February 2011 Union Newspaper


Sunday afternoon, I was fishing in shirt sleeves in the warm sun. Monday morning, I arose to rain with temps in the mid 30s. This wet pattern is predicted to last for the week. The fishing reports from the balmy weather of the last few weeks might not be relevant given the present conditions.

The first weekend of the Crosby Lodge Derby on Pyramid Lake put some nice sized cutthroats on the board. The top two fish were checked in by boat anglers. The largest topped the 15 pound mark with the second place fish weighing in at 11 pounds.

The first place fish measured 32.5 inches and the second place entry was only one inch shorter. The third and fourth place fish were landed by shore anglers and they were just over 10 pounds each. Of the top 15 places six were boat anglers and nine were shore-based anglers.

A group from the Gold Country Fly Fishers fished at Pyramid last Tuesday and Wednesday. They fished a number of west side locations. The preferred method was to fish wooly buggers on sinking lines with a beetle trailer. The best bugger colors were purple, pink with white hackle and midnight cowboy. Purple was a good color for the trailing beetle. The water temp was in the low 40s.

Ed Everhart and his son Cole fished Collins Lake last week. They did well fishing for bass. By far the best pattern for them was to fish crawdad imitating jigs in the 10 to 15 foot depth contour. Bass shallower and deeper were not as cooperative. Lures that did not produce included swim baits, plastic worms and reaction baits.

They fished from 7:30 a.m. until late afternoon. During that time, the surface temp rose from 46 up to 48 degrees. They covered both sides of the lake and the eastside was by far the most productive.

Ed, my son Colin and I fished Sunday afternoon at Tom Moreno’s pond in Penn Valley. I fished Senco worms on a slowly falling presentation. This worked fairly well near brush structure and at drop offs in the pond. Late in the day the Senco bite slowed. At the same time Ed began to connect with numerous bass, fishing a 5 inch swim bait along the bottom. Water temp was in the high 40s.

Dan Grass fished Rollins on Saturday. He confirms that the lake has been planted. Both Rollins and Scott’s Flat were on the planting schedule two weeks ago. The planters are scattered from the dam to a mile or more up the lake. He and his brother in law fished from first light until midday. Most of their efforts were devoted to trolling for brown trout.

They did land one brown in 3 pound range. It was hooked on a Rapala fished close to the bottom using a downrigger. There was surface feeding activity near the dam by the recently planted rainbows. The water was green with three feet of visibility. The visibility could deteriorate if heavy rains wash more silt into the lake.

Up in the high country, ice fishing has been good this winter at both Lake Davis and Antelope Lake. The warm weather has been thinning the ice. At Lake Davis, the ice in Mallard Cove had gone from six inches to four in the last week of warm weather. At Antelope Lake, south west of Susanville and east of Almanor, the ice fishing had been excellent near the dam since the beginning of the year. In the recent past, the ice near the inlet melted. Once there was open water at the rear of the lake the fishing near the dam turned off. The supposition is that the trout in the deep water near the dam, left for open water when it became available. This same pattern may be true for frozen lakes closer to home.

Guide Rick Kennedy (www.fishtightlines.com) fished Donner Lake on Saturday. The shady side of the lake had a thin sheet of ice early in the day that broke up as the day warmed. He was trolling a variety of spoons and minnow plugs 200 feet behind the boat from downriggers set at six to 12 feet. He did land two rainbows and a couple of mackinaw. The water was a chilly 34 to 36 degrees.

The Lower Yuba water flow was cut back another 200 cubic feet per second last Friday to about 2,000 cfs. Barring a major rain event, this level should hold for some time. Frank Rinella reports that fishing has been fair. Copper Johns and Rubber Leg Stone flies are good places to start.

The Department of Fish and Game will be conducting a Turkey Hunting Clinic March 5 at Gray Lodge Wildlife Area. This is near Gridley in Butte County. Topics will include decoy placement, blind design, calling, ballistics, game care and cooking. This is an all day event starting at 9:00 am. The cost is $45.00. You can register on-line at: www.dfg.ca.gov/huntered/advanced/index.aspx. Youths, 16 years and younger, can attend free if accompanied by a parent or guardian. This is a good opportunity to learn about turkey hunting if you do not have someone to teach you.

Denis Peirce writes a weekly fishing column for The Union and is host of “The KNCO Fishing & Outdoor Report,” which airs 6-7 p.m. Fridays and 5-6 a.m. Saturdays on 830-AM radio. Contact him via e-mail at

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