LOWER DESERT WATERS
SALTON SEA: The tilapia action is still excellent. There has been a surge of bigger tilapia again over the past week with quite a few fish to three pounds in the mix. The best bite on the bigger fish has been when the breeze comes up early in the afternoon through the evening and night. Anglers are catching as many fish as they’re willing to clean or fillet with some filling ice chests. The bite is still best on nightcrawler pieces, but some fish on red worms or pieces of Berkley sand worm baits. All the reports are from the state park jetty area or the old Salton Sea Yacht Club jetty. Anglers do not need a fishing license this Saturday, one of the two state “Free Fishing Days,” and there is a free derby at the state park visitor’s center Saturday. It is a big fish event with the weigh-in at noon and prizes are given for the three biggest tilapia in adult and junior categories. Flies continue to be a problem, so bring insect repellant. Kayak rentals are available at the state park headquarters. Boat launch fee is $3 and the park entrance fee is $5, both with a self-registration. The state park launch is available 24-hours a day and is currently the only boat launch on the sea. The camp store is open Friday through Sunday and has bait and basic fishing gear. Volunteers are needed to work in the visitor center and camp store. They get free camping and hookups. Information: Camp Store at (760) 289-9455 (open Friday-Sunday). Salton Sea State Recreation Area main office at (760) 393-3059, or the ranger station kiosk at (760) 393-3052 (or mobile phone at (760) 331-9944).