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Okeechobee is still the destination of choice

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POSTED September 11, 2009 3:00 a.m.
­ I often get asked if I could go fishing anywhere in the world, where would it be?

My experience fishing outside of the United States has been limited to Mexico and Germany. Neither of the two was I overly impressed with enough to want to revisit.

I grew up watching all my angling heroes fishing Lake Okeechobee and have always wanted to go there. A childhood friend and I even agreed that once we graduated high school we would drive all the way to Florida and stay at Roland Martin’s Marina.

We ended up never following through with the plan since my family moved to Manteca after my sophomore year of high school.

I know that Lake Okeechobee probably isn’t as good as some of our local lakes or what it used to be back in the mid-80s, but I still would like to visit it someday.  

Delta Report
The nights have finally begun to cool and the striped bass bite is starting to improve.

As the water temperatures continue to drop, the bite should really start to turn on in and around the flooded island like Franks Tract, Mildred Island and Big Break.

Bass fishing has been tough lately for a lot of anglers. There is still a good reaction bite throughout the Delta right now, but the topwater bite has been hit or miss lately.

Usually this time of year, areas where there is moving water close by is good for a fish or two.   

New Melones Lake
Kokanee fishing is slow, as many of them are getting ready to spawn or already have spawned.

Anglers are trolling between 65 and 80 feet deep, pink and red seem to be the go to colors of a lot of anglers targeting Kokanee.

Catfishing is red hot, as a huge catfish was recently caught by David Warne of Sonora weighing 33.25 lbs. Several anglers fishing around Glory Hole Point have been catching catfish up to 13 pounds while using live crawdads.

Bass fishing has gotten tougher for anglers searching for quality. Catching smaller fish doesn’t seem to be a problem as anglers are catching limits while fishing drop-shotted Robo Worms down to 40 feet.  

Lake Don Pedro
Trout and King Salmon are being caught between 25 and 55 feet deep with shad colored Excels or blade/crawler combinations.

As the water temperatures have dropped threadfin shad have been found shallower bringing the trout and salmon with them.

Bass fishing continues to be fair for anglers fishing brown jigs or drop shotting along rocky points.

Lake Pardee
Trout fishing continues to be tough; trollers are hooking up while fishing between thirty and 60 feet deep. Catfishing has slowed a little bit but the bite remains good for anglers fishing cut bait in the South end coves.

Bass fishing is fair. Key areas are around isolated islands with jigs and worms. Topwater baits are working well in the morning and evening hours.

Lake McClure
There is a good topwater bite for big spotted bass on the lake. Just about any walking bait in a shad pattern is working well right now.

There are a lot of schools throughout the lake right now making catching numbers of fish easy for those who are just out for numbers. Trout fishing is fair, as some fish are being caught by anglers trolling down to 45 feet deep.

Carl and Jerry’s Fishing and Hunting Show
In this weekend’s show Carl and Jerry will be hunting Rooster Ranch Pheasant. The guys will also be shooting a round of sporting clays with Rooster Ranch’s manager competition shooter Mike Tupper, Dallas Jett, and Tony Romero from their favorite local gun store Barnwood Arms.

For the cooking segment of the show Jerry will be putting a spin on the “Beer Can” cooking technique by using Pheasant  The show is scheduled to air this Saturday at 10:30 a.m. on Comcast SportsNet California.

Tip of The Week
As the cooler weather is quickly upon us make sure to store some warmer clothing somewhere within your boat or vehicle. Lately, the mornings have been very brisk and are going to get cooler as we get further into the fall.
 
To contact Jarod Ballardo, e-mail jgbbass@yahoo.com.
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