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Clear Lake report, March 26: Crappie are BAAACK!

 
By Bob Rider, Lakeshore Bait & Tackle, 707.994.FISH (3474)
 
The spring season is here and the fishing on Clear Lake is swinging into gear. Winter, like a house guest that's worn out its welcome, lingers for a bit longer than we would like. A fresh blast of cold air and rain took away our glimpse of spring but only for a short time. There's big news for our crappie anglers, the bass fishing is good on live bait, and the catfish action has turned on quite well.
 
Bass anglers are working deep-running crankbaits and finesse rigs over rock piles and ledges for only mediocre action.  The best action is on live jumbo minnows. Bait anglers are having a great time with good numbers of fish and quality sized bass being claimed. A brief glimpse of warm weather had the north end of the lake warming and some action improving on swim baits but the weather has turned cool again and a cold front has set the shallow water action back another week or two.
 
Crappie have now made an appearance here in the south end of the Redbud Arm. Notable locations for crappie are the mouth of Cache Creek and the end of the Clearlake pipeline that runs through Beakban Island. Other areas are getting attention as well. For now the best hours for good crappie action are between 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. and the hot bait is live medium minnows - of course. We're hearing good things, seeing some nice fish come through the shop, and hanging some pictures on our brag board. They're BAAACK!
 
Catfish action has kicked into gear with anglers finding success from the banks of Clearlake. Mackerel, crawlers, and live minnows have been accounting for much of the success. Sizes range from two pounds (good fryers) to 12 pounds. I haven't heard tell of any real monsters yet this season, but our season is young. Stay tuned!
 
Derby Time is right around the corner. The annual Catfish Derby is taking place May 14, 15 & 16th this year. This event draws over 500 adult anglers and more than 100 youth fishermen. What a great time, too! Applications are available in the store or online at the ClearlakeOaks.org site. With action heating up on the whiskerfish, the Derby should turn out some great fish!
 
The annual Lake Friends of NRA banquet is now just two weeks away! Tickets are going quickly and this event sells out every year. So mark your calendars for Saturday, April 10 at the Lions Hall in Middletown and swing by Lakeshore Bait & Tackle in Clearlake to buy your tickets or tables. This is our flagship event for the year! Be sure to preview some of the nearly 40 guns we'll have at the event, get your tickets, and show your support for the Lake Friends of NRA.
 
And lastly, I'm extremely happy to announce that April 1st is our fifth anniversaryhere at Lakeshore Bait & Tackle. To celebrate we're offering two great anniversary specials. First, for the entire month of April we'll be offering our Jumbo Minnows at  $10 per dozen. (That's the 2005 price!) Second, we're giving away a Front Sight Firearms Training Institute certificate good for a Four Day Defensive Handgun Class. Come in and enter the drawing by visiting the store and filling out an entry any time during the month of April. The drawing will be held on April 30th at 5:00 p.m.

