New Melones Reservoir Report

New Melones Reservoir - Angels Camp, CA

by Glory Hole Sports Staff
(209) 736-4333

Water Conditions: New Melones Lake is currently holding 287,235 acre-feet of water. The lake level dropped three feet this last week. It is currently at 804 ft. above sea level and 284 ft. from full. The water clarity is stained in many areas and will occasionally clear up. The water temperature is warm, with the average being 76-81 degrees. The dam area has been buoyed off due to current that is created when releasing water. Glory Hole Point boat launch is a two lane dirt and gravel road leading off of the end of the point. There is not a courtesy dock and it is best to launch with a 4-wheel drive vehicle.

Trout: Slow. There have been very few anglers that are targeting trout. The summer heat and falling water levels has kept many anglers from launching and fishing on New Melones. We can look forward to the temperatures dropping and the bite picking up. Late summer and fall is typically a good time to target large rainbow trout and brown trout. Trolling anglers should focus on using lures that wobble and rattle. With the water being stained and the fish holding deep, sound and vibration become very important. Try using Rattle Traps and Speed Traps Trolled in 70-90' of water. To target the brown trout, try rolling frozen shad or using a large jointed plug. Night fishing anglers should try fishing in areas with deep/cool water nearby. Live minnows are a good choice of bait and many different species will take them. When using live minnows you will have a chance to catch trout, bass, crappie and catfish. Bank anglers should head to the high country lakes for cooler weather and comfortable shoreline angling conditions. We do encourage catch and release for the brown trout as The Department of Fish and Game will no longer be planting them. Carefully measure, weigh and photograph trophy fish and send us pictures and information.

Kokanee: Slow. With such few anglers targeting kokanee, it is difficult to produce an accurate report. However, based on years past the kokanee will start to work their way upriver for their annual spawn and die. With this in mind, the majority of the fish will be near Carson Creek and up toward the 49-bridge. The fish will be starting to get a little color with some having a little hook mouth showing. Try targeting fish from 70-100' of water. Kokanee will tend to be very aggressive at this time of year and will hit some fairly large lures. There are a few different setups that generally produce limits. Try using an Apex fished behind a large dodger. Black, blue, purple and pink are all good color choices for both the blade and the lure. It is very important to add plenty of scent to the blade and lure. Garlic, anise, kokanee special, and bloody tuna are a few favorites. Don't forget to tip your baits with dyed and scented shoe peg corn.

Bass: Fair. The weather forecast is calling for another week hot weather. The daytime temperatures will be over 100-degrees. This will limit the bass bite to early morning, evening and at night. Generally the topwater bite is good at this time of year but right now we are getting very few surface blow-ups. The fish have been moving to deep/cool water and can be found suspended near shad or pulled tight to the bottom. Most fish are being caught on a variety of soft plastic presentations. A Carolina rig, Texas rig, dart head, and drop shot are all good ways to catch them. A very effective way to target fish in deep water is with a ¾ oz. football head jig. With a heavy jig you can cover a lot of water while keeping contact with the bottom. The idea is to hit under water cover and structure with your jig. Most of the strikes will come after you pull the bait over a rock, tree, or limb. Also, if you do locate shad try using a vertical jigging spoon. PLEASE PRACTICE CATCH AND RELEASE. The bigger fish are the future of our lake. Take photos and carefully release the fish back into to the lake to maintain a healthy fish population for generations to come.

Catfish: Good. Many anglers have found some nice catfish cruising the shallows near the standing timber and rocky banks. Catfish are known to be bottom-feeders but, they actual feed all throughout the water column. Catfish are opportunistic feeders. This means they rarely pass up the chance to fill their bellies. The lake has an abundance of small shad and that is most likely what the catfish are feeding on. Try using frozen shad or live minnows to entice nearby feeding fish. Some catfish will leave the bottom and feed in the middle of the water column. Try using a slip-float and a bobber stop to target these fish. Set the bobber stop to your desired depth and try fishing near structure that would be a good area to ambush shad. Each year many catfish are caught on a nightcrawler/marshmallow rig. The mallow will float the crawler off of the bottom making it easy for the fish to locate. Remember catfish have very poor eyesight. It is a good idea to add additional scent to your presentation.

Glory Hole Sports Big Fish of the Week goes to Ron Rios Jr. of San Jose. He caught a big 11-pound, 3-ounce catfish on a chunk of anchovy. He reported the fish biting at 11:30am near the Glory Hole Point Boat Launch.

Crappie: Good. We have had a few reports of anglers catching some nice crappie. They have not been catching a bunch, but the ones that are biting are nice and weigh up to 2-pounds. Live minnows fished under a light have been working best.

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