Big Bear Fishing Report
May 4, 2013
While the spring trout bite on Big Bear Lake is just a bit off from previous years, trout anglers are picking up a few here and there. It may have something to do with the lack of run off, the quickly climbing water temps, the trout have been in spawn, or the CDFW hasn't stocked yet this year. No one seems to know. The west end jumped up 6 degrees to 57 degrees in the past week while the east end rose 5 degrees to 58 degrees. Not a major problem at this point, but could make for an interesting season to come. The good news is that the CDFW is scheduled to stock the week of 5/12 and the May Trout Classic 5/18-5/19, with its plant of big fish is just around the corner.
Trout anglers working the triangle and a bit further west are picking up a few trout with 3 to 4 colors of lead core and various lures in tow. Bass fishing has slowed as they seem to be going into their spawn. Panfish are starting to show in the shallows off mini jigs and worms.
Steve Mortimore, Apple Valley, CA was fishing along the south shore near the dam, when a post spawn trout weighing 7.77 lbs. and measuring 30 inches long, inhaled his home made dough bait he calls Mammoth Magic. Perhaps Steve will starting calling it Big Bear Voodoo.
April 28, 2013
Wind & Moon Wade
Trout fishing picked up this weekend on the lake. The full moon is waning and the winds have settled down for now. As a result anglers are back to finding trout at 3 to 4 colors of leadcore with various Thomas Buoyants and Needlefish. While a few fish have hit the net in the west end, most of the activity is still in the trout triangle (Eagle Pt., observatory, Lagonita Pt.) Not much news from the shoreline, but with warming water temps (Juniper Pt. at 54 degrees in the morning) most bait anglers are heading west where the water temperature is 51 degrees. Oxygen levels are good top to bottom so the fish are scattered, but hanging below the clarity of 12 feet.
Bass fishing has slowed a bit, but still providing some good action for those pitichin' plastics worked off the bottom on a slow retrieval near docks and rocks. The slow down is probably due to the bass getting ready or already spawning.
Mike Heroux, up from Cypress, CA with the family brought in a nice 5 pounder. While fishing off Eagle Pt. His 7 year old son Vincent, landed the trout drift fishing off a boat, using a Berkley Mice Tail.
April 21, 2013
Winds Die Bites Alive
Sure enough, the wind in Big Bear settled down and the trout are back on the chew. Water temperatures are up to the low 50's in the morning and bumping up to mind 50's in the afternoon. Trout anglers trolling 3 to 4 colors down in the "Triangle" (Eagle Pt., Observatory, Lagonita Pt.) are catching nice holdovers in the 2 plus pound range with smaller trout mixed in. Thomas Buoyants and Luhr-Jensen Needlefish have worked the best down deep. Surface action is starting to pickup with trout going after Rapalas flat lined on mono. Bait anglers are starting to head west as the water on the east end are warming and the fish are leaving the shallows for cooler deeper water. As the trout vacate the east, the crappie are becoming active in the same area.
Bass fishing remains strong as they are eating just about everything as they fatten up and prepare for spawning. Best results are for anglers doing a slow retrieval of plastics and mini jigs worked along the bottom near docks and jetty’s.
Carl Vanburger, Apple Valley with his surface Rapala holdover.
April 14, 2013
Big Bear Howls!
We didn't have much of a winter, but now that it is spring it is feeling like winter. Snow or rain isn't the issue (that would be welcome) it's the WIND. Not many anglers out braving the high winds. The ones getting out are picking at the trout as they blow about. Trollers working leadcore have had some luck with needlefish deep at 3 to 4 colors. Those soaking PowerBait and crawlers are getting the same results. Water temperatures are on the rise in a hurry due to lack of cold water run-off. Surface temps are now in the low 50's in the am and up to the mid 50's later in the day as the sun warms the top.
Bass anglers are still whacking largemouth near docks and rock jetty's when they can stay on the spot long enough. Crayfish plastics and spinner baits worked of the bottom slowly are producing fish in the 2 to 3 pound. Rene Herrera, Big Bear Lake caught and released a 3.15 largemouth near Gibraltar Pt. on a crayfish plastic jig.
