Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Going Fishing Tuesday, Maybe Wednesday, Soon

I was planning on going up the hill on Tuesday (Yesterday) and fish Red Lake. I had to go into Jackson on Monday Morning and pick up a couple of things like food, I like food, and light switches and rope from Lowe's and nose around Walmart for a lure called Trout Trap that I'd never heard of. Guy on the Sniffer used it at Caples and apparently it worked really well. Of course, Walmart didn't have any, nor did Longs, the only two places in town that have fishing gear. There's a K-Mart across from Walmart, but the last time I looked in their fishing department, it looked like a tornado just swept through.

Getting back to the story, I came out of the grocery store and started my truck. Popped off the emergency brake (it's the law) and the dinger (that's about all I can call it) that reminds you the brake is on, kept dinging. I set the brake and released it and the dinger kept dinging and dinging and dinging. Since they closed the GMC dealer in Jackson, the next place to go is Folsom, a good hours drive. I couldn't just drive to Folsom right then and there, I had a truck full of groceries. So I dinged all the way home which is about 3/4 of an hour drive. Now this is not a quiet ding, it's a ding that can be heard 2 blocks away. Thus, I didn't go fishing Tuesday, I dinged my way to Folsom first thing in the morning. Two dings per second for the hour plus to Folsom. Got to GMC and got undinged. By then I was deaf. Had one of those epiphany's about half way down the hill. "I should have taken my ear muffs, from the shop, that I use when I run the saws". A little late.

OK, so now its Wednesday Morning and I'm off to Red Lake. Cup of coffee at Cooks Station and I'm assured of a limit. Red Lake at 7:45am. Nobody catching anything. Only 3 or 4 people there. Guys on the Sniffer caught tons of fish on Sunday. Threw out a meal worm on a slip bobber rig. Started with silver Kastmaster. Always works at Red Lake. Bobber bounced once, then a second time. Picked up the rod and nothing. Did I mention Red Lake is green. Some kind of algae in the lake in the Summer. After an hour and a half with no runs, hits, or errors (I've got to stop watching so much baseball), I packed up and went to Caples. One thing I forgot, I tried a clear bobber with some kind of fly (looked like a wooly bugger) I have from a little plastic container that my Dad (he passed away in 1967) had and I've carried it with me in every tackle box I ever owned. Naw, it didn't work either.

Got to Caples at 10:00am and went to the sandy side of the spillway where I fished July 16th. The lake level had dropped a couple of feet since then and the tree root where I caught fish then was occupied by another fisherman. So I walked a bit further and found a spot where I was by myself. I had walked by several people fishing, but no one had caught anything. This was not looking good. I had to walk through an area where a guy had his stuff, "Sorry, only passing through". Turns out he's a neighbor of sorts. Guy was from Pine Grove, you know Lake Tabeaud area.

I plopped my self down on a log and threw out that good old run of the mill Rainbow Power Bait that got me trounced during the challenge, and before I could rig up a second rod, I had a small Rainbow on. I was glad I was able to release him because he was just a little guy about 8" long. Got the rod out again and before I could get the second one out, I had another 11" Rainbow. Finally got both rods out and was able to land an additional 4 Rainbows in the 8"to 11" range. The "neighbor" next to me had to come over and see what I was using. He hadn't caught anything. We yaked for a while and he went back to his rig, just in time to pull in his first fish. Guess he was concentrating too hard on trying to catch fish.

Thought you might enjoy this. I took it while I was sitting comtemplating catching a really big Rainbow. Nice way to get around Caples.

Then these started to show up. They are usually accompanied by: Thunder, Lightning, Rain, and Hail, which, by the way, we were told, by the weather guessers, to expect. Figured it was time to pack up and head home.

Well, that's Red Lake and Caples today. Might try Bear River on Friday. My neighbor, Bob, said he'd go with, if I went. Just might do that.
Till next time, remember: "A bad day fishing is better than any day at work".

Friday, July 24, 2009

Just an opinion

I’ve reported about fishing on the American River in Sacramento a few of times. A couple of times Shad fishing and once Striper fishing. I regularly follow the forums on Fish Sniffer.Com. Recently I’ve become concerned about what’s happening on the American River Parkway.

