Quail Point Hunting Club and Sporting Clays

May 23, 2017    Headlines

Foothill & Mountain Lakes

Boca Reservoir:
James Netzel of Tight Lines Guider Service has left the San Joaquin River in search of kokanee in the High Sierra at Boca and Stampede, and he said, “We hooked over 50 kokanee on Saturday, but only managed to bring 20 to the boat, but the fish were huge for this early in the season with kokanee to 16.5 inches. I can’t blame losing fish on clients since I fought them and lost them too. Our hot set up was pink Radical Glow Tubes, but we also caught them on orange RGT’s, double-glow pink Rocky Mountain Tackle’s Plankton Squids, and small Dick Nite spoons. Paulina Peak’s micro-hoochies behind their dodgers were also successful, and I scented my corn with either tuna or garlic. “

New Melones:
New Melones continues to rise slowly, and water releases have started in anticipation of more snowmelt on the way. The bass bite has been solid with the emergence of a topwater bite, and kokanee, trout, and catfish are holding up.
John Liechty of Xperience Fishing Guide Service said, “The lake is at a great level, and I recently had the pleasure of guiding my good friend Nate Monroe in search of trophy largemouth and spotted bass as we have been trying to put him onto a giant for the past two years. We starting the day throwing topwater lures knowing that it should be go time, and we found an area where the bass were pushing shad onto the surface. We had some explosive blow-ups and landed both spotted and largemouth bass. At 11:00 a.m., we pulled up on a spot, and the conditions were perfect. As I was explaining to Nate how perfect the wind, light, water, clarity, and depth was, a big largemouth hit Nate’s topwater lure, and the fight was on. The fish flew out of the water and wallowed on the surface several times before coming to the net. We kept her in the live well not to stress her while we recovered, and after the bass was ready to go, Nate released his personal best largemouth at 9.3 pounds.”
Glory Hole Sports in Angels Camp reported 20-plus bass are the norm for thos working the coves with blue pearl Senkos on a wacky-rig. The bass are boiling on the surface, chasing bait into the cove, and there is a reaction bite with a variety of shad-patterned lures.
Trolling for rainbow trout has been producing limits around Angels Creek at depths to 20 feet with Kastmasters in blue/chrome behind a watermelon dodger. The spillway has also been a good option. Kokanee are also found near the spillway at depths between 25 and 35 feet with Pro-Troll’s Kokanee Killer in red pearl or watermelon behind a dodger.
Crappie condition to be taken on small to medium minnows, and the night bite under submersible lights is taking off with the hot temperatures. Catfish are getting active with frozen shad, mackerel, anchovies, or sardines near submerged structures in the lake inlets.
The Angels Cove and the main ramp on Glory Hole Point are open with two ramps available with one ramp at Tuttletown. For campers, there is one campground open on the Glory Hole side of the lake, and two campgrounds open at Tuttletown. The lake is starting to release water into the Stanislaus River and downstream Lake Tulloch, and it dropped nearly a foot to 1057.00 feet in elevation and 86 percent.

Don Pedro:
Don Pedro has been a solid option for largemouth, spotted, and smallmouth bass throughout the winter months, and the bass bite continues to be strong. The good news during the past week has been the emergence of quality kokanee, and the action should heat up within the coming weeks.
Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing went looking for kokanee on Friday, and he said, “It took a long time, and I really had to think back to remember where these fish should be located at this time of year. We landed two quality kokanee at 15.5 and 15.75 inches weighing in excess of 1-pound,10 ounces. We also landed 10 rainbows to 4.5 pounds, releasing the big fish which came at 63 feet on one of my custom heavy spoons. The rainbows right now are deeper than the kokanee, and there is a band of water that is warmer below. The surface temperature was over 70 degrees, and this is very warm for this time of year.  Sunday was a much different day than Friday with one rainbow landed within our first ten minutes, but the bite was very slow, ending up with only 3 fish on the day trip. The only thing I can attribute the slower action to was the heavy recreational boat traffic on the lake  on Saturday due to the hot weather.”
The bass bite remains excellent with Mike Gomez of the Bait Barn in Waterford saying, “It’s a wide open bite there as one angler reported putting in a limit within 2 hours. The Berserk Purple Hornet jig and the 5-inch Pro Worm 300 are working at depths from 25 to 45 feet. The majority of bass are in post-spawn, but there are still a few fish on beds in various locations in the lake.
The upper Tuolumne River arm is now open to boats as 98 percent of the floating wood has been contained by the log booms. As the lake rises with coming snowmelt, the woody debris outside of the containment booms will continue to re-float off of the shorelines.
The lake is currently at 83 percent and 800.69 feet in elevation with all launch ramps open.

