Fishing report, May 22-28: Delta stripers are still on the hot bite, so are the Isabella crappier and Bass Lake bass and trout.

Bill Kunz of St. Croix Rods display a a 6.37-pound bass from Bass Lake as part of his winning 18.59-pound limit during the Fresno Bass Club tournament. on Sunday, May 19, 2024.
Bill Kunz of St. Croix Rods display a a 6.37-pound bass from Bass Lake as part of his winning 18.59-pound limit during the Fresno Bass Club tournament. on Sunday, May 19, 2024.

Compiled by California Outdoors Hall of Fame member Dave Hurley and edited by Roger George, who guides in the greater Fresno area and holds the striper record at Millerton Lake.

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Best bets

Delta stripers on hot bite, Johnny Wang reported. Isabella crappie still biting, Dave Hurley said. New Melones trout action good, John Liechty reported. Shaver trout hungry, Dick Nichols said. Bass Lake trout and bass bites going, MikeBeighey reported. Wishon kicking out rainbows, Kelly Brewer said.

Westside waterways

Striper 2 Catfish 2

In the northern section of the California Aqueduct remains slow for striped bass as there have been few reports. Striperz Gone Wild’s Clean Up Day on the aqueduct last Saturday removed thousands of pounds of human-caused debris from a long stretch of the aqueduct. Bank fishing access has been limited due to anglers leaving a mess after fishing, and their hope is to create stewards of the aqueduct to keep areas accessible. In the south aqueduct in Kern County, cut sardines, anchovies, or jumbo minnows continue to work for stripers around the headgates where the water slows down. Catfish anglers reported decent fishing while soaking chicken liver, dip baits, and cut baits. Limits of quality crappie have been taken out of the dirt canals near Corcoran.

A map of the 16 designated fishing locations on the California Aqueduct can be accessed through this link:

Call: Valley Rod & Gun, Clovis 292-3474; Cope’s Tackle and Rod, Bakersfield – (661) 679-6351; Bob’s Bait Bucket, Bakersfield (661) 833-8657.

Eastman Lake/Hensley Lake

Bass 2 Trout 2 Bluegill 2 Catfish 2 Crappie 2

Brandon Grimsley of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis added, “The numbers of trophy largemouth bass have declined at Eastman, but there is still the possibility for a bass in the 7- to 10-pound range with lipless crankbaits, jerkbaits, or chatterbaits near the rocky structure close to the dam. Numbers of bass are holding in the saddles between the submerged islands with Hover Stalling techniques and plastics on the drop-shot. Crappie are getting active in submerged near the shorelines.” Hensley remains loaded with carp in the shallows, and anglers are enjoying removing the carp from the lake with various doughbait concoctions. Water releases have started, and Eastman is at 88 with Hensley at 61%. There are two bass tournaments on Eastman and one on Hensley scheduled through the end of May.

Call: Eastman Lake 689-3255; Valley Rod & Gun, Clovis 292-3474; 559 Fresno Bait and Tackle 515-6273. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Hensley Lake Hidden Dam 673-5151

Lake Don Pedro

Bass 2 Trout 2 Kokanee 2 King salmon 2 Crappie 2

Dylan Bos Kinser of Central Valley Bait and Tackle in Modesto reported bass fishing is improving as the reaction bite is picking up when the wind is blowing. When the lake is still, finesse presentations are more effective. The topwater bite is picking up with the fish moving into post-spawn. However, small bass seem to be the story. Monte Smith of Gold Country Sport Fishing put Shane Betschart of Farmington onto a 5-pound king salmon on a recent trip, and the king salmon and rainbow trout to 3.5 pounds are found at depths from 40 to 80 feet. He said, “A few kokanee to 14 inches have been taken, but they remain few and far between. Shad in the 1.5- to 2-inch range are starting to school up, and both species are loading up on the shad. I know there are larger kokanee in the lake, but we just must find them.” Kokanee Power’s Team Tournament is scheduled on the lake on July 13.

There is daily vehicle fee of $20 and with an additional $15 for boat launch. The lake has risen to 815.46 feet in elevation and 91% of capacity. Updates on the launch ramp are available at The Blue Oaks launch ramp may close within the next few days with minimal to no notice due to the quickly rising lake elevation. Caution is advised when parking near the shoreline along with following all posted signage.