Most Fishermen go after Shad and Stripers early in the morning or late into the evening. A lot of the recent posts are showing signs of a growing danger in that area. One, I would suspect, stems from our current economy. An increasing number of homeless are taking up residence along the parkway. Many, it seems, are using robbery to obtain items to sell or to maintain their drug habit.

In recent days, I’ve noticed an increase number of posts stating fishermen walking to the river in the early morning hours being accosted by knife welding indigents. It’s a shame that, to fish, you have to carry defensive weapons and sometime brandish them just to indulge in a sport we all love.

There was one post where a guy was walking to the river in the dark and had he not seen the red tip of a cigarette, he would not have noticed a guy hiding in the bushes beside the trail. Another problem that’s happening is, these “crack/crank heads/tweekers”, a direct quote from the forum, are breaking into cars and trucks while the guys are on the river fishing.

These incidences are occurring all along the river from Nimbus to Howe Avenue and beyond. This is not the only problem. There have been numerous Mountain Lion sightings, Rattlesnake encounters, an occasional American alligator, Nile crocodile and a herd of baby sasquatch. OK, that’s a little off, but what I’m saying is, be careful out there.

My last question is,” Why isn’t the Sacramento Sheriff’s Department addressing this problem”? They have to know. There have been, as of this writing, 4444 readings of this one forum alone. Where’s a cop when you need one? I forgot, Arnold is cutting the budget so there will be less law enforcement on the streets. Not the police’s fault they have less men. They just won’t have time to protect us lowly fishermen from being accosted by homeless druggies trying to steal our equipment. All it’s going to cause is more packing and someday, one of them will get shot, then what?

Just a personal opinion.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Not All Days Are Good

I geared up to do some Striper fishing on the American River. Got a new reel, 10# test line, some new Zara Spooks, and a new Rattle Trap. With excitement in the air, I left home before dawn for the hour drive down to Sacramento. Had my coffee, MP-3 player, and my equipment. I ready to rock and roll.

Took the Jackson Highway (Hwy 16) into town and turned right on Watt Ave (crosses the American). Instantly I was jammed in traffic due to construction. It was a 3 lane to 1 lane merge on one of the busiest streets in the city. I wasn't able to get out of the lane I was in for almost an hour. I only moved about a block in that hour. I finally wormed my way over and took a side street, then another, and finally ended up where I could access the river. Now it was about 7:30am, the sun was up and I was already an hour behind schedule.

Got to the river access at Watt and drove up and down the parking lot looking for a place to fish. Every one was overgrown and fishing would have been impossible without getting snagged repeatedly in the bushes. I blew out of the parking lot and crossed the river heading for Harrington Access, where I first tried for Shad. It was close and I knew the river there.

They say the best fishing for Stripers is early in the morning or late in the afternoon. Early morning was gone, but I gave it a shot anyway, since I was there. I fished for about an hour and decided to move again. This time I drove over to El Manto Access, where I also fished for Shad. High bank and deep pools, a lot of swirls, eddies, and whirlpools. Should be a good place for stripers to hang out.

Grabbed the rod I had set up for Stripers and one I had set up for Shad and began the walk to the river. Figured I could try Shad if the Striper thing didn't work. The walk, I'd gauge at about 1/3 of a mile. Got there and realized I'd picked up the wrong rod for Shad. So, I spent some time throwing out Zara Spooks and Rattle Traps on the Striper rod. Hard to manuver the lures on such a turbulent surface, got tangled in green slimy stuff, and I finally got disgusted , grabbed my rods and tackle, and went home.

So much for Striper fishing, at least for now.

Till next time, remember:" A bad day fishing can be a bad day, sometimes".


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Lake Tabeaud - Pine Grove

Popped over to Lake Tabeaud (pronounced "Taboo") yesterday morning. Popping over is about 12 miles from home. I talked to my neighbors son over the weekend and asked him the secret to fishing this lake. He lives a short distance from the lake and has fished it for years. Oh, he's also caught trout too. The key is bottom bouncing a nightcrawler just below the inlet to the lake. So that's what I did since I had a dozen in the fridge. The fourth time I drifted it, a Rainbow about 10" hit. But that was it. So, on trip 4 to Lake Tabeaud, I finally caught one. If you double click on the picture, you'll see a rippling right in the center, all the way to the back. That's where the inlet is. There's a road that goes back there, I didn't have to walk.

Till next time, remember: "A bad day fishing is better than any day at work".


