Los Angeles Area Lakes, March 17 report

CACHUMA: The hot crappie bite has stayed the top bet with very good action, including some 25-fish limits and some slabs to three pounds reported. The best bite has been on small tube or feather jigs tipped with scent or Crappie Nibbles fished along the main river channel on structure, but rocky shore structure, and the docks and boat house are also holding a lot of fish. Also still some fish for slow-trolling all over the lake. Both the largemouth and smallmouth bass bites are also pretty fair with a lot of fish to three pounds reported on nightcrawlers, plastic worms, and reaction baits. Few reports of catfish, but a few are still showing on small pieces of garlic-soaked cut baits. The carp are also massing in big schools and cruising in the shallows, especially on warm days, so the bow-fishing opportunities are good again. The first trout plant of the year is tentatively set for March 23 and there are two additional plants planned in April before the annual derby. Other species have been very slow. Carp bowfishing permits are available at the entrance gate. Private boats must be inspected for quagga mussels and face a 10-day dry dock requirement before being allowed to launch. For quagga mussel and the boat launching information, log on at http://www.sbparks.org/DOCS/Cachuma.html. The marina is open with rental boats available. The boat launch remains open, but boats must get a quagga mussel inspection. Information: 805-688-4040.

CASITAS: The bass are still up tight in shallow water (most less than 10 feet) nosing around for the spawn. The action has been good with a lot of fish over three pounds on plastics and nightcrawlers, but few bigger fish. A few crappie also showed up this week, most landed by trout trollers dragging Needlefish. The trout action is slow to fair, even after the DFW trout plant on Wednesday this week. The best action has been for trollers. The last plant before this one was four weeks ago. Only a few redear or bluegill. Bowfishing is allowed here for carp, but only from a boat after 8 a.m. Lake staff must approve bows. Private boats must be inspected for quagga mussels and face a 35-day dry dock requirement before being allowed to launch. Information: 805-649-2043 or www.casitasboatrentals.com.

CASTAIC: The striper bite is fair on sardines or lug worms fished in deeper water near the dam and off main lake points. The largemouth and smallmouth bass are fair to good, with a lot of fish in shallow water (less than 15 feet) already moving up for the spawn. Best action on plastics and nightcrawlers, but some fish on crankbaits early and late in the day, especially the smallmouth. DFW trout plant last week. Slow trout action with most of the rainbows dispersing away from the launch ramp. A few catfish are showing on cut baits or nightcrawlers. Other species are slow. For information call 661-775-6232 or www.CastaicLake.com.

PIRU: Fair to good largemouth and smallmouth bass bites, with quite a few fish in shallower water in a pre-spawn movement. Both shoreline and boat anglers are using plastics on structure. Fish to four pounds reported. The crappie bite has also improved with some slabs to two pounds reported on small jigs tipped with Crappie Nibbles, most are nice three-quarter pounders. Catfish are slow with only the odd fish reported on a cut bait in 20 to 60 feet of waterOther species are very slow. The launch ramp is open. Water level is very low and boater should be aware that lake hazards exist with the low lake levels. Rental boats are also available. Information: gatehouse at 805-521-1500 or at www.camplakepiru.com

PYRAMID: DFG trout plant went in last week, and a few rainbows were caught on small spoons and spinners before dispersing away from the marina. Stripers continue to be the best bet with fair to good action, mostly on cut baits, but also some fish on slow-trolled lures. The dam and main lake points have been the best spots with most fish in the two-pound class but some to six or seven pounds so far this month. A few catfish are showing on cut baits but this bite is slow. Largemouth bass have been fair and improving daily with the best action on plastics and reaction baits, but most of the fish are moving up into the shallows. Bluegill and redear slow. There is a health warning about eating fish from here. More information at this link: http://www.oehha.ca.gov/fish/so_cal/pyramidlake2013.html. Information: Emigrant Landing entrance booth at 661-295-7155 or the web site at campone.com.

LOS ANGELES/ORANGE COUNTY PARK NEWS: Most of the city and county parks are being planted with trout every two to three weeks by the Department of Fish and Wildlife. The following Los Angeles urban waters are slated to get fish: Alondra Park Lake, Belvedere Lake, Cerritos Lake, Downey Wilderness Park Lake, El Dorado Park Lakes, Hansen Dam Lake, Kenneth Hahn Lake, La Mirada Lake, Legg Lakes, Lincoln Park Lake, Reseda Park Lake, and Sante Fe Reservoir. In Orange County, Centennial Lake, Ralph Clark Park Lake, Trabucco Creek, and Tri-City Lake are slated to get fish this week. For updates, anglers can check the trout plants on the DFW website (https://nrm.dfg.ca.gov/FishPlants/) for any updates and future plants.

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