Call: Monte Smith, Gold Country Sport Fishing (209) 581-4734; Central Valley Bait and Tackle (209) 312-9417.

Lake Isabella/Bakersfield area

Bass 2 Trout 2 Crappie 3 Catfish 3 Bluegill 3

The lake rose two feet to 2584.20 feet in elevation and 62% of capacity as water releases dropped from 1109 to 882 cfs at First Point. The crappie bite continues to attract anglers from throughout the southern valley and the Los Angeles Basin. The slabs are from 5 to 25 feet with 2-inch Keitech swimbaits in chartreuse, white, Electric Shad, or purple on a 1/16th-ounce head. In deeper water, crappie are holding over submerged brush piles, and white minijigs or small to medium minnows are working best. Bass fishing is fair with mid-diving crankbaits or jerkbaits along with Zoom’s Trick Worms on a shakey head or Senkos in Natural Shad. Catfishing remains best with Triple S Dip Bait, cut mackerel, or frozen shad. In the upper Kern River, the flows have picked up with the snow melting and finding slower water with split-shotted salmon eggs, minijigs, or spinners while nymphs, stripping streamers, or dry flies in the afternoons are working for fly fishermen. In the Lower Kern, largemouth and smallmouth bass action remains good in the canyon and along the stretch leading into Bakersfield with jigs, worms, or small crankbaits. Catfish can be found with cut sardines, or Triple S Dip Bait. The flows on upper Kern at Kernville held steady at 2206 cfs.

Call: Cope’s Tackle and Rod (661) 679-6351; Bob’s Bait Bucket, Bakersfield (661) 833-8657; North Fork Marina (760) 376-1812; Golden Trout Pack Station (559) 542-2816

Lake Kaweah

Bass 2 Crappie 2 Trout 2 Catfish 3

The lake rose 61/2 feet to 702.11 feet in elevation and 86% of capacity with snowmelt from the Kaweah River watershed. Bass fishing is best at depths to 25 feet with finesse baits, Senkos, or umbrella rigs. The bass are primarily in post-spawn mode. The rapidly rising water continues to slow down the bite, but if the lake ever stabilizes, the action should improve. Crappie continue to be found with small swimbaits or minijigs as the schools can be located over submerged brush. Catfishing continues to be best with Triple S Dip Bait, cut anchovies, or chicken liver. The Kaweah River at Three Rivers dropped from 2195 to 1403 cfs. There are no bass tournaments scheduled on the lake through May 31.

Lake Success

Bass 2 Crappie 2 Trout 2 Catfish 2

The lake rose just over a foot to 643.73 feet in elevation and 78% of capacity The Golden Empire Bass Club drew 22 boats on Saturday to find tough overall bass fishing with the winning limit taken by Mike and Alex Gohr at 13.25 pounds. Small bass have been the rule as the larger fish have been less active in post-spawn mode. The topwater bite is picking up, but the majority of fish are taken on finesse techniques.

Call: Cope’s Tackle and Rod (661) 679-6351; Sequoia Fishing Co. 539-5626,

McClure Reservoir

Bass 2 Trout 2 King salmon 0 Kokanee 0 Crappie 2 Catfish 2

The bass bite was brutal over the weekend with 20 boats in the Nor Cal Bass tournament struggling for a winning weight of just nine pounds with only 1/2 pound difference between first and fifth place. There was more consistent action on the kayaks the previous day with a five-fish limit at 78.75 inches winning the Yak’A Bass event. Plastics on a Neko-rig, Senkos or 2.8-inch Keitech swimbaits on an underspin remain the top techniques. Most of the bass have spawned, but there will be one more minor wave, primarily of spotted bass, upon the next full moon. The lake rose 6 feet within two weeks to 854.73 feet in elevation and 92% of capacity. Several bass tournaments are scheduled in May. Several bass tournaments are scheduled in May.

Downstream Yosemite Lake is closed until further notice. The Merced River is expected to rise and remain high and dangerous throughout the month of May, and it is currently at 4090 cfs at Merced Falls downstream of Lake McSwain.

Call: Central Valley Bait and Tackle (209) 312-9417.

