Lake Almanor Fishing Report June 8, 2007

We got off to an early start this morning, it was absolutely beautiful out there. We began working the East shore just up from the dam. With plenty of people in possession of their double rod stamps  we ran 6 rods, 2 on side planers and 4 on the Cannon downriggers. Running a lot of rods enables you to not only cover a wide swath of water but also cover a wide variety of depths with different offerings. We trolled a short distance before hooking up our first fish, a 3.5 pound Brown at 20 feet. The next fish came a short time later right on the surface, this time it was a salmon. We had several other hook-ups that didn't stick but it seemed that the action was going to come at 20 to 25 feet. I decided to make a move to an area near Rocky point and almost immediately I started seeing fish on the graph, this time they looked to be hanging around the 35 to 40 foot range. I started dropping the gear and in seconds one of the back rods popped. After a great battle I netted another Brown, this time in the 4.5 pound range. This would end up being our biggest of the day. We continued to work that area for the rest of the day, and while we had good action on the rods, the fish were short striking at our gear. We boated a pair of Bows and lost several other fish before calling it a day. Our best action came on a threaded mini crawler run 18 inches behind a silver dodger.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report May 10, 2007

The East shore was a little quiet for us this morning. We did manage to land one nice 'Bow a 10 feet on the black and silver grub. We moved over to the Prattville area in search of fish and found them. There were tremendous bug hatches going on for most of the day and the fish were feeding up on the easy meal. We found the best results trolling size 6 brown flies right on the surface 200 feet behind the boat as well as on the side planers. We concentrated on the open water well off shore where we could see the most active fish rolling on the surface. While the bite wasn't red hot it was consistent and we continued boating healthy fish right into the afternoon. The boat ended up with limits of Rainbows to 4 pounds. The surface temp was running 52 in the morning and 56 when we pulled off the lake.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report May 4, 2007

With the weather being much more cooperative than a couple days ago at Bucks Lake we headed for the West shore and the area that has been producing so well for me this year. We dropped in just South of Prattville and headed North. This area had been holding a decent amount of Pond Smelt as well as the trout that were feeding on them. As we worked our way North it was obvious things had changed. I wasn't seeing and dead floating smelt on the surface (a good indicator that there is some active feeding in the area) but more importantly the rods weren't bouncing. After fishing the West shore hard and only pulling one nice Rainbow it was time to move. We headed over to the East shore to an area about 2 miles up from the dam. It didn't take long to figure the move was worth it. With in minuets of putting gear down Greg was hooked up with a nice 22 inch salmon. Due to the pond smelt numbers in the lake the salmon look like footballs and fish in the 22 to 24 inch range will weigh 4 to 6 pounds. We continued to make passes and would hook at least one fish per pass. We originally started out deeper getting bit at 18 to 26 feet but ended up moving in as shallow as 10 feet of water running our gear just under the surface. The fish were not shy about hitting the baits with most of the salmon going air borne and putting up some great battles. We had just about everything in the lake hit our baits including the salmon, Bows, Browns to just short of 5 pounds, and the fattest hen Smallmouth I think I have ever seen. (she was carefully released) Our best baits were black and silver grubs rigged with a Wigglefin in front for a little extra action and loaded with Pro-Cure's Trophy Trout scent.

Happy Birthday Ron!!

Some Fat Kings

Lake Almanor Fishing Report April 17-22, 2007

The wild winds we experienced early on in the week subsided with the only evidence being the dock at the Canyon Dam Boat Ramp pitched at a 45 degree angle to the ramp instead of being straight down the center. With the success I have been having on the West shore I find it hard to experiment with new areas. The routine is about the same each day. In the morning we have been starting out top lining black and silver Rapalas in the shallows. This bite is best in the morning but will hold out till noon or so if the cloud cover keeps the sun off of the water. Once the shallow bite dries up I have been moving out off shore a little bit into 12 to 25 feet of water and switching over to black and silver grubs, and orange and gold spoons, and dropping down 7 to 12 feet on the Cannon Downriggers. I have been covering the baits with either Pro-Cures Trophy Trout Sauce or Freshwater Shrimp Oil. There are still a good number of Pond Smelt in the area, all though not as many as several weeks ago, and most of the fish we have been catching are loaded with them. We have managed mostly Rainbows with a few Browns running 2 to 4 pounds. The surface temperature has been running from the mi 40's to 50 degrees depending on the amount of sun and wind. This bite should continue strong in the weeks to come. This coming weekend its off to Pyramid Lake for the 18th Annual Fish the West Classic.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report March 18, 2007

