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'06 Lake Almanor Reports

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'07 Bucks Lake Reports

'06 Eagle Lake Reports

'07 Eagle Lake Reports

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Lake Almanor / Bucks Lake Fishing Report May 9, 2009

Brian Shontz and Rick Kennedy of Davis California returned this year to again do a combo trip, fishing Almanor one day and Bucks Lake the next. We had a couple good days in 2008 with the high light being Brian's 20 pound Mackinaw caught on the last pass of the day at Bucks. I picked up the duo on the docks at Wilson's Camp Prattville on Friday morning and in short order we had lines in the water heading south along Almanor's west shore. The water temp on the surface was in the low 50's and there had been a decent number of Browns holding in the shallows. It didn't take long for the first Brown to grab the black and silver Rapala on Rick's rod. We were running the baits 180 feet back and covered with Trophy Trout Sauce from Pro-Cure. We continued working the same area for several other hookups including a short fat 3.5 pound Brown and another hookup that gave Rick a great fight but was ultimately released. The weather was absolutely beautiful with bright sun and a flat glassy lake surface, not ideal for fishing the shallows so I moved us to a location near Dorado on the east shore and swung out the Cannon Downriggers. There were fish holding at the 20 foot mark, according to the sonar and the bouncing rod tips confirmed they were willing to bite. We failed to convert on several takedowns when the number 4 'rigger got hammered. It was a bikini colored Needlefish at 10 feet. Brian, to the rod in his usual speedy manor, was tied up with a hot Almanor Rainbow that gave him one heck of a fight. Another move put us along the west shore near Almanor West heading south to our starting location. Again the bikini Needlefish at 10 feet did its trick and Brian was doing battle with another Bow this time in the 4 pound class. What a fight and what a fish! Our last fish of the day came just as we got back in front of Wilson's, another Bow that was released.  Day two of our combo trip found us at Bucks Lake looking for some trophy Macks. I had some big shoes to fill after last years previously mentioned trip. We decided to work the area near Rainbow Point. I rigged my favorite Mack weapons, Stingfish from Pro-Troll, and began sinking lines to a variety of depths between 25 and 35 feet. The sonar was lit up with a pile of large returns that were diffidently Mackinaw. Rod two went down and it was fish on!! Following a powerful fight I slid the net under a 13 pounder for Rick. Brian was next, and on the very next pass, nearly in the same spot, rod 3 started pumping. Brian was on it. Another good battle and a 15.5 pounder was in the net. This would already be a good day of Mackinaw fishing at Bucks Lake, but what was to follow can only be described as a Mack Attack! Virtually every pass resulted in a hookup, we didn't get'em all, in fact we lost 3 fish including a hit that took the rod tip to the surface of the water and never let it up. I sure would have liked to see that one. The other fish we landed included a 7, 10, 16 and 3 other 15 pound class fish for a total of 8 fish landed, and a total weight of 106 pounds!!!!! We were able to release all but 2 fish, which inhaled the plug past their gills. What a day of fishing. As you might imagine these guys are already booked for the Friday and Saturday of Mothers Day Weekend in 2010, and I'm looking forward to it. I will get pictures up ASAP.

Lake Almanor / Bucks Lake Fishing Report April 26, 2009

My apologies for the delay in reports, things have been busy up here in the mountains. Almanor is still kicking out some beautiful fish. The waters have warmed and bug hatches are popping all over the lake. The surface temps in the mornings have been running near 50 degrees and shooting up to 57 in the afternoons under sunny skies and light wind. Several low pressure systems have seemed to scatter the fish. The east shore has still been giving up some nice chunky Browns to 4 pounds. The fish are full of smelt or bugs and sometimes both. The west shore Brown fishing has picked up for us also with the warming waters. Black and silver Rapalas ripped in  the shallows have stuck fish on both sides of the lake. Late mornings and early afternoons I have been moving up to the flats on the north west side of the lake to find some hot Rainbows to 3 pounds. Pond smelt imitations and flies have been producing the fish for us. The weather forecast looks pretty good which should stabilize things and only improve the bite. Now for a little Bucks Lake update. The summit road has been plowed from Quincy up to the lake and the ramp at Lakeshore Resort is open. I made a quick scouting run with some very positive results. We hit the water about 11am and started with a quick top line run on the back side of the lake. It only took seconds before the first brown was hooked up. We landed 4 Browns to 3 pounds before switching to the Mackinaw gear and moving out into the open water of the lake. With time running short I really wasn't getting excited with what I was seeing on the sonar. Fifteen minuets into the troll I spotter a school of Macs suspended at 35 feet which was right in line with where we had placed the gear on the Cannon Downriggers. A few seconds later Jeff grabbed a rod out of the holder and it was fish on. Following a good fight I slipped the net under a 12 pound Mackinaw. We quickly released the fish and headed off to the ramp to put the boat back on the trailer. The lake looked to be about 10 to 12 feet down and on the rise with a fair amount of snow still waiting to melt into the lake. Looks like it will be a better year as far a lake levels go, and good water means good fishing.

