HELL HOLE RESERVOIR: French Meadows was accessible last week, but it sounds like nobody drove up to Hell Hole to check. Trout anglers are finding smaller cookie cutter sized trout from 12 to 14 inches while trolling the top 15 feet of the water column. SACRAMENTO RIVER, Colusa to Verona: Sturgeon have been reported at Knights Landing. Whether you’re spinning, fly fishing or baitcasting your chances of getting a bite here are good. It’s been a midge under an indicator show (though marabou jigs and spoons fished on conventional gear work too). People cast baited crab snares from the jetty at the Bodega Bay Harbor entrance. A few steelhead are being caught from Dry Creek to the Grange. The next rain should bring in more fish. Starting in January, the Lower Yuba River can offer some incredible fly fishing. Trout are rising. The fish have been running 17 to 21 inches and up to 4 pounds.
Rainbows and occasional Mack by the boat ramp. STUMPY MEADOWS RES: Not much fishing pressure up here but there is a chance for a good brown if you drag a rainbow trout Rapala along the banks at 2 to 4 mph. A few halfpounders are being caught at Watt Avenue and Howe Avenue. Bass fishing has also been good for anglers fishing the main lake and South Fork with Ned Rigs, tubes and drop-shot down to about 35 feet. So grab your favorite fly fishing rod and reel, and head out to Scotts Flat Reservoir. The crossing over Deer Creek will likely require further environmental permitting, additional funding and collaboration with the spillway repair in the final phase. One bait angler fished up river from the boat launch at the upper dam and caught a 19-inch rainbow while fishing with a nightcrawler. PIT RIVER: Pits 3 and 4 haven’t blown out yet, but due to the heavy rain fall it is only a matter of time, so make sure to do plenty of research before attempting to access it. DONNER LAKE: Boat ramp is still open and a handful are launching. Trout are being planted every other week. The dam road is closed but you can still walk down to the water there — or drive up towards the inlet. SACRAMENTO RIVER, Sacramento: Salmon season closed with slow fishing in the metro area.
Steady afternoon breezes make the lake a favorite with local sailors. There are lots of smelt schools and the kings are working them over pretty good. A few small stripers are being caught. Always call ahead to determine the condition of the river you want to fish.
Hatch may be occuring.
Flows near Happy Camp are 1,400 cfs, while flows at Orleans are 3,460 cfs. ELK RIVER, Port Orford, Ore.: Salmon season remains open, but only hatchery fish may be kept. Fishing for catfish is slow. Flows at Iron Gate Dam are 990 cfs. Shore fishing was dangerous at mid-week, but over the weekend people caught barred surfperch and redtail perch from Linda Mar on up to Mussel Rock. FOLSOM LAKE: Salmon are biting close to the bottom in 35 to 50 feet of water near Mormon Island. South Central Coast streams number is (831) 649-2886.New low flow closures for Mendocino, Sonoma and Marin counties, Oct. 1-April 30, call (707) 822-3164 for Mendocino, (707) 944-5533 for Sonoma, Marin and Napa. HookandBullet.com, a Montlake Media brand. A little ice on that structure and you could end up with your whole rig in the drink!
North Coast streams and rivers are regulated by low flow closures. Anglers often enjoy the challenge of fly fishing for bass during winter months even though the trout fishing can be productive, as well. Not a red hot bite by any means, but can be okay if you find the schools. Check out our Fishing Times chart to determine when the fish will be most active. Scotts Flat Campground is on the north shore of Scotts Flat Lake, 9 miles east of Nevada City. BOCA LAKE: Pretty good access right now with the lack of snow. A final design for the Lower Scotts Flat Trail Connector on either side of Deer Creek has been developed. HALF MOON BAY: Queen of Hearts and Huli Cat ran sack-stuffing combo trips for the final days of rockfish season.
“NID recognizes the importance of trail access and embraces the work of community collaboration to create healthy opportunities for people of all ages to enjoy the outdoors,” said NID General Manager Remleh Scherzinger. CHETCO RIVER, Brookings, Ore.: Steelhead fishing has improved, with guides getting one to two fish a rod, said guide Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing. SCOTTS FLAT LAKE: Folks are still catching rainbows here by dropping flasher/crawler rigs waaaaay back behind the boat — like 200 feet. ICEHOUSE RESERVOIR: Little or no snow at this elevation so the boat ramp should be clear, though no concrete reports were available. EAGLE LAKE: The season closure came with the New Year holiday and anglers stretched it out to the very end to take advantage of the excellent fishing. The approximately 1-mile trail below Scotts Flat Reservoir will initially terminate at Deer Creek, then eventually connect the southern Cascade Shores area with the northern campgrounds prior to the spillway repair project. If not mentioned, the river is closed or no reports.
Smallmouth bass to 3 pounds are hitting Bomber shad pattern crankbaits on the rocky points on the South side of the lake. Angling pressure has been nonexistent here but there are probably a few rainbows, and certainly smallmouth bass, to be had for the enterprising angler. There have been good numbers of 10 plus pounders around and at least one over 15 was reported just after New Year’s. CARSON RIVER, West Fork: Closed until April. AMERICAN RIVER: The Jan. 1 steelhead opener upstream of Ancil Hoffman Park was crowded but slow. NID is pleased to partner with local and regional community organizations that support public trails and recreational use. Plants will resume this winter when the water temps drop back down to acceptable levels. NID looks to once again partner with the Bear Yuba Land Trust (BYLT) to facilitate and coordinate local community groups and volunteers in the construction of both sides of the trail this summer and fall. Guides are reporting zero to three fish a boat. KLAMATH RIVER, Hornbrook: Steelhead fishing remains very good near Hornbrook. Weather, flows are perfect. The hang up is having bathrooms available.
STAMPEDE RESERVOIR: Just enough snow up at the top of the hill that it’s probably a 4×4 only deal if one were to try to get in here. You do not want to miss it! UNION VALLEY RES: Not much in the way of snow up here but the nights have been cold and launching a boat would be sketchy with icy conditions. LEWISTON LAKE: Pine Cove Marina reported fly anglers are enjoying a quiet lake across the way at Lake View Terrace and there are nice quality fish being caught. Crabbing was decent in Tomales Bay.
Rain this week could increase flows and giving plunkers a better shot at steelhead. Current fly fishing conditions are great! KLAMATH RIVER, Happy Camp: Steelhead fishing remains good, with ideal flows and plenty of fish. For January, both of those boats are offering combo trips for crab and sanddab.
Anglers putting in their time are finding holdover trout close to the surface on Speedy Shiners and Super Duper spoons. If conditions improve and become conducive with a pressure drop and mild wind, anglers report there is still swimbait action to be had but when its flat calm and clear water light line and small baits are key to find bites. Few anglers are fishing, and with less pressure it helps those who are enjoying good catch rates.
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