina. In Southern California, the top bets are Green Valley Lake and Big Bear Lake, both of which were a little slower than previous week because of the heat but still fair. Cuyamaca in San Diego County continues to produce a few fish.

BLACK BASS: The bass action has generally been fair to good throughout the region with most fish up chasing shad and other baitfish early in the day. Topwater action good a lot of places on outside edges of weed beds, which most waters have now. Try to avoid lakes with algae blooms (a bunch this past week). Top bets are Lower Otay, Diamond Valley, Casitas, Perris, Castaic, and Wohlford. And of course, Barrett in San Diego County is very good. On the Colorado River, the lower river is pretty much wide open for smallmouth, but the bite is fair to good on largemouths throughout the Colorado River system.

STRIPED BASS: The striper action has been generally fair everywhere this past week, except San Antonio Lake, which reopened two weeks ago. It has continued to crank out the eight to 12 pounders. Outside of that the best action has been at Skinner and Castaic with Silverwood and Pyramid several notches behind. Most anglers are fishing to boiling fish, but the bait bite is a decent bet when the fish aren’t up. The Colorado River’s Lake Mohave has been good on fish to eight pounds or better, but the fish are finally starting to move deeper. Ditto for Lake Havasu, which has been very good on topwater and bait.

PANFISH: The bluegill and/or redear bites are fair just about everywhere, but the top bets are Perris, Diamond Valley, and Skinner. In San Diego County, Murray, Dixon, Jennings, and Lower Otay have the best bluegill bites. On the Central Coast, Lopez and Santa Margarita both have good bluegill/redear and crappie bites.

CATFISH: Catfish bites are good most places. Skinner, Pyramid, and Diamond Valley Lake are top spots, but none of these bites are getting much angler pressure. Lake Isabella continues to have a fair to good bite on catfish on dip baits, clams, and mackerel. Santa Ana River Lakes has been very good with fish to 22 pounds this past week. By far the best bite has been for big flatheads on the lower Colorado River. There continues to be a lot of quality flatheads topping 20 pounds landed — mostly on live bluegill.

Aug
18

TROUT PLANTS

The following waters are scheduled to be planted with rainbow trout from Department of Fish and Wildlife hatcheries this week (Aug. 14-20):

INYO: Baker Creek, Big Pine Creek, Bishop Creek (Lower, Intake II, Middle Fork, South Fork), Echo Lake, Lake Sabrina, Lone Pine Creek, North Lake, Rock Creek Lake, South Lake, Tuttle Creek.

MONO: Buckeye Creek, Convict Creek, Convict Lake, Deadman Creek, Ellery Lake, George Lake, Glass Creek, Grant Lake, Gull Lake, June Lake, Lee Vining Creek, Lee Vining Creek (South Fork), Little Walker River, Lundy Lake, Mamie Lake, Mammoth Creek, Mary Lake, McGee Creek, Mill Creek, Molybdenite Creek, Owens River (section 3), Robinson Creek, Rock Creek (sections 1 and 2), Rush Creek, Saddlebag Creek (Lee Vining Creek), Saddlebag Lake, Sherwin Creek, Silver Lake, Trumble Lake, Twin Lakes (Bridgeport, Upper and Lower), Twin Lakes (Mammoth), Virginia Creek, Virginia Lakes (upper and lower), West Walker River (sections 2 and 3).

FRESNO: Portal Forebay.
The following waters are tentatively scheduled to be planted next week (Aug. 21-27):

INYO: Baker Creek, Big Pine Creek, Bishop Creek (Lower, Intake II, Middle Fork, South Fork), Cottonwood Creek, Goodale Creek, Independence Creek, Lake Sabrina, Lone Pine Creek, North Lake, Rock Creek Lake, South Lake, Taboose Creek, Tinnemaha Creek, Tuttle Creek.

MONO: Buckeye Creek, Convict Creek, Convict Lake, Crowley Lake, Deadman Creek, Ellery Lake, George Lake, Glass Creek, Grant Lake, Gull Lake, June Lake, Lee Vining Creek, Lee Vining Creek (South Fork), Little Walker River, Lundy Lake, Mamie Lake, Mammoth Creek, Mary Lake, McGee Creek, Mill Creek, Molybdenite Creek, Owens River (section 3), Robinson Creek, Rock Creek (sections 1 and 2), Rush Creek, Saddlebag Creek (Lee Vining Creek), Saddlebag Lake, Sherwin Creek, Silver Lake, Trumble Lake, Twin Lakes (Bridgeport, Upper and Lower), Twin Lakes (Mammoth), Virginia Creek, Virginia Lakes (upper and lower), West Walker River (sections 2 and 3).

