The week proceeding Labor Day is always a pretty good week to be out on the water.
Most people end their season with Labor Day. For us fishermen, the only other boaters on the water are usually those die-hard wake boarders.
As the water temperature drops a little more, even they will start to stay home. By no means do I believe that I own the water or that fishermen are the only ones that should be on the water. I’ve spent many days when it seemed as if everyone who had a boat was on the lake.
I don’t have a problem with other boaters and usually don’t mind the water being stirred up a little bit. It’s those boaters who’ve never been taught how to operate a boat that makes it a little harder on everyone.
One piece of advice I tell all new boaters is that “you’re responsible for your wake.” If your wake does damage or harm to anything or anyone, you’re liable. Next time you’re out on the water please “watch your wake.”
Early in the morning, anglers are doing well fishing for bass with top-water lures. During the day, anglers are either catching them with reaction baits like Rattle Traps or flipping heavy cover with sweet beavers.
Bluegills are plentiful and can be caught just about anywhere while using red worms. I haven’t heard of any striped bass reports yet.
This time of year it’s always good to have a rod with a top-water lure tied on just in case a school of striped bass appear.
New Melones Lake
Fishing for kokanee and trout has slowed down on the lake. There have been some reports of kokanee still being caught but no reports of trout being caught. For those fishing for kokanee, many are being caught by anglers who are trolling between 70 and 90 feet deep with dodgers and a hootchie combo.
Bass fishing continues to be good for numbers of bass. There are schools of bait being brought to the surface by schools of bass making for some exciting top-water action for those that are in the right place at the right time. Active fish can be found around the main lake points and around the tops of submerged islands.
The annual Glory Hole Catfish Contest is scheduled for Oct. 1-31. The entry and insurance fees total $15, and the contest has a limited entry. For more information contact Glory Hole Sports 209.736.4333.
Lake Don Pedro
Trout and kokanee are being caught on the lake by anglers trolling as deep as 125 feet. Surprisingly, they are of bigger size than in years past and are full of shad. Anglers trolling are using pink flutter bugs or pink Hootchies trolled being a dodger.
Bass fishermen are employing similar tactics as there are many schools of fish being found around main lake points. Once locating a school that seems to be holding on a point, anglers are either fishing a drop-shotted robo worm or shaky head jig through or around the school.
Trout fishermen are finding trout while trolling speedy shiners between 35 and 40 feet deep. Bass fishing continues to be great on the lake for numbers of bass.
Like most local lakes angers that are having the most consistent bites are finding the schools of fish that are feeding on shad. Once finding the schools of shad just about any small shad imitating bait will draw a strike.
Trout fishing has been tough, Those that are having any luck are fishing between 30 and 60 feet deep. Bass fishing is fair. Key areas are around isolated islands with jigs and worms. Top-water baits are working well in the morning and evening hours.
Tip of the Week
Late summer is an interesting time of the year. You’d be surprised at what works.
As far as bait selection, don’t be afraid to try something new or something a little out of the ordinary. I’ve had some great times fishing this time of year while using untraditional baits.
While everyone seems to be tossing the same thing try something different, you may be surprised at what you catch.
To contact Jarod Ballardo email firstname.lastname@example.org.