First 09 Mackinaw

Brad's Bow

He always catches fish at Almanor


Lake Almanor Fishing Report April 4, 2009

The conditions here at Lake Almanor have been a little up and a little down. The skies for the most part have been clear but some pressure gradients moving in and out created a fair amount of wind this week. The fishing is still hanging on and we are managing to put some nice fish in the boat. My main focus has still been the lake's Brown Trout population. The east shore action that had been fairly solid for a while now started to slow down but areas on the south side of the peninsula picked up the slack and started kicking out some beautiful Browns. Our fish have been averaging around 3 pounds with a few smaller fish in the 2 pound class and a few in the 4-4.5 pound range. As mentioned in previous reports the black and silver Rapalas, that do such a good job of imitating the Pond Smelt in the lake, have continued to work their magic in the shallows. I'm still running these baits 150 to 200 feet behind the boat with a healthy dose of Pro-Cure's Trophy Trout Sauce. The fish are feeding heavily on the Pond Smelt in the lake, and the "I ate to much but still want more" award goes to a 17 inch Brown that inhaled our 4.5 inch bait. When I cleaned that fish later in the day we discovered 2 dozen 3 inch smelt in his gut. The water level is still slowly on the rise and visibility in the areas I have been fishing is good at 5 to 7 feet. The surface temps have been running from 45 in the mornings to as high as 47 in the afternoons. The forecast is calling for some unsettled weather this week, once it clears look for the fishing to get right back on track. Congrats to Art Montiel of Redwood City who, during his first fishing experience ever, set the bar pretty high when he landed a 4 plus pound beautifully colored Almanor Brown.

Another Brown To The Boat

Art's First Brown


Lake Almanor Fishing Report March 25, 2009

The days are sure starting to feel like spring here at Lake Almanor. The mornings have been flat and glassy with just a little wind in the afternoons for the most part. We have gotten a little more wind from time to time as low pressure systems have moved by stirring up some gusty conditions out of the north. The fishing is what I would call ok right now, with the numbers going up and down, but ready to explode at any second. All of the conditions on the lake are present to open it up into a full blown red hot spring bite. The water, due to a slightly better winter is on the rise,  surface temps have been starting out about 42 degrees in the mornings and warming to 48 under the sunny skies. There is a huge volume of Pond Smelt scattered all along the east shore as well as some up the west side. These little fish are a valuable food source for the sport fish in the lake, when their numbers are big the trout respond by being even fatter and more feisty than normal. Large groups of the Pond smelt can be seen all along the east shore in the mornings pushed to the surface by fish and being drilled from the air by the birds, later in the day they seem to be a little deeper with the only evidence of the maylay being scattered dead smelt floating on the surface and an occasional small group of injured disoriented fish. The Browns and Bows are both keying in on them and all the fish we have been landing have been stuffed full. One Brown, in the 3 pound class, spit up 13 on the floor of my boat while I was removing the hook. Others have had 25 to 30 visible smelt in their guts when I cleaned them. Like I said the fishing is doing ok right now and ready to only get better. I have been concentrating on the east shore trolling Rapalas in black and silver, and black and gold. We have been running these baits 200 feet behind the boat and coating them with Pro-Cure's Trophy Trout Sauce. This is a fun and exciting technique because the Rogue Rods are in your hands and when the fish light them up they do it in a big way, and due to the shallow water they usually make several acrobatic jumps. Our catch has been made up of exclusively Browns weighing 2 to 3.5 pounds with the larges ones going up to 4.5 pounds. In fact it has been quite a few trips since I have seen a Rainbow on board. I have made a few runs over to the west shore just to check on things, and today we did hook a couple fish just south of Prattville using the same techniques.  Again, all the conditions are primed and ready to bust wide open, you don't want to miss this spring bite at Almanor.


