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Archive for the ‘MATTHEWS PICKS OF THE WEEK’ Category

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.

Aug
10

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The offshore yellowtail, dorado, and yellowfin tuna fishing for the San Diego fleet fishing overnight and longer trips is excellent, with many boats reporting limits of yellowtail or yellowfin. The fish aren’t big with most everything under 20 pounds for all three species, but the action is top-notch — late September-like in early August. The best bite is down the Baja Coast from off Ensenada down the coast to about the 60-mile range, and the boats are all pretty much fishing kelp paddies. 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 bouncing into the top picks. There have been a lot of three to six pounds catfish here the past couple of fish, and big fish up into the eight and nine-pound range. 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. Anyone surprised? Crowley Lake’s trout bite stays in the top picks. The action is predominately on cutthroats right now with a lot of 20-inch, four-pound class fish. But the Crowley Lake Slam (a cutthroat, rainbows, and brown trout on the same trip) is still pretty common. The bite has been almost exclusively on midge and perch fry fly patterns fished under a strike indicator. But some fish on stripped streamers now. For an update on this action, check with the Troutfitter in Mammoth Lakes at 760-934-2517.

Jul
20

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. This is not getting redundant at all is it? But the Crowley Lake trout bite stays the top pick. The action has stayed wide open on rainbows and cutthroats to five pounds and some brown trout in that same size range. Most are 16 to 20 inches, and there continue to be reports of 20 to 30-fish days. The bite has been almost exclusively on midge fly patterns fished under a strike indicator, but the perch fry are thick now and small fry patterns under indicators or stripping small streamers around weed beds is also becoming effective. For an update on this action, check with the Troutfitter in Mammoth Lakes at 760-934-2517.

2. The twilight boat sand bass bite took off in the past few days off the Orange and Los Angeles counties’ coastline this week with five-fish limits of keeper-sized bass posted a couple of times. Right now, only a couple of boats are making these runs, The Freelance out of Davey’s Locker and the Enterprise out of Pierpoint Landing. For an update on the action, check with Davey’s in Newport Beach at 949-673-1434 or Pierpoint in Long Beach at 562-983-9300. You can also get the latest fish counts at www.976Tuna.com.

3. The bluegill and bass bites at Lower Otay Reservoir in San Diego County have been good to excellent over the past week. Largemouth to six pounds have been reported and one anglers reported catching and releasing over 30 bass on jerk baits. The county fish counts showed that 74 anglers reported 369 bass and 330 bluegill. Quit a few of the ëgills have been bigger than a pound. For an update on this action, call the rental boat and concession office at 619-397-5212.

Jul
13

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. Yep, Crowley Lake stays the top pick. The bite remains pretty much wide open on rainbows and cutthroats to five pounds and some brown trout in that same size range. Most are 16 to 20 inches, and there continue to be reports of 20 to 30-fish days. The bite has been almost exclusively on midge fly patterns fished under a strike indicator, but the perch fry are thick now and small fry patterns under indicators or stripping small streamers around weed beds is also becoming effective. For an update on this action, check with the Troutfitter in Mammoth Lakes at 760-934-2517.

2. There is a wide open bluegill bite at the Castaic Lagoon stays in the top picks, and the upper lake bluegill bite is nearly as good. The panfish are along all the shorelines and in all the coves around flooded vegetation with most action in four to 10 feet of water. While most are hand-sized, there are a lot of smaller fish and some bigger in the action. Wax worms and crickets are the best bets, but most small baits are working. Limits of 25 fish are possible, if not likely. For an update on this bite, check with Tackle Express at 661-251-8700.

3. The Coronado Islands yellowtail bite broke wide open early this week with limit-style fishing on the two to seven-pound fish. There has been a pick on these fish with most boats getting 10 to 20 fish, but the San Diego out of Seaforth Sportfishing had full five-fish limits for all on board Tuesday and then two-fish per rod on Wednesday this week. There have also been quite a few bonito (to four pounds), school-size barracuda, and even a few keeper calico bass on these trips. Only the boats the San Diego and The Liberty out of Fisherman’s Landing have been running to the Coronados the last couple of weeks. (You must have a passport for these trips.) For an update on the bite, call Seaforth at 619-224-3383 or Fisherman’s at 619-221-8500.

Jun
29

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. Crowley Lake stays the top pick yet again this week. The bite remains wide open on rainbows and cutthroats to five pounds and some brown trout in that same size range. There are regular reports of 20 to 30-fish days. The bite has been almost exclusively on midge fly patterns fished under a strike indicator, but the perch fry are starting to hatch and stripping small streamers around weed beds is also becoming effective. For an update on this action, check with the Troutfitter in Mammoth Lakes at 760-934-2517.

2. There is a wide open bluegill bite at the Castaic Lagoon and the upper lake is nearly as good. The panfish are along all the shorelines and in all the coves around flooded vegetation with most action in four to 10 feet of water. While most are hand-sized, there are a lot of smaller fish and some bigger in the action. Wax worms and crickets are the best bets, but most small baits are working. Limits of 25 fish are possible, if not likely. For an update on this bite, check with Tackle Express at 661-251-8700.