Lake McSwain

Trout 2

Without regular plants, only a few holdover rainbows are reported at the normal locations of the Brush Pile, Handicapped Docks, and the peninsula in front of the marina with nightcrawlers, Power Bait, spinners, or Kastmasters. The opening day for the lake’s Splash and Dash is Saturday, June 1. Information - The lake is at 92% of capacity. McSwain Marina is now open weekends through May.

Call: Angler’s Edge Market (209) 226-4416; McSwain Marina (209) 378-2534.

Millerton Lake/San Joaquin River

Bass 2 Striped bass 1 Shad 1 Bluegill 3 Crappie 2

Brandon Grimsley of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “The lake is slowly releasing water, and small spotted bass are the rule with 4- to 5-inch shad-patterned plastics on a Neko-rig or Texas-rig in the shallows along with small swimbaits. The shad are showing up in the shallows along with the bluegill, and the small bass are loading up on both baits. The fish are in all phases of the spawn, but there are more post-spawn fish now.” There are no tournaments scheduled through the end of June, and the lake is receiving minimal fishing pressure. The lake dropped slightly to 576.70 feet in elevation and 99% of capacity. Sycamore Island is open once daily from 6 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The flows in the San Joaquin River at Friant have dropped to 353 cfs.Sycamore Island is open once daily from 6 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Sycamore Island received a trout plant two weeks ago.

Sycamore Island is open once daily from 6 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The flows in the San Joaquin River at Friant have risen from 875 to 1,386 cfs.

Call: Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474; 559 Fresno Bait and Tackle 515-6273.

New Melones Reservoir/Tulloch

Bass 2 Crappie 2 Catfish 2 Trout 3 Kokanee 3

The Kokanee Power Team Tournament is only two weeks away on June 8, and pre-fishing for the event has begun. Melones continues to pump out the largest kokanee in the state to 20 inches, but the fish have gone deep from 100 to 140 feet in the saddles between the submerged islands. Limits have been landed by experienced trollers, and there is great anticipation for this upcoming event with the possibility of record-breaking three-fish limits. Rainbow trout remain a sure thing at depths to 30 feet, but most trollers are in search of a huge kokanee. For bass, John Liechty of Xperience Bass Fishing Guide Service reported numbers of post-spawn bass are possible with reaction baits of flukes, spinnerbaits, or topwater in the mornings or evenings.

“The big fish have been missing in action, but I do believe the lake will be kicking out huge bass in the long term with the great water conditions. You would expect the bass to be in the shallows, but most of the fish are holding from 8 to 20 feet. I have hardly been using any finesse except for swimming a Keitech occasionally. I am expecting one smaller wave of spawning from spotted bass, but the last wave in May was the big one. The largemouth bass here are skinny as post-spawn is in full effect,” he said. There was a solid topwater bite mid-week, but the lack of wind on Saturday contributed to small limits to 13.5 pounds during the Cen Cal Elite Bass Tournaments event. There is a daily use fee of $8 with a boat launch of $10 (day use included). The lake has risen 2 feet to 1059.42 feet in elevation and 87% of capacity.

Call: John Liechty, Xperience Fishing Guide Service (209) 743-9932; Kyle Wise, Headhunter Guide Service (209) 531-3966; Alex Niapas, Catching California Guide Service (209) 728-4225; Monte Smith (209) 581-4734.

Pine Flat Reservoir/Kings River

Bass 2 Trout 2 Kokanee 0 King salmon 2 Catfish 2 Crappie 2

Brandon Grimsley of Valley Rod and Gun in Clovis said, “The bass bite is improving as the high water has inundated grassy areas holding nutrients. There is an emerging topwater bite with small shad-patterned lures such as Pop-R’s or Ricos, but the most consistent bite has been with finesse techniques. Plastics on the drop-shot or Ned-rig along with 2.8- to 3.3-inch Keitech swimbaits on an underspin or ball head are effective. The bass are still hugging the banks, but there are several fish moving out into post-spawn. For trout and king salmon, the fish have dropped in the water column with king salmon as deep as 100 feet or more.” The flows on the lower Kings at Trimmer have risen to the dangerous level of 7053 cfs, and the lack of trout plants over the past several weeks has slowed trout action. The lake is at 941.49 feet in elevation and 94% of capacity.

Call: Valley Rod & Gun 292-3474; 559 Fresno Bait and Tackle 515-6273. Sequoia Fishing Co. 539-5626.

