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Archive for the ‘MATTHEWS PICKS OF THE WEEK’ Category

May
17

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The rockfish action from Oxnard to Morro Bay has just been phenomenal, with limit-style fishing most days on most boat, even the short half-day trips. There have been lots of reds and bocaccio in the rockfish limits, and when you add in the good scores on whitefish, and a smattering of sheephead and lingcod, these have been top notch trips. For an update on this bite, check the daily scores on 976-TUNA.com or call one of the landings in the region.

2. The Pyramid Lake striper bite stays in the top picks this week. Lots of limits of fish around two pounds with some to six or seven pounds, and even the occasional bigger fish. The best bite has been on cut baits and lug worms, and there are also a lot of catfish showing in this bite. For an update on this action, check with the Emigrant Landing entrance booth at 661-295-7155 or Tackle Express at 661-251-8700.

3. There were three plants of brown trout this past week at Silverwood Lake, and the action on the browns and rainbows has been very good with a lot of limits reported. The trout have been running up to 1-8 and have been showing on spinners, small spoons, or trout jigs. For an update on this action, check with the marina staff at 760-389-2299.

May
03

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The trout opener lived up to the hype, and Bridgeport Reservoir was probably the hotspot in the region producing a steady succession of big fish and limits of rainbows with a sprinkling of nice browns. The Bridgeport Fish Enhancement Foundation stocked the region heavily, and Bridgeport got a lot of those trophy fish, and it showed. Once the current snowstorm blows past this week, this is the best bet. For the most up-to-date conditions and reports, check with Ken’s Sporting Goods in Bridgeport at 760-932-7707.

2. Lake Isabella crappie bite stays in the top picks. While a lot of the fish being caught by shore anglers are six to 10-inch fish, boat and float tube anglers are getting good numbers of bigger fish to a pound or so from deeper water. The bite is best on small minnows or jigs tipped with Crappie Nibbles under a bobber. For an update on this action, check with the staff at Bob’s Bait Bucket in Bakersfield at 661-833-8657.

3. The Pyramid Lake striper bite has been excellent and moves into the top picks this week. Lots of limits of fish around two pounds with some to six or seven pounds, and even the occasional bigger fish. The best bite has been on cut baits and lug worms, and there are also a lot of catfish showing in this bite. For an update on this action, check with the Emigrant Landing entrance booth at 661-295-7155 or Tackle Express at 661-251-8700.

Apr
12

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. Crappie move to the top pick with bites lighting up all over the southern third of the state. There has been excellent action at Lower Otay and Lake Isabella, and a number of stops in between, but the best quality fish are coming from Lake Cachuma where most of the slabs are running from one to two-plus pounds. For an update on this action, check with the Cachuma marina at 805-688-4040.

2. Staying in the top picks is the excellent rockfish bite for anglers fishing on boats running out of the Oxnard, Santa Barbara, and Ventura landings. While wind can be a problem, when the sea calms down limits of rockfish, with whitefish and lingcod in the mix, are common. For an update on this bite, visit www.976-TUNA.com for the latest fish counts from this week.

3. The carp bite broke wide open this week at Apollo Park Lake in the High Desert with a lot of fish from three to 12 pounds. Most anglers were getting nice stringers of five or six fish, tossing back smaller ones. The best action has been on homemade dough baits, and mulberry Magic Bait for carp. Strawberry jello has been the favored dip for all these baits. For more information, contact Apollo Park at 661-940-7701 or Amaysing Fishing Bait & Tackle at 661-429-5824.

Mar
08

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. Rockfish season reopened last week south of Point Conception, and the bite has been exceptional on boats running out of the Oxnard, Santa Barbara, and Ventura landings. Limits of rockfish, with some good catches of whitefish and a few ling cod mixed in, have been the rule on everything from half-day to overnight jaunts. For an update on this bite, visit www.976-TUNA.com for the latest fish counts from this week.

2. Apollo Park Lake was the trout hot spot last week after bonus plants for the weekend derby. A lot of limits were reported, and the best action was on pink or bubble gum Mice Tails with garlic scent added fished in the deeper water of the back lake. Most of the trout are running one to three pounds, but every county plant has 250 pounds trophy fish from three to eight pounds. For more information, contact Apollo Park at 661-940-7701.

