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By The Bakersfield Californian
Kern County, southern San Joaquin Valley
CATFISH DERBY: The annual Bob's Bait month-long catfish derby kicked off July 1. The entry fee is $1 per angler and you must register before you weigh in a fish. Only fresh fish can be weighed in and no weighing in of fish the same day as entering derby. The biggest catfish weighed in during July will take the $100 prize, plus all the entry fee money from everyone entered. The current leader is Sam Whelden, Bakersfield, with an 8-11 catfish landed from Hart Park Lake. There are 156 entrants so far. For more information or to register, call Bob's Bait at 661-833-8657.
LAKE ISABELLA: The catfish action has been very good in most of the coves on the lake with shad the top bait. Paradise Cove has been a top bet with fish running from three to four pounds and some bigger. The trout bite also remains pretty good at the dam for shore anglers fishing deep water with floating baits and trollers on Needlefish-style lures. A few quality crappie showing in the tree in 10 to 15 feet of water on live minnows, but no volume. The bluegill bite is good in most coves for small fish. The bass bite has continued fair on two to four pounders with best action is early and late in the day.
KERN RIVER: Trout action is good to excellent on the upper river. While most of the action is on pan-sized fish with quite a few fish to three pounds reported. Best bite has been on crickets, Power Bait, and Mice Tails. Flows are down to 250 to 300 cfs, stacking the fish up in the deeper pools. Good action all the way from the Johnsondale Bridge down to Kernville. Fly anglers are also seeing very good action with more dry fly mornings now, but the best action is still on small nymphs. Good reports from the high elevation waters throughout the region, mostly for small trout. In the lower river flows remain in the 900 cfs range, which is very fishable. The trout bite has been pretty fair with some smallmouth action starting. DFG trout planted in just sections four and five this week.
AQUEDUCT NEAR TAFT: Hot weather and mossy conditions have made the striper bite tough and not bigger fish, but the night catfish action has been pretty fair for anglers fishing shad, mackerel or Sonny's Catfish bait.
MILL CREEK PARK: Fair to good action on bluegill on crickets and wax worms. The carp are good on dough baits. The occasional early morning or late evening bass is also showing.
HART PARK LAKE: The bluegill bite has been very good on wax worms, meal worms, and crickets, and the carp bite is also pretty good on Powder Bait or homemade dough baits.
TRUXTUN LAKE: Very good bluegill action on red worms, meal worms, wax worms, crickets, and nightcrawler pieces, but the best bite has been early and late in the day. The carp action is also fair to good on dough baits.
RIVER WALK PARK: The bluegill action is very good on meal and wax worms or crickets early and late in the day. Carp are very good on Powder Bait.
MING LAKE: Very good bluegill action on wax worms, red worms, and meal worms, and the carp action is good on dough baits. Bass are fair with the best bite early and late in the day.
BRITE LAKE: Few reports.
BUENA VISTA LAKES: The catfish action has been fair at night on cut baits, but mostly on small fish. There is a good bluegill bite on wax worms, crickets, and meal worms, and a fair to good carp bite on Powder Bait or similar dough and dip baits. A few bass continue to show early and late in the day.
WOOLLOMES LAKE: Very good bluegill action on wax worms, meal worms, or crickets, while the early morning and late evening bass bite is fair. Also quite a few carp showing.
SUCCESS LAKE: The bass action has been just fair. The bluegill bite is good.
KAWEAH LAKE: The bass bite has been fair to good. The best bite is at first or last light. The bluegill action is good on the usual array of small baits.
Other regional lakes
CACHUMA: The catfish bite took over the spotlight this week with a lot of limit or near-limits of fish to seven pounds reported in the backs of the coves and in creek channels. The trout trolling and deep-water bait drifting at the dam and Johnson Bay has continued fair on nice quality holdover. The bass bite has been fair with flurries of good action.
CASITAS: The largemouth bass bite has continued good, but live shad became tough to get this week. Lots of two to three pound bass. A few of the deep-water trout trollers are getting trout in 30 to 40 feet of water on Needlefish with the rainbows up to four pounds. The bluegill and redear bite is also still fair to good in eight to 20 feet of water
CASTAIC: The striper bite has been fair to good. The largemouth bass bite has also been good on everything from Flukes to cranks from topwater baits to garlic nightcrawlers and plastic worms. Most of the fish are in 15 feet or less early and then go deeper during the day. More and more catfish are showing each week in the coves.
