Lake Almanor Fishing Report, August 2, 2006

I hit the water at 6:30 am with the Fredrick family and headed to the West shore. We fished from the Almanor West boat launch to Prattville working water that was 40 to 45 feet deep keeping our offerings from 28-35 feet down. The top producing lure was the "Black Perch" Uncle Larry's Spinner with a threaded mini crawler. The baits were run 100 feet off of the Cannon Downrigger cable and 1.2 to 1.5 MPH seemed to be the ticket. We managed to catch fish until noon when we had to be in. We ended up hooking 9 fish from 2 to 4 lbs including several nice Browns.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report, April 29, 2006

Well this is the first day I had to put the boat top up for shade in a long time. The water was flat, the skies sunny, and the breeze light, a beautiful day on Lake Almanor. Water temps around the lake vary but it was 52 degrees at Canyon Dam Boat Ramp at 6 am and got as high as 56 along the West shore. I talked to several bass boats who had seen 60 degree water at several locations. The water clarity was good however there was a lot of grassy debris floating around and fouling our lines from time to time. The spring trout bite continued but not quite as strong as last week. I again concentrated our efforts on the West shore South of Prattville. Our first passes were made shallow top-lining the 4.5 inch Smithwick Rattlin’ Rogues in the same pattern that had worked in the past (blue back orange belly) and we managed to land several Browns. As the sun got higher and brighter I moved out off of the shore line and kept the top lines out but added a couple of rods on the Cannon downriggers  set at 9 and 12 feet with Uncle Larry Spinners in “special green” and “black perch” with 2 inch brown grubs pony tailed up. I also kicked a couple of rods out on the side planers with the Rogues. While the spinners did pick up some fish the top-lined Smithwicks were still the best producers. The planer board on the shore side run in shallows also became very popular with the Smallmouth. I have been running heavy amounts of Pro-Cure Trophy Trout Sauce on all of my lures and it has seemed to really make a difference. The end results were a few sunburned ears, arms, and noses, Browns, Bows, and Smallies from 2-4 pounds and a group of happy kids. Bucks Lake Observations: The snow continues to melt but the lake is still 95% covered in ice. It looks like from Rainbow Point to the dam the ice is beginning to change color indicating it may be close to opening up. I will be starting my Lake Davis trips this week so look for Davis reports coming soon.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report, April 23, 2006

The bite broke wide open today. I continued to fish the West shore starting just north of Rocky Point to Prattville. The water was flat and 43 degrees under partly cloudy skies and it just felt like a good morning for Browns. With in 5 minuets of getting the lines in the water one of my clients landed a chunky 17 inch salmon and from that point it was ON!! The fish seemed to come at regular intervals all the way up to the Prattville intake tower and it was Brown after Brown. We started out top lining an orange Rapala F13 along with a Smithwick Rattlin’ Rogue blue back with an orange belly. It didn’t take long to figure out that the Smithwick was the lure of choice. We ran the baits 150+ feet behind the boat at 2-2.5 mph and they received liberal doses of Pro Cure’s Trophy Trout Sauce every time they came to the boat. The end result was 27 fish landed, mostly Browns, a few Rainbows, one Salmon and one Smallmouth. (Almost all were released in good condition) The fish ranged in size from 2-4.5 lbs. The previous days I would have to say the bite was steady if you were willing to put your time in. I spent most of the time in and around Almanor West fishing water that was 15 to 45 feet in depth down 6-12 feet on the Cannon Downriggers. The top baits were Uncle Larry’s Spinners in ”copperback” and “special Green” with 2 inch orange and brown grubs pony tailed on the hooks. The debris and water clarity are both beginning to clear up and with any luck the good Spring bite will continue. Bucks Lake Observations: The summit road to Bucks Lake is plowed as far as the "T" where it intersects with Big Creek Road. (as of 4/26/05) You can drive up to Bucks Lake Lodge and they are open. There is still a large amount of snow around the lake and the water is 99% covered with snow and ice. There is a small amount of open water where Bucks Creek enters the lake. I made a quick "recon" run up the hill to check on the road conditions and thought with only minuets of light left it would be a good chance to break in the new Rogue fly rod. I made several casts and managed to hook a small Brown on a brown bead head bugger. With all the snow it looks like it will still be a while till the lake is open if Mother Nature cooperates.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report, April 15, 2006

Friday the 14th was easily one of the most beautiful mornings of 2006 on Lake Almanor with mostly clear skies and a calm water. On Friday I moved from my usual West shore trend and fished near the A-Frame on the peninsula. We almost immediately started putting fish in the boat. It was a mix of Browns, and Salmon ranging from 2-4 lbs. As we moved West outside the buoy line we encountered some extremely muddy colored water as I attempted to plot a course out of the muck and back to greener water a rod popped and then another. For the next hour we continued to work this pocket of colored water and continued to hook fish. The top producer, by far, was an Uncle Larry’s Spinner in “Special Green” with a 2 inch brown grub pony tailed on the hook. We fished this rig 150 feet behind the boat and 5 to 10 feet down on the Cannon Downriggers over 35-40 feet of water. I was applying heavy doses of Pro Cure’s Predator scent to the baits. At 11 am the barometer began falling like a rock ahead of a low pressure system and the bite shut off. After moving to Almanor West we picked up another fish but over all the lake was “off”. Saturday morning came around and the lake had a completely different look to it. The wind was up out of the South which made going back to my spot near the A-Frame out of the question and there was no doubt fishing would be tough. We fished the East shore for a short time without any success. The wind picked up out of the West so we pulled and ran through 4 foot rollers to get up the West Shore and dropped in just North of Prattville. The West shore provided us with some shelter from the wind and I had graphed good numbers of fish the day before now all we had to be is hook them up. We picked up our first fish on the “Special Green” from the day before but that was it. I started changing up lures and started running bright colored rigs. Orange was the key! Orange pattern Uncle Larry’s with you guessed it orange grubs on the hooks. We also managed to hook fish on orange and gold Rapalas. All of the fish were caught in the top 12 feet of the water, with 9 and 12 feet being our most successful depths. The fish were all healthy Bows with one Brown thrown in the mix and ranged from 2 to 6 lbs. The water temperature varies throughout the lake from the low to high 40’s depending on where you are and how much sun is on the water. The lake is extremely full right now and there is A LOT of floating debris in the water including some logs the size of boat docks so look out. The weather man is calling for a more stable weather pattern and warmer temps which should put the lake on a solid bite.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report, April 11, 2006

