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Let’s go fishing! Modoc County offers diverse opportunity for anglers

By Lorissa “Reece” Soriano

The fishing has been a little slow in Modoc so far this year, primarily due to the diverse weather conditions we’ve been subjected to for the last seven months. In fact, it still feels like winter here. To “Modocer’s” this is normal; typically we go right from winter to summer, rarely experiencing any spring. With Memorial weekend just around the corner we are hopeful that the weather conditions will change and warm up. Then the fishing should start to pick up.

Fishing in unpredictable weather is customary for the locals, you just have to dress for the occasion. For most comfort when fishing in Modoc, the following dress code should be adhered to, “layered clothing”, starting with a tee shirt and shorts, covered with a long sleeve shirt and pants and last, coveralls, a down jacket, gloves and a wool hat. Meeting any and all possible weather conditions encountered in one day is the goal. Now that you’re dressed for the occasion, let’s go fishing!

Last week, my fishing partner and I traveled around Modoc checking out the various lakes and reservoirs in the area. We were trying to decide where the best place to fish and camp during Memorial weekend would be. We found many possibilities. Most of the lakes around the county are now thawed out and accessible.

Water levels in most of the lakes on the Devils Garden plateau are full up, with the exception of C and F Reservoirs. C and F are two of the more popular areas to fish and camp at during Memorial weekend. Unfortunately the drought we experienced last summer dropped the water levels in these reservoirs to an extreme low and this past winter didn’t provide much water to bring levels up. These two reservoirs hold eagle lake trout, browns and largemouth bass.

Last weekend, we fished both of these reservoirs, the water temperatures were cold, ranging between 40° to the mid 50’s. The water was murky and unclear. These conditions aren’t exactly conducive when fishing for bass, which was what we were fishing for, however we did manage to catch a few. Depending on the temperature, clarity of the water and type of fish you are after, just like the Modoc dress code you have to prepare your tackle for whatever conditions you may encounter. Trolling spinners, casting swim or top water baits and bank fishing with worms have been used with success here. If you do plan to fish either C or F, take caution when launching your boat, the low water situation could cause damage to your boat and/or motor.

Located in the beautiful South Warner Mountain wilderness area, Blue Lake offers fishermen a chance to catch trophy size rainbow and brown trout. Because this lake is so deep trolling is your best option. Some fishermen have had success trolling flashers with trailing lures, while others have had success trolling flies such as Bailey Bugs or woolly buggers. This time of year fishing from the bank with night crawlers can also produce nice trout as well, but as soon as the weather warms up, the water becomes weedy and more difficult to bank fish.

BlueLakeis a very popular place to camp now and throughout the summer. There are 48 camp units available here all of which fill up rather quickly on Memorial Day weekend. Unlike other campgrounds in Modoc, this campground provides more facilities; there is a boat launch, picnic tables, piped water, vault toilets and fire pits. In addition to fishing, Blue Lake offers an array of recreational opportunities for the outdoor enthusiast to enjoy.

If you don’t plan to join the masses for the annual Memorial Day trek and you just want to go fishing for the day, Lily and Cave Lakes located in the north Warner Mountain area and Rainbow and Brown ponds located in the Cal Pines area, are wonderful places to take your kids for a day outing. There are plenty of catch-able trout in these lakes and they are easily accessible to everyone.

Dorris Reservoir just outside of Alturas has had a great success rate for fish. Dorris Reservoir produces decent sized trout, 12-14 inch crappie, largemouth bass, channel and bullhead catfish. There is a “No Wake” zone observed on this lake so watch your speed. The gates at Dorris Reservoir are open to vehicles from sunrise to sunset daily.

Although the fishing has been slow recently, some folks have been fortunate to limit out on decent size trout and largemouth bass.

So deck yourself out until you look like the Pillsbury dough boy, grab your pole, bait and tackle and head out. Let’s go fishing!

Just remember, when you’re out enjoying the outdoors always, respect the land, wildlife our lakes, reservoirs and streams.