Fishing will get better once the winds forecast to high until Wednesday, settle down.
April 7, 2013
High Winds Blow Out Bite
Up until the winds came up Saturday, trout fishing had been steady on Big Bear Lake. Anglers working "Trout Triangle" (Eagle Pt.-Observatory-Lagonita Pt.) with leadcore down 3 to 4 colors with needlefish in tow have been getting plenty of fish in the one to two pound range. The water clarity is very high so fish deep be it from shore or boat. Bait anglers along the north shore are doing well on PowerBait and nightcrawlers fished off the bottom. Local angler "Mark" brought in a 6.6 pound Big Bear Bow he caught off of Windy Pt., while trolling a needlefish.
Bass fishing is insane! Cast any plastics that looks like a crayfish along docks and rocks and get ready to go bendo. Scott Eberhard, Big Bear Lake caught 30 largemouth in the two pound range during a 3 hour period recently. Yours truly got into the action, catching several bass near Big Bear Marina. Not bad for a guy that never bass fished before.
March 31, 2013
The 2013 Fishing Season is Here!
It looks to be a great year for fishing on Big Bear Lake, surface water temperatures are now up to 46 degrees and the lake is 4 feet down from full. Run-off from creeks that feed the lake are at a lower flow rate than normal, due to the below normal snow fall this winter. Even with low flow from the creeks it is against CA DFW regulations to fish in the creeks or the out-flow, until the Friday after Memorial Day. Please stay clear and give the trout a chance to spawn.
Trout anglers working the north shore are catching limits of holdover trout in the one and a half to two pound range. The trout are hugging the shore line in search of warmer water and food sources. PowerBait and/or inflated nightcrawlers fished off the bottom with a small egg sinker of split shot 1 to 2 feet above your 4 pound leader with a #14 or #16 treble hook for the PowerBait or a #6 or #8 baitholder hook for the crawler is all you need.
The few anglers on the lake in a boat have reported good catches of trout on leadcore down 3 to 4 colors with Needlefish in Fire Pearl and Red Head finishes getting the best results. The trout are deep for this time of year due to the clarity of the water. Oxy or thermo clines are not an issue.
March 22, 2013
Ready, Set, Go!
Time to go fishing! We plan to open Friday March 29th for the 2013 season (weather permitting). It looks to be a great year on Big Bear Lake. The trout have been getting fat over the winter and are hitting PowerBait fished off the bottom near to shore. A small split shot between 8 to 18 inches from a number 14 or 16 treble hook on 4 pound test line with your favorite PowerBait suspended will make your rod go bendo in no time. The lake is at the same level we left it at in the fall, down 4ft 4inches from full. Water temperature is at a chilly 39 degrees and the trout are a little slow to chase a trolled or retrieved lure right now. Bass are showing in the shallows as they look for warmer water and forage. Flippin' plastics near the rocky shore has produced a few bass to 3 pounds. Tight lines and good fishing to you!
September 30, 2012
Harvest Moon Slows Bite
That big bright light in the sky at night is beautiful and you may like it, but the trout don't. The good news is it came and will be gone before TroutfesT. As the moon wanes, take the time to put new line on your reels, check your drags, lube your reels up and get ready for TroutfesT. It won't hurt to look at your Rapalas, Panther Martins and Thomas Buoyants for tired split rings, and make sure the hooks are sharp. Why take the chance of losing that one trout that could get you a brand new F-150 or a wad of cash.
The lake is ready to go. Water temps continue to drop and are currently at 66 degrees on the surface and 65 on the bottom. Oxygen levels are high top to bottom and will keep the trophy trout for TroutfesT happy! Hopefully you have entered the tournament, but if you can't make it, remember there will be many trout in the lake after the tournament. Great Fall fishing should continue right into the ski season. Tight lines and good fishing to you.