3. For the second week in a row, the crappie bite at Lower Otay Reservoir has been good for the few anglers targeting the slabs. There were nearly 200 crappie reported by anglers checked again this past week, most on small jigs fished tight to cover. For an update on this bite call the rental boat and marina concession at 619-397-5212.

Mar
01

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. Rockfish season reopened Thursday this week south of Point Conception, and the bite should be exceptional all along the coast. With no fishing the past for two months, the fish have stacked up on the spots and limits should be the rule for all the boats this weekend — from the half-day jaunts to the full-day and overnight boats running out of landings in the Oxnard to Santa Barbara region. Weather might be the only hindrance to this fishing. Check with any of the local landings for boat availability and visit www.976-TUNA.com for the latest fish counts from this week.

2. After being closed to fishing all this week and a pair of trout plants, Apollo Park Lake should be excellent for this Saturday’s derby. The back lake has been the hot spot, but fish should be well distributed around the lake. The best action has been on pink or bubble gum Mice Tails with garlic scent added. Most of the trout are one to three pounds, but every county plant has 250 pounds trophy fish from three to eight pounds. For more information, contact Apollo Park at 661-940-7701.

3. The crappie bite at Lower Otay Reservoir broke wide open this week in spite of the cold weather. There were nearly 200 slabs reported by anglers checked, most on small jigs fished tight to cover. For an update on this bite call the rental boat and marina concession at 619-397-5212.

Feb
22

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The Pyramid Lake stripers bite has been pretty good, even if most of the fish are in the two-pound range or less. The bite has mostly been on cut anchovies or sardines, but lugworms are as good or better. The bait is drifted in 20-feet or water or more. For an update on this bite, call Tackle Express at 661-251-8700.

2. Cachuma Lake received its second 4,000-pound trout plant of the season last Thursday, and the rainbow action has been pretty good since throughout Cachuma Bay. Most of the fish are showing for trollers fishing small spoons or bait anglers (bank or boat) using PowerBait or Mice Taisls. For an update on this bite, call the marina at 805-688-4040.

3. The Lake Skinner striper bite is staying in the top spots yet another week because its striper bite has remained solid with fish to five pounds reported in the past week. The best bite has continued to be on live shad, but some nice fish are also showing on frozen sardines. For an update on this bite, check with the marina staff at 951-926-8515.

Feb
01

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. They call it the Mardi Gras of fishing in the Antelope Valley, and that is the opening at Lake Palmdale, a membership-only fishing lake. The line is already forming for Saturday’s opener. The lake has already stocked with three loads of trout, including Lightning Trout (500 pounds), with a total of 22,000 pounds stocked so far. The lake is scheduled to receive 70,000 pounds of trout total this fishing season. For membership or fishing information, call the Palmdale Fin & Feather Club at 661-947-2884 or got to www.palmdalefinandfeatherclub.com.

2. The Lake Skinner striper bite is staying in the top spot because its striper bite has remained solid with fish to 20 pounds reported in the past week. The best bite has continued to be on live shad, but some nice fish are also showing on frozen sardines. For an update on this bite, check with the marina staff at 951-926-8515.

3. The upper Owens River in the Eastern Sierra Nevada stays in the top spots because of the good action on big rainbows running up out of Crowley Lake into the warmer water in the Owens in the Hot Fingers stretch. There has been a little lull during the full moon, but this is still a good bet for catch-and-release action on trout from two to four pounds. For an update on this bite, check with The Troutfitter in Mammoth at 760-934-2517, Sierra Drifters Guide Service at 760-935-4250, or Sierra Trout Magnet Fly Shop in Bishop at 760-873-0010.

Jan
25

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. Moving to the top pick, the Lake Skinner striper bite has been pretty solid for the past month, and it has been steadily improving the last two weeks. The trick for both numbers and quality has been live shad, but some nice fish are also showing on cut baits and shad-like swim baits. There have been fish up to nearly 10 pounds again this past week. For an update on this bite, check with the marina staff at 951-926-8515.

2. The Castaic Lake striper bite really improved over the past week, and it cranked out fish at 36 and 15 pounds. The best action has been on bigger, trout-like swimbaits for the larger fish with smaller stripers showing on smaller swimbaits, lug worms, spoons, and trolled umbrella rigs. For an update on the bite, check with the marina at 661-775-6232 (www.CastaicLake.com) or Tackle Express at 661-251-8700.

