Western Sierra, March 1 Report

LAKE ISABELLA: There is a fair to good trout bite at the auxiliary dam beach and off Engineer’s Point after a DFW plant three weeks ago. Most of the fish are showing on PowerBait and salmon eggs. Other species have been very slow, including catfish. The 2018 Isabella Lake Fishing Derby is set for March 24-26 with a $10,000 top prize for the longest trout and over $40,000 in prizes. Entry fee is $30 per person, $65 for a family (two adults and up to three kids). There will be major trout plants prior to the derby. Derby information at www.kernriverlally.com. For fishing information: Bob’s Bait 661-833-8657 or www.bobsbaitbucket.com, North Fork Marina at 760-376-1812, or Cope’s Tackle and Rod Shop at 661-679-6351 or www.tackleandrod.com.

KERN RIVER: The trout bite in the upper river above Isabella remained slow this week with colder weather keeping water temperatures in the 35 degree range again. A few fish are showing for bait anglers fishing salmon eggs or crickets, but the fly anglers are seeing very tough fishing. Section 2 in the lower river was planted last week. The lower river below Isabella is warmer. The Kern from Democrat Dam downstream to the next powerhouse is muddy. The lower Kern is slow for smallmouths and largemouths on small plastics and cranks. Most fish are small, and a very few catfish are being caught on clams. Information: Kern River Fly Shop 760-376-2040 or (www.kernriverflyfishing.com) or Gateway Market 760-376-2424.

AQUEDUCT NEAR TAFT: The striper bite remains fair with light fishing pressure. The stripers are very chunky fish, but most are just below the 18-inch minimum keeper size. The best bite has been on Gitzits for lure anglers, and blood or lug worms for bait fishermen. Catfish remain very slow. Anglers are reminded the limit on stripers is two fish greater than 18 inches, while the largemouth limit is five fish. Information: Bob’s Bait 661-833-8657 or www.bobsbaitbucket.com or Cope’s Tackle and Rod Shop at 661-679-6351 or www.tackleandrod.com.

MILL CREEK PARK AND CANAL: Very slow action. Only an occasional carp dough baits and Powder Bait, and the odd catfish reported on nightcrawlers.

RIVER WALK PARK LAKE: DFW trout plant two weeks ago. The trout bite had slowed way down. Best action on hatchery pellet or chunky cheese PowerBait, pink and white Mice Tails, and Sierra Slammer jigs. Other species very slow. The Firefighters Derby will be Saturday, March 10 this year, and it is limited to the first 800 anglers who sign up. Entry fee is $20 and the lowest-numbered tagged trout caught will win the $1,000 top prize. There will be 2,000 pounds of trout stocked for the event and 25 tagged trout, all worth cash. Information: Bob’s Bait 661-833-8657.

HART PARK LAKE: DFW trout plants last week and three weeks ago, and the bite has been fair on Mice Tails, garlic PowerBait, inflated nightcrawlers, and small trout jigs. There has also been some nice crappie showing. Not a lot of fish, but pretty decent quality. The carp bite is very slow on dough baits with the cold weather. No bass or bluegill this week.

TRUXTUN LAKE: Trout plant last week and three weeks ago made for good action over the weekend with quite a few fish continuing to show on Sierra Slammer jigs, chunky cheese or garlic PowerBait, pink and white Mice Tails, and inflated nightcrawlers doused with garlic oil. There have also been a fair number of nice crappie caught. Not a wide open bite, but a few nice fish reported. Other species have been very slow with the cold weather this week.

MING LAKE: Continued good trout action after DFW plant last week and two weeks ago. Most of the action has been on PowerBait, Mice Tails, small trout jigs, and inflated nightcrawlers. There has also been a fair bite on crappie on small minnows. The continued cool weather has kept the bass bite off with only a few showing on drop-shot plastics or nightcrawlers.

BRITE LAKE: DFW trout plant four weeks ago, and the trout action has slowed way down. An occasional fish still showing on small jigs or floating dough baits. Fewer crappie reports this past week, but some are still showing on small jigs. The Brite Lake Derby will be April 21 with the final weigh-in at 1:05 p.m. For more information on the derby, check with Amaysing Fishing Bait & Tackle at 661-429-5824.
BUENA VISTA LAKES: The trout action has slowed way down since the plant last week. The best action has been on hatchery pellet or chunky cheese PowerBait doused with Pro Cure garlic nightcrawler gel or Sierra Slammer trout jigs. The bass bite, which had been started to improved, has remained slow with the cooler weather. Fishing information: Bob’s Bait 661-833-8657 or www.bobsbaitbucket.com or Cope’s Tackle and Rod Shop at 661-679-6351 or www.tackleandrod.com.

WOOLLOMES LAKE: No reports.

SUCCESS LAKE: The big news is the crappie bite that has taken off here in the past two weeks with a lot of fish showing from the bank on minnows. Also some bluegill showing. The bass action is improving with fair action on plastics. Other species very slow. Information: Sequoia Fishing Company at 559-539-5626, www.sequoiafishingcompany.com or Cope’s Tackle and Rod Shop at 661-679-6351 or www.tackleandrod.com.

KAWEAH LAKE: The bass are tough with only a few fish on plastics. Most are 2- to 3-pounders, but some bigger fish. Other species are very slow. Launch ramp open. Information: Sierra Sporting Goods at 559-592-5212.

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