September 23, 2012
Lake Record Almost
The Big Bear Lake record for crappie almost fell this past week. Local Cody Jenkins was flippin' a purple and white Norman lure off the observatory when a nice slab hit his offering. Not wanting to stop fishing Cody kept the fish bagged and in a cooler, until the next morning. As the crappie was placed in the scale, Cody held his breath as the readout went to 1.25 lbs. The fish was .01 lbs. short of the record set in 2010 at 1.26 lbs. Just to make sure we weighed the fish 3 more times…still came up short. Too bad, we will never know what the fish weighed when first caught, but it definitely lost some weight overnight.
Trouting remains steady on the lake. Water temps continue to drop, oxygen levels are high and the fish are coming up. DFG plant is scheduled for this week to compliment the large stocking of trophy fish for TroutfesT 10/6-10/7. There has not be a lot of fishing pressure latley, seems like everyone is waiting for TroutfesT and their chance at an F-150, fishing boat and a multitude of prizes and cash.
It's not to late to enter WON's very popular tournament. Mail in deadline is 9/28, so be sure to get your entry in very soon. You can also enter on-line at www.wonews.com (click on the event folder). Last chance sign-up is 10/5 (if space is available) during registration at the Big Bear visitors center.
September 16, 2012
Trout On The Up
With a chill in the night air and cooling of the lake, trout fishing is improving right on schedule. As the water temps come down and the oxygen levels stay high, the trout are moving closer to the surface. Leadcore trollers are finding the trout at 2.5 colors early and down to 4 mid-day. Much better than 5 plus colors of the past few weeks. A top line bite is also starting to develop. A variety of Rapalas (up) and Needlefish (down), from nickel and brass to rainbow and firetiger are working well.
Bait anglers fishing PowerBait and crawlers are getting the trout off of slip bobbers rigged up just a bit shorter than before. From 5 to 15 feet is where you want to be. Drift fishing without a slip bobber, using just a little egg sinker to keep the bait down will, put fish on the stringer.
The place on the lake to be for trout, is from Metcalf Bay to the dam. Fishng the south shore early, then the north late. Bass and panfish anglers are still getting nice fish along the docks and rock jetties from the Observatory to Eagle Pt., on spinners, mini-jigs and plastics.
September 9, 2012
Fading Into Fall
As the high season wraps up for 2012, with less jet skis and boats, anglers have the lake back to themselves. Oxygen levels are high throughout the lake and water temps are starting to drop. With 67 degrees at the dam and 68 all the way to Windy Pt. conditions are shaping up well for the 8th annual WON Troutfest. Avid anglers are anxiously awaiting the stocking of trophy trout, and many tagged ones worth a lot of money and possibly a truck.
In the meantime trout anglers are picking up a few stockers on PowerBait suspended from 20 to 25 ft in the western third of the lake. While leadcore trollers gong down 4 to 5 colors with various spoons in tow are getting a few too.
Panfish and bass action remains good for those pitching minijigs and spinners near docks early and late. No news on the catfish and in general it has been slower than in years past.
September 2, 2012
Busy Holiday Slows Bite
While all the Labor Day visitors has been great for business, the added boating and fishing pressure has slowed the trout bite. The trout that are coming in, as in the past week, are being caught on leadcore line trolled at 4 to 5 colors and by bait anglers suspending PowerBait from a slip bobber at 20-25 feet. The western third of the lake is still the place to be. Early and late is a bit better than mid-day. Look for the fishing to improve once the holiday is over.
Bass action continues to be good along docks for anglers pitching plastic crayfish and small spinner baits. Scott Wittrig, Big Bear Lake brought in a 4.61 lb. largemouth bass caught off Eagle Pt. He reports the bassin’ has been steady all season long with smallmouth to 2 lbs part of the mix.
Panfishing is strong along the weed beds and docks with crappie, bluegill and pumpkinseed hitting minijigs tipped with Gulp nuggets or a piece of nightcrawler. A Great way to put a smile on any young anglers face.
August 26, 2012
In a recent conversation with a couple of old fishi' buddies, we all agreed that it had been awhile since any of us had seen a big trout come in. While limits of smaller fish have been the rule during the late summer, our conclusion was that we probably wouldn't see any big fish until the WON TroutfesT tournament in October. One of the guys in the conversation was Carl Vanburger an avid angler who has many big trout to his credit. Carl has always maintained that the best way to catch a big trout was to flat line a Rapala on the surface. While that may be true, we were all convinced that it didn't matter what you did now, there just aren't any big trout to be had.