Lake Pardee:

Lake Pardee is gearing up for the Memorial Day weekend with huge trout plants of 8000 pounds for two consecutive weekends. Although few bass fishermen have been either targeting the lake or reporting about their results, quality largemouths have been taken from the shoreline.

Kaitlyn McCroskey of the Lake Pardee Recreation Company reported 8000 pounds of rainbow trout in the 2- to 3-pound range were released on Friday with another 8000 pounds to come on the Thursday and Friday before the holiday weekend. We are ready to go for the holiday weekend with the opening of the swimming pool during the week and all but one camping space reserved. The trout plants from the Department of Fish and Wildlife project at the Mokelumne River Hatchery will continue into June, and after this, we will have a monthly maintenance plant from the Mt. Lassen Hatchery through September. The rainbows are fighting hard with firm meet. We haven’t heard much from the kokanee fishermen, but there will be plenty of kokanee trollers on the lake after Memorial Day in preparation for the June 3rd Kokanee Power Derby.”

Alan Fong, manager of the Sacramento Fishermen’s Warehouse, went trolling for kokanee during the week as his plans for Boca were dashed by a snowstorm, and he said, “We hooked 15 kokanee and landed only 4 running pink Micro-hoochies behind a dodger at 10 to 12 feet in the main body of the lake. I went up the river arm to explore the debris, and we were able to make it all the way up as the debris is now gone.”
The bass are primarily in post-spawn mode, and Anthony Archuleta of Sacramento tossed a green spinnerbait for a 7.1-pound largemouth off of Blue Heron Point. Lake Pardee is over capacity at 101 percent, and it is spilling into Lake Camanche.

Information and registration on the upcoming Kokanee Power Team Kokanee Derby is available at

Lake Amador:

Trout plants continue in anticipation of the upcoming holiday weekend with 1200 pounds split between 600 pounds of Lightning trout and 600 pounds of rainbow trout released at the Dry Creek Point. The rainbows are found at depths from 12 to 18 feet with Rapalas in orange, firetiger, or rainbow trout coated with scent. Floating trout dough bait off of the bottom has also been effective, and fishing at night on the Blue Docks has been excellent. The trout bite should continue through July with the full lake. The swim pond is expected to open on Memorial Day weekend.


Lake Camanche:
3000 pounds of Mt. Lassen Hatchery rainbows were split between the South Pond, South Shore, and North Shore in anticipation of the upcoming holiday weekend. Bank fishing is fair for rainbows while trollers working the deepest water near the dam have been locating quality rainbows with shad-patterned spoons. The rainbows are dropping in the water column as the lake warms up. Robbie Dunham, aka ‘The Koke Machine’ took out John and Diana Stockton for three limits of rainbows on Sunday pulling Speedy Shiners coated with Kokanee Feast at depths from 25 to 40 feet in front of Little Hat Island into the main river channel. He is running the spoons from 2.7 to 3.0 mph on the GPS. The bass are in post-spawn mode, and jerkbaits and topwater lures are effective for numbers of largemouths. Camanche was recently recognized as one of California’s top six bass lakes. The lake is currently at 70 percent.

Lake McClure:

Mike Gomez of the Bait Barn in Waterford said, “Bass fishing remains solid with Pro Worm’s 266 or Berserk Baits Green Craw jigs at depths from 25 to 45 feet. The bass are in post-spawn mode and actively feeding.” The launch ramps at Barrett Cove and McClure Point are open with the lake at 71 percent and rising due to snowmelt in the Merced River watershed.

New Hogan:
The water clarity has improved with less debris in the lake than in previous weeks. Striper trolling remains solid with frozen shad in a harness rig. Numbers of stripers can be taken on a slow troll. The lake is high at 78 percent, and the launch ramp is open with one lane and one dock. 

White Pines:
The small impoundment just outside of the town of Arnold has been planted regularly with another plant coming before Memorial Day. Trout dough bait, Mice Tails,  or nightcrawlers in the early mornings or late afternoons are working from the dam area.

Pine Flat:
Pine Flat remains a top Central Valley lake for spotted bass, but trout fishermen are also enjoying good action for quality as opposed to quality. The crappie bite has slowed with the past few weeks, but fishermen continue to pick up a few slabs in the river arm.

Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “There is a good reaction bite with ripbaits and crankbaits, and there is a topwater bite early and late. Several spotted bass in the 5- to 6-pound range have been landed this week, and one of my friends lost a big one within 9 feet from the boat. He had caught a 6.1-pound spot a few weeks ago at the lake, and he said, ‘This one dwarfed that fish, and I had it close to the boat, but the ripbait popped out.’ The best fishermen are picking up limits in the 12-pound range.”