San Luis Reservoir and O’Neill Forebay

Striper 2 Catfish 2 Bass 2 Crappie 2

Mickey Clements of Coyote Bait and Tackle in Morgan Hill reported high winds continue to plague access for boaters on occasion.

Roger George of Roger George Guide Service said that the winds have kept most anglers off the water for the last week.

“The few guys that went out only got a few fish before the later day winds blew them off. The coming full moon will be another factor that could affect the bite this week too. Falling water is also certainly not helping create any stable patterns right now,” George said.

To check the wind conditions on the lake - use

Call: Coyote Bait and Tackle (408) 463-0711, Roger George, (559) 905-2954

High Sierra

Bass Lake

Bass 3 Trout 3 Kokanee 0

Mike Beighey of Bass Lake Guide Service said, “The lake is nearly filled and looking good with a water temperature of 70 degrees. Trout are easy picking from the Sheriff’s Tower to the Forks Resort on Dick’s Trout Busters or Mountain Tubes in orange or pink tipped with pinched crawlers. Pink or orange Rocky Mountain Tackle’s Radical Glow Tubes behind a Blue Ice Dodger are also effective. The kokanee have yet to show.” There was another annual plant of 50 thousand kokanee fingerling, making for a total of 189,121 kokanee fingerling since 2021. Despite the heavy annual planting, kokanee have been few and far between for the past few years. Bass fishing has been excellent for some with Bill Kunz of St. Croix Rods winning Sunday’s Fresno Bass Club event with over 18 pounds.

Call: Mike Beighey, Bass Lake Fishing 676-8133.

Edison/Florence/Mammoth Pool

The gate to Kaiser Pass Road remains closed, and is not expected to reopen until after Memorial Day weekend.

Edison is at 34% of capacity, Florence at 28% of capacity, and Mammoth Pool at 100% of capacity.

Road conditions 297-0706.

Call: Vermilion Valley Resort at Edison Lake 259-4000.

Shaver Lake/Huntington Lake

Trout 3 Kokanee 2

The Shaver Lake Trophy Trout Project made its plant of 7,000 pounds of trophy trout from an Oregon hatchery averaging 4 pounds and up to 10 pounds this week, just in time for the busy Memorial Day Weekend. Shaver Lake Guide Emeritus, Dick Nichols of Dick’s Fishing Charters and Mountain Tackle said, “Kokanee fishing remains slow at Shaver while the water level continues to rise along with the floating debris drawn off the shoreline. It will be toward the end of June when the water level tapers off at an estimated 89% of capacity. I believe the action should improve before the lake ceases its climb in the water column. While all reports from experienced fishermen show one or two kokanee in the boat per trip, there is good news.

The Department of Fish and Wildlife planted catchables last week with another plant prior to this weekend. Jay Irvine of Visalia and his nephew, Julian Francolino, picked up 13 of those plants on Saturday fishing near the buoys in front of Sierra Marina on Saturday. They found the fish near the surface dragging flies. Another plant of catchables is expected before Memorial Day Weekend. Long-time planting chairman and a founding member of the Shaver Lake Trophy Trout Project, Bob Bernier, said, ‘We hated to plant the trophies on a Saturday, but delivery was out of our control. Very surprisingly, few people were near the plant, and very few boats were in the area where we planted. I am very impressed with the quality of fish we received from Oregon. Many of our members were on hand to help in the planting. My guess is that this is going to be one heck of a Memorial Day Weekend fishing for everybody. We continue to plant these trophies thanks to the sponsors and supporters of our project. Our youth derby on June 8 should provide an opportunity to catch one of these beauties.

Shaver guide, Todd Wittwer of Guide Service is the only angler I know who has picked up four mixed limits in one of his trips this week. Wittwer reported the new trophy fish have acclimated well and have already spread about the lake.His guests picked up one near Sierra Marina on Sunday.” A webcam of the Shaver launch ramp is at and for Huntington at Shaver has risen to 64 with Huntington also rising to 97% of capacity. The ramp at Huntington is in the water and usable while half the dock is floating. The campgrounds should be open soon. Shaver rose to 56% of capacity with Huntington rising to 81% of capacity with snowmelt.

Call: Todd Wittwer, Guide Service 288-8100; Jerad Romero, Jrods Guide Service 392-6994; Tom Oliveira, Tom Oliveira Fishing 802-8072.