Carl's son Ron Vanburger from Highland, came up this past weekend to wet a line with his dad. True to form Carl had Ron put a gold Rapala out on the surface. While trolling mid-lake off Trout Alley in the mid day sun, the Rapala took off, at first the anglers thought it to be another stocker. Not the case, as the trout hit the surface the boys realized it was a good one. The trout hit the scales at a hefty 5.81 lbs. a real beauty. Just another example of the marvels of fishing and the surprises it can produce.
For everybody else, limits of pan-sized trout were the rule. Trolling deep at 5 colors with nickel spoons in tow has produced the most fish. The trout are concentrated in the western third of the lake where the water temperature and oxygen levels are most favorable.
Bait anglers using PowerBait and nightcrawlers suspended off a slip bobber in the 20 to 25 feet range are also catching trout in the same area. Much like trolling anglers are better off drifting the lake, covering more water, as opposed to sitting in one spot.
Look for a busy Labor Day weekend on the lake, as everyone gets in their last hooray of the summer. After that the lake will quiet down with less boats and fishing pressure, making the month of September a great time to enjoy the lake. October brings us TroutfesT, with a lot of trout and prizes, both big and small to be had by all.
August 12, 2012
Trout Keep a Bitin'
As thunder storms come and go the trout bite keeps getting better. Just before the thunder bumpers strike the barometer drops and bite is on. Curt Dills of Fish Big Bear Charter Service got limits of 20 trout for his party last week. The fish hit nickel Needlefish and Buoyants fished at 4 to 5 colors, as the clouds built. There is a little bit of surface action on Rapalas fished early and late, when the sun gets high, the trout shut down.
Bait anglers are enjoying the same type of action suspending PowerBait from 18 to 25 feet down. Michael Hoo, from Northridge, brought the family up over the weekend. He and his daughters caught a nice stringer of trout just before Saturdays thunderstorms. The fish bit PowerBait off the mouths of Metcalf and Boulder Bays.
The west is best this time of year on Big Bear Lake. Fish early, fish late, just fish.
August 5, 2012
Summer Bite Stays Hot
Trout fishing remained strong this past week. The fish are hanging deep in 67 to 68 degree water, from 18 to 28 feet. Oxygen levels are good top to bottom, but the trout are seeking the cooler deeper water in the western third of the lake. Either leadcore at almost 6 colors or a downrigger set in that range are a must for anglers that are trolling. Needlefish and just about any other spoon type lure in a nickel finish is your best bet. Bait anglers need to be slip bobbing at the same depths in order to get bit. Unless there is cloud cover, it is an early and late bite that is producing fresh stockers in the one pound range with a few holdovers up to two and a half pounds mixed in.
Bass and panfish anglers are picking up a few fish. Again it is and early and late bite, around docks and weed beds. Spinners for the bass and minijigs for the panfish are getting the most fish. Nocturnal anglers are still finding big catfish off the sandy bottom on stinkbaits, shrimp or mackerel.
July 29, 2012
Big Cat Plus Trout Back On The Bite
Trout fishing got a whole lot better on the lake this week! With high oxygen levels from top to bottom and east to west the trout have gone back on the bite. The western third of the lake is where the action is. Anglers drift fishing from a boat or off the north shore are hooking trout off slip bobbers at 25 feet down. P0werBait is the best bait with garlic the hot choice. Trollers are working the fish deep with 5 colors of leadcore out. Early and late is when most the action is happening, with the north shore in the west end the hot spot. Shiny copper watermelon Needlefish are getting the most fish, while nickle Thomas Buoyants are getting the job done too.
While the trout fishing is good, the cat fishing is off the hook. Big catfish are hitting the scales on a regular basis. Kamill Mirzaguliyev up from LA was soaking Gulp catfish dough off the fishing pier at Meadow Park late on the evening of 7/23 when a 25.48 kittie inhaled his bait. After a 35 minute battle Kamill was able to land the huge cat. While waiting for the weigh station at Big Bear Marina to open the next morning, Kamill kept the prized catch wrapped up in a towel on the bathroom floor of the cabin he and his family rented. The housekeeper was just a bit startled when she picked up the dirty towels that morning!
