Glory Hole Fishing Report

New Melones Reservoir - Angels Camp, CA

by Glory Hole Sports Staff
(209) 736-4333

Water Conditions

New Melones Lake is currently holding 527,076 acre-feet of water. The lake level dropped one foot this past week and it appears more water is being held and less is being released. It is currently at 863 ft. above sea level and 222 ft. from full. The water clarity is clear in most of the lake with a slight stain in some areas. The water temperature is slightly cooling, with the average being 67-73 degrees. The concrete ramp is CLOSED and longer in use. There is also a courtesy dock on the dirt launch which will be in place for the remainder of the summer and until the concrete ramp is open again.

Joe Caccamo of Arnold caught two really nice rainbow trout while trolling a tandem spoon rig in deep water.


We had a good week of trout fishing and saw some of those big New Melones rainbows. Many anglers are catching some 2 to 5-pound rainbows while fishing in deep water on the main lake. We are very excited to be seeing fish of this size and can expect the bite to improve. As the water temperatures cool the fish will become more active and move up closer to the surface. Trolling anglers are not catching a bunch of fish, but the ones they are hooking into are very impressive. Try trolling from 70' to 90' over the deepest portions of the lake. The fish are feeding heavily on shad, so most anglers are fishing with shad patterned spoons, plugs and swimbaits. There is very little visibility in deep water and darker colors will work best. Black, blue and purple are all good choices. Also, try adding scent to your presentation or tying a scent chamber inline. Bank anglers should start to anticipate the fall/winter bite and the lake turnover. The temperatures are dropping and the fish will be moving toward the surface and shoreline. The lake will generally be turned by the first couple weeks of November. Try fan casting a large Kastmaster in search of the first big fish to move up.

Glory Hole Sports Big Fish of the Week goes to Matt Rice of Modesto. He caught two chunky rainbows with his biggest weighing 4-pounds, 14-ounces. He reported catching his fish on a Pro Troll Trout Killer in 95' of water.

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.

Bob James of Murphys spent a couple days chasing these large trout. He brought in some big ones weighing up to 3-pounds, 8-ounces.

Rod Smith and Reel Habit of Sonora caught three nice trout. They used an Apex fished in 90' of water to find success. Their biggest weighed just shy of 3-pounds.

Bob Scruggs spent a couple days on the Take it to the Limit Guide Service boat and caught some beautiful rainbows. His biggest weighed 3-pounds, 13-ounces.


The season has come to an end and the kokanee will be spawning in the creek channels and upriver.


The recent cooling trend in the weather should help the bite and make the bass a bit more active. There is an abundance of shad and the bass are gorging on them. Use your electronics to locate these large populations of shad and the bass will be nearby. Many of the shad are small and the bass will key in on their size. Try using small soft plastics that are similar in size and color to the shad. Many fish are suspended and feed in the middle of the water column. These fish can be targeted with small swimbaits and deep diving rip baits. A dropshot rig is also a must have for fall fishing. Try using a light weight and be ready to detect a bite as the bait drops. Some fish will stay down closer to the bottom and feed on crawdads and other bottom dwelling creatures. Even the bass that are feeding on shad will come down to feed on the bottom when they get a chance. Try using a light football head jig in shallow water and switching to a heavier one when fishing deep. California Reservoir Lures makes a selection of jigs that will catch big fish in the Motherlode. PLEASE PRACTICE CATCH AND RELEASE. Take photos and carefully release the fish back into to the lake to maintain a healthy fish population for generations to come.


We are very excited to be bringing back the Glory Hole Sports Fall Catfish Contest which will be going for the entire month of November. Sign-ups start October 1st. Stop by to register and secure a spot. We are seeing some big catfish being caught and we hope to see some giants come to the scales during the month of November. Now is a good time to go out and scout out some of those catfish holes. Many of the biggest catfish will be caught on frozen fish. Shad, mackerel and anchovies are all good choices for bait. Use miracle thread to keep your bait secured to the hook. Catfish have very poor eyesight and will feed by smell. Add scent to your bait or use scent catfish bait. Each year many large cats are caught a ball of crawlers. Be sure to grab a box of crawlers before each outing and try using them in combination with other stink baits and dough baits.

Glory Hole Sports Big Fish of the Week goes to John Wylie of Tuolumne. He caught a nice 10-pound, 4-ounce catfish on frozen mackerel.


The crappie bite has slowed and there are very few anglers targeting them. They will be holding in tall standing timber near deep water and feeding on schools of shad that swim past. Live minnows and mini jigs fish under a slip-float will work. Try fishing near the mouth of any of the major creek channels.

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