3. The upper Owens River in the Eastern Sierra Nevada moves back into the top spot because of the very good action on big rainbows running up out of Crowley Lake into the warmer water in the Owens in the Hot Fingers stretch. This is a catch-and-release only fishery, but the fish are mostly from two to four pounds. For an update on this bite, check with The Troutfitter in Mammoth at 760-934-2517, Sierra Drifters Guide Service at 760-935-4250, or Sierra Trout Magnet Fly Shop in Bishop at 760-873-0010.

Dec
08

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The bite on bluefin tuna just won’t go away. While it’s not for toads like earlier this year, the action is steady on 20 to 45-pound class fish and two-fish limits are easy on 1 1/2-day boats running out of San Diego landings. For an update on the action, check with 976-tuna.com.

2. It’s time to hurl big swimbaits for stripers. A big trout plant at Diamond Valley Lake this week and that should make the action surge. The plant was made on Tuesday, and the bigger stripers were already moving into the boat launch area to feast. For an update on this action, call the Diamond Valley Lake marina at 951-926-7201 or Castaic Lake marina at 661-775-6232.

3. Hesperia Lake is getting its first trout plant of the season this week — a stock of 1,000-pound of Mt. Lassen rainbow. Most of these fish will be one-pounders or a little better, but some trophy fish are in this first release. For an update on this bite, check with the lake staff at 800-521-6332 or 760-244-5951.

Nov
16

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. Castaic Lake’s bass bite — stripers, largemouth, and smallmouth — stays the top pick again this week but the overall action is a little slower than it has been the past couple of weeks — still good, but not as good. This is surface or near-surface action as all three species chase baitfish. The better stripers are five to 10 pounds, while most of the black bass are in the two to three-pound range. For an update on this bite, check with the marina staff at Castaic by calling 661-775-6232 or call Tackle Express at 661-251-8700.

2. There are generally very good fall catfish bites at most Southern California reservoirs that get little attention from only a handful of local anglers. Lake Skinner continues to shine with more fish topping the 10-pound mark again this week. These bites are best on big hunks of cut baits. For an update on the Skinner bite, check with the marina at 951-926-8515.

3. Diamond Valley Lake’s trout bite moves into the top picks this week after a plant on Thursday of 4,000 pounds. There are always some big Mt. Lassen rainbows in the DVL plants, and the action on small trout plastics and jigs, inflated nightcrawlers (with garlic), and PowerBait has been pretty good for boat and shore anglers. For an update on the action, call the marina at at 951-926-7201.

Oct
26

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The yellowfin and bluefin tuna bites off the Southern California coast remain good to excellent. There’s still a chance to catch the bluefin tuna of a lifetime, and limits of yellowfin are the rule ñ sometimes even for three-quarter day San Diego boats. The bluefin are still on the banks off San Clemente, while the yellowfin are mostly south down the coast into Mexican waters. For an update on this action, check for the latest reports on 976-tuna.com.

2. Castaic Lake’s bass bite — stripers, largemouth, and smallmouth — stays in the top picks for the third week in a row because of the quality and volume of fish being caught. The action has been good on or near the surface when the fish are boiling, and it stays good when the fish move deeper and anglers switch to trolled lures. Stripers to eight pounds have been reported again in the past week. For an update on this bite, check with the marina staff at Castaic by calling 661-775-6232 or call Tackle Express at 661-251-8700.

3. There have been some absolutely pig redear caught in the past week and Lake Perris (one at 2-8 and another at three pounds), and the overall bite for the panfish has improved at the marina docks, off the Tire Reef, and along the dam. The bite is best on nightcrawler pieces, wax worms, or crickets, and many anglers are fishing the small baits on lightweight jigs. For an update on this bite, check with the marina at 951-657-2179.

Sep
28

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The yellowfin tuna bite remains a top bet and while not quite as hot as last week for the San Diego and Oceanside boats, it is still one of the best bites going. The action is best for the overnight anf longer trips fishing in Mexican waters. The fish are close enough that the three-quarter day San Diego boats are also getting a piece of this action some days. Most of these fish are eight to 22 pounds. These fish have been pushing further north each week, and with the coming full moon, the best bite is yet to come. For an update on the bite, check for the latest reports on 976-tuna.com.

2. The Lake Skinner catfish bite stays in the top picks this week. It just keeps getting better and there are more and more quality fish (three over 10 pounds this week). Early morning and late evening have been the best times to fish, and a variety of cut baits are the ticket to success. For an update on this bite, check with the marina staff at Skinner at 951-926-8515.

