LAKE DON PEDRO Kokanee action remains outstanding with both Danny Layne of Fishn' Dan's Guide Service and Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing finding terrific action. Smith found the kokanee at depths from 60 to 65 feet with Vance's hootchies behind the large 8-inch Shasta Tackle's Sling Blade. He also landed a 15-inch kokanee at a depth of 95 feet on a rolled shad while targeting king salmon. The kings have been as deep as 125 feet. Layne has been using small shad-patterned spoons or spinners at depths from 20 to 30 feet, while dropping from 40 to 70 feet for kokanee with bugs, trolling flies, or spinners tipped with Shoepeg corn in various scents including vanilla, garlic, krill, or a blend of root beer soda. Call: Monte Smith (209) 581-4734; Danny Layne (209) 586-2383; Gary Vella (209) 652-7550; The Bait Barn (209) 874-3011.
McCLURE RESERVOIR The kokanee and king salmon action has taken off, and Bruce Hamby of Sierra Sport Fishing reported a sizzling bite for king salmon at depths from 60 to 80 feet before dropping to 100 feet by mid-morning with rolled shad injected with Pro Cure or small shad-patterned spoons. Hamby has been focusing between Barrett's Cove and the Dam. Danny Layne of Fishn' Dan's Guide Service found kokanee over 16-inches on a recent trip at depths from 45 to 80 feet with spinners, bugs, or trolling flies tipped with garlic scented corn. He found his best action from McClure Point to the Dam. The lake dropped over five feet to 810.25 feet in elevation and 64 percent of capacity. Call: A-1 Bait (209) 563-6505, Bub Tosh (209) 404-0053.
McSWAIN RESERVOIR Stephanie Powell at the McSwain Marina reported the best trout action has been occurring in the deeper waters near the dam for both trollers and bank fishermen. Trollers have been pulling night crawlers behind a silver or copper blade at depths to 25 feet. Kastmasters and Roostertails are also working. Bank fishermen have been primarily using the lures or garlic Power Bait. The Handicapped Docks and the Campsites are also producing from the banks. Their last plant was on July 10, and a Calaveras Trout Farm plant is anticipated by mid-week. Call: McSwain Marina (209) 378-2534.
NEW MELONES RESERVOIR/TULLOCH A new lake record spotted bass was landed this week by Joe Bruce of Sonora at 8-pounds, 1-ounce on a crank bait near Mormon Creek. Bass fishing remains good. Top water lures are working in the mornings before dropping to the bottom with brown jigs on a football head. Bass fishermen are advised to practice catch and release, particularly with the increasingly scarce largemouth bass. Melanie Lewis advised trout trollers to work up the river arm against the steep canyon walls with shad-patterned Rapalas, Needlefish, or Speedy Shiners tipped with a night crawler or trolling grub while running from 2 to 3 miles per hour. Fly fishing in the local streams is excellent with hopper-dropper setup to locate fish. The lake is releasing water, and it dropped two feet to 1022.59 feet in elevation and 71 percent of capacity. Call: Glory Hole Sports (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 Mickey Clements of Coyote Bait and Tackle in Morgan Hill reported good striper action from the banks in the big lake near the Romero Visitor Center with white, pearl, or Smokin' Shad flukes on a half or quarter swimbait head. The water in the O'Neill Forebay is pumping regularly, and the American shad have moved into the moving waters. Fishermen have been threading anchovies to toss into the running waters near Check 12 for striped bass. The lake is dropping rapidly, and it is currently at 37 percent of capacity. Call: Ly's Fishing Goods (408) 629-9644, Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711.
DELTA/STOCKTON The river salmon season opened in the Sacramento, Feather, and Mokelumne Rivers on Monday, and anglers from Benicia to the upper stretches of the Sacramento River have been gearing up for their first shot at what should be a phenomenal year. Anglers were ready for Monday's river opener with Vee Zee or Flying C spinners from the shoreline. Catfishing is improving with mackerel, clams, or cut baits. Randy Pringle, the Fishing Instructor, also touted the largemouth action, and he advised using top water lures such as the ima Big Stick in bluegill or perch patterns as the bass are keying on the panfish. He advised working flats with moving water since the fish are holding around the cooler water in the current. There is a frog bite in the afternoon, and Pringle has been scoring with Furbet the Frog in the open water on the high tide and along the weeds farthest from the bank on the low tide. There is a rip bait bite with the ima Flit, and the key is to work it slowly through the strike zone without jerking the bait. When the wind is blowing, spinnerbaits, crankbaits, or buzzbaits are all effective when bumped into the rocky banks or ticking the tops of the weeds. The Berkley Chigger Craw in black/blue or black/red is an extremely good bite flipping the bait along the banks. Call: Randy Pringle (209) 543-6260; Stan Koenigsberger/Quetzal Adventures (925) 570-5303; Mark Wilson Sport Fishing (916) 682-1630; Intimidator Sport Fishing (916) 806-3030; Jolly Jay's Guide Service (209) 478-6645; Mark Delnero of Fin Addict Sport Fishing (209) 367-4665.
HALF MOON BAY Salmon fishing is the top draw, and Captain Dennis Baxter of the New Captain Pete out of Bait and Switch Sport Fishing went south to the Deep Reef on Sunday for 25 salmon for 14 anglers. The fish are all a mixed-grade with a number of shakers mixed in with some big splitters. Captain Tom Mattusch of the Huli Cat went rockfish on Sunday south off of Pescadero for 14 limits of rockfish composed of 85 percent black rockfish to go with a few blues, vermilions, chinas, and gophers and 4 ling cod to 18-pounds. 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 of Chris's Landing in Monterey said, "It was wide open until Sunday, " referring to the salmon bite. They went north to the Soquel Hole for 26 salmon to 30-pounds for 22 anglers with a mixed grade of salmon from 8-pounds to the jumbos. There were a number of boats working the Soquel Hole, and the boat pressure may have pushed down the fish since they weren't able to get the later bite at 10 a.m. like they have been experiencing. Arcoleo added that boats in the Monterey area put in limits of salmon in front of the Cannery, and mountains of squid have moved in to the bay. Reserve rental boats early since this coming Saturday's boats are already rented, and the boats have been booking a week out. Call: Chris' Landing (831) 375-5951, Bayside Marine (831) 475-2173.
SAN FRANCISCO BAY The party boats from the Golden Gate have been running to and above the Point Reyes Lighthouse, and the 'Salty Lady' out of Sausalito posted another day of limits of a mixed grade of fish on Sunday. Captain Roger Thomas said, "We have another spot below W Buoy which looks very promising, and we will try this out this week." Captain R.J. Waldron of the Sundance out of Emeryville Sport Fishing reported wide open action near Point Reyes on both Saturday and Sunday, and they put in 8 limits to 22-pounds by 10:15 a.m. He has next Saturday and Sunday open at the present time. The New Huck Finn and Wet Spot are also running combination rockfish trips, and they loaded up with full limits of salmon on Sunday to go with 175 rockfish and 32 ling cod to 16-pounds up the Marin coast. The next week brings a series of small minus tides. Joel Sinkay of Leonard's Bait touted the Petaluma River near the Miramonte Hole as the top location for striped bass with bullheads.