I’m not sure what to think about the weather we’ve been having lately. Usually by this time of year we’re all complaining about how hot it is. It’s been really nice lately, the winds have been blowing just enough to keep the temperatures down, and our nights have been nice and cool. Yesterday during my lunch break, I was reading the news online and was surprised to read that weather forecasting centers around the world are predicting an El Nino by the end of this year, similar to the one we had in 1997-98. So, last night, talks about the forecasted El Nino dominated my family’s dinnertime conversation. My son immediately ran to his tablet to confirm what I had said as we proceeded to talk in disbelief while trying to remember the impact of the flooding that occurred in 1997-98.
It was a long time ago, I was just finishing up my enlistment in the Army. I remember sitting in the barracks watching news footage of a levee breakage near Manteca. If the current prediction is true, we could be in a lot of trouble as the ground has been dry for an extended period of time. If I’ve learned anything, it’s been to never trust a weatherman. As much as I want to ignore what I’ve been reading, it’s been difficult to not visualize our lakes full of water again, with launch ramps that are within feet of the parking lot.
Right now on the delta the bite remains good for a variety of species. Bass have been hitting top water lures as well as a variety of different reaction baits. You can’t go wrong with buzz baits early and late in the day. Once the sun gets nice and high snag proof frogs are catching some of the bigger bass while those cranking are catching nice limits. Franks Tract continues to produce nice numbers as well as Whites and Disappointment Slough. Striper fishing has been good for those trolling rebels near Cache Slough and Miner Slough. Anglers are also doing well while fishing for Stripers off the bank along the San Joaquin River near Mossdale and around Whiskey Slough.
New Melones Lake:
Fishing for kokanee is still great for anglers who are trolling from 40 to 50 feet deep with hootchies. The kokanee are schooling up around the dam area and Rose Island. Anglers trolling for kokanee are also catching an occasional trout as they have been found around the same depths. Catfishing is really good for anglers fishing cut bait through the night for them. Bass fishing continues to be the hot bite right now, there are plenty of post spawn bass willing to bite. The top water bite has really opened up as anglers are doing well while using Zara Spooks and Poppers. All launching on the lake is on gravel out of Glory Hole Point making having a vehicle equipped with four wheel drive necessary.
Lake Don Pedro:
The bite is great right now on the lake for trout, kokanee, and king salmon. Most anglers are fishing for kokanee between 60 and100 feet deep. Mexican Gulch, Fleming Bay, and in Middle Bay are all good areas right now for all three species. Anglers fishing for trout are finding them mixed in with the kokanee as they are taking kokanee gear as well as Excel spinners. Those fishing for king salmon are fishing with rolled shad. Bass fishing is good right now for anglers fishing top water baits in the morning as well as in the evening. During the day angles are drop shotting small worms or tossing reaction baits around main lake points. Fleming Meadows has the only paved launch ramp available on the lake.
Anglers trolling are concentrating in the South end of the Lake adjacent to the intake tower and the River Arm up to Columbia Gulch. Boaters continue to land some nice Trout in this area. Kokanee have been showing up but not in great numbers. The fish are hanging a bit deeper with the warming surface temperatures, most have dropped down between 40-60 feet deep. The winning combos have been Uncle Larry’s and Apex lures with night crawlers or scented corn behind medium flashers or medium size dodgers in red, blue, and chrome. Bass fishing is good this time of year as anglers are targeting and downed timber or rock walls with jigs and Senko’s.
For those smart phone users, there are so many great fishing apps available today for free. Some of my favorites include fishing logs, navigation apps, and moon phase apps. There are many more, including fishing games and hunting apps as well. I encourage you all to search fishing in your phones applications feature.