FRESNO: Kings River (below Pine Flat Dam).
For trout plants statewide, you can visit the DFW’s stocking page at https://nrm.dfg.ca.gov/FishPlants/.

Aug
18

CENTRAL COAST

Hot Bites: Santa Margarita Lake has been good for bass with most fish up chasing baitfish early in the day. Even some topwater. Redear, bluegill fair, catfish, good, crappie fair. Lopez Lake has been good for bluegill and redear with the best bite on wax worms and meal worms, also quite a few crappie showing. Also fair to good action for bass with an occasional crappie. Nacimiento has had a fair bass and bluegill bite and a few crappie reports. Lake San Antonio reopened this Aug. 5 and will be open weekends-only (Friday through Sunday) through Sept. 11. The striper bite has been very good with a lot of 10-pound class fish and there is also a decent crappie bite. For information, call the Monterey County Parks at 831-755-4895.

Aug
18

WESTERN SIERRA

CARP DERBY: Bob’s Bait Bucket’s annual month-long carp derby is ongoing through August. The entry fee is $1 per angler and you must register before you weigh in a fish. Only fresh fish can be weighed in and no weighing in of fish the same day as entering derby. The biggest carp weighed in during August will take the $100 prize, plus all the entry fee money from everyone entered. There are 40 entries so far and the leader is Richard George, Bakersfield, with a 9-8 carp. For more information or to register, call Bob’s Bait at 661-833-8657.

LAKE ISABELLA: There continues to be a fair to good catfish bite on with the best bite on super meal worms, dip baits, and mackerel. Most cats up into the six pounds, occasionally a bigger fish. Other species have been slow with very little fishing pressure with the heat. For fishing information: Bob’s Bait 661-833-8657 or www.bobsbaitbucket.com or North Fork Marina at 760-376-1812.

KERN RIVER: The Kern River has stayed fair to good for trout. The most recent plant was two weeks ago in sections 4 through 6 (above Isabella), and no more plants are on the schedule. Best bite on the planted trout has been crickets and salmon eggs. For fly anglers, the bite is fair to good, especially in the upper river near Johnsondale Bridge for wild fish. Lots of different surface action and hatches now. Flows are about 160 cfs coming into Isabella and around 500 cfs below the dam. In the lower river the bass and catfish bites are both good with the bass on spinners while the cats are best on clams. Information: Kern River Fly Shop 760-376-2040 (or www.kernriverflyfishing.com) or Gateway Market 760-376-2424.

AQUEDUCT NEAR TAFT: Very mossy which makes fishing tough, but the bite for catfish remains pretty fair for the diligent anglers working through the problems. Most are two to five pounders. The best action has been on sardines, chicken liver, and dip baits. The striper bite has also come back on with the coming full moon, and they have been best on blood worms. Other species are very slow. Anglers are reminded the limit on stripers is two fish greater than 18 inches, while the largemouth limit is five fish greater than 12 inches. Information: Bob’s Bait 661-833-8657 or www.bobsbaitbucket.com.

MILL CREEK PARK AND CANAL: Very slow.

RIVER WALK PARK LAKE: Very slow overall fishing with only an occasional bluegill being caught. Also an occasional bass or carp.

HART PARK LAKE: Fair bluegill action with the best bite on wax worms, meal worms, crickets, and red worms. Slow bass action on Senkos, brush hawgs, plastics, small jigs, minnows or nightcrawlers early in the morning. Only the odd catfish reported.

TRUXTUN LAKE: Slow fishing and light fishing pressures. Only a few bluegill reported. Other species even slower.

MING LAKE: The bluegill action is fair. Most fish are showing on meal worms, wax worms, and crickets. Also a very slow bass bite on live minnows, plastic worms, and swim baits early in the day.

BRITE LAKE: A few bluegill and small crappie, otherwise a very slow bite.

BUENA VISTA LAKES: The bluegill bite is fair on wax worms, red worms, and meal worms. There is also a slow bite on small catfish with most anglers fishing dip baits. Other species very slow with only the odd bass. Fishing information: Bob’s Bait 661-833-8657 or www.bobsbaitbucket.com.

WOOLLOMES LAKE: Overall slow fishing with few reports. Some bluegill on the usual baits. Other species very slow.