Trout 3

Kelly Brewer of the Wishon RV Park and Store reported the store opened last Friday, and the campgrounds are open. The docks are in the water as the lake is rising. Trout fishing has been excellent for rainbows to 14 inches with blade/’crawler combinations or Wedding Rings tipped with a piece of crawler while larger brown trout are taken on Rapalas. Jay Irvine along with Andrew and Stephanie Vazquez of Visalia trolled for three limits of trout using Dick’s Texas Tea’s Trout Buster behind a Doc Barb Mountain Dodger on a setback of 100 feet, approximately 11 feet in depth, at speed between 1.6 and 1.8 mph. They also scored with a brown Woolley Bugger on sinking fly line on a side rod. Access to Courtright is still restricted.

Call: Wishon RV Park 865-5361.


Half Moon Bay

Rockfish 3 Striper 2 Halibut 2 White seabass 1 Sand dabs 3 Surf perch 3

About 250,000 salmon smolts from the Mokelumne River Hatchery were delivered to the Coastside Fishing Club net pens. This is the first of three plants totaling 750,000 fish. These fish will be released at some point during the summer, and they should be mature within three years.

Shallow water rockfishing has been excellent since the May 1 opener with Captain Melynda Dodds of the New Captain Pete loading up with vermilions, browns, gophers on the rockfish front along with a few quality lingcod. The next five months are shallow water only, and the party and private boats are finally starting to see some work. The weather window has yet to open up for bluefin tuna, but a few boats have made the run out to the Davenport Fingers to find 55-degree water with no temperature break. Only hoops or snares are allowed for Dungeness crab until the season ends on June 30.

The City of Pacifica Pier is open, and snares are the best option for crab.

Call: Captain Melynda Dodds, New Captain Pete (512) 825- 8225; Captain Chris Chang, Ankeny Street (650) 279-8819; Captain Bill Smith, Riptide (650) 728-8433; Half Moon Bay Sport Fishing, Queen of Hearts (510) 581-2628.

Monterey/Santa Cruz

Rockfish 3 Halibut 2 Striper 3 White seabass 1 Sand dabs 3 Surf perch 3

Mickey Clements of Coyote Bait and Tackle in Morgan Hill reported a solid striped bass bite along the Monterey County beaches around Marina and Seaside. Duo Realis 140 Tide Minnow Lance or Sprat in white/red head or Mazumi Sardine. He added, “Perch fishing is best along the Santa Cruz beaches with an excellent striper bite along the Santa Cruz/Monterey Bay beaches with Charlie Brewer’s Crappie Sliders or 2-inch Honey Badger Baits Super Slayer or Synthetic Motor Oil. Motor oil/red flake remains a popular color.” Allen Bushnell of Santa Cruz Kayak and Surf Casting Guide Service said, “Chris Arcoleo at Chris’ Fishing trips is posting full limits of rockfish for every trip aboard the Check Mate and Caroline, as usual. Depending on the customer load that means up to 230 rockfish plus as many as nine lingcod for every foray this week. “We’re fishing shallow water, but it’s been excellent. There’s some bait around but we’re not even using bait. We’ve been throwing bars and lures at ‘em. Swimbaits are working well.” Asked about halibut action in his area, Chris replied, “Haven’t heard anything about them but there’s a few stripers around.” Anglers on the nearby beaches and from Fishing Pier #2 are seeing lots of striped bass in the 10-pound range. “They’re catching some, too,” Arcoleo added. The long beaches at the center of the Bay might be the best place to go to find stripers. We’ve received reports from both the Monterey and Santa Cruz sides of the bay from surfcasters successful in hooking up on the stripers this week. A roving bass could swim through just about any beach on the bay right now, so be prepared with some striper gear in your tackle bag. The best scenario is, you get lucky enough to walk the right beach at the right time while schools of bass are working bait close to shore. Besides the solo catches reported here and there over the past couple months, we’ve heard from a few trustworthy anglers about enjoying feeding frenzy type fishing. They have reported catching and releasing up to 20 fish while throwing directly to the boils with a variety of gear including irons, stickbaits and surface poppers. Most these boilers were school fish ranging from 15-22 inches.

