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Northern California Fishing: quality and diversity


By Gary Heffley
Northern California from its blue ocean waters, crystal clear mountain streams to man-made reservoirs offers a diversity of quality fishing found in few places.
The Pacific Ocean fishing ports from Fort Bragg to Crescent City offer anglers a possible chance at salmon, rockfish, halibut and seasonal albacore tuna. The coastal rivers and those of the Sacramento River system host runs of anadromous fish , such as Sturgeon, American Shad, Steelhead Trout, Striped Bass and Salmon which can provide great fishing opportunities.
Even the casual angler can try their luck at catching any of species by hiring guides or taking an open charter at many ports and towns in the area. Most can supply or rent the tackle which is a great option for the first time or casual angler. These trout were caught at Lake Almanor. Photo courtesy of Roger's Guide Service in Canyon Dam.
2009_Lake_Almanor_004__2_.jpgNorthern California also offers some of the best trout fishing in the world and in fact many of the rainbow trout fisheries found around the world has their roots in fertilized eggs sent from Northern California. Trout fishing can be found in lakes, rivers, streams, special regulated waters and exclusive private waters. Fly fishermen can be tested in many of the technically challenging streams, while children delight in catching stocked trout in campgrounds and stream side picnic grounds.
Bass fishermen also flock to lakes such as Lake Shasta, Lake Oroville, Trinity Lake and Clear Lake to fish for trophy largemouth, smallmouth or spotted bass. Many lakes also offer the opportunity to just lay back and catch sunfish, bluegill, crappie and catfish to your heart’s content.
The sheer beauty of many of the surrounding vistas makes the fishing experience in Northern California that much better. For current Northern California fishing news just click on www.myoutdoorbuddy.com. We publish northern California fishing news each week and update the site daily when possible. We also publish northern California hunting news and northern California outdoor news.

