Del Valle Fishing Report

Del Valle Lake - Livermore, CA (Alameda County)

by East Bay Regional Park District


The weather at Del Valle has been cloudy, with the sun warming through the afternoon. Early mornings in the 40s with temperatures rising up into the low 70s by midday. Water temperature at the dock reads 66-69 degrees.

Jeff Cooper (San Ramon, CA) gave a report to the marina about his fishing experiences this weekend at Del Valle! Here is his report:

“Saturday at Del Valle was the perfect storm for big bass fishing! Overcast skies, and high winds on the eve of the springtime full moon had the big females feeding up before they spawn. It seemed like a long month of baiting since the female bass pulled back out to deeper water, when the conditions were not yet to their liking at the beginning of the month. Well, the wait is over because the "Girls are Back in Town!" This time of year has always been my favorite for catching big bass, and Saturday at Del Valle did not disappoint! Landing 23 pounds for my top five bass, set my new one-day total personal best at the lake! My day was not all sunshine and rainbows. Actually, it was quite painful from pulling my lower back out the night before. Finding it difficult to walk or even stand upright, I decided to hit the lake anyway. Upon reaching the docks, I could see baitfish jumping out of the water as smallmouth bass were teaming up on them along the shoreline. We started fishing immediately past the docks throwing all sorts of small lures at them but did not prevail. The next stop was the Christmas trees just past the camping area. I pitched a weightless Senko in and hooked a 5+ lb'er. She jumped and with a head shaking tail walk, threw my barbless rig back at me. In pain and frustrated I fished on! Next stop was Swallow Bay off a point of a cove. Casting a 1/2 oz. lipless crankbait it snagged some submersed vegetation in 4-5 feet of water. As I ripped it through to clear my line of grass, a 1 1/2 lbs. male bass jumped on it for my first fish of the day. A few minutes later on the other side of the point, I picked up a smallmouth on the same lure. After fishing around the pocket, I went back to where I caught the male bass. Making a long cast over the vegetation and ripping it through to clear my line, another bass jumped on. This time it was a giant female weighing in at 5 lbs. 12 oz. A pattern was starting to form, so we moved on looking for similar depths with submersed vegetation. Running up to Heron Bay we found it, and added a 3 lbs. 12.

oz. bass to the list of lipless crankbait fish. When the vegetation became too thick to get the dual treble hooks through, I switched to a homemade 1/2 swim jig, with a heavy brush guard. Tipped with a 4" Keitech Easy Shiner, it pulled through the grass cleanly. The next two giant girls were caught on this swim jig at 5 lbs. 11 oz. and 6 lbs. 4 oz. Knowing I surpassed my personal best at this point, my mind wanted to keep going with a few hours left. But, my body was failing and the lower back pain was too much to continue so we called it an early day.

This is the beginning of an exciting time of the year for those who like to catch big bass! So pain or shine, grab your gear, and I will see you on the lake!”

Some of our other regulars, Al Hurwitz, Abbey Lev, John Foster trolled the lake on April 26th. Here is their report:

“We trolled the lake on April 26th and caught two nice looking Mt. Lassen Rainbow Trout, measuring 15 and 17 inches. Pictured are Abbey and John with their catch. A third fish, probably a Rainbow, did not stay pinned. All of the strikes occurred using leaded line, trolling a Speedy Shiner as well as J-9 Rapalas some 10-20 feet below the surface. Scent was applied to the lures. The fish were caught along the western shore south of Heron Bay and in Heron Bay itself. The surface water temperature was 66-69 degrees, the water being cooler and clearer up lake towards the dam. Water clarity is an essential part of trolling, particularly for Trout. As the water continues to clear during the month of May, I would expect the trollers to achieve greater success in catching Trout and all Bass species. See you soon, Dr. Al Hurwitz”


We are not getting many reports about catfish, but if you are planning to target them, they will be in deeper water, 15-20 feet. The best baits to use would be anchovies, mackerel, or night crawlers.


The lake level his higher, and the staining is starting to subside. Most anglers are reporting success with Powerbait or Powereggs. Make sure you are fishing shallow sand flats and if you are fishing from a boat, make sure you keep moving. If you have scent, that seems to be helping as well.


Many anglers are catching bass, using any lures or jigs. Keep moving along the shore, near cover. Plastic worms and drop lures seem to do the trick! With the lake level up, and the warming waters and air temperatures, bass should be moving into the shallows to breed the next few weeks, and should make bass fishing at Del Valle great!


We are starting to hear a few more reports of people hooking into stripers. Most of the striper action has been centered near the dam, but some people are having success in the Narrows and near the dock. We recommend diving spoons and lures out by the dam, in deeper water.

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