It’s the week of the big trout up here at the lake with a couple 7 pounders, several 6+ pounders and a whole lot more up for photos at our store. Surface temperatures are rising but more than a few feet down it’s still cool so the trout aren’t too deep.
Ken Lordier from Roseville caught his 7 pound rainbow on chartreuse PowerBait right out in front of the Water’s Edge Group camping area- and that’s a story we’ve been hearing all week: Gabriel & Jonas Avila caught two right on the beach, David & Patty Bradley nailed a 5 1/4 pound rainbow from the shore by the 100’s, Jaden & Jared Knox from Richmond caught five trout right out front of camp 307, Jonny & Katie, a 6 1/4 pounder off Road 6; PowerBait, PowerBait, PowerBait. If you’re on the shore, it’s PowerBait. Just ask Ronnie & D, they brought up 8 on Rainbow PowerBait by the beach. You’re not into quantity? Johnny Grizzle caught his 7 pounder on that same magic dough out front of the new campsites near the dam. Oops, did I mention? Johnny & Barbara Grizzle also both caught their limit that day. Daryl Carter won’t say where he caught his 4.7 pound trout but I bet you could guess what he caught it on.
It’s no wonder trout fishing is so hot, we’ve had two private plants, each 1000 pounds, and four raised-in-the-lake net pens released in the last two weeks, for a total of 25 fish plants so far this spring. This in addition to nearly twelve thousand pounds planted fall 2017 means overall trout population should be nearing its peak.
If shore fishing isn’t your thing or if you’re like me and just want to get the family out on the boat, you can use PowerBait too. That’s how Rick & Forest from Rohnert Park pulled their 9 trout from all over the lake. Kaliyah caught her first fish… then her second. But don’t feel constrained to the shoreline, lots of folks are trolling with good success, again, not too deep, no down-rigger required. I took my wife & son out trolling Rapalas 60′ to 100′ behind grandpa’s pontoon boat and in one pass up and down the main channel my wife pulled in three and my boy caught his first trout…and then his second. Grandpa Robbie doesn’t want to say the color of his favorite lure, but I know at least a gold Rapala isn’t a bad choice. I didn’t come up with it myself, Don Einspahr, Alan Collins, Cathie Brenton all brought in some great fish trolling Rapalas of all colors. If you don’t have a bright Rapala, you can come buy one at our store or you could drag a Needlefish or a Swimbait, that’s what worked for Eric Murphey and Jacob & Tony White but I’d be lying if I told you they were hotter than Rapalas.
As the surface warms up and the trout head for cooler water expect to see more from the shore on Kastmasters and deeper trolling but for now it’s easy catching on PowerBait or trolling a Rapala.
There is a long standing tradition of secrecy among bass fishermen. Some guys with a full ice chest are happy to shake their head like they caught nothin. Folks will put back a spawning female without even a picture, and after winning a battle with a juvenile, run his gills through the water before setting him free, wanting to keep him strong and hoping to outwit and spar him another day.
Up until two weeks ago I had been under the impression that bass fishing was still slow. I had heard about a few good size catch & releases but the first real hint I saw that the season might be on was back on the 7th when Justin Wright and his buddies from Sacramento brought up a bunch of trout, three redear sunfish, a catfish and two decent bass. They had five other fish but not enough hands to hold them. They weren’t fishing for bass specifically and caught everything on nightcrawlers. Sid from Haywood was doing the same when he caught his 3 pound bass on the 14th.
But the real news came when Riley, Gary & Zack from Yuba City went out with Roboworms targeting bass in habitat on the east side. Their haul included 10 good sized bass in just a few hours of fishing. You may see a few bass here and there from folks fishing-for-fish with worms, but for the real bass angler, whether you are a Secret Sam or a Show-off Sally, the green flag is out.
If you do catch a big bass on our lake, we do appreciate a picture and your story, especially if your doing catch & release, email me email@example.com or share it off your phone at the store.
Don’t forget! CIFFI is putting on it’s 8th annual Family Fun Trout Fishing Derby on April 28th
Happy catching! Until next week, Ed