SUCCESS LAKE: The bass bite has been fair on plastics and reaction baits. Bluegill good in some coves, and the odd catfish has been reported. The new marina is in operation. Information: Sequoia Fishing Company at 559-539-5626, www.sequoiafishingcompany.com.

KAWEAH LAKE: The bass bite has been fair to good with a lot of fish showing on drop-shot plastics, and some on reaction baits and topwater early in the day. Fair to good bluegill action, but most fish smaller. Launch ramp open. Information: Sierra Sporting Goods at 559-592-5212.

Aug
18

EASTERN SIERRA

GENERAL UPDATE: The general trout season is open through Nov. 15. Top Eastern Sierra fishing report web sites are: www.KensSport.com (Bridgeport region), www.TheTroutFly.com, and www.SierraDrifters.com.

TOP NEWS: Most of the roadside waters are getting weekly DFW trout plants, and those areas remain good. The top action: The West Walker River is good for both fly and spin anglers. Bridgeport Reservoir is very good with a lot of limits of fish to four pounds for bait, troll, and fly anglers. Crowley Lake has continued to produce a lot of rainbows and cutthroats from 20 to 24-inches for fly anglers fishing midges and tiny perch fry imitations. Grant Lake right where Rush Creek dumps in and Silver Lake have both been good again this week. The East Walker River’s flows have been down under 100 feet per second this week, which is a pretty good flow, but the bite is still tough but some bruiser browns have been reported. The Virginia Lakes are good. Lundy Lake is fair, and the backcountry above the lake is good for day-hike and back-pack anglers. The lakes in the Mammoth Lakes basin are fair at best, but Convict Lake continues fair to good. The Rock Creek drainage is fair, but the backcountry is very good for small fish. The Bishop Creek drainage is generally fair to good, and many of the backcountry lakes are opening up and there is good fishing for day-hike and backpacking anglers. Top spots include North Lake and Intake II after DFW plants. Sabrina is full and producing a lot of rainbows for trollers and anglers fishing the creek inlets. South Lake is higher than it has been in four years and rental boats are available, but fishing is still just fair, at best. Weir Pond has been a top spot for fly anglers fishing dry flies early and late. Mosquitos are a problem throughout the region.

Top Fish: At Upper Twin Lake out of Bridgeport, Mike Davis, Carson City, landed an 11-pound trout trolling a flatfish. At Lower Twin, Savannah Moody, Long Beach, landed a 3-11 rainbow trolling a SuperDuper. At Convict Lake, Stacey and Shayne Smith, Chino Hills, landed rainbows at 2-7 and 2-3, respectively.

BRIDGEPORT REGION: Information: Ken’s Sporting Goods 760-932-7707 or www.kenssport.com.

JUNE LAKE LOOP-LEE VINING REGION: Information: Silver Lake Resort at 760-648-7726 or at silverlakeresort.net or Ernie’s Tackle at 760-648-7756.

MAMMOTH AREA: Information: The Troutfitter at 760-934-2517.

BISHOP AND BIG PINE AREA: Fishing information: Culver’s Sporting Goods 760-872-8361, Sierra Drifters Guide Service 760-935-4250, or Sierra Trout Magnet Fly Shop 760-873-0010.

INDEPENDENCE TO LONE PINE AREA: Good action in waters planted weekly or every two weeks by the DFW. See trout plant list.

Aug
18

LOWER DESERT WATERS

SALTON SEA: No change. Very, very slow fishing. Few anglers are braving the heat or the flies right now. The few anglers fishing nightcrawler pieces haven’t reported any fish in recent days at either the state park headquarters jetty or the nearby Salton Sea Yacht Club jetty. Wind, excessive heat, and green tides can really impact this summer bite and anglers should always call to get the latest information. The water level is still so low that launching is nearly impossible except for small boats (boaters should check with the main office at the recreation area before bringing a boat). The camp store is open Friday through Sunday. Information: Camp Store at 760-289-9455 (open Friday-Sunday). Salton Sea State Recreation Area main office at 760-393-3059, or the ranger station kiosk at 760-393-3052 (or mobile phone at 760-331-9944).

Aug
18

COLORADO RIVER

ARIZONA FISHING REPORTS: The Arizona Game and Fish Department compiles a weekly report for most waters in the state, including the Colorado Rivers. Anglers can read the report at this direct link: http://azgfd.net/artman/publish/FishingReport/.

FLOW INFORMATION: Reservoir elevation levels and flow releases for the entire lower Colorado River are available at this web site with information updated hourly: www.usbr.gov/lc/region/g4000/hourly/rivops.html.