I would rate the trout bite at Almanor as slow but very consistent, if that makes any sense. I was out with clients most of the week and day after day the conditions were almost identical; 25 to 30 degrees in the morning but with the clear skies and little or no breeze we were down to our t-shirts by 10 am. I find flat water and bright sun are about the worst conditions you can have when fishing most of these lakes and that's exactly what we had. That said, we always seemed to have a pretty good afternoon bite, even on the top lined rods. The details; I spent 98 percent of my time somewhere along the West shore of the lake, from just South of Prattville to the Chester Airport. The fish seemed to be holding in this area due to massive amounts of Pond Smelt. Every fish we landed had a distended belly and upon cleaning they were chuck full of 2-3 inch smelt, which is great news after several years with the Pond Smelt population being low. The depth of water we were fishing ranged from 6 feet to 40 feet and everywhere in between. I found water temps starting in the high 40's in the mornings going up to the mid 50's in the afternoon. Due to the lack of heavy in-flows and wind the water clarity is quite good and at times we could actually see groups of fish cruising and feeding. I ran a variety of gear at different times through out the days trying to hit on the "hot ticket" and most of it produced but by far the best were the black and white grubs run naked with liberal amounts of Pro-Cure's Trophy Trout scent. I was lucky enough to have enough people on board every day to enable me to run 4 to 6 rods at a time. I would kick out a couple rigs on the side planers and the others were run off the Cannon downriggers from 4 to 10 feet down and over 200 feet behind the boat. I think the best piece of advice I can give right now is use gear you have confidence in and that has a history of catching fish at Almanor (especially if it mimics a Pond Smelt), put it down, keep it down and cover as much water as possible. By putting in our time my clients have been able to hook limits to near limits of fish depending on the size of the group. The catch has been made up of mostly Rainbows with a few Browns and Smallmouth Bass mixed in and running from 2-4.5 pounds.. The forecast is for a little precipitation early in this next week and by the end of the week it is supposed to be back to Spring like conditions. With the water temps running where they are, and the conditions ideal, the bite should go from ok to wide open at any time.


Lake Almanor Fishing Report March 10, 2007

We had a little hiccup in the trout bite today on Almanor. It was one of those days that I think is a little to nice for fishing. The lake was like a sheet of glass all day long and while it was chilly in the morning it wasn't long until we were in t-shirts. We started the morning about half way up the West shore in tight to the shore line. I wasn't real confidant due to the water temps running around 38 degrees, but we wanted to give it a shot. After a short while with out success we pulled up and ran further North to the bay in front of the Chester airport. This area has been producing quite well over the last several weeks. It is some of the warmest water on the lake due to its shallow nature. Once the lines were in the water we did find some Rainbows willing to bite but I would rate the overall action as slow. We had action on threaded crawlers run from the surface on planer boards down to 6 feet on the Cannon downriggers in 9-13 feet of water. We also picked up some fish on gold and orange spoons in the 6 to 8 foot range on the riggers. The fish ranged from 1.5 to 3 pounds. There were several other boats in the general area all reporting slow action. The lake had plenty of sun on the water which kicked up the surface temp up to 46 as we pulled off the lake about mid day. With the forecast for continued good weather and steady pressure the bite should be moving into high gear as the water continues to warm.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report February 25, 2007

I re-scheduled this weekend's trips due to weather conditions. (That is not something you will hear me say very often.) The lake was plenty fishable, however with young children in the mix it is some times better to error on the side of caution and give them a trip to remember for reasons other than being wet, cold or uncomfortable. Almanor received snow over the last several days, in fact it is still snowing up at the lake as I am writing this report. Snow is good, especially since so far this Winter we are below average for precipitation. Those of you who are regular readers of my reports know that on Almanor and Eagle, snowy days with light winds are some of my favorite to fish and usually yield excellent results, so to say I was chomping at the bit to get out is an understatement. My full enclosure and dual heaters on the boat keep things comfortable on the inside, and for some reason on the back deck no one seems to care about the weather when they are hooked up to a nice trout on light tackle. Trips early on this last week saw the West shore action continue. The same rigs we were successful with last weekend (orange grub, Bloody Marry Uncle Larry's Spinner with an orange pony tail, and the black and white grubs behind dodgers) all produced fish from the surface down to 18 feet. The catch was about an even split of Browns and Bows to 4 pounds. Look for the winter trout bite to continue strong.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report February 17, 2007

