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By Carson Flanagan, 6, of Bakersfield holds his first striper, 18-1/2 inches long and 2.1 pounds, caught while trolling a shad-type lure during a March 6 outing at Pyramid Lake.
By The Bakersfield Californian
Kern County, southern San Joaquin Valley
LAKE ISABELLA: Overall pretty tough fishing with windy conditions much of the week. The best action has been for catfish, but that bite is just fair. The only crappie reports have been from boat anglers fishing deeper water with live minnows, and those reports have been scanty. Largemouth mostly slow.
KERN RIVER: The upper river trout bite remains fair to good for fly anglers fishing the wild or holdover fish, mostly on small nymphs. Trout were planted in all the stretches two weeks ago and the bite has been good.
AQUEDUCT NEAR TAFT: Anglers are all commenting on the huge schools of stripers in the aqueduct. Most are 15 to 16 inches long, but more and more of the 24- to 25-inch, keeper fish are showing. The best bite has been on Gitzits or other tube baits and sand or blood worms. Oddly slow action on catfish continues.
MILL CREEK PARK: Few reports. The bluegill bite is starting here, but the catfish action is slow.
RIVER WALK PARK LAKE: There was a surprise trout plant Tuesday and this bite has been very good on PowerBait doused with garlic oil or rolled in the new Hatchery Dust. Nightcrawlers in garlic also working. The bass are pretty good. Slow other species.
HART PARK LAKE: The bass action has been good with fish to four pounds reported this past week. Most of the action is on minnows, plastics and nightcrawlers. The trout bite has been slowing with the most recent trout plant two weeks ago. PowerBait and Power Mice best bets. Bluegill in fair numbers.
TRUXTUN LAKE: Slowing trout action with the most recent DFW plants two and four weeks ago. The bass are starting to move shallow to spawn and the bite has been fair to good. The bluegill action is also improving.
MING LAKE: The bass bite has been fair to good with a lot of fish showing on Zoom Brush Hogs, plastic worms, large minnows and nightcrawlers. Last DFW trout plants two and four weeks ago and this bite is slowing with a few fish showing on PowerBait and nightcrawlers doused with garlic. Also some bluegill starting to show.
BRITE LAKE: DFW trout plants two and four weeks ago. Slow trout action.
BUENA VISTA LAKES: A trout plant last week led to good weekend rainbow trout action and the bite has continued through this week with very light fishing pressure. The bass action has been good with the fish moving shallow for the spawn. The best action has been on plastics, spinnerbaits and Senkos in Webb. The bluegill are also just starting to show on meal worms and wax worms. Catfish are slow.
WOOLLOMES LAKE: Very slow fishing with such low water conditions, but a few bass and bluegill are starting to show.
SUCCESS LAKE: Very good bluegill action with nice stringers of fish showing up along most shoreline areas with some structure. Bass bite has also broken open as they start nosing into the shallows in their annual spawn. Lots of 1- to 2-pound fish and bass to 6 pounds reported. DFW trout plants this week and two weeks ago.
KAWEAH LAKE: The bass bite has continued to improve over the past week with more fish showing in less than 15 feet of water on plastics and small swimbaits. The bluegill action is also improving on wax worms and meal worms. DFW trout plants this week and two weeks ago. Other species very slow.
Other regional lakes
CACHUMA: The in-between moon phase slowed the crappie bite with only a few slabs to 2-8 reports by trollers working the Narrows with CD Rapalas or fishing tube or feather jigs topped with Crappie Nibbles or meal worms in the same area. The bass bite has also been improving with both the smallmouth and largemouth moving up into the shallows. A 4,000-pound trout plant went in on Tuesday. There will be two more big plants before the April 20-21 trout derby.
CASITAS: The annual Kid's Fishing Derby is Saturday and the lake was planted with rainbow trout for this event. The bass bite is very good.
CASTAIC: DFW trout plants this week and two weeks ago. The rainbow bite was best around the marina shoreline on PowerBait, nightcrawlers and small trout jigs. The stripers have been showing around the marina and off the dam on cut baits.
PIRU: The largemouth bass bite has been very good over the past week, with a lot of 2- to 4-pound bass showing for anglers fishing in 4-25 feet of water.
LOPEZ: The bass action has been improving, and while most of the fish are still in 10 to 15 feet, there are some fish moving shallow in a pre-spawn movement with the best action in Cottonwood Cove and at the dam. Also some crappie and bluegill showing around the docks on small jigs. Other species very slow.
NACIMIENTO: Spotted bass have been fair to good with the fish still mostly in 12 to 20 feet of water, but the fish are definitely in a pre-spawn mode and more aggressive. Other species have been slower.
PYRAMID: Trout plants this week and two weeks ago, and there has been a decent trout bite the day or two after the plants in the stock area, and the stripers are also showing in pretty good numbers with a lot of bigger fish to 14 pounds. Largemouth bite is breaking opening.
SAN ANTONIO: The largemouth bass bite has been good with the fish flooding the shallows to spawn. The bite has been best on plastic worms. Few striper reports but the fish seem to still be on the shad schools and a few have been reported by trollers or anglers soaking bait. Catfish action has been slow.
SANTA MARGARITA: The largemouth bass bite is kicking into gear with more and more fish showing in 10 feet of water or less, and plastic worms, swimbaits and even slow-rolled blades are getting fish that are beginning to think of the spawn.
LOS ANGELES: Castaic Lake
TULARE: Kaweah Reservoir, Murry Park Pond, Success Lake.
LONG RANGE UPDATE: For the big tuna anglers, the Royal Star is en route back from the grounds off the tip of Baja with yellowfin from 100 to 242 pounds in an excellent bite. The Royal Polaris is en route south this week and has already reported excellent action on wahoo. Overall the tuna fishing remains excellent with perhaps fewer of the tuna over 300 pounds being landed.
SAN DIEGO UPDATE: The overnight and 1 1/2-day rockfish trips into Mexican waters are still producing limits of rockfish with a large number of reds and bocaccio in the catch. The yellowtail bite continues at the Coronado Islands, and the word is out on this bite so the boat traffic and angler loads are up. Most days, there are from five to 10 yellowtail per boat with a high score over the past week in the 15 fish range for the 20 to 40 anglers on these boats. Skippers usually have been falling back on some local rockfish to make sure everyone has a few fish in the sack.
LOCAL COAST UPDATE: Private boaters are focusing on squid beds all along the coast and picking on the occasional white seabass or yellowtail. Water temperatures are still low but creeping up. This is still a little low for a good bite and the candy squid bait has been tougher to get. So this bite is still just a slow pick.
ROCKFISH EVERYWHERE: The sportfishing fleet from the Channel Islands to San Diego continues to focus much of its activity on rockfish and the bite is good to excellent all along the coast with anglers getting from five to seven rockfish on half-day trip and near-limits or limits on three-quarter day or full-days.