3. The bluegill bite at Diamond Valley has also been very good with anglers targeting the panfish reporting 10- to 25-fish stringers with a lot of ëgills in the one-pound class. Also some ever bigger redear mixed in. Top bite has been on wax worms, meal worms, red worms, and nightcrawler pieces. The best action has been on the ladders on the dams for boat anglers and the second cove to the right of the marina for shore anglers. For an update on this bite, call the marina at 951-926-7201 or Last Chance Bait and Tackle at 951-658-7410.

Jun
08

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. Crowley Lake stays the top pick this week. It is simply wide open on rainbows and cutthroats to five pounds and some brown trout in that same size range. There have been a number of reports of 30-fish days again this past week. The bite has been almost exclusively on midge fly patterns fished under a strike indicator, but the perch fry are starting to hatch. For an update on this action, check with the Troutfitter in Mammoth Lakes at 760-934-2517.

2. The trout bite at Big Bear Lake has been good thanks to big-fish plants for a pair of recent derbies. Most of those fish are just starting to show. There have been fish to eight pounds reported again over the past week. For an update on this bite, check with Big Bear Sporting Goods at 909-866-3222. They stay on top of where the trout are best and what is working.

3. The barracuda bite broke open this early week for boats fishing out of landings along the Orange and Los Angeles counties coastline. The fish are mostly logs, running from six to 10 pounds and it’s like the good-ol’-days with the bite all on surface iron. For an update on the fishing and which landings to contact for a trip, check for the latest information on 976-Tuna.com.

Jun
01

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. All of the fly-fishing guides in the Mammoth Lake region are saying the same thing: Crowley Lake is wide open on rainbows and cutthroats to five pounds. There have been a number of reports of 30-fsh days this past week. The bite has been almost exclusively on midge fly patterns fished under a strike indicator. For an update on this action, check with the Troutfitter in Mammoth Lakes at 760-934-2517.

2. The trout bite at Big Bear Lake has been good, even over the busy holiday weekend. There were bonus plants of big rainbows two weeks ago for the Hall Family May Trout Classic and many of those fish are just starting to show. There have been fish to eight pounds reported over the past week. For an update on this bite, check with Big Bear Sporting Goods at 909-866-3222. They stay on top of where the trout are best and what is working.

3. Bluegill and redear anglers are finding good fishing across Southern California right now with most lakes producing good catches of these popular panfish. One of the top bites has been a Lower Otay Reservoir. Over 800 bluegill were reported by a few of the anglers checked this past week, and these fish have been running up to 1 1/2-pounds. For more information, check with the dock concession at 619-397-5212.

May
25

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The tilapia at the Salton Sea stay in the top spot with the bite excellent. Anglers fishing in five-feet or deeper water are getting the bigger fish from 12 to 14-inches long and weighing from 1 1/2 to two pounds. The action is all on nightcrawler pieces at the Salton Sea State Recreation Area headquarter’s jetty. For an update on the bite call the main office at 760-393-3059, or the ranger station kiosk at 760-393-3052 (or mobile phone at 760-331-9944).

2. A sleeper pick is the trout bite at Big Bear Lake following this past weekend’s Hall Family May Trout Classic. There were bonus plants of big fish for this event and the DFW added more trout this week so the bite is good for both shore and boat anglers. For an update on this bite, check with Big Bear Sporting Goods at 909-866-3222. They stay on top of where the trout are best and what is working.

3. The striper bite continues good on the California Aqueduct near Taft so it stays a top pick. The bulk of these stripers are under the 18-inch minimum size, but a two-fish limit of keepers has not been hard to come by. The best bite remains on cut sardines, blood worms, or lug worms. But fish are also showing on deep running Gitzits. The warm weather has started the moss growth, but it’s not bad yet. For an update on the action, contact Bob’s Bait Bucket in Bakersfield at 661-833-8657. Also check out ìPoor Man Aqueduct Fishingî on Facebook.

May
11

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The bluegill bite at Lower Otay Reservoir has been excellent for the past two weeks with over 500 slabs to two pounds reported each week. The fish are in shallow water in the middle of the spawn and a number of 25-fish limits have been reported. For an update on the bite, call the rental boat and concession at 619-397-5212.

2. The striper bite continues hot on the California Aqueduct near Taft so it stays in the top pick again. While most are under the 18-inch minimum size, the two-fish limit is doable. The best bite is on cut sardines, but fish are also showing on blood worms, lug worms, anchovies, Gitzits, and Senkos. For an update on the action, contact Bob’s Bait Bucket in Bakersfield at 661-833-8657. Also check out ìPoor Man Aqueduct Fishing” on Facebook.