Fishing Reports

Redtail surfperch record waits to be broken
03/31/15 -- When I moved to Brookings 34 years ago from southern California, the biggest surfperch I had caught were the ubiquitous barred surfperch. Then I took a walk on the beach and saw what appeared to be...Full Story
So long steelhead; hello rock and surf fish
Mark Gasich of Harbor holds up two lingcod and some hefty black rockfish he limited out on while fishing plastics out of the Port of Brookings Harbor on Thursday.
On Oregon Waters by Larry Ellis
03/28/15 -- The Chetco will be closing its doors to the retention of steelhead and salmon this week one hour after sunset on Tuesday, March 31. Not that there are any salmon to be caught. But March can often be a good month to cash in...Full Story
Trophies mark week at Collins Lake
Croix Baio of Auburn with his 13 lb. 8 oz. Rainbow. Photo by Kathy Hess
By Kathy Hess, Lake Reporter
03/28/15 -- Look at these three whoppers of the week! Today we are getting a trophy trout plant with tags and yesterday we released another net pen full of trout. Lana Herrington just emailed her photo of her 2 lb. 8 oz. trout catch...Full Story
Late-season rain benefits steelhead/anglers
 Laurie Jensen holds her 28.5 inch lb rainbow she caught at Freshwater Lagoon. Photo courtesy of Laurie Jensen.
Fishing the North Coast by Kenny Priest
03/26/15 -- The heavy rain that fell early this week was certainly a nice little bonus for our rivers, and in more ways than one. First, the extra flows will help pave the way for the spawned out steelhead as they make their way back to...Full Story
Pot grows dry up streams; devastate fish
Northern California marijuana grow, photo courtesy of CDFW
03/25/15 -- Environmental scientists with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) recently published a first-of-its-kind study that clearly shows that water used for growing marijuana has a devastating effect on...Full Story
​Berryessa Bass: Knowing where to look
Berryessa bass taken in shallow water last weekend, photo by Sid Silberberg
By Sid Silberberg
03/25/15 -- I went out Friday with Judge and John. Our first stop was to show them the fish in Willy's ski school. I couldn't find their bedding area but saw four nice size female bass and one male swimming around in three feet of crystal...Full Story
Topaz Trout Derby fishing picking up
Phil Owens, Flagstaff, AZ, Topaz Trout Derby Weekly Winner, Topaz Lake
By Mike Mogler
03/24/15 -- Dave Rossman, manager of the Topaz Lake Lodge General Store, reports water levels have increased by 15 feet. which has enhanced the fishing opportunities for anglers looking for those tagged fish and cash... Full Story
Coleman NFH to truck juvenile salmon again
After trucking to locations such as Mare Island the juvenile salmon are released into net pens for a period of acclimatization and then released. USFWS photo
03/24/15 -- For the second year in a row, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced today that the Coleman National Fish Hatchery will begin a process this week that could result in approximately 12 million Chinook...Full Story
Ab season to open along Nor-Cal coast
Photo of diver measuring an abalone, by Capt. Patrick Foy
03/24/15 -- California’s popular red abalone sport fishery season will open April 1 in most waters north of San Francisco Bay. However, new regulations effective last year closed parts of Fort Ross State Historical Park to the take of...Full Story
First ocean salmon season opens April 4 03/24/15 -- California’s recreational salmon season will open in ocean waters on Saturday, April 4, 2015, from Horse Mountain (40° 05’ 00” N. latitude) south to the U.S.-Mexico border. The daily bag limit is two Chinook per day and no more...Full Story
​Spring fishing has sprung!
Article and photos by Jeff Goodwin 
03/23/15 -- Now that spring has officially arrived, we can just forget about the fact that we didn't really even have a winter and move on. Shasta Lake did get some much needed rain with the two good storms we did get this winter...Full Story
Black Cod commercial fishing... what?
Black Cod or Sablefish
By Mike Mogler
03/21/15 -- A fishing buddy of mine, John D,  and I had a conversation last week regarding the ‘old days’ we had fishing Albion and Ft. Bragg for salmon and rockfish. As you probably know both these ports are located in Mendocino County... Full Story
Samoa Surfperch Derby/fish fry is April 18
John Nicolini with his 4th place Redtail (15.3”)
By Frank Galusha 
03/18/15 -- “Perch'n on the Peninsula” a Surfperch Fishing Tournament and Fish Fry Fundraiser, will return to Samoa on April 18. This is the Samoa Peninsula Fire District’s 6th annual derby, which will be hosted at the Peninsula... Full Story
How to improve your striper catch
Bill Adelman  with two nice keeper-sized Sacramento River stripers.
By Bill Adelman
03/18/15 -- Each particular species within our world of the outdoors holds a special place in not only our memory bank, but also in our immediate planning. All during the winter when we plan for sturgeon, steelhead and catfish...Full Story
