Western Sierra, May 19 report

LAKE ISABELLA: There continues to be a pretty good catfish bite, mostly on large minnows, but still some on super meal worms and frozen shad. Most are in the three to six-pound range. Other species are pretty slow. There are a few trout at the dam on PowerBait or small spinners. Also a few bass, but the crappie bite has completely died. Water level continues to come up. The lake is reportedly at 19 percent (about double its maximum last year), and flows coming in are around 1,700 cfs, mostly thanks to thunderstorms early this week. The flow is 400 cfs coming out. For fishing information: Bob’s Bait 661-833-8657 or bobsbaitbucket.com or North Fork Marina at 760-376-1812.

KERN RIVER: The Kern River has been just fair to good with weekly plants in sections 4 through 6, and all sections getting trout last week and next week. The number of fish planted is still down from previous years, but the quality appears to be up. Best bite on the planted trout has been on crickets and salmon eggs. The action has continued to be fair to good for fly anglers on the upper river near Johnsondale Bridge for wild fish with a major crane fly hatch lasting all day and an afternoon blue-wing olive hatch with some surface trout activity. The lower river is still low and the bite is slow on species other than planted trout. A few bass are starting to show as water temperatures rise. Flows are still around 1,700 cfs going into Isabella and 400 cfs coming out. Information: Kern River Fly Shop 760-376-2040 (or kernriverflyfishing.com) or Gateway Market 760-376-2424.

AQUEDUCT NEAR TAFT: The good catfish bite has continued, and the quality of the fish has also remained good with a lot of five to 10 pounders. The catfish have been best on dip baits, chicken liver, anchovies, and sardines. The bite on small stripers is still good, but only a few are over the minimum size, but lots of action on blood or lug worms, sardines, and a few on lures. Only the odd largemouth showing on swimbaits, plastics, and live minnows. All sections of the aqueduct are again open to fishing and the flow is good right now. Anglers are reminded the limit on stripers is two fish greater than 18 inches, while the largemouth limit is five fish greater than 12 inches. Information: Bob’s Bait 661-833-8657 or bobsbaitbucket.com.

MILL CREEK PARK AND CANAL: Overall tough fishing with only the odd bass showing.

RIVER WALK PARK LAKE: The bass action has been slow to fair over the past week with only a few bass showing on Senkos, Brush Hawgs, plastic worms, and nightcrawlers. The bluegill bite is finally starting but still not hot.

HART PARK LAKE: Good bass action on Senkos, brush hawgs, plastics, small jigs, minnows or nightcrawlers. The bluegill bite is also starting with a few more fish on wax worms and meal worms, but the bite keeps going up and down with the weather. A few catfish have been reported.

TRUXTUN LAKE: A slow to fair bass bite on plastic worms, live minnows, or Senko-type baits. Few other reports, with only the odd bluegill or carp reported.

MING LAKE: A few bluegill are showing here in a fair bite, and this bite has been improving with each warm day. Best bite on meal worms, wax worms, and crickets. Fair bass action on Brush Hawgs, Senkos, live minnows, and plastic worms.

BRITE LAKE: There is a good crappie bite on half- to three-quarter pounders and an occasional bigger fish. Most are showing on small minnows. Also some bass showing.

BUENA VISTA LAKES: There is a fair catfish bite with most anglers fishing dip baits. The bluegill bite is getting better daily with the warm weather. Beast action on meal worms or wax worms. Only the occasional bass reported. Fishing information: Bob’s Bait 661-833-8657 or bobsbaitbucket.com.

WOOLLOMES LAKE: Few reports, but the bass are fair, and a few bluegill have been caught on warmer days.

SUCCESS LAKE: Water level is coming up with the lake about half full, and the bass bite has been fair to good on plastics and reaction baits. A few panfish starting to show, along with the odd catfish. Slow other species. The new marina is in operation. Information: Sequoia Fishing Company at 559-539-5626, sequoiafishingcompany.com. For updated fishing reports, go to the Fresno Bee report at fresnobee.com/sports/outdoors/hunting-fishing/.

KAWEAH LAKE: The bass bite has been good, probably the best spot in the region, with a lot of fish showing on drop-shot plastics, and some on reaction baits and nightcrawlers. Most fish in less than 15 feet of water. Bluegill just starting to show. Other species still very slow. Launch ramp open, lake near full. Information: Sierra Sporting Goods at 559-592-5212. For updated fishing reports, go to the Fresno Bee report at fresnobee.com/sports/outdoors/hunting-fishing/.

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