TOP NEWS: Fishing is generally fair to good all along the Colorado River, but heat is keeping most anglers indoors. The striper bite in Lake Havasu and Lake Mohave is fair to good. In Mohave, the bite is still the best near the dam, powerlines, and points around Katherine’s Landing, but the warm weather is moving the fish deeper for most of the day. Morning has been the best time to fish. Steve Jansen and Jole Payne, both Bullhead City, landed a dozen stripers from two to seven pounds fishing from a boat with anchovies in pretty deep water. In the river between Mohave and Havasu, there has been pretty good action on two-pound stripers with some up to five, especially just below Davis Dam above the casinos on the Nevada side. In Havasu, the stripers are showing throughout the lake, chasing shad of top for narrow windows early in the morning. Most fish showing from deeper water on bait or tolled lures in 20 to 50 feet of water. The largemouth and smallmouth bass action has been fair to good throughout the river system with a topwater bite most mornings, especially in the lower river backwaters and Topoc Marsh. The smallmouth bass in the lower river has been best along the rip-rap from Parker Dam to Palo Verde. This bite is wide open with most of the fish showing on crawdad-like jigs or crank baits, but also white tube baits. The flathead bite remains good with a lot of fish from 12 to 25 pounds being landed on goldfish and live bluegill. The channel catfish bite is also fair to good throughout the system, mostly on cut baits or smaller baits like nightcrawlers, marshmallow-meal worm combos, or dip baits. While getting little pressure of publicity, the carp fishing is very good all along the river with a lot of fish to 15 pounds reported. A final note: It’s mosquito season. The bugs are out in full force, and repellant is highly recommended, especially on the lower river which has more backwaters.

WILLOW BEACH: Information: Willow Beach Resort at 928-767-4747.

LAKE MOHAVE: Information: Cottonwood Cove at 702-297-1464, Katherine’s Landing at 928-754-3245.

LAUGHLIN-BULLHEAD AREA: Information: Riviera Marina at 928-763-8550.

NEEDLES-TOPOC REGION: Information: Phil’s Western Trader at 928-768-4954 or Capt. Doyle’s Fun Fishing guide service at 928-768-2667.

LAKE HAVASU: Information: Bass Tackle Master at 928-854-2277.

BLYTHE: Information: B&B Bait 760-921-2248.

PALO VERDE: Information: Walter’s Camp 760-854-3322 Wednesday through Sunday.

PICACHO-MARTINEZ LAKE AREA: Information: 928-783-9589 Thursday through Monday or www.martinezlake.com.

Aug
18

SAN DIEGO AREA LAKES

NEWS/STOCKING UPDATES: Still no news on when San Vicente Reservoir is expected to reopen. There is apparently an issue with the docks that is keeping the lake from opening. At Dixon Lake, catfish plants went in Aug. 5 and Aug. 12. Jennings is scheduled to get 1,000 pounds of cats this week.

FISHING UPDATE: In most of the lakes in this region, the bass and bluegill bites have been the best bet, with the lakes planted with catfish reporting good action on the cats. Top bets for bass include Barrett, Wohlford, Lower Otay, Jennings, and El Capitan. There is generally pretty fair topwater action early in the day and then the fish move deeper and show on live shiners (where legal), nightcrawlers, or plastics. For bluegill and/or redear, Poway, Dixon, Jennings, and Lower Otay have fair to good bluegill bites, mostly on smaller fish right now, with red worms, crickets, meal worms, and nightcrawler pieces the best baits. There has been a good carp bite at Lake Morena for anglers fishing dough baits.

FISH COUNTS: At Barrett Lake, 59 anglers checked had 2,497 bass. At El Capitan, 25 anglers checked had 49 bass. At Hodges, there were 108 anglers checked and they had 131, 10 bluegill, and five channel catfish. At Mirimar, the 19 anglers checked had 49 bass to 4-9 and eight bluegill to nearly a pound. At Murray, 30 anglers checked had 25 bluegill. At Lower Otay, there were 139 anglers checked and they landed 414 bass to 13.44 pounds, 356 bluegill to 1.84 pounds, three crappie, and two channel catfish. At Sutherland, there were 29 anglers checked and they landed 33 bass and 11 bluegill.

NOTEABLE CATCHES: At Wohlford, Taylor Gomez of the U.S.S. Erie stationed at the 32nd St. Naval Base caught and released a 10.95-pound bass on a plastic salamander fishing from a boat east of the Senior Shoreline. At Murray, Alex Dempsey, Virginia, had 25 bluegill to 2-8, all on wax worms in San Carlos.

