April is the month that I get most excited about when thinking about going fishing. My personal best was caught during the month of April, nearly 10 years ago. As a bass fisherman, catching a bass over 10 pounds is extremely rare. Naturally, it becomes a goal of just about every fisherman that I know. Before finally breaking the 10 pound mark, I caught many that weighted over five pounds and a handful that were slightly over nine pounds. I quickly became frustrated to the point of wondering if I was ever going to catch one over 10 pounds. When the time finally did come, I couldn’t believe it. Especially when I saw that the fish weighed slightly over 11 pounds. Since then I’ve caught a dozen or so bass that have weighed over 10 pounds but none that have topped my personal best. Every year I wonder if this is going to be the year. There are definitely a lot of fish swimming around in our local waters that are over 12 pounds. I can only hope that I’ve learned enough over the years to get my chance at one of those giants.
Largemouth bass continue to provide action for those fishing jigs, finding clearer water and banks protected from the wind and current seem to be what anglers are focusing on. With the recent full moon combined with rising water temperatures there should be another large group of bass making their way into the spawning flats. Now is a good time to get out and toss a Senko around visible clearings in the tulles or submerged vegetation.
New Melones Lake:
The trout bite has been reported as being off and on lately. Bass fishing has started to pick up with the average fish exceeding the two pound mark. There are plenty of bass up shallow; the bigger females can be found cruising but few have begun to spawn. As the water warms more look for a lot more fish to move shallow. The crappie bite is starting to improve as anglers fishing submerged trees or bushed in 10 to 15 feet of water are catching them on beetle spins or small minnows. The catfish bite is also starting to turn on as anglers soaking cut bait are starting to catch them. Glory Hole point still has the only paved launch ramp on the lake that is open for launching. The lake is currently 25 percent full.
Lake Don Pedro:
Bass fishing is fair right now. Anglers are catching smaller fish all over the lake on small plastics as well as crank baits. A lot of fish can be found right now up shallow in the backs of coves. Swim bait fish are still being caught but with all the fish getting ready to make their way onto the beds many anglers are choosing to work the banks with smaller baits. The lake is currently 60 percent full; all three launch ramps are open.
Bass fishing has been hit or miss for some as many anglers are abandoning traditional patterns and focusing on catching a big swim bait fish. Lipless rattle baits as well as other shad imitating baits cast far ahead are producing well. Anglers fishing reaction baits such as flukes are also having some luck. For kokanee and trout, anglers are having to work hard while trolling from the surface down to 15 feet deep. Most anglers are opting for spinners as the trout have been biting more than the kokanee.
Weekly trout plants continue to fill the lake with hungry trout. Right now there are plenty of trout to be caught up shallow for anglers using power bait. Bass fishing is starting to pick up as anglers are beginning to catch them shallow as well. The lake is currently full making it a great place to fish right now.
Tip of the Week:
Fluorocarbon line sinks a lot faster than regular monofilament line. When tying on certain baits, the advantage of using fluorocarbon is obvious. Crankbaits dive a little further, weightless baits such as Senko’s sink faster, and sensitivity is almost doubled. There are several good fluorocarbon lines out there, my personal favorite being Seaguar. The invisibility factor of fluorocarbon lines is still being tested. The stretch of fluorocarbon line is far less than monofilament, making fluorocarbon a good choice for several different applications.