July 22, 2012
Trout Hard to Find
Compared to the last two years, trout fishing is tough this summer on Big Bear Lake. WIth water temperatures high and clarity deep the trout are hanging out deep at 25 feet plus. Trolling leadcore requires 5 colors in the water to get close to them. No single lure has stood out recently. You need to throw the tackle box at them and change types and colors of lures often. Bait anglers are also struggling. A slip bobber rigged at 25 to 30 feet and drifting off a boat with PowerBait or a crawler is your best shot. Catfish and panfish are stiil active while the bass action has slowed too.
July 15, 2012
Waters Warm, Trout Chill
It’s summer time on the lake! Water temperatures are at levels that normally aren’t seen until late August or early September. The dam is at 68 degrees, down by Juniper Pt. the temp is 72 degrees on the surface. The warm water has slowed the trout bite a bit. With clarity at 13 feet the trout are hitting Needlefish and Thomas Buoyants as deep as four colors of leadcore. Bait anglers are doing best drifting mid-lake from the dam to Windy Pt. with PowerBait suspended at 20 feet. Oxygen levels remain high from 40 feet to the surface in the west end and 27 feet to the top mid-lake. Surface action is early and late with Rapalas and Wollybuggers trolled on top.
Inland Empire Bass Masters came to the lake this Saturday and found largemouth bass in the three pound range with some smallies to two pounds mixed in.
Three generations of the Vanburger family trolled the waters of Big Bear Lake on Sunday. Carl (granddad) Apple Valley, Ron (son) Highland and Ronnie (grandson) caught a limit of Big Bear Bows to two pounds. Ronnie landed his on a Needlefish at four colors along Trout Alley.
July 7, 2012
Summer Settles on Big Bear
With water temperatures ranging from 66 degrees at the dam to 69 degrees at Juniper Pt. Big Bear Lake is warm and in summer mode. Oxygens levels are great from the top to within a few feet of the bottom. Trout are being caught from the observatory all the way down to the dam due to these uniform and favorable conditions. The best trout bite is early and late due to clarity as deep as 12 feet. Bait anglers hanging PowerBait off a slip bobber set at 15 to 20 feet are doing well be it from the shore from Windy Pt. and to the ewst, or drifting the middle of the lake in a boat. Trollers are finding the trout up on the surface with Rapalas and nightcrawlers at dawn and dusk, then going down to three and a half colors of leadcore during brighter daylight hours. Needlefish and Dick Nite spoons are getting the best deep action.
All the summer time specieas are active and easy to catch. Crappie and Bluegill are hitting minijigs and worms hung of a bobber near docks and weed beds. Catfish are being caught by nocturnal anglers on shrimp, mackerel and stinkbaits fished off sandy bottoms near Eagle Pt., Gilner Pt. and the observatory. Bass action for large and small varieties is slow; pitching spinners and plastics near docks early and late is your best bet.
June 16, 2012
Good Fishing on Big Bear Lake
As we roll into summer fishing on the lake remains good. Water temps are up compared to last year, with readings at 63 degrees in the west end, 64 degrees in the middle and 66 in the east. Clarity is also higher than normal with visibility down to 10 feet. Oxygen levels for trout are adequate down to 47 feet at the dam and bump up tp 30 feet from the west ramp to Juniper Pt. For trout anglers fishing close to shore in the west end using PowerBait and nightcrawlers suspended from a slip bobber rigged at 20 feet is producing nice trout. Trollers working Rapalas on the surface and Dick Nite spoons and Thomas Buoyants at 3 to 3 1/2 colors down from Windy Pt. and west are getting a good mix of hefty holdovers and fresh planters.
Crappie and Bluegill are showing well along docks, weed beds and rocks. Mini-jigs or a worm hung off a clip on bobber will get the job done. Bass are a little slow as they come out of spawn. Look for the catfish to start hitting the stink baits in the days to come. Bow anglers are starting to whack the carp as they hit the shallows to spawn.
