As much as I’m enjoying these nice clear winter days, I believe it’s just a matter of time before we’re going to be hit with a series of storms making fishing even tougher. Usually, by this time of year, our waters are muddied up by a few storms. So far that isn’t the case, we’ve had a pretty dry but cold winter. One of my favorite professional bass anglers used to always say “the toughest condition to fish in is when the water is cold and muddy.” In my experience that statement has held true. I’m not sure exactly why that is but I just know that I can count on one of my hands the times when I caught fish when the water was both cold and muddy.
The Striped Bass really seem to be scattered right now. Anglers are having a tough time pinning them down with one specific pattern. Those having the most luck are moving from spot to spot while covering a lot of area. The techniques being used are both live and artificial baits. It’s really just a matter of finding the fish. Bass fishing is tough right now as anglers are advised to use lighter lines and smaller baits as the water has gotten real clear in a lot of areas. Most anglers are choosing to use a drop shot rigged worm along deep weed edges.
Lake New Melones
Trout continue to bite for a lot of anglers who are fishing off the bank. Anglers are fishing around Glory Hole Cove and catching trout up to two pounds. Currently the hot bait has been Power Bait. Trollers are catching fish up shallow but of the smaller size giving bank anglers the advantage. Anglers trolling are doing well while top-lining and using side planners. A single night crawler threaded onto a Wedding Ring behind a Sling Blade is hard to beat. 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
Trout fishing continues to be great for both anglers trolling and bank fishermen. “Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing reported excellent trout fishing in the Moccasin Arm of the lake with the fish stacked up in the backs of the river arm. He said, “We found them there last year, and experienced trollers are reporting double hook up after double hook up with as many as 30 strikes within three hours of trolling.” Smith advises dragging heavy spoons on lead core on a fast presentation as the fish are close to the surface.” The salmon bite is expected to improve as we get closer to February. Bass fishing has slowed right now 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.
Heavy loads of trout are being planted into the lake right now on what seems like a daily basis. Anglers fishing off the bank are getting their monies worth in most cases. Power bait has been the ticket either fished off the bottom or beneath a bobber.
Lake Pardee is scheduled to reopen February 13th and for recreational vehicles and the 14th for fishing.
The south shore pond seems to be the hot area right now anglers are doing well while fishing with power bait. North shore bank fishing is still producing limits this week, mostly in the early morning hours when the water is coldest. South shore has a couple of good reports as well. Bass fishing remains fair, anglers catching fish while working small plastic baits along the bottom.
Tip of the Week
If you’re planning on not using your boat for a while it’s always better to top off the gas tanks before storing, than to let it sit empty. An empty tank allows for a lot of condensation to build up resulting in water mixing with your fuel. This can be a very costly mistake if not treated properly.