BARRETT: Weekly fish counts: http://www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/fish.shtml, Lake information: 619-465-3474 or www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/.

HODGES: Weekly fish counts: http://www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/fish.shtml. Information: 760-432-2023.

EL CAPITAN: Weekly fish counts: http://www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/fish.shtml. Rental boat and concession information: 619-443-4110.

LOWER OTAY: Weekly fish counts: http://www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/fish.shtml. Information: 619-465-3474 or www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/. Rental boat and concession information: 619-397-5212.

UPPER OTAY: Weekly fish counts: http://www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/fish.shtml. Lake information: 619-465-3474. Concession: 619-397-5212.

MURRAY: Weekly fish counts: http://www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/fish.shtml. Lake information: 619-466-4847 or www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/. Concession: 619-466-4847.

MIRAMAR: Weekly fish counts: http://www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/fish.shtml. Marina concession: 858-527-1722. General information: 619-465-3474 or www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/.

SUTHERLAND: Weekly fish counts: http://www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/fish.shtml. Lake information: 619-465-3474 or www.sandiego.gov/water/recreation/. Rental boat reservations: 619-668-2050 or ssmith@sandiego.gov.

WOHLFORD: Lake information: 760-839-4346 or www.wohlfordlake.com.

DIXON: Lake information: 760-839-4680 or www.dixonlake.com.

POWAY: Lake information: 858-668-4772, tackle shop recording 858-486-1234, or www.poway.org.

JENNINGS: Information: 619-390-1300 or www.lakejennings.org.

MORENA: Information: 24-hour fishing update line 619-478-5473, ranger station 619-579-4101, or lakemorena.com.

CUYAMACA: Information: 760-765-0515 or www.lakecuyamaca.org.

HENSHAW: Information: 760-782-3501.

Aug
18

LOS ANGELES AREA LAKES

CACHUMA: The catfish and bass bites both have remained good this week. The catfish are best in the east end on cut bait and nightcrawlers in five to 10 feet of water. Most of the fish are running about a pound, but with more bigger fish this past week, especially from deeper water. The bass have been good on nightcrawlers, plastics, and a wide variety of shad-like baits from cranks to spinnerbaits to spoons, especially in brown and copper tones, and topwater. Fish to five pounds reported. The trout bite slowed way down with the heat, but the odd fish continues to show on trolled Needlefish-type lures or drifting bait in deep water near the day. Crappie, bluegill, and redear are all slow. The carp bite is good on dough baits along most shorelines. Bow-fishing opportunities are good again in the mornings. Carp bowfishing permits are available at the entrance gate. Private boats must be inspected for quagga mussels and face a 30-day dry dock requirement before being allowed to launch. For quagga mussel and the boat launching information, log on at http://www.sbparks.org/DOCS/Cachuma.html. The marina is open with rental boats available. The boat launch remains open, but boats must get a quagga mussel inspection. Information: 805-688-4040.

CASITAS: The largemouth bass bite has been fair to good, with topwater, reaction baits and plastics all getting the fish, especially early and late in the day. Young Juan Esparza, Oakview, had his first bass ever, a 4-5 on a Mini Storm swimbait. The bluegill and redear continue to show in good numbers on red worms or nightcrawler pieces around the grass beds. Catfish are also fair on live shad or cut mackerel. Carp are still slow to fair on dough baits. Crappie and trout very slow. Bowfishing is allowed here for carp, but only from a boat after 8 a.m. Lake staff must approve bows. The Santa Ana launch ramp remains closed due to low water, but the Coyote ramp is open. Private boats must be inspected for quagga mussels and face a 35-day dry dock requirement before being allowed to launch. Information: 805-649-2043 or www.casitasboatrentals.com.

CASTAIC: The water level continues to come up and is approaching full pool. There has been pretty good striper boils most days. Lots of fish up to four pounds chasing baitfish and some bigger specimens to 10-plus pounds. Topwater, cranks, and other reaction baits that resemble shad are the best bet. Fishing bait — mostly sardines or lug worms — at the buoy line or around Kong Island is also a good bet. The largemouth bass perked a little with fair action on topwater fish early and then plastics in 15 to 25 feet of water. A few catfish are showing on cut baits or nightcrawlers in six to 25 feet of water, and some nice stringers are starting to be posted with more anglers targeting these fish. The bluegill bite is good around structure in most coves on wax worms and meal worms. Other species are slow. Water level continues to come up. For information call 661-775-6232 or www.CastaicLake.com.