3. Silverwood Lake’s trout bite is still excellent with most anglers still finding it pretty each to get a limit of rainbows. Small lures or floating dough baits are the best bets, and around the marina and canyons on both sides of the launch ramp have been the hotspots. For an update on the bite, call the Silverwood marina at 760-389-2299.

Apr
20

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. “Striper Mania” at the California Aqueduct near Taft stays the top pick. The stripers are excellent and many anglers are still reporting 25-fish-plus days. While most are under the 18-inch minimum size, the two-fish limits is pretty easy to get and a 35-pounder was caught here this week. The best bite is on cut sardines, but fish are also showing on blood worms, lug worms, Gitzits, Senkos, and just about everything else. For an update on the action, contact Bob’s Bait Bucket in Bakersfield at 661-833-8657. Also check out “Poor Man Aqueduct Fishing” on Facebook.

2. The 22nd Annual Cachuma Lake Fishing Derby will be this coming Saturday and Sunday, and the lake received a 2,000-pound plant for this event. Registration is $40 per angler, and cash prizes of $599 and $300 will be awarded for the biggest and second biggest catch for trout, bass, crappie, and catfish. The two largest carp will win $100 and $50. For more information, call the derby hotline at 805-696-8381 or go to www.troutderby.org. For fishing information, call the marina at 805-688-4040.

3. The bluefin tuna bite out of San Diego stays in the top picks. The bite surged on Monday and Tuesday this week with a number of boats posting two-fish limits for all anglers on board. These are mostly 20 to 40-pound class fish, but fish to 200 pounds have been caught the past could of weeks. There have also been a lot of small yellowtail to seven pounds and bonito in this bite. The skippers are running to offshore kelp paddies or hitting bird schools or just metering fish. The three-quarter day, overnight, and 1 1/2-day boats out of San Diego and Oceanside landings are fishing this bite. For information, check with Fisherman’s Landing at 619-221-8500, H&M Landing at 619-222-1144, Seaforth Sportfishing at 619-224-3383, Point Loma Sportfishing at 619-223-1627, or Helgren’s Sportfishing at 760-722-2133. A reminder: You will need a passport for these trips.

Mar
30

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The largemouth bass bite stays as the top pick this week, but you have to pick where you want to fish. The spawn has kicked into high gear just about everywhere. You pick a water, and there are likely to be spawning bass in the shallows. The top bets for this bite are Casitas, Castaic and the Castaic Lagoon, Lake Perris, and Lake Skinner. There are others just as good, but those four remain really hot right now. You can call those lakes respective marinas for updates on the fishing.

2. The yellowtail and bluefin tuna bite out of San Diego exploded this past week. While the yellowtail are small (three-pound class) around the offshore kelp paddies where the three-quarter day boats are fishing, the bluefin are running up to 50-plus pounds. If you want bigger yellowtail (but no shot real shot at bluefin), Clemente Island has been the best bet. For information on the three-quarter day boats catching bluefin, check with H&M Landing at 619-222-1144, Seaforth Sportfishing at 619-224-3383, or Point Loma Sportfishing at 619-223-1627. A reminder that you will need a passport for these trips.

3. The striped bass bite in the California aqueduct near Taft stays in the top picks. Anglers are reporting easy 30 to 40 fish days, mostly on cut sardines with other baits or lures far distant second-place choices. While many are under the 18-inch minimum keeper size, it has been pretty easy to get a two-fish limit of bigger stripers in this hot bite. Fish to eight pounds this week. For an update on the action, contact Bob’s Bait Bucket in Bakersfield at 661-833-8657.

Mar
09

JIM MATTHEWS’ PICKS OF THE WEEK

1. The Channel Islands rockfish bite is simply wide open for the boats running out of the Oxnard to Santa Barbara landings. The season reopened March 1, and the bite has been excellent since with anglers on everything from half-day to overnight boats getting 10-fish limits. The longer trips hit spots further offshore and get better quality fish and more variety, adding a few more whitefish and lingcod to the bag. Bottom line: You will return home with a full sack of great-eating fillets. For an update on this action, check with Channel Islands Sportfishing in Oxnard at 805-985-8511, Hook’s Landing, also in Oxnard, at 805-382-6233, Sea Landing in Santa Barbara at 805-963-3564, or Harbor Village Sportfishing in Ventura at 805-658-1060.

2. Bass bites are breaking wide open across the region as the fish flood into the warming shallows for the coming spawn. While there are a number of waters producing a lot of fish right now, Casitas Lake might be one of the best bets with many anglers getting 10-plus fish per day and bass to six pounds have been reported in recent days. For an update on this bite call the marina at 805-649-2043.

3. The sleeper pick of the week is the budding crappie bite at Lake Isabella. There were a number of reports in recent days of full limits of crappie landed. That’s 25 fish per angler. While the fish are still mostly out in deeper water and mostly unreachable for shore anglers, crappie fanatics will take note of this bite. For an update on the action, contact Bob’s Bait Bucket in Bakersfield at 661-833-8657.