June 12, 2012
Great Fishin' for $50K Event, No Big Winner
576 Anglers participated in the 4th annual "Fishin' for $50K." Two tagged trout worth a potential $50,000 were caught during the event, but unfortunately neither carried the prized tag. Big trout winner was Gary Judd from Redlands, CA who brought a 8.10 lbs. trout good for $500 to the scales, Gary's fish was caught on PowerBait, Berkley rewarded him with another $500. Adult female winner was Lisa Yocum, Upland CA with a 2.23 lbs. trout. Junior male was Jimmy Gillen, Yucaipa, CA with a 2.38 and Junior female winner was local Kaelee Haggerty, Big Bear Lake with her 2.28 lbs. trout. All received gift baskets, Shakespeare and Pflueger rod and reel combos, as well as, Flambeau tackle boxes stuffed with Rapala and Luhr-Jensen lures.
Besides the thousands of dollars of tackle and prizes given away, a part of each anglers entry fee will go towards enhancing the trout fishery on Big Bear Lake.
May 29, 2012
Cold Snap, Hot Trout
While we all expected a chill in the air over Memorial Weekend, no one really thought it would snow…but it did. Anglers visiting this weekend in shorts, t-shirts and flip-flops awoke to a white valley. One of three days was lost, as the Big Bear thawed out on Saturday. It all got better on Sunday as large trout started hitting the scales and anglers found a nice mix of pound and a half to three pound fish in the mix.
Trollers resumed their assualt on the trout, going down to three colors of leader core with a variety of spoons in numerous colors putting trout in the boat. Be it Needlefish, Buoyants, Dick Nite or Phoebes the trout just seemed to hit all of them. The east end from Eagle Pt. to Stanfiled is slowing down as the water temps go up and the oxygen levels down. Most of the good action is happening from the observatory west to Windy Pt. On a recent trip with Fish Big Bear Charter Fishing, Luke Jeffery from Moreno Valley landed a 8.69 bow on a gold Phoebe off Gilner Pt. that Capt. Curt Dills brought to the boat.
Bait anglers soaking PowerBait along the North Shore continue to nail nice trout. Katte Schenkan got a little more than see bargained for over the holiday weekend. Fishing off Windy Pt. with her family, 13 yr. old Katte got into a huge trout while fishing garlic PowerBait on 4 lb. test line. The 10.74 trout gave her quite the fight and finally gave up as it wedged itself between some rocks. Not willing to give up the fight at this point Katte wadded in up to here waist to get a h0ld of her trophy. When she arrived at the scales she was shivering not from excitement but from the chill of the water.
May 21, 2012
30th Annual May Trout Classic is Just That
The Hall family could not have asked for a better weekend to celebrate the 30th Jim Hall Memorial May Trout Classic and its founder Jim Hall. The top nine started with a 7.39 lb. trout for ninth followed by 7 trout all in the eight pound class with first place going to Dan Marshall of Sugarloaf, CA who took the top spot for the third time with a whopping 11.07 lb beautiful bow. Look for the lake to give up a bunch of big bows in the days to come, thanks to the May Trout Classic.
Conditions on the lake are becoming more like summer than spring at this time. Water temperatures are five degrees higher than a year ago. Water clarity is at about 11 feet and the oxygen levels have dropped off at 33 feet near the dam, Papoose Bay and west ramp to 23 feet off the observatory and Juniper Pt. Trout are still showing in good numbers from the observatory and west, while the east end is producing more summer time species. Due to the warmer than usual water, crappie, bluegill and smallmouth bass have become active. Largemouth bass are going into their spawn mode, gathering on nesting beds along the shore of the lake.
Trout are being landed by just about any means known. Trollers going 3 to 4 colors down with just about any spoon in tow are getting their limits. Surface action can be good early and late in the day. Bait anglers using a slip bobber rigged to about 20 feet or drifting from a boat are producing good counts, while shore anglers have a lesser chance if they fish off the bottom.