Lake Almanor Fishing Report March 20, 2009

Well how about an update from Lake Almanor. It looks like my rain dancing has accomplished a couple things; first the positive, we have been the recipient of a fair amount of precipitation in the form of both snow and rain. (More is still needed) The negative is that the rising  snow level brought  very heavy rain to the Almanor Basin resulting in a huge rush of water hitting the lake.  This heavy snow melt churned the waters of Almanor to the point that in some places it looked more like chocolate milk, while also dropping the water temp some 4 to 5 degrees in places in a matter of 4 days. Needless to say all this had a negative effect on the fishing. We have now seen almost a week of fair weather with warm spring days and very little wind. This has really helped water clarity as well as the temperature. In places over the last couple days I have been able to see my downrigger releases as deep as 8 feet and the water temp on the surface has been starting in the low 40's and topping out around 48 in the early afternoon. The pond smelt have come up out of the deep water and have concentrated all along the east shore and the browns have followed. We have been concentrating on the rocky shorelines at various points along the east shore in the shallows for aggressively feeding browns. Working the shallows with black and silver Rapalas coated with Pro-Cure's Trophy Trout Sauce has produced brown from 2 to 4.5 pounds with the average fish going over 3 pounds. While many of these fish have been released, the fish I have cleaned for clients have been stuffed with 3 inch pond smelt. The fish are fat and healthy putting up great battles on the light tackle. This bite has been fairly solid from the early morning until 10 or 11 and then shuts off due to pressure and clear conditions. We have been able to move out over deeper water in the later mornings and catch Rainbows from 4 to 10 feet down on the downriggers. Our best baits for the Bows have been The Naked Nightcrawler and Artic Fox Tube Flies in a Pond Smelt pattern. Looks like we have a couple days of storms ahead, following that I expect the fishing to pick up right where it left off and only continue to get better as we move along into spring. The "Captain's Club" up and running. This is a way for me to better stay in touch with you. As a member you will be eligible for special reports featuring hot bites, open days, discounted rates, and special offers. You will also be entered into a yearly drawing for a free fishing trip. For more information and to register CLICK HERE . Until then.

Danny's Brown


Lake Almanor Fishing Report February 6, 2009

The quality of fishing has been steadily on the increase over the last couple of weeks. Water temps are in the high 30's to low 40's depending on time of day and your location on the lake. I have run just a few trips in the last couple weeks, and have continued to work the east shore in a variety of locations. With every trip the number and size of the Browns have improved. The largest so far has been a 4.5 pounder caught by S.F. Johnson of Magalia CA. The weapons of choice have been Rapalas in a variety of colors but my old stand-by black and silver has been producing the best. We are fishing these baits in 7 to 10 feet of water and nearly 200 feet behind the boat. I also have been making heavy use of Pro-Cure's Trophy Trout scent. We have experienced several days of much needed rain and are now looking at several days of snow. This precipitation is a good thing (Trust me we need it bad). Despite the inclement weather the access at the Canyon Dam Boat Launch is good. Once these next series of storms clear I will be back out after them. The "Captain's Club" up and running. This is a way for me to better stay in touch with you. As a member you will be eligible for special reports featuring hot bites, open days, discounted rates, and special offers. You will also be entered into a yearly drawing for a free fishing trip. For more information and to register CLICK HERE . Until then.

Fishing Report January 20, 2009

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you who stopped by the booth at the Sacramento ISE Show. It was good to see some of my old friends and to meet some new ones. As I probably mentioned to you at the show, we are currently watching the ice situation at Lake Almanor. The ice has been rapidly building from the north and quickly swallowing up the open water. There are several storm fronts on the way which will help to break up the high pressure overhead and free up more fishable water. As soon as I get back on the water in search of those trophy Browns (Hopefully later this week.) you will know about it.

Fishing Report December 22, 2008

"It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas" or so the song goes. Winter has finally decided to show up dropping snow to low levels in the Sierras. We have close to a foot of snow here in Quincy even after a full day of rain yesterday. It is probably no surprise to most of you that I have been doing secret rain and snow dances after dealing with low lake levels all year. While we did end up with quite a season at Eagle Lake, producing both good numbers and quality size, launching was a bit challenging due to the shallow water. A good rush of water this spring following a good winter will certainly help. The summer trout bite was unbelievable at Bucks Lake. The quality 'Bows went on a tear through most of July and August as we caught and released some days more than 40 fish per morning. Almanor certainly lived up to its reputation producing a killer spring Brown bite. We were held off the water by a persistent ice pack until the first part of March, but once it opened up at the Canyon Dam boat ramp we were rewarded with an spectacular bite for quality Browns along the east shore. I'm looking forward to another great year in '09. I'm taking a little bit of time while the weather is here to accomplish some routine maintenance on both boats to have them ready to go when the roads and skies clear. Weather and ice permitting I will be doing some trips on Almanor from now through January until the big Sacramento International Sportsmen's Expo at Cal Expo January 15th to the 18th. I'd like to invite all of you to the show and to stop by and say hi. This year as in years past I will be in booth number 3436 in the Sportfishing Hall. Here is wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

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