By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Fishing Report 7-17-19
Fishing columnist Jarod Ballardo shows a six-pound bass he caught on a topwater frog while fishing on the Delta recently.

I was finally able to get out and fish a Wednesday night tournament on the Delta. Every Wednesday night out of Buckley Cove from 3:45 p.m. to 9 p.m. there’s a $50 bass tournament being held. I’ve been wanting to fish one for several months now, so a friend and I went and fished it. We never got the big bites that were needed to win the tournament but had a great time as always. The Delta fishes so differently in the evening. There seems to be a very small window of when the sun is going down and when the big fish bite. It’s during that time that you want to be in your best spot. For us, we caught a lot of fish but got caught up catching numbers of fish, while the top finishers had quality over quantity. If you’ve never fished a bass tournament it can become both an addiction and an extremely humbling experience. It was both for me Wednesday night. I believe in our own minds we’re the best anglers on the water until it’s time to weigh in our fish.



Shade is the most important factor when fishing for bass on the Delta right now. Really pay attention to the banks and look for any shade pockets. This past weekend the bigger bass being caught were caught on Sweet Beavers on the shady side of isolated islands. The top water frog bite has remained excellent for those willing to toss it all day. Anglers are catching frog fish in both open water and above matted vegetation.


New Melones Lake:

Anglers are starting to catch trout but must go deeper in order to catch them 50-60 feet deep. The kokanee bite has remained great for those fishing the right depths. Anglers are reporting that the kokanee are being caught shallow during the morning hours and between 40 and 80 feet deep during the mid-day. Bass fishing has been great for smaller fish on just about anything during the day and top water lures early morning and late. Catfishing has been good for night fishermen fishing just about anywhere on the lake right now. Bluegill and crappie are also cooperating as many anglers are doing well fishing the backs of coves with minnows or worms under a bobber.


Don Pedro:

Fishing for kokanee has been good. Jenkins Hill, Graveyard Bay, and Fleming Bay have all been producing good catches lately. Kokanee can be found between 50 and 80 feet deep while trolling Uncle Larry’s spinners, Vance’s Sockeye Slammers, or Pink Shasta Tackle Kok-a-Nuts. Bass are feeding on shad schools throughout the lake. Senkos, drop-shotting or split-shotting plastics in or around the schools of bait is producing numbers right now. A favorite bait of mine this time of year is a white Zoom Fluke worked around the shady side of large rocks or any brush found along the shoreline.


Lake Pardee:

The hotter it gets the better Pardee becomes for smallmouth bass. Crickets are a must for sheer numbers of smallmouth bass. Rig and fish crickets just as you would a split shot rig with a smaller hook of course and get ready for some action. Bigger smallmouths are usually caught by those who anchor and drop a line over the side and wait them out. The nice thing about using crickets is that you have a chance at catching just about anything that swims in the lake. Kokanee fishing continues to be very good for anglers fishing early in the morning and trolling between 30 and 60 feet deep. Many anglers are being rewarded with limits of kokanee once finding the schools of fish.


Tip of The Week:

In my attempt to bring my boat’s faded hull back to its original shine, I spent nearly $200 on a buffer and restoration products. The results I thought were great, until I came across a video on YouTube showing how people were removing hard stains and scum lines with Dollar Store toilet bowl cleaner. When comparing the chemicals in toilet bowl cleaner and the high dollar marine hull cleaner, the ingredients are similar. I’m still unsure how the cleaner will handle oxidation, but I have a small spot on my boat that I’m going to give it a try on.