PIRU: The bluegill bite is fair on red worms, wax worms and meal worms in less than 15 feet of water. Fair to good largemouth and smallmouth bass bites for both shoreline and boat anglers are using plastics on structure with some fish on reaction baits that imitate shad. Fish to four pounds reported. Topwater action most mornings. The crappie bite is off with no fish reported recently. Catfish still slow with only the odd fish reported on cut bait in 20 to 60 feet of water. Other species are very slow. The launch ramp is open. Water level is very low and boater should be aware that lake hazards exist with the low lake levels. Rental boats are also available. Information: gatehouse at 805-521-1500 or at www.camplakepiru.com.

PYRAMID: Stripers continue to be the best bet with fair to good action, mostly on cut baits, but also some fish on slow-trolled lures and flies or umbrella rigs. There is also some surface action early in the day. The dam and main lake points have been the best spots with most fish in the two-pound class but some to six or seven pounds. A few catfish are showing on cut baits and this bite has improved in the past week with fair action. Largemouth bass have been fair to good with the topwater bite kicking into gear most mornings and evenings now. Mid-day action is best on plastics, and reaction baits. Bluegill and redear are fair to good on small jigs topped with baits or half a nightcrawler fished around structure in six to 20 feet of water. There is a health warning about eating fish from here. More information at this link: http://www.oehha.ca.gov/fish/so_cal/pyramidlake2013.html. Information: Emigrant Landing entrance booth at 661-295-7155 or the web site at campone.com.

LOS ANGELES/ORANGE COUNTY PARK NEWS: The urban trout season is over until winter plants, and the DFW has not been planting catfish due to cutbacks in its hatchery budget. Anglers can check the plants list on the DFW website (https://nrm.dfg.ca.gov/FishPlants/) for any updates and future plants.

Aug
18

ORANGE COUNTY

SANTA ANA RIVER LAKES: The catfish action has been good to excellent. Frank Mancra, Los Angeles, caught and released a 22-8 catfish on mackerel from a float tube in the big lake. Santiago Palacios, West Covina, landed 21 fish over the weekend, a mix of tilapia to three pounds and two-pound catfish, all on nightcrawlers at the Bubble Hole. Rick Kizzee, Los Angeles, had three catfish to eight pounds and the total weight was 22 pounds. He was fishing mackerel from a float tube. There are catfish and tilapia plants each week. Information: 714-632-7851 or log on at www.fishinglakes.com.

IRVINE LAKE: The lake is now closed and will be for at least the immediate future.

LAGUNA NIGUEL LAKE: No report. There are no fishing fees this season, only the $5 parking fee on weekends (or $3 during the week). For more information, 949-923-2240 or go to ocparks.com/parks/lagunan/.

Aug
18

RIVERSIDE COUNTY

DIAMOND VALLEY: The water level continues rising steadily, and the bass bite has been just fair over the past week. Most of the action remains on topwater, Senkos, Ikas, and in 15 to 25 feet of water on plastics. Most of the largemouth are two to four pounds with some bigger. Striped bass remain very tough with only a very few fish reported on swimbaits in recent weeks. The bluegill bite is still good with the best action on the staircases on the east dam for anglers fishing meal worms and crickets. Some of the bigger bluegill are also showing on tiny ice jigs in 25 to 35 feet of water. Stripers have been slow. The catfish bite is good for anglers targeting the cats. Lots of flatheads. The boat launch has reopened. Private boats must be inspected to be quagga mussel-free and boats certified at Lake Perris and Lake Skinner will be accepted here. For general lake and launch information, call 800-590-LAKE. For fishing and boat rental info call the marina at 951-926-7201 or www.dvmarina.com or Last Chance Bait and Tackle at 951-658-7410 or www.lastchancetackle.com.

