The first fishing advice I ever received was to be patient. I’m not sure if I even understood the word back then, I just knew that I was expected to wait for the fish to come to me. This time of year, I’m constantly reminded of that advice as the bites are usually harder to come by. There are a couple of things that I do to keep motivated when the fishing gets tough. I always bring a warm thermos of coffee. Just about the time frustration starts to set in, I pull out my thermos and warm up with a cup of coffee. Not only does the coffee warm me up, but it helps me regroup. Sometimes, I’ll even leave my bait in the water while I’m having my cup of coffee. There’s been several times where I’ve caught fish that bit while I was taking my coffee break. Another thing that I do is try to bring someone with me that keeps me company; it’s amazing how fast time goes by when you’re enjoying your time. If I can’t find a fishing partner, I make sure to bring my iPod full of all my favorite songs. It’s sometimes tough staying positive when the fish aren’t biting but like they say “You’re not going to catch anything unless your line is in the water.”
It’s been really foggy in the mornings lately making it difficult for anglers to navigate. For those that are willing to deal with the fog the fishing for both bass and striped bass has been steady. There are already some signs of the bass starting to feed for the upcoming spawn as anglers are catching fish that are full of baitfish and crawdads. Anglers catching bass are fishing slow moving baits along the edges of the tulles. Striped bass fishing is still good for anglers drifting live bait. Water hyacinth is still a problem as it’s floating just about everywhere right now.
Lake New Melones:
Trout fishing has slowed down a bit but anglers are still bringing in limits. Currently the hot bait has been Power Bait. Trollers are catching fish up shallow but they have been a lot smaller than the ones caught off the bank. Because of this, a lot of boaters have chosen to drift live minnows under a bobber in the backs of coves in order to target the bigger trout. Angels Cove and Glory Hole Cove have been the hot areas recently for trout. Bass fishing remains consistent as the bass have moved deeper. The bigger bass are still 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. The bite for numbers of smaller bass is great right now for anglers targeting submerged wood and drop offs. Glory hole Point is still the only paved launch ramp available on the lake.
Lake Don Pedro:
The trout bite is good right now for anglers fishing from the surface down to 25 feet deep. Anglers are targeting the bigger fish that are combing the bank while using side planers and trolling a variety of shad imitating lures. Anglers fishing off the bank for trout are doing well while using Power Bait. 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. The lake is still down to only one paved launch ramp at that is located in Fleming Meadow.
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 doing well while using Power Bait either fished off the bottom or beneath a bobber.
Fishing is good right now for trout as anglers are catching trout both out of the pond and in the lake. For those fishing the lake, north and south shore day use areas are producing limits. Bass fishing remains tough as most anglers are going after trout. For those searching for bass I recommend either a drop shot or football head jig. Favorite areas for me this time of year are island tops and main lake points.
The lake is currently closed and is scheduled to re-open on February 13th.
Tip of the Week:
Something that I like to keep in my boat is a small tube of clear silicone. Silicone is great for sealing up any unexpected water leaks and can even be used to waterproof plastic baits such as topwater frogs.