No specific beaches were mentioned in these reports, and it’s most likely the bass schools are moving quickly. So it’s really a matter of making a good guess and then getting lucky. Perseverance pays. In Santa Cruz we’re seeing an increase of halibut on the inside of 60 feet. Anglers near the Mile Buoy and especially the sandy flats off Capitola are hooking up the halibut while drifting with live bait, mostly smelt or mackerel. Remember, with these large baits, you need to give the halibut time to get it in the mouth. Free spool and test your patience. Lift the rod tip occasionally and judge whether there’s “weight” on it before starting to retrieve. Bounce ball trolling has been working as well. Moving slowly at 11/2 to 21/2 miles per hour, halibut hunters use a three-way swivel set up employing a dropper for the heavy weight that bumps along the sandy bottom. Using live or dead bait such as anchovy, sardine, squid, smelt or mackerel on a trap hook rig can be deadly for the halibut. Another advantage to this technique is the fish hook themselves, because the bait is moving, and they are chasing. When the rod goes bendo, the fish is on.”

Call: Chris’ Landing (831) 375-5951; Allen Bushnell, Santa Cruz Kayak and Surf Casting (831) 251-9732.

Golden Gate/San Francisco Bay

Halibut 3 Striper 2 Rockfish 3 Leopard shark 2 Sturgeon 2

Halibut action rebounded on Sunday and Monday after rough weather on Saturday where scores averaged a fish per rod, reflecting the brutal conditions due to high winds. Monday’s haul is indicative of what can be expected this week as the California Dawn 2 out of Berkeley Marina returned with 16 limits of halibut to 20 pounds and 4 striped bass trolling in the south bay. Captain Chris Smith of the Pacific Dream out of Berkeley put 6 limits of halibut on Sunday.

“We had to work for them on both sides of the Berkeley Pier at depths from 10 to 11 feet.,” he said. “There are halibut even shallow, and when we move into very shallow water, we must let our lines out much further behind the boat.”

Captain Ron Koyasako of Nautilus Excursions out of San Francisco’s Pier 45 also put in 6 limits to 21 pounds on Friday, and he said, “There have been some larger fish mixed in as a 33-pound halibut came out of the south bay this week.” Despite the excellent action, few charter boats are working as there were only three boats out of Berkeley on Sunday. Captains are heading out with lighter loads and running special deals such as $160/angler on the Happy Hooker out of Berkeley on Memorial Day. There is a possibility that live bait may be available within the week in the San Francisco receiver, but there are still a few kinks to work out before the operation gets going.

Once live bait is available, boats will be able to fish more and deeper areas inside of the bay. Outside the Golden Gate, coastal rockfishing remains solid, and out of Bodega Bay, Captain Rick Powers of the New Sea Angler has been loading up to 22 limits of rockfish consisting of vermilions, browns, chinas, and canaries with only a handful of school fish in the mix along with a lingcod per rod to 22 pounds.

“The weather has been flat calm, and this is the week to go,” he said.

Call: Captain Ron Koyasako, Nautilus Excursions (916) 704-4169; Captain Jerad Davis, Salty Lady (415) 760-9362; Captain Steve Mitchell, Hook’d Up Sport Fishing (707) 655-6736; Happy Hooker (510) 223-5388.

San Luis Obispo

Rockfish 3 Surf perch 3

Party boat trips are producing limits to near-limits of a variety of rockfish. By far, the best scores come on the longer trips, both in length and distance from the harbor. Out of Patriot Sport Fishing in Port San Luis, one boat was out on Monday with 11 anglers near limits consisting of 95a assorted rockfish, 2 lingcod to 8 pounds, and a rock sole. Out of Virg’s Landing in Morro Bay, the Rita G was out on Sunday on a full-day trip with 18 anglers for limits of rockfish composed of 36 vermilion and 144 assorted rockfish along with 5 ling cod. Out of Morro Bay Landing, two boats were out on Sunday with 17 anglers for five fish shy of limits with 105 assorted rockfish, 34 vermilion, 20 Boccaccio, six copper rockfish, and a single lingcod.

Webcams of many of the coastal locations are available at

Call: Virg’s Landing (800) 762-5263; Patriot Sport Fishing (805) 595-4100; Morro Bay Landing.



