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Fishing with Jim: Salmon bite has arrived on the Sacramento River

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Posted: Wednesday, October 7, 2015 11:58 pm

The Delta: The salmon bite has definitely arrived on the Sacramento River and with the cooler mornings it will continue to improve. Central Valley Anglers held their salmon derby last Saturday with over 70 anglers. Top anglers were: Steve Quintal with an 18.4-pound salmon followed by Dan Loomis (16.4) and Kenny McDonald (15.14).

The best area for the salmon have been from Vieira’s up the Old Sac to Freeport. Most salmon are being caught on Silvertrons, Kwikfish and Blue Foxes. Shore anglers are using Flying “C”s and Blue Foxes with good success. Spreaders, inline weights and keel weights are the most common set-ups.

The Rio Vista Bass Derby begins this Friday and tickets are available at The Fisherman’s Friend or online at bassfestival.com. The Delta will be packed this weekend with derby and recreational anglers.

The striped bass bite is good one day, tough the next, but the fish are getting bigger. They’re moving throughout the Delta, which could be a reason for the inconsistent bite. Broad Slough, Collinsville/Chain Island, Sherman and Decker islands and the Dairy on bait and trolling shallow and deep divers move, so anglers need to try several areas looking for the schools. Bait is working well in all locations.

San Joaquin: With the removal of the False River dam the dynamics continue to change on the lower San Joaquin. Anglers are still having good success trolling, jigging and bait fishing for striped bass, but they’re moving around on a daily basis. Santa Clara and San Andreas Shoals and down by Eddo’s and outside of Three Mile Slough have been producing. Drift minnows from Mildred Island up to the Stockton Turning Basin.

Bait fishermen are fishing in False River using sardines and anchovies.

Due to the warm/low water issues on the Mokelumne the pulse flows have not been scheduled to begin, which means not a lot of action for salmon yet. When the pulse flows begin I will ensure that all my readers know and within two days of the beginning of the pulses the salmon bite will turn on for both trolling and jigging.

The largemouth bite continues to be strong in the sloughs off of the San Joaquin, including Fourteen Mile, White and Potato sloughs and Mildred Island. Senkos, drop-shotting and crankbaits are still ruling the day.

Camanche: The lake is low, but the boat ramps are still open. Catfish and bass are your best bets. The catfish are still in the cove and shallows, but with the cool nights and rain the catfish will be moving into deeper water. Sardines, liver, Kat-Nip and nightcrawlers are the best baits. Bass are over structure, Crankbaits and plastics are working well on the largemouth.


Local fisherman Jim Pickens is the owner of Fisherman’s Friend in Lodi. Visit the Fisherman’s Friend online at http://www.mrkokanee.com.