Fish and Game did it — made a decision a few days ago to open a salmon fishing season on inland rivers. The opening date is July 16 and the season will run through December.
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It’s the first season in four years due to a short run of kings in 2008. Guides and salmon devotees are ecstatic to hear salmon fishing will be open again. Now there will be a choice when opening day comes around — ocean or inland salmon.
Kokanee are on the prowl at valley lakes. Koke seekers at Lake Pardee are finding action at the mouth of the Mokelumne all the way up river to Indian Rock. Only small bass are active right now.
“They are running up to 14 inches,” noted Fred Dorman, a spokesperson at Pardee.
Brown trout are also hitting lures like Rapalas. Below Pardee at Lake Amador, shore anglers are doing well on trout. Most are being caught at the 2-foot depth with crawlers, PowerBait or small lures. The lake is still spilling.
The bass bite is not strong yet even though a few in the 5-pound size have been taken at 20-foot depths. Bluegills are showing all over the lake, especially in the warmer coves.
Further south, the kokanee are on a tear near Angels Camp at New Melones Reservoir. Limits are common; 20 feet is the magic depth.
Many are reaching the 14-inch size and they’re hitting Senkos, spinner baits, jigs and swim baits. The bass are moving into the shallows to begin their spawn. Trolling near the spillway or the dam has been the most successful.
Bass are also active at Folsom Lake, moving into the shallows to spawn and hitting crank baits and swim baits. Fish the flooded brush areas. That’s where they are holding — most weighing 1 to 2 pounds.
Striped bass are everywhere along the Sacramento, San Joaquin and Feather rivers. The Feather at Verona is probably the best sector right now although striper anglers are scoring at the mouth of the American at Discovery and Miller parks, Garcia Bend and the deep water channel.
Pile worms and anchovies work best in attracting the stripers to feed.
Finally, the baffler: What’s different about both sexes of reindeer? Both have antlers.