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New Melones Reservoir - New Melones Lake is currently holding 1,154,000 acre-feet of water. Lake is at 48 percent capacity. Lake elevation held steady this week, at 963 feet above sea level, and 125 feet from full capacity. Water temperature has cooled to approximately 58 degrees, and the lake seems to have "turned over."

New Melones Lake Visitors Center has some great free Thursday evening lectures at 7 p.m. For information on the informative lectures, call 536-9094 ext. 22, or visit Glory Hole Sports to see the schedule of lectures.

The Angels Cove Boat Ramp is closed. All other boat ramps are in operation.

The Department of Fish and Game has been heavily planting Melones with trout, so the action for small rainbows is hot. The lake seems to have "turned over," so we should start seeing some bigger fish in the shallows now. We have already heard reports of big rainbows showing up in the major creek arms such as Mormon Creek, Coyote Creek and Rose Creek upriver. Power Bait or Pautski's Salmon Eggs are the best choice for bank anglers. Use a marshmallow to float your bait. During the cold winter months, rainbows and browns often chase schools of shad into the coves and cuts. You sometimes will see schools of shad boiling on the surface, right up onto the bank, as the bigger fish herd them and trap them in the shallows to feed. Bank anglers and those still fishing from a boat can try throwing shad-patterned Rattletraps in the shallows, especially if they see shad boils near the shore. Trollers should fish in the top 10-20 feet of water in the main lake, and at the mouths of major creeks. Remember - when fish are on the surface, it's important to have plenty of line out behind your boat (as much as 100-150 feet). Using side planers is a great way to get your lure away from the boat chop and commotion that your boat causes, which scares the fish away from the area behind your boat. Most rainbows that trollers have caught recently have come on spinner/crawler combos behind small flashers. Uncle Larry's Power Spin, which allows you to troll with Power Bait, or live crawlers behind Wedding Ring spinners. Golden Eye and Speedy Shiner lures are also catching fish, and both can be trolled fast - 4 to 5 m.p.h. Seven-year-old Chris Perez trolled a nightcrawler behind gold flashers 10 feet deep under the 49 Bridge. He caught a nice limit of rainbows. This is the time when the big browns start lining up in the shallows, so we should start seeing some nice ones caught by trollers and bank anglers alike. Shad-pattern Rapalas and frozen shad are your best lures for the big browns. The Spro Sliding Hook Rig is an easy way to rig a frozen shad for trolling.

Kokanee are done for the season.

Bass are still pretty active, with smaller fish feeding in the shallows and bigger fish holding to slightly deeper water. Try fishing near main lake points or by steep drop offs. Smaller fish are hitting drop-shotted 4" crawdad-colored worms, such as Roboworm Bold Bluegill or Keeper 411 or 1038 (oxblood). Larger fish, like the 9-pounder that John Chiarpotti caught and released, are deeper and seem to prefer jigs. Bass have also recently been caught on Rattletraps, crankbaits, swim baits and spoons. Young Aaron Green caught a nice 3.2-pounder while throwing a shad-patterned crankbait from shore off of Glory Hole Point. Using a blue/silver spoon over submerged structure and island tops will catch bass as the water temperature falls. The fluttering fall of the spoon imitates the shad that die in the cold water.

The catfish bite has been slow. Try Angels Cove, Glory Hole Point, under the 49 Bridge, or near Tuttletown. Use mackerel, anchovies or sardines, crawlers, chicken liver, or live large minnows. The action is always best at night for catfish, when they move into the shallows to feed.

Crappie and bluegill are showing up occasionally. The south side of the lake has been good, and near Tuttletown is another good choice. Best crappie bite has been at night under a submersible light, with minnows or red/white crappie jigs.

Melones Reservoir is planned for catch-able trout plants between Dec. 19-25, conditions permitting.

Glory Hole Sports, 736-4333.

Lake Don Pedro - Best spots to try are around partially submerged trees, near the marina and rocky points.

Guide Monte Smith said fishing for rainbow trout at Don Pedro remains great now that the lake has turned over. Anglers fishing from shore have had luck soaking power bait or throwing Kastmasters by the Fleming Meadows Marina or by the dam area. Trollers are also finding good action in the same areas, and even launching at Moccasin Point and fishing up the river arm, while trolling from the surface down to 20 feet. Use Sep's Sideplaners to keep your offering in the top five feet of water and away from the noise of your boat. Good lures to use are Uncle Larry's Spinners with a night crawler or a Sep's grub or Excel lures.

The Department of Fish and Game has planned a trout plant from Dec. 19-25, at Don Pedro Reservoir.

852-2369, 989-2206, 848-2746.

Tulloch Reservoir - Fish the main part of the lake for the best chance of action.

The lake gradually is being drained more than usual for dam maintenance. It's scheduled to drop to 30 feet on Dec. 23. There is a solid trout bite going, but the water is too low to launch unless you have four-wheel drive and a light boat because there is an exposed gap in the launch ramp. There is a good bite from the bank, too, but it's muddy. Fishing is good, but getting the fish is tough. Call ahead for launch conditions.

Tulloch Lake is scheduled for a trout plant between Dec. 5-11, conditions permitting.

881-0107, 847-3447.

McClure Reservoir - Fish in Barrett Cove, Horseshoe Bend, Cotton Creek and Temperance Creek for the best luck.

Diana Mello of A-1 Bait and Tackle said bass have gone a little deeper as temperatures have dropped, but anglers fishing from the bank are having luck on trout. Bass are hitting on crawdads.

563-6505, 378-2441

McSwain Reservoir - Try your luck at the brushpile, in front of the campgrounds and marina, and at Gilligan's Island and the handicap dock.

John Kemper from McSwain Marina said the lake was filled to the top recently, and fishing has slumped as the fish adjust to the rapid change. Bank anglers should start at the brushpile with rainbow Power Bait. The trollers still are having luck working the slot area. The water was down for so long, it may take a while for the fish to adjust, but they usually move into the shallows to feed. A lot of fish are being metered, but not many are being caught. Jesse Parra, 9, caught trout with Power Bait, and Nicole Kent, 12, of Turlock caught trout on the handicap dock with rainbow Power Eggs.