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Tackle box filled with too many baits to choose from
Manteca resident Dave Jenke caught a 15-pound striper near Mossdale Bridge Sunday. - photo by Photo by RANDY BLANKENSHIP

It seems like the more tackle I purchase the harder it is to decide which bait to use.

Often before a tournament you can tell which competitor is on the fish. He or she is usually the one with two to three different rods on their deck as opposed to those competitors who have 10 to 15 different rods rigged up.

Personally, I’ve reached the point where I can no longer fit all my favorite baits into my boat.

Years ago, they used to weigh each competitor’s tackle box before a tournament, and if it was over a certain limit the tournament director would open it up and take whatever tackle he wanted out.

Tournament directors have since tried to spark interest in their tournaments by holding lure-specific events like amateur-only tournaments, one-fish-limit tournaments, etc.

As our economy continues to struggle I’m curious if limited-tackle tournaments will make a comeback.

Delta Report

The bass fishing is great for anglers fishing a variety of different baits. The always-productive bait of choice is the Senko.

It’s important this time of year to make more than one pass over a spot if a fish is caught. With the increase in temperature look for the top water bite to take off as there are already signs of fry. Reaction baits are also working really well for those tossing spinnerbaits, chatter baits, rattle traps, and crawdad colored speed traps.

New Melones Lake
The trout bite has been non-existent for a lot of anglers fishing off the bank. As the water temperatures rise even more the bite can become even tougher.

Bass are being caught by reaction baits as well as jigs. The bigger bass have been caught while using jigs and dragging Carolina Rigs along the bottom.

Catfishing has been good for anglers fishing in the backs of coves during the night, anchovies and sardines are working really well. Crappie and bluegill continue to bite well for anglers fishing around submerged trees with minnow and crappie jigs.

Kokanee fishing has started to pick up for anglers trolling down to 25 feet deep with shad imitating lures.  

Lake Don Pedro
Fishing for trout, king salmon, and kokanee has really started to pick up for a lot of anglers.
For king salmon try fishing 80 to 100 feet deep near Jenkins Hill. Small-rolled anchovies, shad, Sockeye Slammers or small Ex-Cel’s are working well.

Trout are being found on the top twenty feet while trolling traditional shad patterned lures. Kokanee are being caught from 35 to 50 feet deep while fishing the South Bay area. Bass fishing continues to pick up as this next full moon should move up another batch of spawning fish. Just about everything is working right now as the bass are in all three levels of spawn throughout the lake.  

Lake Camanche
The trout fishing has slowed a bit for anglers fishing Camanche. They have reported that the bite has been picking up as the day goes on and not necessarily in the early part of the day.

Anglers fishing off the bank are doing well while fishing with Power Bait and Anglers trolling for trout are trolling the top 20 feet of water for their limits. Bass fishing continues to get better as the bigger females are starting to show up on the beds found throughout the lake.

Make sure to practice catch and release when landing a fish found guarding its young.  

Product Review
Forget about the pegs. Recently, I switched to bobber stoppers when pegging my weights. The bobber stoppers allowed my weight to slide up and down the line once the fish is hooked and kept my weight in place when flipping heavy cover.

For just under $2 a pack they were a steal, and best of all you can change weights without having to re-peg.

Just make sure to wet the line before sliding the bobber stopper in place. If you’re having trouble keeping your weight from sliding along the line, try using two bobber stoppers.
To contact Jarod Ballardo, e-mail