May 13, 2012
Back on the Chew
The moon waned, the Santa Ana winds died down and the trout went back on the bite. On the eve of the 30th Annual Jim Hall Memorial May Trout Classic, conditions couldn't be better. Surface water temps across the lake are 58 degrees, while oxygen levels are still high near Juniper Pt., they have fallen to the west and will not support trout below 46 feet at the dam and Papoose Bay. At the west ramp and Observatory the oxygen stops at 32 feet. For bait anglers it is time to give up on bottom fishing in those areas and time to rig up your slip bobbers to find the fish. Trollers are finding the fish at 3 to 4 colors, which translate into 15 to 20 feet for the right depth to rig your slip bobber and perhaps a little deeper depending on your location on the lake. Trollers are not finding much action on the surface at this time. Leadcore, as mentioned, from 3 to 4 colors with a variety of spoons (Needlefish, Thomas Buoyants, Dick Nite) have gotten the most fish. No real magic to the color of spoon, at one time or another they all seem to work. "Trout Triangle" (Eagle Pt., Observatory, Lagonita Pt.) is starting to come alive and should hold fish for sometime.
The May Trout Classic will be stocking a lot of trophy trout for the tournament 5/19-5/20. Entries are still available for this great event. $8000 in cash prizes, a $10,000 tagged trout, great tackle, bait giveaways and raffles are all good reasons to sign up. Don't miss out on your chance for big bucks and prizes!
May 6, 2012
Super Moon Turns Off Bite
It started 4 days before the moon went super full on Saturday, slowly the fish counts got smaller and smaller as the moon got bigger and bigger. Thank goodness this only happens once a year and as the moon wanes the trout will get back on the bite. Before the bite shut down, the trout were active in all the areas and hitting all the baits mentioned in last weeks report. Weather forecast for the next week is for highs in the 70′s and lows in the 40′s. Beautiful weather for Big Bear and the Bows.
April 29, 2012
Finally Spring Has Sprung
The weather has cleared the fish are biting and the snow shovels are put away. Spring has sprung in Big Bear! With good weather and daytime temperatures in the 60's and nighttime in the 40's the trout are on the bite. Water temperatures have risen to 54 degrees in the east and 52 in the west. A nice insect hatch has the trout active on the surface for the first time this year. Trollers who have been working Needlefish on leadcore at 3 to 4 colors the past few weeks are still getting limits of pound and a half holdovers, but can now also put a Rapala up on the surface landing holdover trout in the two plus range as they hit the surface.
Bait anglers continue to catch the same nice limits along the North Shore from Stanfield Cutoff to Windy Pt. With the bait action slowing a bit as you get closer to the dam. Fishing off the bottom with PowerBait, as always is the magic. Varying leader lengths from 1-4 feet until you find the fish is a good idea, with a short cast from the shoreline the most effective. If you have a favorite spot to anchor on and bait fish it too will put fish on the stringer. Drifting the lake in your vessel with bait suspended 15 to 20 feet down will as get the job done.
Regardless of the lure, bait, technique, size rod or line you use (that is less than a broom stick with clothes line) you will catch trout!
April 22, 2012
As The Snow Goes...So Do The Bows
Hard to believe it has been in the low 70's this weekend in Big Bear. A week ago we had a foot of snow on the ground, now it's shorts and T-shirt time. But wait…what is in the forecast for Thursday? That nasty four letter word SNOW! Oh well, it is sprinter time in Big Bear (the season when Mother Nature can’t make her mind if it is spring or winter).
When the weather is good the trout fishing has been great! Plump holdovers in the pound and a half range are filling stringers for trollers and bait anglers alike, with a few fish coming in at two to three pounds. Bait anglers fishing PowerBait and/or nightcrawlers off the bottom with a leader length of 1 to 3 feet are doing well all along the North Shore from Stanfield Cutoff to Windy Pt. The west end of the lake is also producing trout, but the trout are more plentiful in the east due to tributary flow, shallower and warmer water. Don't get too close to the streams though, DFG regulations prohibit fishing in the streams or the waters that outflow from them when the moving water is visible from Mrach 1st until May 25th.
