Over the years, I’ve been surprised more than once by a fish willing to bite at the strangest moments.
Countless times, I’ve set my rod down to reach for something to drink or eat, and to my surprise I had a fish on the other end of the line. One of my biggest catches came when I was trying to see how far I could cast.
What I learned from each of those experiences was that I either needed to slow down, or I needed to make longer casts.
I was reminded this past weekend of the latter, as everybody seemed to be struggling to get a bite at the lake I was fishing. The lake was very clear, and it was evident to me that the fish were very spooky. I decided to try backing off as far as I could from the bank and make longer casts.
Sure enough, it wasn’t long before I caught a few fish.
Small adjustments often determine whether or not you’re going to catch a fish. In my case, I had a prior history to draw on, which helped. A lot of people would say that in each situation I was lucky. Yes, I probably was.
What I did which was different than most was that I tried to learn from each situation so that someday I could have another trick up my sleeve. Sometimes the best casts are the ones that you’re not trying to make.
Bass fishing is fair for those braving the elements. Top-water baits are still working well for bass during the morning and evening hours. There’s also a good Senko bite during the day while fishing around deep grass beds.
Bluegills are being caught in large numbers right now for those fishing with small worms in the backs of sloughs. Catfish are being caught on chicken livers and clams.
New Melones Lake
Trout are being caught for those fishing under submersible lights during the night and the Kokanee bite remains wide open for those who choose to troll. The hot bait right now seems to be Apex Lures tipped with shoepeg corn fished trolled anywhere from 70-100 feet deep.
Bass fishing remains good for smaller fish during the day, and bigger fish are being caught earlier in the day on top-water lures.
Bluegill and crappie continue to bite well for those fishing brush piles with worms and minnows. The best action for crappie is at night around a submersible light.
The catfish bite is really good all over the lake at night and are being caught while using anchovies or chicken livers.
Lake Don Pedro
The best bite on the lake is for those anglers going after kokanee. There are a lot of 2-pound kokanee being caught by anglers trolling between 60-100 feet deep while using Vance’s Sling Blade Dodgers trailed with Uncle Larry’s spinners tipped with shoe peg corn.
Bass fishing is good for smaller fish. Anglers fishing for bass are using shakey head worms down to 20 feet deep.
Lake Amador has been good for those fishing at night. During the day the only fish reported caught are bluegill which are being caught up shallow on worms. At night bass are being caught on large power worms and spinnerbaits.
Bass fishing is good for anglers who are finding shade along the bank or fishing deep with plastics. Trout fishing has also been good for those trolling earlier in the day until about noon. Bluegill fishing is really good for those fishing the shallows with worms and crickets.
The bite is really good for bluegill and bass. Bass are being caught right now just about anywhere on the lake, with rocky points being the best spots. Small plastic worms worked along the bottom are producing a lot of bites during the day.
Bluegills are being caught shallow by those fishing with red worms in the backs of coves.
Tip of the Week
Several years ago, a wheel bearing on one of my trailer wheels burned out, and if it weren’t for some help provided by friends I’d probably still be stuck on the side of the road.
Since then, I’ve made it a habit of mine to check my wheels at each stop along the way. What I do is gently put my hand against the tire feeling for any unusual heat indicating a lack of oil or bearing that may be wearing out.
I also carry extra wheel bearings and bearing grease along with the necessary tools needed to change a burned-out bearing.
To contact Jarod Ballardo, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.