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Salmon fishing now ‘wide open’ in Sacramento River

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Posted: Thursday, October 11, 2012 12:00 am

The Delta: Salmon fishing is about to bust wide open in the Sacramento River. Water is being released out of Camanche and coming down, which will increase the number of fish.

Anglers are using Silvertrons, Killer Bees and Brad’s Cut Plugs with a Bloody Tuna scent. Cordell Meidinger took first place in the Central Valley Anglers Salmon Derby last weekend with a 22.3-pound Salmon on a Green Killer Bee. It was his only fish of the day and he caught it just as his line hit the water. Thirty-one fish were caught among 50 anglers.

Striper trollers are catching fish near the Dairy, Decker Island and West Bank, all the way to Collinsville, pulling shallow running Yozuris.

Bait fishermen are using Shad, sardines and Anchovies near the Rio Vista Bridge, Decker Island to Broad Slough. Sturgeon are starting to show in the Light No. 1 area down to Big Cut.

San Joaquin River: There is no salmon fishing in the San Joaquin River.

Striper trollers are working the Mokelumne, Georgiana Slough, Sycamore and Hog Slough. Most fish are up to10 pounds. The fresh water is coming in now, so we should start seeing more fish. The top lures are Rebels and Yozuris.

Salmon trolling should start picking up soon in the south fork of Mokelume. Anglers are jigging at the Franklin Bridge, the Beehive and Hog and Sycamore Sloughs, out in front in the main river. Fishing should improve daily.

Pardee: Trout trollers are working the main body of the lake and the mouth of the river for Rainbow Trout, using nightcrawlers behind a Dodger. The best lures are Needlefish and Excel lures, and the best depths are 25-40 feet.

Bait fishermen are using Berkley PowerBait in Garlic flavor or nightcrawlers.

Lake Camanche: Trout fishermen are trolling the dam area with ExCels and Needlefish. The best speed is 2.5-3 mph and it is best to stay in the deep water, 35-40 feet.

Fishing for Catfish is still doing well, using chicken livers and mackerel. Bass fishermen are using rip baits, jigs and worms, on the points and the beginning of coves.

New Melones Lake: Trout fishing continues to be the best. Kokanee is pretty much done for this year. Fishermen are concentrating in the lake and the dam to the Hwy 49 Bridge, using Needlefish, Excels, Rapalas and Speedy Shiners. Most Rainbows are coming in at 2.5-3 lbs. Some Browns are showing up as well.

Fishing for Catfish is good day and night using Shad, Nightcrawlers, Anchovies and Liver baits.Some Crappie are being caught by the night time fishermen as well.

Ocean: Anglers are still catching Salmon outside the Golden Gate in San Francisco and in the Bodega Bay area. The best baits are Anchovies and Herring, while the best lures lately are the 4.5-inch and 5.5-inch Apexes, Brad’s Cut Plugs with Bloody Tuna scent, Anchovies and Herring.

Large numbers of bottom fish are still being reported from the party boats and other anglers, as well in the Bodega Bay area.

Upcoming events

The 2012 Rio Vista Bass Derby is taking place Friday, Oct. 12 to Sunday Oct. 14. Derby fishing begins at 6 a.m. on Friday. Weigh-in times are Friday from noon – 6 p.m., Saturday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The 2nd Annual Steelhead Festival takes place this Sunday, Oct. 14 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at UOP’s DeRosa Center. Admission is free. The event will include seminars, demonstrations, fly casting, children’s arts, a steelhead fish tank, food and a documentary screening.

For more information, contact Jeremy Terhune at (209) 922-8215 or visit

The Salmon Festival takes place Oct. 20, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Coleman Fish Hatchery near Anderson. Free shuttle busses are available from Walmart in Anderson. For information, call (530) 365-8622.

The Lake Camanche Team Trout Derby takes place on Nov. 3. Register by phone at (866) 763-5121 or purchase tickets at the gate or marina. Entry fee is $35 in advance and $45 the day of the event.

See official rules at

Local fisherman Mike Faught is the owner of Fisherman's Friend in Lodi. To view the Fisherman's Friend website go to

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