For Big ‘Bows, Roll Bait Deep
Trout and salmon trolling is a great option for north valley anglers. Lake Shasta is booting out solid numbers of quality rainbows, while Whiskeytown is the place to go for a limit of kokanee.
“There are lots of shad showing in Shasta right now from the surface to 60 feet deep and that has made for interesting fishing,” related Mike Elster of Mike’s Fishing Guide Service. “Guys working with spoons and other lures at the depth of the bait are struggling to catch smallish rainbows in the 14 inch range. I’ve been hitting bigger fish by fishing below the level of the bait.”
“The rainbows I’ve been getting are running 16 to 19 inches. These fish are coming out of 90 to 100 feet of water and are hitting rolled shad and anchovies. I’ve been working Water’s Gulch where the Sacramento and Pitt Arms merge, but you can find good fishing all over the lower arms and main body,” tipped Elster.
Bass anglers are finding dense concentrations of fish off main lake points holding from 30 to 60 feet deep. A variety of lures and spoons will draw strikes from bass to 15 inches, but the best approach has been drop shotting shad colored soft plastics.
As of press time Shasta was 93 feet from maximum pool and dropping.
At Whiskeytown the water level is up and the kokanee bite is outstanding.
“Kokanee fishing at Whiskeytown is red hot,” exclaimed Elster. “The best fish run 13 to 14 inches, but there are smaller fish in the mix too. I recently took out some DFW biologists on a research trip and we were able to land five limits of fish in just a few hours. I’ve been using Apex lures exclusively during my last few kokanee trips.”Back To Reports