CACHUMA: The season’s first trout plant went in Wednesday last week. It consisted of 3,300 pounds of Nebraska Tailwalkers, and most of the rainbows were bigger than four pounds. More plants are slated for April before the annual fishing derby. The trout bite was good for shore anglers at Launch No. 5 immediately after the plant, but the fish have dispersed since and the best action has been for trollers using small Rapalas in black and gold or in rainbow trout colors. Johnson Bay, along the cliffs near the main point, and from the dam to Clark’s Canyon are the top spots. Eddie Robinson, Santa Barbara, had three trout for a total weight of 19 pounds and his best was an 11 1/2-pounder. All were caught on chrome-blue or rainbow Kastmasters from shore. The crappie bite slowed a little this week, but it is still fair to good. They are locked on structure and the hot spots have been the rocky areas and cliff-like shoreline, the docks, and along the main channel. Small jigs tipped with Crappie Nibbles are the best bait. Both the largemouth and smallmouth bass bites are becoming pretty good 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. 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 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) for the spawn. The action has been good with a lot of fish around three pounds on plastics and nightcrawlers, but few bigger fish. Wyatt Lunsden, Moorpark, landed a 7.34-pound bass on Saturday. During a weekend team bass tournament, Brian Evans and Matt Newman won first place with four bass that weighed 21.85 pounds. A few crappie also showed up this week, most landed by trout trollers dragging Needlefish. The trout action is slow. Most recent DFW trout plant was two weeks ago. The best action has been for trollers. 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 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. Guide Bob Caffey, Quartz Hill, guided two clients to 16 stripers last Friday with the biggest fish in the 5-pound class. 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 two weeks ago. 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 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 with some fish on reaction baits that imitate shad. Fish to four pounds reported. The crappie bite has been inconsistent, but some continue to show on small jigs tipped with Crappie Nibbles, most are nice three-quarter pounders. Catfish are slow with only the odd fish reported on cut bait in 20 to 60 feet of water. Other 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 camplakepiru.com.
PYRAMID: DFG trout plant went in three weeks ago. Few trout reports in past week with only an occasional fish on small spoons and spinners. 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 2-pound class but some to 6 or 7 pounds. 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: 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. No Los Angeles or Orange county urban waters are slated to get fish this week. For updates, anglers can check the trout plants on the DFW website (nrm.dfg.ca.gov/FishPlants/) for any updates and future plants.