Bay Area ab poachers get heavy fines 03/18/15 -- Three San Francisco men received thousands of dollars in fines and other penalties after pleading no contest to illegally poaching 59 abalone in November 2014. The daily bag limit for abalone is three. Jinfu Wu...Full Story
Possible extinction of Delta smelt draws ire
Delta smelt, photo courtesy of California Department of Water Resources
03/18/16 -- Fishermen and Delta leader are saying water exporters are responsible for destroying the Delta smelt. It was revealed this morning that Dr. Peter Moyle, UC Davis fish biologist had said “Prepare for the extinction of...Full Story
In Search of Hatchery Solutions
Salmon spawning photo courtesy of FISHBIO.com
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO.com
03/17/15 -- [Posted with permission of FISHBIO] As discussed in a recent Fish Report, the hatchery system in California is currently facing a growing number of concerns about the role fish hatcheries should play in helping wild...Full Story
Please respect your catch and the law By Gary Heffley
03/17/15 -- The state has set aside many waters to be managed as catch and release “Wild Trout Waters.” For some there is not enough and for some too many. The state also manages many waters as “put and take,” where those...Full Story
One canary rockfish allowed in Oregon
Canary Rockfish, Photo courtesy of ODFW
03/15/15 -- Although Oregon’s Fishery managers still encourage conservation practices ocean anglers will be able to retain one canary rockfish as part of their marine daily bag limit beginning March 11 -- a move intended to reduce...  Full Story
How to Repair Aluminum Boat Hulls
Repair of a transom damaged this severely takes a great deal of experience working with aluminum. Photo by Don Stec
Photos and article by Don Stec
03/14/15 -- Today there is a lot of talk in the trade magazines about aluminum and how difficult it is to repair. It is different from steel, but it can be repaired with the proper training and equipment. What is much more uncommon...Full Story
New Regs: Lingcod up; black rockfish down
Black and yellow ground fish photo courtesy of CA DFW
03/12/15 -- Anglers will be able to take three instead of two lingcod but only five black rockfish instead of 10 per day off California’s coast this season. Yesterday, the California Fish and Game Commission adopted these and other...Full Story
Chinook Salmon Abundance: 2014 vs. 2015
 Annual Sacramento Index (SI), including harvest and escapement, and 2015 PFMC forecast of SI.
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
03/10/15 -- The Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC) releases two key documents each February related to salmon abundance: a Review of Ocean Salmon Fisheries, which evaluates the status of salmon fisheries on the West...Full Story
Tech. & Taimen: World’s largest salmon
Taimen are the world’s largest salmonids. Photo courtesy of FISHBIO
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
03/03/15 -- [Posted with permission of FISHBIO] In honor of World Wildlife Day this week, we wanted to shift our usual focus from fisheries of the West Coast and the Mekong River basin, and shine our Fish Report spotlight on...Full Story
Fishing the Klamath below JC Boyle Dam
 Brian Buckingham with one of the larger fish from this section. This trout, estimated at 2 lbs., was caught near the BLM campground on the west shore six miles down the JC Boyle Dam on the Klamath River in Southern Oregon. Photo by author
By Trouteagle
03/02/15 -- Year round trout action can be found on the Klamath River within the 20 or so miles of free flow within Oregon and California. While fishing below the flumes at the JC Boyle powerhouse, it can be difficult to know just when...Full Story
Humbug to Horse Mountain: 1.3 million kings!
Chinook salmon caught and being held up by Larry Ellis, photo by Larry Ellis
On Oregon Waters by Larry Ellis
02/27/15 -- This year, at least 1,298,600 adult Chinook are expected to be finning their way through the ocean in the KMZ, otherwise known as the Klamath Management Zone, an area that spans from Humbug Mountain, Oregon to Horse...  Full Story
Some steelhead & salmon tags carry reward 02/26/15 -- Successful north coast steelhead and salmon anglers could catch a $10-50 reward for returning their fish tags this season. Of the more than 4,500 fish that were tagged, 3,000 are eligible for a cash reward...Full Story
First free Kid’s Fishing Day is April 4 By Gary Heffley
02/14/15 -- Anderson River Park in Anderson Ca. will host a free Kid’s Fishing Day on April 4, 2015 sponsored by the California Fish and Wildlife Department along with many local sponsors. The CFWD will have the park’s ponds stocked...Full Story
Mt. Shasta free kids fishing days set
2 men with thier daughters on Free Fishing Day at Mt. Shasta Fish Hatchery, photo by Gary Heffley
By, Gary Heffley
02/14/15 -- Three of my favorite days of the year are spent at the Mt. Shasta Fish Hatchery volunteering at the California Department of Wildlife’s Free Kids Fishing Days. Monty Currier of the CDFW has announced that the free...Full Story
Hatchery History in California
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