First of all I have to apologize for not posting reports over the last couple of weeks. I will do my best to summarize a number of recent trips as well as include some current information. The overall fishing has been fair with moments of great depending on the weather. I have continued to spend most of my time on the West shore from Rocky point to Chester with a good portion of that time spent between Prattville and Almanor West. The water temps are still "cold" and are ranging between 37 and 42 depending on where you are at on the lake and how much sun and or wind is on the water. Most all the fish we have been catching in these areas have been in the top 10 feet of water and because they are so shallow I have been very careful to run the gear at least 150' behind the boat. All of the usual gear has been working to one degree or another with no solid pattern to put my finger on. I have been starting each trip with a variety of baits out and narrowing them down based on the amount of action they seem to produce. Some of the top producers have been orange trolling flies, Uncle Larry's Spinners in "Black Perch", "Gold/Orange", "Special Green", and "Green Glow Tiger", (I have been "Pony Tailing" 2 or 3 inch brown or green grubs on the hooks.) Needlefish and Speedy Shiner Spoons in silver/orange or gold/orange patterns, and Rapalas in black/gold, orange/gold, or Vampire colors. Other areas that have produced fish include Rec.1 and the A-Frame as well as the East shore South of Dorado Inn and in these areas sometimes it has been necessary to go down to 15 feet to hook up. With all the water running into the lake the water has a little haze to it and the lake is extremely full for this time of year, all the runoff has also prompted the Rainbows to begin to spawn. When the weather finally stabilizes look for this lake bust open. I will be back out on the water the end of this week.  Lake Davis Observations: As of 4/10/06 the boat ramp and parking lot at Honker Cove is open and while the boat dock is pulled up out of the water in the middle of the ramp there is still plenty of room and water to launch a boat. I didn't see any spawning fish in the stream adjacent to the ramp but I have heard that there have been a few. Some nice fish have been caught over the last couple of weeks by both bait and fly anglers fishing the Coot Bay and Mallard Cove areas. The East shore road is clear as far as the Mallard Cove access. I will begin running my guided trips at Davis the first week of May and still have some days open if you are interested.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report, March 19, 2006

We actually had a couple days with out any precipitation, however the winds did come into play this week. Winds from 5 to 15mph mostly from the North made things a little tough at times depending on where we were fishing. Over all the fish cooperated despite the unsettled barometer. As in weeks past we fished the West Shore but we also made several runs at the West side of the peninsula South of Bailey Creek. We continued to see allot of Rainbows in the bottom of the net with only a few Browns and Salmon. I ran all the usual array of tackle and this week the fish really took a liking to the Uncle Larry's Spinners but not to my standard "Black Perch", this week a new color "Special Green" was the ticket. We ran this spinner with a 2 inch brown grub "pony tailed" on the hook between 4 and 8 feet down on the Cannons again keeping the baits at least 100 feet behind the boat. The "Black Perch did account for a couple fish with an orange trolling fly hooking a few as well, but nothing could keep up with that "Special Green". The water temp was fluctuating between 35 and 37 depending on where we were on the lake.

The calendar says Spring but it definitely feels more like Winter. There was a solid 4 feet of snow at the Canyon Dam Boat Ramp but the parking lot and the Northern lane of the ramp was clear of snow and ice. The lake is on the rise and in the last week there has been allot more floating debris to look out for if you are on the water.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report, March 11, 2006

People must have read the weather report last week and got scared as we never saw another boat on the lake this weekend. The weather was a little un-settled but over all not bad. We would get short periods of snow flurries then the sun would come out for a while and the best part was the wind never got out of hand. It might have been uncomfortable in a small boat but with dual heaters inside the full canvas cab we were quite comfortable.  I concentrated our fishing efforts on the West shore from Rocky Point to Almanor West. Like the weather the bite has been up and down, but over all not bad. We have been hooking 7 to 14 fish per outing with the size ranging from 2 to 4.5 pounds. On recent trips most of our catch has been made up of Rainbows with a couple of Kings and Browns mixed in. The top producing lure again this week has been an Uncle Larry’s Spinner in “Black Perch” with a 3 inch brown grub “pony tailed” on the hook. Other baits that have been getting bit include orange soft plastic grubs and red and gold spoons with all of them receiving a liberal application of Pro-Cure’s Trophy Trout Sauce or Freshwater Shrimp Oil. All of our fish have been caught from the surface to 10 feet while trolling on the Cannon downriggers 125 to 150 feet behind the boat. The most apparent pattern has been to keep your baits in the water and cover a lot of water.

Anglers headed to Almanor should be prepared for rapidly changing weather and road conditions. As of Saturday there was about 18 inches to 2 feet of snow at the Canyon Dam Boat Launch but the county is doing an excellent job of keeping at least on lane of the ramp and the parking lot open during these storms.

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