PERRIS: The bluegill and redear bites remain fair to good, and some better fish are showing again. Top areas have been around the dam and Sail Cove with some very good stringers reported. Most of the fish are showing on crickets, wax worms, red worms, or micro jigs tipped with these baits in deeper water. Cayden Yin, 6, Long Beach, landed 13 bluegill to 1-2 on crickets and meal worms at the dam. The largemouth bass are still showing in a pretty fair topwater bite early in the morning and late in the evening, with some fish on plastics other parts of the day. Most of the fish are on the outside edges of the weeds. Guide Pete Marino and a buddy had landed and released 33 bass to five pounds, his best trip of the summer. A few catfish and carp, but little fishing pressure on those species. There were also some stripers landed this past week. The best was an eight-pounder caught by Mike Craig, Riverside, on a homemade lure, while Ian Cube, Buena Park, had a 6-12 striper on a Lunker Plunker. The reconstruction of the Lake Perris dam is ongoing. During the process, the entire dam and Bernasconi Beach side of the lake, including the Bernasconi Beach parking area, will be closed to public access. (The closure includes the bicycle trail on the east side of the lake.) The recreation area remains open, including access for fishing, boating, camping, and hiking. The west side of the lake will remain open. Private boats must be inspected for zebra and quagga mussels. Boats with wet lower units will be turned away. Boats inspected and tagged at Silverwood or Diamond Valley will also be allowed at Perris. Information: marina 951-657-2179, state park 951-940-5600.

SKINNER: The lake was bluestoned Aug. 11 (last Thursday), but it didn’t knock the bite totally out of kilter like normal. The striper bite stayed pretty good with surface action until 8:30 a.m. at the inlet. The evening bite also came on a little the last two hours of light. Some fish on bait, but most on surface swim baits. Lindsey and Jimmy Smitz, Temecula, had a 9-9 striper at the inlet. The bluegill bite has stayed pretty fair, especially along the south side of the lake and around the inlet. Crickets have been the best bait. The catfish bite has been good. The best action has been at the inlet, Launch No. 2, and along the south shore. Chicken liver is the top bait, but shrimp and mackerel are also working. Chantelle Gutierrez, Pico Rivera, landed a 12-9 catfish on mackerel. Largemouth are fair on plastics, with some topwater. Best areas have been the east end and most coves along the south shore. Carp good on dough baits, but very little pressure. Information: store 951-926-1505, marina 951-926-8515, entrance kiosk 951-926-1541.

ELSINORE: The lake has been closed to recreational use because of a harmful algae. The closure includes fishing and boating. For fishing information, call William’s Bait, Tackle, and Boat Rental at 951-642-0640 or go to www.williamsboatandtackle.com.

CORONA: The lake is temporarily closed. Information: www.fishinglakes.com.

FISHERMAN’S RETREAT: Information: 909-795-0171 or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/MountainValleyResort.

SAN JACINTO MOUNTAIN WATERS

LAKE HEMET: Very slow fishing. Carp bowfishing is allowed Monday through Thursday but bow fishermen must check in first. Information: Lake Hemet campground 951-659-2680.

LAKE FULMOR AREA: No recent trout plants in Fulmor Lake or Strawberry Creek. Information: 951-659-2117.

Aug
18

HIGH DESERT LAKES

HESPERIA LAKE: No report. Information: 800-521-6332 or 760-244-5951.

JESS RANCH LAKES: Heat continues to keep the trout bite generally slow with only a few fish showing coming in before 9 a.m. Top baits have been PowerBait (in salmon peach, rainbow, and garlic), jigs, lures and nightcrawlers. The fish showing have all been two-pound class fish. The pay-per-trout angling pond has been good. The catfish bite has also been fair for the few anglers fishing nightcrawlers and shrimp. Bass have been slow to fair on Senkos and nightcrawlers, and a few bluegill have been caught. For more information call (760)240-1107 or go to www.jessranchlakesnews.com.

Aug
18

SAN BERNARDINO MOUNTAIN WATERS

SILVERWOOD: The lake was closed much of last week because of the Pilot Fire (now 100 percent contained), and there has been an algae bloom (toxic to humans) that stopped boating and water contact activities. All that said, the fishing has stayed slow to fair. A few small stripers under two pounds and catfish are showing on chicken liver, lug worms, sardines, or anchovies around the marina and off the dam. Mark Thompson, Arcadia, had a six-pound catfish on chicken liver off the dock. There have been very few trout reports. The bluegill and largemouth bass bites have all been slow to fair with few reports. Anglers should be aware of health warnings for the consumption of fish from this lake because of high PCB and mercury levels in the fish flesh and skin. Here’s the direct link to a PDF brochure explaining consumption recommendations: http://www.oehha.ca.gov/fish/so_cal/pdf_zip/081013KioskadvySilverwood.pdf. Dock fishing is allowed for $3 for adults, $2 for kids and seniors. Private boats must be inspected for zebra and quagga mussels. Boats with wet lower units will be turned away. Boats inspected and tagged at Diamond Valley and Perris will be allowed at Silverwood. The park is open seven days a week. Information: marina 760-389-2299, state park 760-389-2281, Silverwood Country store 760-389-2423.

