NEW MELONES RESERVOIR Guide Danny Layne reports excellent kokanee action throughout the lower portion of the reservoir at 15 to 65 feet with pink or purple Apex lures, Shasta Tackle's Wiggle Hootchies, Uncle Larry's spinners or Sockeye Slammers behind a Vance's Dodger or a small Sling Blade. Layne has been scenting his corn with vanilla, ginger, garlic or shrimp. "Expect limits when fishing Melones," he says. For rainbows, Layne advises pulling Wee-Tads, small ExCel lures, or rolling shad at 20 to 35 feet. Bank fishing for trout is slow with the water getting warmer in the shallows. Anglers are advised to target deeper water near the main lake. He recommends making a long cast with a slip float rig with a bobber stop adjusted from 15 to 25 feet from the bobber. Night fishing under lights is improving, and Power Bait or minnows are working near the spillway/dam areas or under the Stevenot Bridge. Bass fishing is still very good with numbers of spotted bass on soft plastics in the shallows. The spawn is wrapping up, and the fish are transitioning from the shallows back into deeper water. In the early mornings or when the wind is blowing, top water lures have been effective. The bass drop into deeper water by mid-morning, and most anglers are pounding the bottom with drop shot plastics or jigs. Crappie fishing with small minnows or minijigs in the submerged willows in Bear or Carson Cove is a top bet for slabsides in the 2-pound range. Call: (209) 736-4333, Monte Smith (209) 581-4734, Danny Layne (209) 586 2383, Sierra Sport Fishing (209) 599-2023.
SAN LUIS RESERVOIR / O'NEILL FOREBAY There has been a consistent striper bite in the Forebay with schoolies to 24 inches taken on threaded anchovies on a 4/0 hook with a 4-ounce weight tossed into the moving water at Check 12. A number of anglers have been fishing under the bridge nightly. Mickey Clements of Coyote Bait and Tackle in Morgan Hill said anglers in the big lake have been picking up schoolies from the banks on pile worms, blood worms or anchovies. The striper bite has been tough in the main lake with the best action at the trash racks at 40 to 60 feet, Bring a fizzing needle when fishing deep water. Call: Ly's Fishing Goods (408) 629-9644; Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711.
McSWAIN RESERVOIR The lake was planted Thursday, and shore action is best with Power Bait in garlic or pink garlic Power Eggs at the brush pile or handicapped docks or closer to the dam. Trolling has been slow, but you'll get some bites near the floating restrooms and Gilligan's Island. A Calaveras Trout Farm plant is a week off. Call: (209) 378-2534
McCLURE RESERVOIR Bass fishing is outstanding especially with live crawdads, says Diana Mello of A-1 Bait in Snelling. She reports one angler bringing in 30 bass on shad patterned plastics. Manny Basi of the Bait Barn said the top-water bite is strong on Lucky Craft Gunfish in Chartreuse shad or American shad, and Super Spooks in Okie Shad. The key is letting the bait sit. Crappie action is heating up from Barrett's Cove to Bagby to Horseshoe Bend on small minnows or minijigs over submerged brush or rocks. Trout limits are being taken at 20 to 30 feet with blade/crawler combinations or Power Bait behind a cowbell flasher up the river arm or near the dam. King salmon can be found at 80 feet near the dam with rolled shad or anchovies.Call: A-1 Bait (209) 563-6505, Bub Tosh (209) 404-0053.
LAKE DON PEDRO Guide Monte Smith is finding quality rainbows and king salmon by fast-trolling heavy spoons at 18 to 50 feet. He called the rainbows "beautiful," and the bigger the prettier. King salmon are also biting, and they landed a salmon with three 2½-inch shad in its mouth in addition to the lure. Smith added that large schools of kokanee are holding at 30 to 70 feet, but with the excellent trout fishing, Smith is focused on the rainbows. Manny Basi of the Bait Barn reported the emergence of a top-water bite with Super Spooks in Okie Shad or Lucky Craft's Gunfish in American shad or Chartreuse shad. Call: Monte Smith (209) 581-4734, Danny Layne (209) 586-2383, Bait Barn (209) 874-301.
DELTA Stripers are still in the area, but scattered. Alan Fong of the Fishermen's Warehouse in Sacramento reported excellent largemouth bass fishing in the central Delta with chatterbaits or Senkos. Guide Randy Pringle reported an outstanding top-water bite with a variety of lures including Furbet the Frog, Poppin' Furbet, the ima Roumba and buzz baits. Pringle said clients have been catching and releasing largemouths in the 3- to 5-pound range with some fish up to 7 pounds. He said the best action is on top water at high tide. Pringle recommends tossing lures into isolated clumps of weeds. Casting accuracy is necessary as the fish are holding in the small holes outside the weedlines. Call: Randy Pringle (209) 543-6260; Stan Koenigsberger (925) 570-530, Mark Wilson (916) 682-1630, Jolly Jay's Guide Service (209) 478-6645, Gary Vella (209) 652-7550.
NEW HOGAN RESERVOIR Guide Bruce Hamby reports that striper action is heating up. Clients caught linesides 3 to 5 pounds along with smaller fish that were released. Best action is found trolling from the dam to the narrows. The bass bit on shad, anchovies and herring laced with Pro Cure scent trolled at 20 to 30 feet. There were fish down to 60 feet, but they weren't interested. Call: Sierra Sportfishing (209) 599-2023.
SAN FRANCISCO BAY The Super Fish and New Salmon Queen out of Emeryville Sport Fishing put in near limits of 54 salmon to 23 pounds for 31 anglers. The New Rayanne out of Sausalito fished below Chimney Rock Buoy on the Marin coast Sunday for full limits to 24-pounds for 16 anglers. This is the first concentration of salmon in the area just north of the Golden Gate. For the first time this season, live bait was supplied to the party boats over the weekend with sales to private boaters yet to come once enough bait has been located. Unfortunately the live bait wasn't reflected in fish counts. The Happy Hooker came back with only three halibut to 10 pounds and six bass to 12 pounds for just under a fish per rod for a dozen fishermen Sunday. Shark fishing in the south bay near the Alameda Rockwall is a solid bet with the leopards loading up on anchovies or small Dungeness crab.
HALF MOON BAY Capt. Dennis Baxter of the New Captain Pete reported a spotty bite Sunday, catching only 10 salmon for 20 anglers. He said the fish "are trickling in," but there are no large concentrations in this area. The wind blew between 10 to 18 knots Sunday, and the krill was scattered at depths from 20 to 30 fathoms. Call: Happy Hooker (510) 223-5388; Huck Finn Sport Fishing Center (650) 726-7133, Emeryville Sport Fishing (510) 654-6040, Don Franklin, Soleman (510) 703-4148.
MONTEREY/SANTA CRUZ Chris Arcoleo at Chris's Landing in Monterey said rockfish action has picked up with the Checkmate and Caroline boating limits Sunday. On Saturday, the Caroline was back at the harbor with early limits and a dozen ling cod. Salmon action continues to slow. Call: Chris' Landing (831) 375-5951, Bayside Marine (831) 475-2173