Bass 2 Striper 3 Sturgeon 2 Catfish 2 Bluegill 3

Striped bass remain the highlight in the California Delta on both sides of the estuary as the linesides are still moving into the upper rivers along with migrating back into San Francisco Bay and through the Golden Gate after spawning. Johnny Wang, manager of Turner’s Outdoorsman in Stockton, said, “We were trolling deep diving plugs on the Old Sacramento River from Isleton to Walnut Grove, and we marked lots of fish. I couldn’t tell if they were striped bass or American shad, but we ended up with 4 keepers to 8 pounds. The water is in great shape, green with around 6 feet of visibility. In the San Joaquin system, drifting bluegill has been effective in the flooded islands of Mildred and Frank’s Tract. Chatterbaits in either perch or crawdad patterns are picking up largemouth bass, and stripers are also hitting the chatterbaits when the tide is moving in the breaks in the tules. Crappie are starting to school up again in the San Joaquin around Bullfrog Landing on Bacon Island Road and near the Middle River Railroad Bridge.” Jeff Soo Hoo of Soo Hoo’s Sport Fishing out of Lauritzen’s Yacht Harbor in Oakley continues to find ‘lights out’ striped bass fishing drifting live bait in the San Joaquin River. He said, “We couldn’t even get the second rod out before we had a fish on. The stripers have gone deep to nearly 30 feet, but they have been stacking up during the last few hours of the tide. There are so many fish out there, and we only had males on Friday’s trip, and they were still milting. It should be slowing down, but it’s anything but slowing down.”

Denise Loo, videographer for Alan Fong Outdoors, has been taking her mother out on both sides of the Delta for striped bass, and she put her mom onto her personal best striper trolling Yo-Zuri Crystal Minnows on the San Joaquin. Loo then misread the weather report, and brought mom out on in 20 knot winds with gusts up to 40 mph, but they were able to jig up limits even though keeping the lines vertical was an impossibility. She said, “All but one of these fish were spawned out.” For largemouth bass, the bite continues to be challenging for most, but the water temperatures are stabilizing, and the clarity is improving. Fong has been tossing spinnerbaits and chatterbaits in the wind for limits up to 15 pounds in Liberty Island.

Captain Zack Medinas of Gatecrasher Fishing Adventures is one of the few sturgeon captains still operating out of Pittsburg, and he said, “The wind has been the only limiting factor.” Medinas is working on a research project to set line for white sturgeon where the fish are weighed, measured, and tagged. On another note, Martinez Bait and Tackle at the Martinez Marina has closed indefinitely.

Call: Randy Pringle (209) 543-6260; Captain Steve Mitchell, Hook’d Up Sport Fishing (707) 655-6736; Vince Borges, Vince Borges Outdoors (209) 918-0828. Soo Hoo Sport Fishing (925) 899-4045.


May 18

Striperz Gone Wild California Aqueduct Clean Up Day- Volta Road – Free BBQ afterwards.

Tournament results

May 18

New Melones – Cen Cal Elite Bass Tournaments

1st– Scott Parsons/Steve Nielsen – 13.48 pounds (Big Fish - 3.73); 2nd –– Cory Kerber/Bill Kunz – 13.12; 3rd – Tom Loya/Rusty Rummerfield – 13.05.

Lake McClure – Yak ‘A Bass

1st– Robert Yamamoto –78.75 inches; 2nd –– Daigo Kobayashi – 77.50 (Big Fish – 18.75 inches); 3rd – Chris Starkey – 76.75 inches.

San Antonio – Best Bass Tournaments

1st– Damon Meeks/Jay Short – 15.89 pounds (5.60); 2nd –– Joe Gardiner/Ryan Shuben – 14.82; 3rd – Chris Rains/Jose Canchola – 14.66.

Success – Golden Empire Bass Club

1st– Mike and Alex Gohr – 13.25 pounds; 2nd –– Darren Palmer/Bruce Ramey – 12.60; 3rd – Jeff and Jimmy Mitchell – 12.45 (Big Fish – 4.60).

May 19

Bass Lake – Fresno Bass Club

1st– Bill Kunz – 18.59 pounds (Big Fish – 6,37); 2nd –– Cory Kerber – 17.24; 3rd – Ryan Smith– 12.82.Upcoming tournaments (dates and locations subject to change)

May 22, 29

Delta/Ladd’s Marina – Wednesday Night Shootout

May 24, 31

Tulloch – Friday Night Shootout

May 25

McClure – Kerman Bass Club

Lopez – Bakersfield Bass Club

For more go to