Fishing Reports

One Fish, Two Forms, Many Questions
Oncorhynchus mykiss (steelhead and/or rainbow trout?) photo courtesy of FISHBIO.com
By Erin Loury
07/06/15 -- Genetically they are the same species, but rainbow trout and steelhead lead very different lives. These fish represent two separate life strategies of the species Oncorhynchus mykiss: a resident form that stays in... Full Story
Hat Creek has limits for patient anglers
Man holding up his brook trout caught at bridge campground at Hat creek, photo by Mike Mogler
Article and photo by Mike Mogler
07/05/15 -- The California Department of fish and Wildlife will continue to plant trout in Upper and Middle Hat Creek on a weekly basis according to the CDFW planting schedule.The planting schedule allows only...Full Story
Returning to San Pablo Reservoir
 Ron Marciel of Fremont, with his first hookup of the day., photo by Bill Adelman
By Bill Adelman
07/05/15 -- July 4th was a key day in the life of my cousins and brothers when we were kids. Big party at my aunt’s home, ice cold watermelon, bobbing for apples and home made, hand cranked vanilla ice cream with peach... Full Story
Summer action has variety at Collins Lake
Eddie and Paul Eichberger holding a full string of fish, photo by kathy Hess, Collins Lake
By Kathy Hess, Lake Reporter
07/04/15 -- I want to apologize to everyone for the delay in getting our Fishing Report program back up and running. I have been €œchomping at the bit€ to get back on here and post all the fish photos. This will be the biggest... Full Story
Rogue Bay Chinook stellar; tuna at Coos
Steven Wallace holding 2 large tuna he caught off Coos Bay, Photo by Larry Ellis
On Oregon Waters by Larry Ellis
07/03/15 -- Lower-than-usual water releases out of Lost Creek Dam from now till October is probably going to produce higher-than-usual hookups on fall Chinook for anglers trolling in the lower Rogue Bay. And the fantastic fall Chinook... Full Story
Bass deeper and fewer at Lake Oroville
king salmon swimming under water, photo by Joseph Green
Oroville Waters by Craig Bentley
07/02/15 -- Lake Oroville king salmon bite continues to produce limits for trollers while the topwater bite for bass continues as water temperatures warm and some big channel catfish are on the bite! Afterbay largemouth bass provide... Full Story
Salmon finally start to show off Eureka
Batista Bregante from Santa Cruz smiles over a nice king. Photo courtesy of Green Water Fishing Adventures
Fishing the North Coast by Kenny Priest
07/02/15 -- The salmon bite is finally showing signs of life out of Eureka, and just in time for the holiday weekend. Kings started hitting the decks consistently on Sunday for the boats fishing south of Eureka on the edge of... Full Story
Can Predator Control Help Native Fishes?
Striped bass predation, Photo courtesy of FISHBIO
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
06/30/15 -- Even introduced, non-native fishes get their day on Capitol Hill. On June 3, the House of Representatives passed an amendment to the Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriation Act that requires consideration of predator...Full Story
Farm pond, oh farm pond. Where art thou?
Angler Tom Hargis was obvioulsy pleased to catch and release this beautful bass , photo by Bill Adelman
Article and photos by Bill Adelman
06/29/15 -- The thrill of victory doesn’t end with downhill skiing. In many cases, it ends with a farmer giving you permission to fish a private farm pond. When I relocated to farming country in 1959, it didn’t take long for the mystique of farm... Full Story
Drought prompts transfer of hatchery fish
American River Hatchery tanks, photo courtesy of CDFW
06/25/15 -- With a fourth year of extreme drought conditions reducing the cold water supply available, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is moving fish out of the American River and Nimbus hatcheries for... Full Story
ODFW offers Summer Workshops 06/24/15 -- School’s out and maybe you're wondering how to fill those lazy summer days. Why not take yourself and/or your family fishing? Let ODFW show you how to get started with the new video series “How to fish for trout in... Full Story
Early morning bite best at Eagle Lake
Eagle Lake on June 22. Photo by Val Aubrey
By Val Aubrey, EagleLakeFishing.net
06/23/15 -- Fishing the last few days has been tough for a couple hours after the early bite goes off around a.m. Sometimes when the bite goes off in one area, it may come on in another. But, I always go back to where I left... Full Story
F&GC emergency fishery closures loom 06/23/15 -- The California Fish and Game Commission recently adopted emergency regulations that grant the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) authority to temporarily close fisheries experiencing degraded... Full Story
Hog Hunt Bass
Author, John Higley holds Bass he caught at pond near Whitmore, photo by John Higley
By John Higley
06/22/15 -- The other day, with an about-to-expire pig tag in my pocket, I went to a friend’s pond in the foothills near Whitmore where some hogs hang out occasionally. I saw pigs in the morning there a week ago, when I didn’t have a... Full Story
Finding Fish from Discarded DNA
Bluegill, photo by FISHBIO
By Erin Loury
06/22/15 -- To round out our series on environmental DNA (eDNA), in which we've described the basic concepts of this technique* in aquatic research, as well as its challenges and limitations**, here we highlight... Full Story
Fishermen enjoy Burney Falls area
A man fishing at the fast moving Burney Creek, surrounded by Forest, photo by Alex Colvin
Article and photos by Alex Colvin
06/19/15 -- Shawn Lewis at Burney Sporting Goods says that fishing on Lake Britton, on the Pit River below Lake Britton Dam, and in Burney Falls State Park is fair to good. Regulations vary, so be sure to have a copy of... Full Story
Mt. Shasta Kid’s Fishing Days canceled
Dead fish on the grass, photo by Gary Heffley
By Gary Heffley
06/17/15 -- Free Kid’s Fishing Days scheduled at the Mt. Shasta Fish Hatchery for July 11 and August 1 have been canceled by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. The cancellations are due to the hatchery trout being... Full Story
Domoic acid levels too high for razors 06/17/15 -- With concentrations of domoic acid reaching levels not seen since 1998, ODFW shellfish biologists see no possibility that razor clamming on Oregon’s most popular beaches will re-open before the annual conservation... Full Story
The Problem of Predation
Pikeminnows prey on juvenile salmon as they make their journey down rivers. Photo courtesy of FISHBIO.com
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
06/16/15 -- Once set free in a new environment, non-native piscivores, or animals that eat fish, can wreak havoc on native fish populations. In the Colorado River Basin, such non-native piscivores are driving the Utah...Full Story
Dunsmuir continues trophy trout program
Upper Sacramento River trophy trout photos courtesy of the City of Dunsmuir.
06/15/15 -- Anyone can catch a trophy trout in Dunsmuir, California, this summer. Is that what you want to do on your vacation? There are many reasons you can do that in Dunsmuir. Plentiful water, easy access and... Full Story
Shifting Waters: Warmer Ocean, less food
Sea Lion pup, photo by FISHBIO
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
06/08/15 -- On World Oceans Day today, we're reflecting on the news that the California Current Ecosystem is changing. In this important marine environment off the West Coast, wind and water combine to fuel the production of... Full Story
Favorite 10 Trout Lures
Rapala Shad lure
By Gary Heffley
06/02/15 -- Everyone has their favorites list, a post Letterman’s Top 10 list, a ‘best of’ list… if for no other reason, to get a discussion going or perhaps, an outright argument! I thought I would list my favorite 10 trout lures. These are...Full Story
How to make Tuscan Tuna Salad with Fennel By Frank Galusha
05/04/15 -- OK, you went ocean fishing. If your fish is fresh or if you have processed, vacuum packed and frozen your catch properly, there are many ways to enhance your meals. Almost everything taken from the ocean is not... Full Story
Pacific halibut 2015 regulations in effect
Angler with Pacific halibut, photo courtesy of CDFW
05/01/15 -- The recreational Pacific halibut fishery will open May 1 for the 2015 season. This year the fishery will be held to a federally established quota of 25,220 pounds. The season dates will be May 1-15, June 1-15, July 1-15, Aug. 1-15... Full Story
Agencies halt commercial sardine fishing
Commercial fishing boats dragging their fishing nets, CADFW
04/30/15 -- All large-volume commercial sardine fishing in state and federal waters off California has been prohibited as of Tuesday, April 28, 2015. The closing will remain in effect until at least July 2016. “This may be an end of... Full Story
F&GC adopts in-river sport fishing regs 04/23/15 -- The California Fish and Game Commission adopted changes to the Central Valley and Klamath River basin salmon sport fishing regulations for the 2015 season on Friday, April 17. The changes include fall-run...Full Story
F&GC closes Sac River in Redding
Winter Run Chinook, photo courtesy of CDFW
04/18/15 -- Recommendations by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) to provide dual areas of protection to Sacramento River winter-run Chinook salmon were approved by the state Fish and Game Commission on April 17... Full Story
OR DFW seeks help with stocking program 04/16/15 -- This year the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife plans to stock 11,000 rainbow trout (including 3,000 of trophy size) in popular Lake of the Woods, and the agency would like anglers help in figuring out what...Full Story
Perch Fishing with Grandpa
By Bill Adelman
By Bill Adelman
04/15/15 -- Way, way back in the day, while experiencing my first panfish outings with my grandfather, he taught us, my cousin and I, ages 9, a secret system. Remember the pre-tied 6 pack of Eagle Claw bait hooks? The leader portion was... 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
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
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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