Trout trolling for numbers is slow, but there are quality rainbows to 18 inches. Gilbert said, “Boats are averaging around 5 to 6 rainbows for two anglers, but the quality remains good. We are selling a number of shad-patterned Apex lures, Needlefish, and Thomas Buoyants along with Wedding Rings. The best action is at 4 to 5 colors of leadcore as they are doing much better than those fishing deeper at 40 to 50 feet on downriggers.” There are still a few crappie to be had around Trimmer and Sycamore Creeks, but overall the crappie bite has slowed down since the zenith of a few weeks back.
In the lower Kings, trout plants continue, but the river is running fast, and it has been difficult to fish the swift water.
Pine Flat has risen to 62 percent in spite of water releases down the Kings River.

San Luis Reservoir
Huge striped bass have been coming from the shorelines at night at San Luis Reservoir, and dedicated anglers now have a short walk to the banks with the reservoir at near-capacity. The wind during the beginning of the past week has kept many boats off of the water, but the hot weather by the weekend will create more favorable conditions for boaters.
Merritt Gilbert of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “A number of our customers have been buying Magnum Flukes and jig heads and walking the banks at night, and one group landed stripers to 35 inches with others in the 7 to 8-pound range on the big flukes. Their cousin went back the next evening for two huge stripers at 42 and 46 inches tossing a Super Spook at night. The stripers are coming into the shorelines at night.”
Choua Her of Merced caught an estimated 20 pound striped bass from the banks on a white fluke after fishing throughout the evening.
Coyote Bait in Morgan Hill reported flukes, swimbaits, and ripbaits are working for a larger grade of striped bass in the main lake while the O’Neill Forebay is limited to a number of shakers. Some trollers are running P-Line’s Predator Minnows or umbrella rigs while others are drifting extra-large minnows.
Roger George of Roger’s Guide Service said, “R. I truly believe that we will have a later than usual season due to the high water and many storms that have kept the water temps very moderate so far. There are a lot of fish, but finding them can be tough in the big water as they continue to spread out. I expect the pattern to solidify soon and the bite to get back to normal. The next month will see more big fish being caught by savvy anglers who know that this is not the time to back off, even if it is getting warmer and windier. The opportunity to fish San Luis while its full,  is a wonderful chance to take a shot at hooking a trophy sized fish. You never know what you may hook on your next cast, run or hit. Now’s the time for a monster, if you’re looking for one!”
The dam area is off limits for any fishing, day or night and the Basalt side of the lake requires anglers to walk into the lake from the locked road gate just past the  Basalt State Park Kiosk if you are night fishing past closing time. San Luis is currently at 99 percent.

Shaver Lake:
The lake continues to rise, and it remains one of California’s top kokanee lakes at the start of the 2017 kokanee season. The lake ramp at the Sierra Marina is in the water, and even the Edison Ramp is in the water as the lake rose more than anticipated with the snowmelt.
Dick Nichols of Dick’s Fishing Charters went out on his first charter on Friday, and he said, “We got into some good action this morning with over three limits of kokanee and rainbow trout, and all of the trout were holdovers with the kokanee at 15 and 16 inches. It was slow in the morning on Saturday, but we ended up with three limits including big kokanee to 16 inches at a depth of 20 feet near Road 2. I have been running Trout Buster’s or Koke Busters from the Road 2 Point to the Sierra Ramp.”
A trout plant from the Department of Fish and Wildlife occurred last week, and in addition, there are trophy-trout in the lake from the Shaver Lake Trophy Trout Project. Todd Wittwer of Guide Service will also be guiding on the lake this summer, and he reported putting in two kokanee to 16.5 inches on Sunday along with losing a couple of others in the same range. He said, “These fish are jumping strong out of the water, and they are difficult to hold onto. The kokanee came at 24 to 32 feet with the rainbows found higher at 10 to 14 feet.”
Steve Santoro of Fish Box Charters said, “I took my grandson Zack out with me on Saturday, and he landed three quality kokanee and a rainbow trout with the kokanee all three-year olds in the 15 to 17-inch range. We were working orange Apex lures tipped with scented corn at 30 feet along with Rocky Mountain Tackle’s Assassin spinners.”
The lake is currently at 65 percent of capacity, much higher than anticipated at the end of May with the expected water releases.

Patience is necessary for trollers pulling Rapalas near the shorelines as catching rainbow and brown trout is limited to a few fish per rod. There are quality brown trout to 20 inches possible, but anglers will have to work hard for the opportunity. The fish are scattered at random depths from the surface to 40 feet. The lake is coming up slightly, and launching from the concrete ramp is possible. The Wishon Village RV Park and Store is open for business. The road to Courtright is closed as there is still too much snow in the higher elevations. All of the creeks are running very high, and they will be difficult to fish with the runoff.

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