It’s been a few years since I stopped fishing bass tournaments. The good news is that I probably ended up saving myself a lot of money; I’m honestly starting to miss it though. Especially this time of year, when some of the bigger tournament circuits start visiting locally. Over the years I’ve been fortunate to do fairly well while tournament fishing, but I could never quite come to terms with spending upwards of a thousand dollars on an entry fee. Winning of course would pay all of that money back and much more but it’s definitely a gamble. A recent tournament at Lake Oroville cost upwards of $700 for boaters to enter. If you were to factor in all of the other expenses, an angler could easily end up spending $1500 to $2000 by the time they returned home. Needless to say, tournament fishing has ruined plenty of anglers’ credit scores.
The largemouth bass bite is wide open right now with numbers and size being caught. All presentations are working well right now, craw colored lipless crankbaits are working especially well. Last week’s full moon has caused the water levels to be a little higher than normal combined with great visibility there are a lot of signs of fish that have already made their way up shallow. Striped bass fishing has really turned on for anglers fishing around Rio Vista.
New Melones Lake:
Trout fishing continues to be tough right now on the lake. There are some trout being caught but they are primarily the trout that are being planted by DFG and are mostly being caught by anglers while fishing off the bank with Power Bait. Bass fishing is really good right now as there are a lot of fish roaming around that are willing to bite just about anything that passes by them. Glory Hole Launch ramp remains the only current launch ramp that is open for launching. The paved launch ramp is still out of water but not for long. For now, having a tow vehicle equipped with 4x4 is highly recommended.
Lake Don Pedro:
Trout fishing has been the same as neighboring Lake New Melones. Anglers are having a tough time catching anything lately. Most anglers visiting the lake are focusing on the great bass fishing as there are plenty of bass being caught by anglers fishing from the bank down to 20 feet deep. Most anglers are fishing with shaky head worms or Senko’s for limits of fish while those searching for trophy fish are tossing large trout imitating swimbaits. Fleming Meadows still has the only paved launch ramp on the lake that is still functional. That should be changing very soon though as water levels are on the rise.
There are a lot of big trout being caught out of the lake recently. Currently the lake is being planted with 1200 pounds a week. It’s not uncommon to catch a trout exceeding 6 pounds. Anglers searching for trout are fishing both the trout ponds and the main lake. Power Bait seems to be the bait of choice for anglers. Bass fishing is great right now as there are a lot of fish up shallow that are willing to bite on just about everything.
Lake owners continue to plant large amounts of trout into the lake. Power bait fished on the bottom as well as under a bobber is the going technique right now. Bass fishing has started to pick up as anglers are starting to get a few while fishing crankbaits and jigs. While the trout are still shallow large trout imitating swimbaits are sure to entice a few followers at the least. The lake is currently 1 foot from spilling and the water clarity is improving daily.
Tip of the Week:
It’s taken me many years, but I’ve finally learned that it’s better to take that extra step when working on boats. Boats vibrate like no other vehicle I’ve ever owned. Having either lock washers or lock tight on all your bolts is very important. My recent trolling motor installation took longer than it should have because I wanted to make sure that it was going to remain intact for as long as it’s on the boat. The manual didn’t call for lock tight, but I’ve lost bolts in the past, and I wasn’t about to make the same mistake twice.