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A couple of months ago I mentioned how to safely remove a hook that had gone past the barb. This past weekend I sure wish I had a copy of that article as my memory was put to the test. While fishing with a relative newcomer to fishing he had hooked a striped bass and brought it into the boat. As he was unhooking the fish it started to thrash around and managed to send his hook right through the inside of his index finger. Once we put the fish back into the water he looked at me and said "take it out." I told him that I would try and proceeded to get a line set for the yank technique. I had never performed this on another person and have only seen it done before. As I made my loops and told him to turn his head while I attempted to dislodge the hook it remained in his finger after two failed attempts. He ended up having to go to the hospital to have it removed. Once I got home I was curious as to what I had done wrong and now know that I should have pushed down on the eye of the hook making sure that it was against the skin before pulling. I also learned that for smaller hooks you can actually remove them with pliers by turning back out in a circular motion. I also need to make sure that I have a well-stocked first aid kit on board for now on.


Water clarity is an issue for a lot of anglers fishing the Delta as some of the usually clear areas have remained stained due to the high winds. Water temperature throughout the Delta has remained in the low seventies. Fishing for bass has been good as numbers can be caught on reaction baits such as rattle traps and spinnerbaits. For bigger fish anglers are fishing wake baits, top water frogs, spooks, and flipping jigs along banks that are closest to deep water. When fishing stained water try using a little darker colored bait than normal as the darker colors are more visible in stained water.

New Melones Lake:

Good limits of Kokanee are being caught right now by anglers trolling between 40 and 60 feet deep. Trollers are focusing on submerged island tops and points while trolling lures that are either pink or red. Pink Hootchies are the favorite bait among anglers trolling for Kokanee right now. Bass fishing has slowed a bit as a lot of the shallow fish have now moved deep, anglers are targeting main lake points while drop shotting or cranking deep divers. There is a top water bite in the early morning hours and as the sun starts to go down. A lot of big catfish are being caught right now during the night; anglers are using anchovies, mackerel, sardines, or a ball of nightcrawlers.