Lake level stands today at 4.3 Rumsey, down almost 2 feet from last month
as water continues to be pulled. Last year on this date the lake was measured
at 2.3 and the historical average for the date is 3.9. Dam releases have
been running around 700 CFS (Cubic Feet per Second) as Yolo Country pulls
more of its allotment for irrigation. At this volume of pull it takes
about a week to pull half a foot of water out of the lake. As a reminder,
you can check out current lake level and dam releases shown on an hourly
graph with the links available on our web site (clearlakeguideservice.com).
Weed growth is substantial and appears worse in some areas due to the
falling water. Overall the weed growth seems to be about the same as last
Tournament activity steps up a notch this month from last month. According
to the event calendar the 12th and 13th, 14th, 15th, 27th-28th-29th are
dates of tournaments. The California Bass Championship final is being
held on the 12th and 13th. Their field is set at 40 boats and it will
have a field of very talented anglers. The 13th and 14th are slotted for
Anglers Choice team events that will have small fields of 25 to 30 boats.
Finally, the biggest mess of the month is being put on by Angler’s
Choice on the 27th, 28th, and 29th. It is being called the USAC Bass West
USA Open. It is unknown who big of a field it will attract as this is
the inaugural event at a $1,500 entry fee per pro. I am guessing 50 boats
max but don’t really know. The event has one official practice day
the 26th, the 27th is a morning event, the 28th is an afternoon event,
and the 29th is a morning event again. Locations for these tournaments
still appear to be up in the air at this time. Of course, there are always
other tournaments going on that don’t show up as it seems there
are almost always two to four clubs here on any given weekend. We are
also at that point of the year where all tournaments are limited to a
6 hour day.
July was an absolute struggle. An average day saw 6 or 7 fish caught...and anglers worked hard to catch those fish. We actually did better than many of the anglers we ran into on the water who were reporting 1 or 2 bites for up to 3 days of fishing. On one day though, I did run into one or our clients and buddies Doc on the water and he had managed a dozen fish that day, he was on fire!
Most of the fish we caught were on drop shot worms, shakey head worms, and a few top water fish in the mix. Our catches came from 4 feet of water out to 25 feet of water depending on the day. The good news is that there were only a few trips when we didn’t have a 5 pound plus fish.
The biggest struggle for the month was that we could not get on a consistent topwater bite. The fish we did catch on top came on a frog, Rico, or spook and the most we had in one day was 3.
Regarding our fish count, we caught 6 four pounders, 4 five pounders,
and 2 six pounders (last year for the month it was 6 four pounders and
3 five pounders). This year we continue to see more fish of better size
each month even with the overall fish count down.
This coming month is hard to envision results. Each month this year has
been different from not only the month prior but in comparison to 2009.
One thing is very apparent this year, we are not going to be catching
the numbers we have in the past. The lake is fishing very small right
now, meaning that if there is a little patch of fish somewhere, others
have found them and are fishing them too.
How do you target those bites? Topwater baits, crank baits, and probably
Being on the water as much as I am I run into a lot of anglers obviously. One of the most common stories on the water starts with...”man, what is going on? We were here last year and the bite was off the hook! We were catching ___ fish a day and this year we can’t get bite!?”
Firstly, one man’s version of “whacking them” and another’s version are usually quite different. I have run into anglers this year who are having a “whackfest” and after you drill down a bit through some questions you find out they have caught 5 or 6 fish, that is not a “whackfest” to me. Terms and phrases I have heard this year include “finally got on them”, “getting a lot of bites”, “tore them up”. I have spoken with very few over the past several months who can put some objective numbers out for consideration.
Secondly, let’s start out by being honest. Your having a good day
may have a different definition than my having a good day. That is o.k.,
in fact, regardless of how others are doing if you are having a good day
then enjoy it! If you aren’t though, quit doing what you are doing,
quit fishing last year’s stuff, and quit fishing how you did last
time you were here if it isn’t working, that is called nostalgia
fishing and when bites turn tough it can ruin your day.
This lake is not an easy lake to fish and it never has been. Yes, there was a time when the fish population was so extensive that you could catch fish almost any where and almost any way and every competitive angler went through multiple limits of fish as they culled through the day, but the number of years that has happened against the number of years that it didn’t is very small. I remember all to well the years when only a handful of anglers caught a limit of fish to have an opportunity to cull.
The best advice I can give you is to stop and think when your bite isn’t
there. Where might those fish have moved to if they did move? If they
won’t hit a __, what might be a better choice. Once in a while it
might be a color change but more often than not it is a bait type change.
If you are not getting any bites, then cover more water until you do get
bit and then slow down to try to get a couple of extra bites out of the
area. If you have been fishing docks unsuccessfully then move to rocks.
If you have been fishing tules without any action then move out to the
weeds. The absolute worst thing that can happen is you don’t get
bit when you move either, but at least you have put some thought into
August still has some prime dates available so pick up the phone or drop me an email, or just book a date on-line. The easiest way to see if a date is available is via the booking calendar on the web site. Thanks to all of you who have already set up your trips, I appreciate it.
We are going to be working on our kayak bass fishing skills which right
now is learning the ins and outs of staying on top of a sit on top kayak.
It was easier than I thought. Once we get a better feel for the game we
plan on offering trips to Pillsbury and Indian Valley as another option.
We will keep you posted.
The newly revised inspection program is now in place. The changes only
impact boaters who have a boat registered outside of Lake County. Out
of county boaters now must have their boat inspected monthly. Each month
upon a successful inspection, the boat owner will be issued a set of colored
ribbons, one goes on the boat and the other on the trailer. The paperwork
is the same and the same places are handling the process. The fee is $10.
What this means is those of you bringing a boat here on a regular basis
from outside the area are now required to follow through with the inspection
process on your first trip of each new month, and pay the $10 fee, each
inspection. Each month the color of the ribbons will change.
Just a reminder that we do offer gift certificates that can be for a complete trip or can be used against the price of a complete trip. If you are interested, just drop us a line or give me a call.
Thank you for your continued interest and support of Clear Lake Guide Service! Our business continues to grow with the help of you and your spreading the word and my wife Deb and I both thank you. Good fishing and keep a tight line.
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There is a lot of useful information available on the Clear Lake Website. Even insights into the best times to fish the lake and other fishing tips. Local lodging, weather, and even lake level reporting is available through the links we have set up.
Good fishing, and I look forward to seeing you soon!