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Hoping for fruitful year on water after rough 2009
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While speaking to a lot of close friends and relatives, they all pretty much can’t wait for the New Year to come.

This past year wasn’t particularly good for a lot of us. Although I had one of my best springs while fishing the Delta, local fishing in 2009 was unusually tough compared to years past.

This year I’m hoping things will change — in fishing rarely do bad years come in pairs. At least, that is what I’ve been trying to get myself to believe.

Delta Report
Fishing has been tough recently on the Delta. The water has cleared up and is in the mid- to low-40’s right now.

Fishing for bass continues to be tough for a lot of anglers as very few limits are being caught. Those targeting bass are fishing mainly with jigs and crawdad-imitating baits. Fishing for stripers is tough, as very little schooling activity is being reported.

Schools of striper are being found by anglers fishing Sycamore and Hog Slough. Bluegill fishing continues to be good for anglers fishing around docks and marinas with wax worms.

Lake New Melones
Trout fishing is great. Anglers are still bringing in limits while fishing off the bank. The hot bait has been Power Bait.

Trollers are catching fish up shallow but they have been a lot smaller than the ones caught off the bank. Because of this, a lot of boaters have chosen to drift live minnows under a bobber in the backs of coves in order to target the bigger trout.

Angels Cove and Glory Hole Cove have been the hot areas for trout. Bass fishing remains consistent as the bass have moved deeper.

The bigger bass are being caught by swimbaits as they are definitely following the trout up shallow. For numbers try targeting points and backs of creeks with soft plastics and jigs.   

Lake Don Pedro
The trout bite is good for anglers fishing from the surface down to 25 feet. Anglers are targeting the bigger fish that are combing the bank, while using side planers and trolling a variety of shad imitating lures.

The salmon bite is expected to improve as we get closer to February. Bass fishing has slowed, as anglers are struggling to find a consistent bite anywhere on the lake.

There have been a few anglers that have been able to catch fish on spoons while searching for schooling fish.

Lake Camanche
Fishing for trout is very good both in the lake and in the pond. Anglers fishing for trout are doing well will fishing with Power Bait or casting various trout-imitating lures along the bank.

Bass fishing has been steady for anglers fishing offshore structure. Locating schools of bass following schools of shad seems to be the key to catching them.

Once the schools are found anglers are fishing with either spoons or a drop-shotted Robo Worm in a shad color.

Lake Amador
Heavy loads of trout are being planted into the lake on what seems like a daily basis. Anglers fishing off the bank are doing well while using Power Bait either fished off the bottom or beneath a bobber.

Lake Pardee
Anglers get ready; the lake usually reopens the on the first February for fishermen.

Lake Pardee currently holds the smallmouth bass record set last year at 9.83 pounds, which was caught by Harold Hardin of Stockton.  

Tip of the Week
With the current state of our economy, there has been an increase in thefts to anglers and their equipment.

Personally I’ve yet to have anything stolen from my boat but have had various items stolen from my truck and trailer while I was out enjoying a day of fishing.

All spare tires should be locked and if you have any valuables stored inside the cab of your truck make sure that it is out of sight.

Lastly, don’t assume your vehicle is safe while parked inside a gated launching facility. When it comes to preventing theft it is better to be over protected than under protected.

To contact Jarod Ballardo, e-mail