A slight breeze overnight prevented the fog from forming and it was a crystal clear morning. We headed back to the West shore where we finished up yesterday however the bite was a little slow at the start but picked up as the morning went along. The orange grub and the Bloody Mary spinner did produce fish but today we also found good success on 2 inch black and white grubs run behind dodgers. With the sun bright and the water flat we moved out just a bit into 20 foot water and ran the rigs a little deeper (10 to 15 feet). By noon we had boated 2 limits, all Rainbows to 3.5 pounds and lost several others. The surface temp. was running 38 to 40 degrees. The ice pack near Prattville melted back substantially from the day before and now extended only half way across the lake leaving what looked like a mine field of moorage buoys that had broken free in the middle of the lake.

Another Nice Rainbow For Rene

A Beautiful February Day

Lake Almanor Fishing Report February 16, 2007

This morning we were greeted with "pea soup" fog which made for a slow run on the GPS to an area just North of Almanor West. We started dropping gear from the surface to 8 feet on the Cannon downriggers in 10   to 12 feet of water. The surface temp was running in the 37 degree range which is several degrees higher than other parts of the lake. It didn't take long before we were hooked up. We continued to work this area for the rest of the morning keeping two of the rigs near the bottom and the other two 3 to 4 feet below the surface. The top producers were 3 inch orange grubs and Uncle Larry's Spinners in Bloody Mary with an orange grub "pony tailed" on the hook. We fished these rigs 150 feet behind the boat at 1.4 mph. The results were a 50/50 mix of Browns and 'Bows to 3.5 pounds. (** On cloudy or foggy days the Bloody Mary spinner with an orange grub is one of my favorites.**) The water was flat for most of the morning however as we were leaving around noon a good Northeast wind to 15 mph had picked up. A word of caution there is still a large mass of ice extending East from the Prattville area almost all the way across to the peninsula. As a result of the ice there are a lot of floating obstacles in the lake such as buoys, logs and pieces of boat docks.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report February 11, 2007

Rain and light snow in the area. The lake is now mostly ice free and ready to fish. I will be back out this up-coming week. Stay tuned for more information.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report February 2, 2007

Lots of ice still covering the lake, limiting access to what open water there is. Once we get a storm front to push in and warm things up I will be back to chasing the trophy 'Bows and Browns.

Lake Almanor Fishing Report January 26, 2007

One might consider an ice auger instead of a boat. The lake appears to be about 98% covered in ice right now. Most of the ice is not safe for ice fishing. I launched at the Canyon Dam facility around 5:30 am. The lake is down which has left quite a bit of sand/silt/dirt/rocks on the ramp, which thanks to the cold temps, was frozen pretty solid but provided solid footing for a launch. We loaded up and headed out, and within 200 feet of leaving the dock it was a mad scramble to get some lines in as the graphs were lit up with fish. I took a course across the face of the dam and over to the rocks of the East shore, and by the time we got there we had managed to hook 3 fish landing 2 of them. We continued working the Eastern side of the bay for several hours which resulted in 5 more fish to the boat, however once the sun hit the water around 8am the graphs went quiet and so did the rods. I would have loved to change location and follow the fish but ice as thick as 1.5" prevented that. Almost everything we had in the water got hit. Bloody Mary Uncle Larry Spinners with an orange grub, a silver dodger with a white grub trailing, and copper and red spoons all produced. We fished these rigs 125 feet behind the boat from 2 to 20 feet down on the Cannon Downriggers and they all got a dose of Pro-Cure's Krill Gel. Speed was critical SLOW, SLOW, SLOW was the key, most of the time .8 to 1 mph. That being said we did manage to pick up several other Rainbows late in the morning on the copper and red spoons at 7 feet doing 1.5 mph. The water temp started at 34.4 in the morning and got as high as 35.2 when we came off the water around 1pm.

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