Freshwater Hot Spots

TROUT: In the Eastern Sierra Nevada the trout bite has been fair to good this past week at most waters in the region not experiencing high runoff. The best bets are Crowley Lake, which has simply been wide open for fly-anglers fishing midge patterns below strike indicators. There is also a very good bite Bridgeport Reservoir, and June Lake and Convict Lake are good. In Southern California, Big Bear Lake is a good bet with a chance at a quality trout planted a couple of weeks ago for the May Trout Classic. Fish to nearly eight pounds reported this past week. Silverwood Lake slowed, but still pretty fair for trout. Jenks Lake and Green Valley Lake are also both fair to good. In San Diego County, Cuyamaca is fair with plants most week.

BLACK BASS: The bass action is good across the region with the bass out of the spawn and chasing baitfish. Top bets are Barrett Lake, which opened three weeks ago, Lower Otay, San Vicente, Skinner, Perris, Diamond Valley, Silverwood, Puddingstone, Piru, Pyramid, Castaic, Casitas, and Cachuma. On the Colorado River, the bites are pretty good in Havasu and Mohave along with the lower river backwaters.

STRIPED BASS: The California aqueduct near Taft is still good on frozen sardines and blood worms, but not wide open like it had been for the past month. The striper action was generally fair most other places this past week, with Castaic, Pyramid, Skinner, Silverwood, and Diamond Valley all fair, in about that order. All are producing quite a few fish for anglers targeting them with cut bait or shad-like topwater and swimbaits. The Colorado River’s Lake Havasu and Lake Mohave are both fair to good with good numbers and fish to 10 pounds.

PANFISH: The bluegill and redear bites are good all over the region. Top bets for bluegill and/or redear are Lower Otay, Perris, Skinner, and Diamond Valley. Lopez and Santa Margarita on the Central Coast are also fair to good for bluegill. Redear in Havasu are also starting to go crazy, and the whole Colorado River is getting pretty good. Few reports on hot crappie bites, but anglers might want to keep an eye on Cachuma and Isabella, both of which are producing a few fish in relatively tough bites. Casitas has had a couple of nice fish reported on live shad again this past week.

CATFISH: Overall, the catfish bites have been improving across the region with the warmer weather. Some decent catches beginning at Skinner, Elsinore, and Diamond Valley. Cachuma also is turning on. By far the best action has been on the lower Colorado River where both the channel and flathead catfish bites are really turning on. Flatheads to 30-plus pounds again reported in the past week.

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