Don’t leave trash lying around, you pack it in, you pack it out. Keep campsites and fishing areas clean and campfires out when you leave. See you on the lake.


Fishing Reports

OR tagged trout may be worth $50 04/28/16 -- This spring ODFW will “sweeten the pot” for anglers at Phillips Reservoir by stocking 4,000 trophy-sized rainbow trout, some of which will be marked with tags good for $50. Phillips Reservoir is one of five locations... Full Story
General Trout Season Opens Saturday
Silver Lake, Mono County CA, photo courtesy Silver Lake Resort in June Lake, CA
04/28/16 -- The general trout opener in many counties throughout California will commence on Saturday, April 30, one hour before sunrise. Anglers are advised to check specific area regulations and opening dates in the...Full Story
Pacific Halibut Fishery Opens May 1 04/27/16 -- California’s recreational Pacific halibut (Hippoglossus stenolepis) fishery season will open May 1. This year the fishery will be held to a federally established quota of 29,640 pounds. The open season dates...Full Story
Sheridan Pond Family Fishing Event 04/27/16 --  large variety of rainbow trout is in store for anglers who attend the free family fishing event set for Saturday, April 30at Sheridan Pond from 9: 30 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Oregon Department of Fish and wildlife... Full Story
Recreational Salmon Seasons Set
Boy with fish, photo courtesy of CDFW
04/27/16 -- The California Fish and Game Commission adopted recreational ocean and inland salmon season regulations as presented by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) on April 18. Ocean salmon season...Full Story
Trout Opener on Saturday By Gary Heffley 
04/27/16 -- Anglers are checking gear, spooling fresh line, and polishing up spinners in anticipation of the general trout opener this Saturday, April 30, on most North State rivers and streams. Campgrounds along popular waters...Full Story
​Grace Lake Free Kids Fishing Day By Gary Heffley 
04/26/16 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife will host a free kids fishing event on Saturday May at Grace Lake which is just outside of Shingletown. Shingletown is east of Redding, along highway 44 on the way to...Full Story
Salmon dump opposed by fishermen 04/26/16 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is abandoning a highly successful program that greatly increases salmon survival and is instead dumping valuable Feather River hatchery baby fall run...Full Story
Salmon, Halibut, bird hunting regulations 04/25/16 -- The Fish and Wildlife Commission adopted bird hunting and fishing regulations today at its meeting in Bandon, Ore. Ocean salmon seasons: The Commission set ocean salmon fishing seasons in state waters based on...Full Story
Lobster Report Cards Due by April 30
Spiny Lobster, photo by Derek Stein
04/25/16 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) reminds 2015-2016 Spiny Lobster Report Card holders to return their cards by April 30, 2016 as required by law. The cards must be returned even if no lobsters...Full Story
Trout explosion at Collins Lake
Father and daughter, Emma Scott, with catfish caught at Collins Lake, courtesy of Kathy Hess
By Kathy Hess, Collins Lake Reporter
04/23/16 -- We saw many consistent "limits" of trout caught this week!! Many of them from the shoreline down by the dam or off the sand beach. All the biggest trout were caught on lures while trolling this week...Full Story
CDFW: Dungeness, Rock Crab schedule
Crab in pot, photo courtesy of CDFW
 04/23/16 -- Commercial and recreational rock crab fisheries are open along the mainland coast south of 36° 58.72′ N Latitude at Sand Hill Bluff, Santa Cruz County (approximately 9 miles north of Santa Cruz Harbor entrance) to...Full Story
Whiskeytown Kokanee bite is on
Clients of AC Guide Service holding stringers of the morning Kokanee catch, photo courtesy of AC guide Service
By Jeff Goodwin
04/21/16 -- Its known for being one of the best NorCal Kokanee lakes, and days like today explain why it has earned that title. Whiskeytown Lake is just 8 miles west of Redding, Ca. along SR 299, and has many recreational...Full Story