Monday, July 20, 2009

For the Deer Hunters

I'm not a hunter. I gave up hunting around 1970, while deer hunting at Big Bear, California. I heard a noise down the hill from where I was sitting. I sighted my scope on the spot and a man walked out of the brush dressed in all brown. I had him in the crosshairs. I set down my rifle and haven't hunted since. But, those that hunt, these are for you.
That's it for this post, I'm going fishing. OH Yeh, forgot to tell you, the deer were about 150 feet from my front door.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Caples Lake on Thursday

I want to make a correction to some of my past posts. I keep referring to the place I get those giant meal worms as the feed store in Bighorn. Here is the actual name of the store.

Juni Mae's Buck Horn Feed, Grain, and Bait, not Bighorn. When I was in there yesterday to get more meal worms, I got a card so I would get it correct. She's located next to the Shell Gas Station in Buck Horn. I also want to commend her for the work she does with animals. She was caring for the smallest kitten I've ever seen when I was there and she said he was a lot smaller when she got him. She's also cared for a number of other "orphaned" animals. One is the cutest little goats you've ever seen, but boy is she a brat. Cleans off the shelves everytime she's in the store. Kudos' to June for her work.

There were a lot of people fishing at the lake today. Even though the trout were surface feeding, those on the dam, like myself were not getting much. I caught a small one on a nightcrawler and released one about 11" on a meal worm. Couldn't get them to hit anything that looked like a lure. Did see the big ones cruising by about 5 feet off shore. Even the guys with fly rods couldn't entice them.

Went over to the sandy side of the spillway. No body was catching anything there either. I went about 200 yards down and set my butt on a tree root. I was able to catch 6 more on Gulp Trout Dough, keeping 4 for my limit. Must have found "the hole" because the guy next to me, using the same Power Bait, only caught one and that was before I got there.
Might be back up on Saturday with my Son, maybe my Grandson too. I'll let you know.

Till next time, remember: "A bad day fishing is better than any day at work".


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Just a Couple of Pictures

When I took Bob (my neighbor) with me last week, he took a couple of pictures I thought I'd share with you.

The Shoreman in Action.

Bear River Reservoir from the dam.


Tuesday Morning and Quite Warm

We're starting out the day at 60 degrees and expecting right at 98, here in beautiful downtown Volcano. Actually we're 1000 ft higher than downtown. That's a one street, downtown. Small place.

OK, so much for the weather forecast. I stopped for my usual coffee at Cooks Station this morning. Something about coffee from here and fish limits. Good mojo or something. Got to Bear River Reservoir at 7:45 am and put out a slip bobber rig with one of those big Meal Worms I get from the feed store in Bighorn. Wasn't long before I had the first fish on. that would be the fish farthest to the left. On my other rod, I put a PM (both colors), KM (both colors), Little Cleo in Bronze Gold, and red & white Sonic Rooster Tails, to no avail.

Last Fall I went to the Fishermans Exposition at Cal Expo and came across a company called Rocky Mountain Tackle Company. I picked up a couple of lures and one of them was called Pink Splatter Assassin Spinner (see picture below). Now I tried this once a while ago and nothing happened. So, this time I thought I'd try it with a nightcrawler attached to the two hooks. Casted it out and reeled it in a couple of times with out any interest. Then on the last cast, the worm went flying off and I started to reel in the lure by itself. Low and behold, the trout on the right side of the picture hit it. If you're interested in their lures, there is a link on the left. I also got a couple of Serpent Spoons. I'll try those later.

The other three trout came, two on the big meal worms and one on Orange Pulp Gulp Trout Dough. I didn't see anyone else catching anything while I was there, but did meet a gentleman from Stockton named Bill, whom I left the rest of my Meal Worms with, in hopes he could take a couple of trout home with him.

That's it for today. Until next time, remember: "A bad day fishing is better than any day at work".


Friday, July 10, 2009

I Hate Getting Skunked

I met Rob (you remember Rob from the post on April 11th) at the coffee house in El Dorado Hills this morning. We decided to take a run up to the South Fork of the American River at Crystal Basin. I wanted to try bottom bouncing a nightcrawler into some of the bigger pools. If you'll remember, Rob's first time fishing since he was 14, was back in April. Well, this was his second. I'm sure a lot of you know that it's really hard to keep from losing tackle in a rocky river when you're experienced and a lot harder when you're "new" at it. We lost some. Fortunately it wasn't any of those $8 or $9 lures. Just hooks and split shot.