LOPEZ: The bass bite has been pretty fair, but the bite has mostly been on smaller fish on reaction baits early and late in the day. The bluegill and redear are also fair. Crappie and catfish have been slow.
NACIMIENTO: Good to excellent action on 1-8 to two-pound white bass for anglers trolling in 24 to 26 feet of water. The spotted bass action is also very good with the fish on structure.
PIRU: The bass bite has been good as has the bluegill bite. The crappie are also still fair to good
PYRAMID: The catfish bite has been good from shore and for boat anglers fishing cut baits in deeper water. The striper bite has been fair to good for trollers, but the bait bite has been nearly as good with the fish still in deeper water.
SAN ANTONIO: The striper bite has remain good to excellent. The stripers are frequently below the birds. There have been a lot of fish from six to 12 pounds with a few bigger fish. The catfish bite has been good in most of the coves. The black bass action is fair to good early and late in the day.
SANTA MARGARITA: The only action worth mentioning has been the largemouth bass bite with pretty fair action early and late in the day on topwater and reaction baits.
BRIDGEPORT REGION: The East Walker River remains very good. Flows were at 130 cfs early in the week, which is very fishable. Bridgeport Reservoir remains excellent for bait anglers fishing for trout from boats and there has been an excellent perch bite. For fly anglers, the callibaetis hatches are starting and the damsels are out. Kirman has been tough with few brookies or cutthroats reported. Twin Lakes have been less consistent this past week. The West Walker is very good for spin and fly anglers. Virginia Lakes remain wide open on bait, lures, and flies with both DFG and Alpers fish this past week. Braydon Hawks, 6, Bakersfield, landed a 2-9 on a Gulp! Crawler.
JUNE LAKE LOOP REGION: Silver Lake has been very good after both DFG and Alpers' trout this past week. Lots of two to three pound trout on floating baits, lures, and flies early and late in the day. Grant Lake and Rush Creek both continue to crank out a few nice browns. Gull and June are both good with a good deep troll bite during the day and surface fly action in the evenings. Ellery, Tioga, and Saddlebag lakes are all open and the action has been good
MAMMOTH AREA: Crowley Lake trout are stacking in the inlets and the bite has been exceptional in McGee, Little Hilton, and Layton Springs with excellent action on indicator-suspended midge fly patterns in nine to 15 feet of water. Algae can be a problem, but lots of nice rainbows, browns and quality cutthroat showing in the bite. Convict Lake is fair to good on the usual bait or small lures and jigs. Mammoth Creek has been good on stocked trout with quite a few wild browns. The Upper Owens is fair to good with mostly small fish showing now. Hot Creek is excellent with good hatches morning and afternoon. The road to the upper San Joaquin and Red's Meadow is open and the fishing is good.
BISHOP AREA: South Lake remains the top spot on pan-sized fish with a few quality fish still coming on. All the forks of Bishop Creek and Intake II have been fair to good with regular DFG plants providing lots of rainbows and the brown trout are showing in fair numbers. North Lake has been fair to good, mostly at the upper end on small jigs. At Sabrina, the fishing has been tougher overall, but still fair for trollers and anglers fishing in inlets.
LONE PINE-INDEPENDENCE AREA: All the small streams along Highway 395 from Big Pine Creek to Cottonwood Creek remain fair to good, and most have been planted again this week.
KERN: Kern River (Sections 4 and 5).
TULARE: Balch Park Lake (Lower and Upper), Hedrick Pond (Redwood Lake).
Fishing remains good out of Central Coast landings for assorted rockfish. Patriot Sportfishing (Avilia Beach) has one boat in the boatyard for repairs and is operating half-day trips with the other boat. Offshore counts out of San Diego were down much of the past week and through the weekend, mostly thanks to some wind and poor tides, anglers on the 1 1/2-day and two-day boats were still finding a good pick on the yellowtail on floating kelp, along with a few dorado and some Bluefin tuna. The staff of 976-TUNA is hosting instructional charters throughout the year, offering advice to beginning or veteran anglers and on-the-water teaching of techniques for different saltwater species. The next trip is a two-day trip aboard the Freedom out of 22nd Street Landing in San Pedro leaving Aug. 18. Cost is $250 per angler. For information on upcoming 976-TUNA instructional charters, call 562-352-0012 or go to the website at www.976-TUNA.com.