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Choose right spot on bank and cash in
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As the weather has been improving, I’m sure a lot of anglers looking forward to going fishing. A majority of those anglers will most likely be fishing from the bank.

Personally, I’ve had some very good days while fishing from the bank. What I have learned is that location is everything when choosing the right spot.

On the Delta, for example, fishing the bends, dead-end sloughs or forks in the river are almost always productive areas. In the lakes, I almost always start off by fishing the marina areas.

Usually, all the fish plants take place around the lake’s main launch site. Tournament fish are also released around the launch ramp right after being weighed in. Those fish often don’t travel too far unless there isn’t enough food or cover to sustain them.

Depth is also a key factor when picking a site along the bank. You want to make sure that you’re not fishing too shallow of water and at the same time make sure that you’re not too deep.

I usually like fishing banks that have a nice even taper to them. If there’s some structure like rocks and trees, the more the better.

Last but not least, how much time should you spend in one area? Usually, if I’m not get a bite within an hour’s time, I pack up and try another spot that’s a little different than the one I just fished.

Either way, it’s an exciting time of year to be out fishing. You just never know when you might find that magic spot!

Delta Report

Largemouth bass continue to provide action for those fishing a variety of different techniques. Finding clearer water and banks protected from the wind and current seem to be what anglers are targeting.

One of the most consistent baits this time of year is a shallow running crawdad colored crankbait or a lipless crankbait.

New Melones Lake

The trout bite has been reported as being on and off lately. Right before a storm the bite has been turning off and has picked up right after a storm. The better bites have been for those fishing the banks.

A lot of trout have made their way into the coves keeping those fishing Power Bait busy.

Bass fishing is hit or miss for a lot of anglers, as they have yet to move shallow. Lately, they are being caught on a variety of slow moving baits while fished around lake points. The bites haven’t been very aggressive; many fish are just picking the baits up and moving off with them.

Lake Don Pedro

The trout bite continues to pick up. Mexican Gulch, Big Oak, and Graveyard Bay seems to be the hot spots right now for anglers. Trout are being caught by those trolling within the top 25 feet with Uncle Larry’s Spinners.

Large swimbait fish are being caught for those working points. The swimbait of choice seems to be the Huddleston Deluxe in a Trout pattern. For those targeting smaller bass crankbaits and jigs have been producing decent limits of fish.

Lake Pardee

Trout are being caught for those fishing the top 10 feet while trolling flashers with lures tipped with a partial scented grub or night crawler behind dodgers or sidekicks. Water levels are dropping.

Bass fishing remains tough for anglers, as the water temperatures increase the fishing will surely pick up. On a recent trip the temperatures were in the low 50s.

Tip of the Week

One of the most common mistakes anglers make is “fishing the past.”

Fishing the past is fishing the same way or same place over and over again expecting the same results. Some of my best tournament finishes have come on lakes that I had hardly fished.

This, I believe, explains how someone from outside of California can go on to win a major tournament while competing against a hometown field. The story remains the same from hometown anglers, as they often complain about waiting for their fish to start biting, or their fish to move into position.

Someone who is unfamiliar with a body of water is more than likely going to cover water instead of waiting fish out. When fishing with artificial baits waiting for a bite isn’t always the greatest approach, usually the more fish you can put your bait in front of the more bites you’re going to get.

To contact Jarod Ballardo, email