3. Staying in the top picks yet another week, the Crowley Lake trout bite remains simply one of the best bets in the whole region. Guide Ernie Gulley wrote this on Facebook Wednesday, ìFishing has been good at Crowley. I have averaged well over 25 fish to net for my last five trips.î The quality remains 1 1/2 to four-pound fish. The action is for fly-anglers fishing perch patterns in less than 10 feet of water along weed beds. Cutthroats, rainbows, and browns are all in the mix. For an update on this action, check with the Troutfitter in Mammoth Lakes at 760-934-2517.

Sep
21

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The yellowfin tuna bite remains good to excellent this week for San Diego and Oceanside boats. The action is best for the overnight an longer trips fishing in Mexican waters. The fish are close enough that the three-quarter day San Diego boats are also getting a piece of this action some days. Limits have not been uncommon on these eight to 22-pound fish. This bite has been good for over a week now and more and more fish are moving north, even into U.S. waters, with some all the way up to Catalina. For an update on the action, check for the latest reports on 976-tuna.com.

2. The Lake Skinner and Lake Silverwood catfish bites will continue to share the No. 2 spot this week. Both have bene producing a lot of nice fish over the eight-pound mark, so pick the closer water. Early morning and late evening have been the best times to fish. For an update on these bites, check with the marina staff at each lake. For Skinner, call 951-926-8515. For Silverwood, call 760-389-2299.

3. Staying in the top picks yet another week, the Crowley Lake trout bite remains simply one of the best bets in the whole region. Ten to 20-fish days are still likely, and the quality remains 2 1/2 to 4 pound fish. The action is for fly-anglers fishing midge patterns under an indicator and casting perch minnow imitations along weed beds. Cutthroats, rainbows, and browns are all in the mix. For an update on this action, check with the Troutfitter in Mammoth Lakes at 760-934-2517.

Sep
14

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The yellowfin tuna bite broke wide open this week for the San Diego fleet. The bulk of this action is in Mexican waters for the three-quarter day and longer-trips. Some boats have posted five fish limits on these six to 22-pound fish, and the bite has been getting better by the day and moving north. The fish are already showing all the way to Catalina. For an update on the action, check for the latest reports on 976-tuna.com.

2. The Lake Skinner and Lake Silverwood catfish bite share the No. 2 spot this week. Both have bene producing a lot of nice fish over the eight-pound mark. Early morning and late evening have been the best times to fish. For an update on these bites, check with the marina staff at each lake. For Skinner, call 951-926-8515. For Silverwood, call 760-389-2299.

3. Staying in the top picks yet another week, the Crowley Lake trout bite remains simply one of the best bets in the whole region. Ten to 20-fish days are still likely, and the quality remains 2 1/2 to 4 pound fish. The action is for fly-anglers fishing midge patterns under an indicator and casting perch minnow imitations along weed beds. Cutthroats, rainbows, and browns are all in the mix. For an update on this action, check with the Troutfitter in Mammoth Lakes at 760-934-2517.

Aug
24

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The San Diego ocean fishing is still the top pick. The boats running south into Mexican waters are getting a nice mix of yellowfin tuna, yellowtail, and dorado. The boats running west have found bigger numbers of bluefin tuna this week, but they are smaller bluefin from 10 to 15 pounds. Check on the latest fish counts at 976-TUNA.com. with great counts of fish, usually limits of yellowtail. Check with www.976Tuna.com for the latest counts.

2. The Lake Skinner catfish bite is staying in the top picks because of the volume of nice catfish being landed, including more fish this week topping 10 pounds. The action has been best on at Ramp No. 2 and all along the south shore coves. Early morning and late evening have been the best times to fish. For an update on the bite, check with the marina staff at 951-926-8515.

3. Refusing to give up a spot in the top picks, Crowley Lake’s incredible trout bite just won’t seem to go away this year for the fly-fishing crowd. While the bite is mostly cutthroats up to 20 inches or better, a lot of anglers are still posting Crowley Lake Slams (a cutthroat, rainbows, and brown trout on the same trip). The bite has been almost exclusively on midge patterns fished under an indicator or stripped perch minnow imitations. For an update on this action, check with the Troutfitter in Mammoth Lakes at 760-934-2517.