02/10/15 -- [Posted with permission of FISHBIO] The year is 1871. California has been a state for just over 20 years and the country is mired in reconstruction following the end of the Civil War just six years earlier. Both the telephone... Full Story
NMFS preseason planning for salmon starts 01/29/31 -- [Federal Register Notice] The Pacific Fishery Management Council has announced its annual preseason management process for the 2015 ocean salmon fisheries. NOAA Fisheries has published a notice in the Federal...Full Story
Local lakes on CTT schedule
Keith Bryan with the fish that sealed the win and new world record at Melones
By Jason Haley
01/03/15 -- California Tournament Trail (CTT), the self-proclaimed Working Man’s Tournament Circuit, opened its doors in January 2014 at Lake Oroville and wrapped-up a successful inaugural season at Clear Lake in June... Full Story
Ocean climate revealed in tree rings
Large standing trees in a green pasture, photo by FISHBIO
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
12/23/14 -- Scientists have tried many approaches to unravel the complex puzzle of past ocean climates. Now, a recent study in the journal Science uses an unlikely source to put the pieces together: tree rings. The study's authors found... Full Story
'Get paid to fish' derby returns to Topaz
Topaz Lodge 2015 Trout Fishing Derby
By Mike Mogler
12/13/14 -- Dave Rossman, manager of Topaz Lake Store, reports the annual “get paid for fishing derby” starts as usual on January 1, 2015, New Year's Day, and will end on April 12, 2015 with a fantastic drawing... Full Story
Bottomfish anglers get knuckles rapped
pacific Halibut
Tom Marking GAP Sport Representative
11/20/14 -- We North Coast rockfish anglers are a victim of our own success! 2014 has been an eventful year for many reasons, but there are definitely winners and losers on the horizon. In a nutshell, halibut is a win/lose... Full Story
The Mystery of the Middle Fork, Part IV
Jim Broshears, author badge, myoutdoorbuddy.com
By Jim Broshears
11/10/14 -- This trip was to be the final chapter in the saga that began three years ago but is actually over 20 years in the making. As Bruce, Tuck and I journeyed back to the Middle Fork of the Feather River we made...Full Story
Climbing Terms for the Fisherman
Trailhead Tales by Jim Broshears
10/14/14 -- For those of us who prefer to fish the rugged and remote streams and rivers for the elusive wild trout, rock climbing is a skill that is required to reach the special places where catching the big one is a “sure thing.” The skills...Full Story
German brown trout afternoon in Modoc
german brown trout in Modoc creek. MyOutdoorBuddy.com
By Lea Huetteman
09/04/14 -- Catching a German Brown Trout from the creeks in Modoc County is a fine way to spend an afternoon. There are many creeks in this part of California that drain the Warner Mountains. Stream trout fishing in this region opens...Full Story
Throw the kitchen sink at them
Indian Paintbrush is a favorite wildflower that carpets wilderness landscapes. Phil Flip Akers, myoutdoorbuddy.com
Article and photos by Phil Akers
08/20/14 -- Our wilderness areas are special, where Mother Nature is landlord and natural forces operate freely. Within the wilderness you will find no roads, shelters, picnic tables, toilets, or other conveniences. You enter at...Full Story
Humboldt Bay: Busy port, excellent fishery
Woodley Island Marina, Humboldt Bay, Eureka, California
03/06/04 -- Humboldt Bay, a busy commercial harbor and home port to many charter and private offshore fishing boats, is also popular with shore-based anglers and small boaters seeking bottomfish, sharks, crabs and clams...Full Story
Pulled into the pipes: Green Sturgeon
green sturgeon
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
03/04/14 -- [Posted with permission of FISHBIO] Living in the Sacramento River can be a risky business for juvenile green sturgeon (Acipenser medirostris). The young fish must swim through a gauntlet of water... Full Story
Not Just Any Fish
California Golden Trout, California Heritage Trout Challenge, Not Just Any Fish, Phil
By Phil "Flip" Akers
02/14/13 -- Trout have inhabited California waters from the Sierra Nevada and Warner Mountains to the Pacific Ocean since prehistoric times. However, most of the trout caught by anglers are either hatchery raised fish...Full Story
Fishing with Phideaux
By Phil “Flip” Akers
01/26/14 -- Meet Phideaux, a 110-pound neurotic chocolate Lab. His name is pronounced “Fido” but it is spelled “Phideaux” because he is a Cajun dog. Anyway, last summer Phideaux took his human (that’s me) on a trout hunt up into...Full Story
A primer on fishing Lake Shasta By Gary Heffley
01/01/12 -- Shasta Lake draws more visitors to Shasta County than any other single attraction. While it is often a challenge to fish, it is more likely to produce stringers of fat trout or spotted bass. Trout to four and five pounds are caught here routinely...Full Story
Lake Oroville; 'tis the season By Chuck Giles
01/11/12 – Lake Oroville is probably one of the best lakes for sheer numbers of Spotted Bass in Northern California. This is not just on a seasonal basis, but year round. To start, I have a list of baits that produce decent results... Full Story

 

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