Humboldt, Del Norte razor clam advisory 04/21/16 -- Today, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) re-issued a health advisory reminding individuals to avoid eating recreationally harvested razor clams along Humboldt and Del Norte county beaches due to...Full Story
Tagged Empire Lakes trout worth reporting
This tagged rainbow trout will be released into Empire Lakes, helping biologists understand harvest data. ODFW photo.
04/20/16 -- Empire Lakes anglers have a chance of taking home a $50 VISA gift card if they land a specially tagged rainbow trout. Empire Lakes is a popular coastal rainbow trout fishery, and ODFW biologists need anglers...Full Story
Introduction to Fishing 101 By Gary Heffley 
04/18/16 -- With the North State general stream/ trout opener less than a couple of weeks away, and with greater water levels seen in the lakes than in recent years, there has been a large influx of new anglers seeking advice on...Full Story
​Family Style Trout Opener By Gary Heffley
04/14/16 -- While many avid trout anglers head to the fabled Northern California fly waters of the McCloud, Pit, Lower Hat Creek, Upper Sac and Fall River for the traditional opening of Northern California stream season, many families...Full Story
Wanted: Overdue Sturgeon Report Cards
CDFW Environmental Scientist Mike Harris hold a white sturgeon he just tagged in the Delta, photo courtesy of CDFW
04/15/16 -- The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is reminding sturgeon anglers to return their 2015 Sturgeon Fishing Report Cards as required by law. Although the deadline to report their catch was Jan. 31, so far only...Full Story
Invasive Quagga mussels found at border 03/12/16 -- Quagga mussels once again were prevented from entering Oregon and potentially causing millions in damage to our state’s water systems and ecosystems. Yesterday, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife...Full Story
Grappling with poor 2016 salmon forecast
Chinook salmon, courtesy of CDFW
03/02/16 -- At the annual salmon informational meeting held in Santa Rosa today, state and federal fishery scientists presented updates on the numbers of spawning salmon, and the expected abundance for the upcoming fishing season...Full Story
Nor Cal Kokanee Power Tournaments set By Gary Heffley
02/18/16 -- Dates for the popular series of Kokanee Power's Trout and Salmon Tournaments are set for 2016 with three of the events taking place in Northern California. Kokanee Power is one of the top organizations promoting not only the...Full Story
Bad news for winter run 02/10/16 -- Very few adult winter run will likely return to spawn in 2017 and 2018 which could easily lead to further restriction on ocean salmon fishing. Federal fishery experts reported only three percent of the winter run eggs spawned in...Full Story
Brownie’s Choice
Art work by Isabella Langaman
By Don Webster
Disregard the story’s title. I don’t really have a “first” name. If I did, it would probably be something like Leviathan or Behemoth or maybe Lunker. Officially, I’m a trout. A brown trout. A giant, brown trout. Possibly the biggest, fattest...Full Story
Columbia spring Chinook seasons set 01/29/16 -- Fishery managers from Oregon and Washington set spring Chinook salmon seasons for the Columbia River today during a joint state hearing in Vancouver, Wash. The recreational springer season on the Columbia...Full Story
Keddie Ridge
Scouting Deerheart Lake, photo by Phil Akers
Article and photos by Phil “Flip” Akers
11/14/15 -- Adjacent to both Lake Almanor and Mountain Meadows, between the towns of Westwood and Greenville, is a seemingly forgotten piece of backcountry; Keddie Ridge – aka Ridge World – where ancient rocks... Full Story
Let’s check out the Upper Sac
Lake Siskiyou with Mt. Shasta standing sentinel. photo by Phil Akers
Article and photos by Phil "Flip" Akers
09/06/15 -- The Upper Sacramento River – The Upper Sac – begins at Lake Siskiyou’s Box Canyon Dam and continues ~37 miles downstream to Lake Shasta. It is a classic freestone river born from the Mt. Shasta and Mt. Eddy... 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
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
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
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
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

 

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