We gave it up and drove to Ice House Reservoir where we fished in April. I've got to tell you, it was a LOT warmer today. We fished one rig with Power Bait (both kinds), but didn't get anything. We fished one rig with nightcrawlers on a floating bobber rig. Oh yeh, I already told you we got skunked. So I'll make it simple. Lures, Power Bait, Worms, NADA.

One Asian gentleman said he caught one on Power Bait and another gentleman caught one, I think on Power Bait, although he was tangled in his other line and wasn't very conversive.

So that's the story for today. Next time Rob wants to hit the Highway 88 corridor. We'll see how that goes.

Until then, remember: "A bad day fishing is still a bad day fishing, but better than any day at work".


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Slim Pickens at Bear River Reservoir

Made my usual stop a Cooks Station for coffee and proceeded up the hill to Bear River Reservoir.

The water level is dropping at a pretty good clip. It's probably 6 to 8 feet lower than when I was there on June 24th. Makes it a little harder to fish off the dam. Got there about 7:45 am and put out Gulp in Rainbow Candy on a slip sinker rig, the started throwing lures. Got a good bump on black PM, but that was about it. Did try a couple of new lures without success. The old stand by Dardevle in red and white. Nothing. A Mepps Black Fury with white spots and white dress. Got a good thump on that. The rest, PM in silver, Kastmaster in silver and gold, Little Cleo in a couple of colors, Rooster Tail, both sonic and regular produced nothing.

During all the lure time, I did land a small one on Gulp Rainbow Candy and a small one on Orange Pulp. Switched to regular PB in Rainbow and landed a small one on that also. Small being "maybe" 9".

I want to note that I took my neighbor Bob with me this morning. Bob doesn't fish, but he's good company to have along. Bob's the guy that plows my driveway (or scrapes with his tractor as the case might be) in the Winter when it snows. Bob will plow for fish. I do what I can to help.

As the summer wanes, Sunrise will be later and I will be able to get up there closer to Dawn than I do now, so my catch ratio should go up. Of course, I'll keep everyone updated.

Don't know if I mentioned "my fish to cost of license ratio" before. I keep track of the number of fish I catch versus the cost of the fishing license in the bankrupt State of California. Now I don't factor in gas, coffee, worms, and stuff like that, just the number of fish to the cost. With the three from today, the cost is 90 cents per fish. At the end of last year the cost was 39 cents per fish. Still have a ways to go this year.

That's it for today. Until next time, remember: "A bad day fishing is better than any day spent shoveling your driveway. Especially if yours is 900 feet, like mine is". That's why I do what I can.


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Caples Lake

Fished 3 spots at Caples today. First was the sandy side of the spillway. Nothing, although I did have a cruise by from a Rainbow that would have gone 4 or 5 lbs. Beautiful fish. Actually he cruised by 3 times. He was so close (how close was he?) I could have gotten him with a fish gaff. Too bad snagging is illegal for trout. Next was the point on the other side of the lake with the dead tree. Nothing there either. Two guys fishing there were skunked also. Went to the corner of the dam on the resort side. First I put on a Berkley Gulp Power Worm on a floating bobber rig. Nothing. If Gulp Trout Dough doesn't work, what makes me think Gulp Power Worm will? I'll wait until the next time I get to Bear River and try it there. Fished Rainbow Candy and American Pie (red,white, and blue. After all the 4th is just around the corner) with no results. The my luck changed. I did catch and release 13 in the 9" to 12" range. One Brookie and 12 Rainbows. All on 1/4 oz Panther Martins. Mostly gold and a few on silver. Had as many hits as fish caught. Didn't get any hits on Kastmasters, Rooster Tails, Little Cleos, or any of the other lures I tried. That's it for Caples today.

Until next time, remember: "A bad day fishing is better than any day at work".


The Sierra Nevada Mountains

I wanted to share with all of you the magnificence of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range. I took this picture from one of the passes on Highway 88 called Carson Spur (elevation 7990). I made a panoramic view with the three shots. In the Winter, this pass closes many times due to high snow. Sit back and enjoy the beauty. Double click on each picture and it will fill your screen.