Clear Lake Fishing Report

Clear Lake - Clearlake, CA (Lake County)

by RB Bass

Well I had a great day on Clear Lake today. I launched the boat and headed to Windflower Point. My thought was to throw jigs and crank baits on rock piles in 6 to 16 feet of water. I gave it a good 45 minutes, which was way to long, before moving on to another island to try some flipping. The flip bite didn’t produce either. So at this point I decided to make a location change and head north. When I drove through the narrows I saw boats on top of boats all down the bank. Wow! I thought, is that the only place there are fish on the lake? So I kept driving until I found an area that was pretty much vacant. A point that the next closest boat was well over 100 yards away. Its a point I was very familiar with and was rather surprised nobody was on it being as how the boats were covering so much of the area.

I set the boat down a good ways offshore and picked up the shad colored square bill. Making long casts towards the bank I was quickly rewarded with a nice chunky 2 lb fish. The next 4 casts also produced bites to 4 lbs. All the fish seemed to be close to or on the bank. I figured I could get up closer a parallel cast and stay in the strike zone. Nope! The fished wanted it swimming away from the bank. I worked down 30 feet one direction the turned and worked back the other direction. I soon had a 15-16 lb limit. When that bite slowed I picked up a DD14 in a Delta Craw pattern and picked off a few more nice chunks. When that went without a bite for a few casts I picked up the jig and caught a few more. Then I decided to try the Delta Craw colored BDS4, and that produced some more bites. So as you can see I now have a good number of baits that Im getting bit on.

I continued to cycle back and forth on this point and catch fish. Every now and then Id get a bigger fish. By this time there were boats closing in on me from both directions. I fended off the area by casting in both directions just to let them know I was fishing both sides of the boat. Most of the boats were respectful. One of them decided to come in very close and I just asked if he could go around in a wider circle. He did. The bite was slowing a little bit as the morning was fading, but I was still graphing plant of fish out deeper. So I moved the boat out to 17 ft and continued with my same baits. I fished the jig more of a parallel angle in a little deeper water, say 10-12 feet. I made a long cast with my G-Money 1/2 oz black blue jig. It hit bottom and I popped it once, bam! 5.75 lb largemouth. Now I knew there were some bigger fish here because I was graphing them. I continued to cycle through my baits. It was getting close to the time I had to get off the water, even though I didn’t want to have to stop fishing. Anyhow. I continued to cast the BDS in Delta Craw to the bank. I finally got bit and the drag was stripping off. I got her in the boat after a couple minutes and weighed her in at 7.5 lbs. I made a few more casts and had to head for the house.

All in all it was a great morning. What I saw out there with the tournament guys is they were just burning up bank. Instead of doing that I fished the school for all it was worth and put together a nice bag of fish. Had I been able to fish longer I do believe that Id a picked up another big fish. They were moving up and down to feed and fresh fish were moving in from time to time. My past few trips to Clear Lake have taught me to not give up on a spot to quickly. Every trip I have caught the biggest fish of the day after Id fished it for a couple hours.

The other thing I was looking for is water quality. Clear Lake had a large die off over the past couple weeks. It seems to have taken its course as I didn’t notice any fresh fish. Its not all that unusual, however this one was much larger then normal. I also noticed the weeds are not present like they used to be. Tons of shad dead in the lower half of the lake. The middle part of the lake appeared closer to normal in color and not many dead fish around. I’m sure there was fish to be caught south, I just didn’t figure them out. Next time your on the lake, spend some time trying to figure out multiple ways to catch fish out of a school and give it some time. It may just be a great day without burning a lot of gas.

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