BIG BEAR LAKE: A new lake record catfish weighing 26.65 pounds was caught by Bob McGrew and Robin Hart, both Big Bear, while fishing mackerel. The fish took two hours to land. Trout trollers are seeing fair to good action in the west end of the lake in six to 12 feet of water in the triangle the mooring buoys, the floating outhouse, and Papoose Bay. Some fish on Needlefish early, but most on nightcrawler trailers. For shore anglers, there is still fair action at the dam on an inflated nightcrawler of salmon egg peach PowerBait with garlic fished below a slip bobber. Heavy boat traffic on weekends makes fishing tough. Largemouth bass and panfish have slowed with the summer heat, but there is a fair bite on smallmouth on submerged rock structure on drop-shot wacky-rigged plastics. Early and late in the day have been the best times to fish for all species. For updated fishing information: Big Bear Sporting Goods at 909-866-3222 or visit the store’s Facebook page.

GREGORY LAKE: No report. Lake, derby, and fishing information at 909-338-2233 or on the website at lakegregoryrecreation.com/fish.

GREEN VALLEY LAKE: The action has been slowish during the day for the trout, but there has been a pretty decent bite in the mornings and evenings with the fish up on top taking insects. Most of the trout reported have been on small jigs with scent fished slowly or inflated nightcrawlers. Anglers get a raffle ticket or a Bass Pro gift card each time they bring in 15 to 25 crappie. Fishing fees are $15 per adult, $10 for kids. Information: 909-867-2009 and the website, with an in-depth fishing report, is www.gvlfishing.com.

JENKS LAKE REGION: No recent plants in Jenks Lake, the Santa Ana River, or the South Fork of the Santa Ana River.

Aug
11

FRESHWATER HOT SPOTS

TROUT: The Sierra Nevada has some bright spots for trout, but overall, it is just fair. The top bets include the West Walker River, Bridgeport Reservoir, Virginia Lakes, Crowley Lake (the fly anglers are just hammering ëem), Silver and Grant lakes in the June Loop, Convict Lake, and Lake Sabrina. In Southern California, the top bets are Green Valley Lake and Big Bear Lake, both of which were a little slower than previous week because of the heat but still pretty good. Cuyamaca is the best bet in San Diego County and it produced some good fish over the past week.

BLACK BASS: The bass action has generally been fair to good throughout the region with most fish up chasing shad and other baitfish early in the day. Topwater action good a lot of places on outside edges of weed beds, which most waters have now. But there are a lot of fish showing on plastics and nightcrawlers fished on the bottom in 12 to 20 feet of water at the edges of those weeds. Top bets are Diamond Valley, Casitas, Skinner, Perris, Castaic, Piru, Cachuma (smallmouth on crawdad-like baits), Puddingstone, Pyramid, Wohlford, Lower Otay, Sutherland, Hodges, and Dixon. And of course, Barrett in San Diego County is very good. Silverwood and Big Bear are fair. On the Colorado River, the lower river is pretty much wide open, especially for smallmouth, but the bite is fair to good on largemouths throughout the Colorado River system.

STRIPED BASS: The striper action has been generally fair everywhere this past week, except San Antonio Lake, which reopened last Friday. It was cranking out the eight to 12 pounders. Outside of that the best action has been at Skinner and Castaic with Silverwood and Pyramid several notches behind. Most anglers are fishing to boiling fish, but the bait bite is a decent bet at all of them when the fish aren’t up. The Colorado River’s Lake Mohave has been good on fish to eight pounds or better, but the fish are finally starting to move deeper. Ditto for Lake Havasu, which has been very good on topwater and bait.

PANFISH: The bluegill and/or redear bites are fair just about everywhere, but the top bets are Skinner, Perris, and Diamond Valley. In San Diego County, Poway, Dixon, Jennings, and Lower Otay have the best bluegill bites. Crappie are slow everywhere.

CATFISH: Catfish bites are good most places. Skinner, Pyramid, and Diamond Valley Lake are top spots, but none of these bites are getting much angler pressure. Lake Isabella continues to have a fair to good bite on catfish on dip baits, clams, and mackerel. Santa Ana River Lakes and Hesperia Lake are now stocking catfish weekly. By far the best bite has been for big flatheads on the lower Colorado River. There continues to be a lot of quality flatheads topping 20 pounds landed — mostly on live bluegill.