By The Bakersfield Californian
Kern County, southern San Joaquin Valley
LAKE ISABELLA: Very slow. Last week's cold front chilled the water temeratures to the point that even the catfish action stalled. This bite had been good on garlic nightcrawlers, but that's not the case now. There is a DFW trout plant slated for this week which should perk up the trout action. Other species have been even worse than the catfish. The lake remains so low the boat ramps pretty much require four-wheel drive to launch boats.
KERN RIVER: The action has slowed in the whole river over the past two weeks. There is still a fair bite in the upper river on wild rainbows and a few holdover rainbows from the last plant a month ago. Bait anglers are doing best on salmon eggs, PowerBait and Mice Tails, while the fly anglers are having their best success with small nymph and midge patterns. The lower river continues to have slow to spotty action on smallmouth bass along with an occasional trout.
AQUEDUCT NEAR TAFT: The aqueduct has been very good and getting even better for the small stripers over the past week as the water cools and moss disappears. There have also been a few more quality fish this past week, especially on live minnows, but the best bite overall is still on blood worms or sand worms. Also a few on tube baits. The fish are running from two to five pounds with a few over the 18-inch minimum size. The catfish bite is very slow.
MILL CREEK PARK: Overall slow fishing.
RIVER WALK PARK LAKE: After the schedule trout plant by the DFW didn't go in last week, there have been two plants this week on Monday and Wednesday. Good trout action on garlic PowerBait and Mice Tails doused with garlic oil or the new Power Dust. Other species slow.
HART PARK LAKE: Overall slow action on trout. Last week's expected plant never went in, and while the DFW was supposed to deliver those fish this week there were no reports as of Tuesday this week. Other species slow.
TRUXTUN LAKE: The DFW trout plant slated for last week never arrived, but the DFW planted here Monday this week. Pretty fair action and relatively light fishing pressure. The best action has been on chartreuse, rainbow and regular garlic PowerBait with Power Dust. Mice Tails in garlic oil are also good bets. Other species slow.
MING LAKE: Slow action. Last week's expected DFW trout plant never arrived, but it was expected those fish would arrive this week. As of Tuesday, no news of a plant yet. The odd holdover trout from the last plant have been showing on PowerBait in the garlic flavors and Mice Tails with garlic oil. Other species slow.
BRITE LAKE: DFW trout plant slated for this week. No reports.
BUENA VISTA LAKES: The catfish bite has been very good and last week's trout plant made for pretty good rainbow action with relatively light fishing pressure on rainbows to three pounds. The catfish have been best on live minnows and frozen shad and there have been big cats from 20 to 30 pounds reported in the past week. The best action on trout has been on garlic-flavored or enhanced PowerBait, Mice Tails or nightcrawlers. Trout plants are tentatively scheduled every three weeks this season. Other species have been mostly slow.
WOOLLOMES LAKE: Slow. No DFW trout plants since three weeks ago and none on the list for this week or next week. Few reports on other species.
SUCCESS LAKE: Overall slow fishing. DFW trout plant slated for next week.
KAWEAH LAKE: Overall slow fishing. DFW trout plant slated for next week.
Other regional lakes
CACHUMA: There were 4,000 pounds of Calaveras Trout planted last week and the action was good to excellent through the weekend. Shore fishing was very good the first couple of days and then the trout spread away from E-Point and trollers are scoring the best on the rainbows, which have been averaging over a pound. Best action on smaller minnow imitations with Rapalas and Yo-Zuris the top bets. The catfish action remains fair. Bass, crappie, bluegill-redear and carp are mostly slow.
CASITAS: The bass action remains pretty fair but the bulk of the action in now in 30 or more feet of water with the fish mostly hugging structure and showing on plastics and nightcrawlers. A few catfish are showing. Overall very light fishing pressure.
CASTAIC: DFW trout plants last Friday and four weeks ago, but the plants haven't brought up any trophy stripers yet. The striper bite has been good, but mostly on smaller fish. Some better fish up chasing trout and swimbaits and Lucky Craft lures are best for them. Trout are just fair. There is also a pretty fair catfish bite.
PIRU: Overall slowing fishing. The largemouth bass bite has been fair on plastics and reaction baits. The average fish is from one to two pounds. A few catfish reports, but no reports on crappie this week.
PYRAMID: DFW trout plants last week and three weeks ago. Fair to good trout bite. The best action has been on nightcrawlers, cut baits and bloodworms. Fair catfish bite in the main channel by the gate house and in most of the deeper coves and bays. The best catfish bite has been on nightcrawlers, blood worms and cut baits. The largemouth bass bite has slowed with the cool weather over the past couple of weeks but still fair on plastics and nightcrawlers, but the reaction bait bite is slowing. Most are one to two pounds with a few bigger fish. No reports on other species.
SAN ANTONIO: Little fishing pressure and few reports. A few stripers showing for trollers working near the dam and off B Rock. Most of the fish are four to 10 pounds. The catfish bite is probably the best bet. Black bass are fair on nightcrawlers, plastics and reaction baits.
NACIMIENTO: Few reports. Still fair spotted bass action on nightcrawlers, jumbo red worms or slow-fished jigs and plastics. Other species getting very little pressure.
SANTA MARGARITA: Very little fishing pressure and the action has slowed. A fair bite on largemouth bite with nightcrawlers and plastics. Catfish and panfish are very slow.
LOPEZ: There has been a fair bass bite on jigs and plastics, but this bite has really slowed. A few catfish continue to show on cut baits in deeper water, but all other action is slow. First DFW trout plant of the season is scheduled for next week.
KERN: Brite Valley Reservoir, Lake Isabella. In addition, Hart Park Lake, Ming Lake, River Walk Lake, Truxtun Lake were scheduled to be planted last week but were not. There were also planted early this week.
TULARE: Del Lago Park Lake.
GIANT YELLOWFIN FOR LONG RANGE FLEET: The rampage on giant yellowfin tuna continues for the long range fleet running off the tip of Baja from San Diego. The Royal Polaris just wrapped up a trip this week and the total tally was two fish over 300 pounds and 25 other fish over 200 pounds. The jackpot was 306 pounds, and one angler had fish at 303, 296, and 255 pounds. The Independence and Excel also returned with good scores with fish to 287 pounds.
BOTTOMFISH STILL EXCEPTIONAL: With less than two weeks left until the rockfish season closes (Dec. 31), the bite has remained excellent all along the coast. Three days in a row over the past week, the Redondo Special out of Redondo Sportfish was on half-day trips with 10 anglers or less and they had limits of rockfish.