Trollers working 3 to 4 colors of lead core with just about any color of Needlefish or Thomas Buoyants are getting the same results. Once again the east is best for the higher fish counts than the west. No real surface action yet, but look for that to change once the weather stabilizes and the insects begin to hatch. Water temperatures are uniform east to west and top to bottom at 47 degrees with plenty of oxygen throughout the water column.
Surprisingly a few avid bass anglers have found some bucket mouths along docks and rocks in the east end. No action for any other species at this time. Keep on eye on the weather and enjoy the fishing when you can.
April 8, 2012
Big Bear Lake Fired Up For 2012
Well here we go boys and girls, it's time to get on our beautiful blue jewel at 6750 ft. and catch some fish! Big Bear Lake is open for the 2012 season. April 1st came in a little chilly, but the MWD did open the East Ramp for those who just had to get out on the chilly waters first. Big Bear Marina opened its doors on April 6th and will remain open from dawn to dusk weather permitting until November.
The trout bite is good, as the fish start to come out of their winter mode and look for new food sources. Bait anglers working the North Shore from Stanfield Cutoff to Windy Pt. are catching the bigger trout that are hugging the shoreline. Be sure to vary your leader length form 1 to 4 ft., until you find the zone the trout are feeding in. PowerBait and nightcrawlers fished within 25 feet of shore are producing quality limits.
Trollers working the eastern third of the lake (Lagonita Pt. to East Ramp) are finding limits of smaller trout at 3 to 4 colors of lead core. Needlefish in Fire Pearl and Red Dot Frog are getting the best results. Surface water temps in this area are holding at 46 degrees while the other two thirds of the lake are ten cooler holding at 36 degrees, with not much action in those areas.
The weather forecast for the week ahead is not very favorable. A small low scheduled for Wednesday could bring a few snow flurries to the area, with a bigger system heading this way on Friday with more snow. Thats Big Bear in the spring. Keep on eye on the weather and get up as soon as you can.
September 28, 2011
It must be the end of a great season on Big Bear Lake, its TroutfesT time!!! October 1st and 2nd will see up to a 1000 anglers working the waters of Big Bear Lake. Some will be in search of tagged trout for a Ford F-150 or a $25,000.00 payout. Others will pursue stringers of hefty trout stocked for the event to be proclaimed the overall winners in adult/junior male and female categories. If that isn’t enough every entrant has a raffle chance at a boat, motor and trailer. If you are not lucky enough to claim one of these prizes, you can still win money in the blind bogey draw. The blind bogey is simple and fun. Any trout you catch is recorded when it is weighed in, random weights are selected and if the weight of your trout matches, you get to choose an envelope with a cash prize in it.
On the eve of this great tournament, now would be a good time to do a tackle tune-up. Check and replace your fishing line. Even if you don’t totally re-spool, you should strip off 50 feet or so to get rid of frayed line that can break. Lube up your reel, check your drags and replace if need be. Make sure your hooks are sharp and your tackle ready. Just think how bad you would feel if you lost out on a truck or big bucks because your tackle was lacking.
After Troutfest is over, the trout fishing will still be great until the snow begins to fall. Take advantage of it. Big trout from the tournament plus our holdover population will be whacking lures and baits for some time. Don’t miss out on the fall bite. Tight lines and good fishing to you all. I hope you enjoyed these articles and perhaps learned a little along the way. With a little good luck we will do it again next year.
August 28, 2011
TROUT BACK FROM VACATION
Since the full moon on 8/13, the bite on Big Bear Lake can, at best, be described as tough. Anglers struggled to catch a few fish in 3 hours, when it was the norm to have a limit in less time than that. Fisherman using leadcore went as deep as 6 colors to put a few hold overs in the boat. Those fishing shallower come up with a few fresh stockers.
It has taken awhile to figure out what happened-now we know! While oxygen levels and water temperatures have been great, the trout needed a break and went on summer vacation! As the moon went full, our trout left town. They brought in their cousins to house sit in their absence. These cousins courtesy of the DFG numbered in the hundreds of thousands of sub-catchable (under 6 inches) and catchable trout (over 6 inches). They took advantage of the bigger trout's hospitality and literally took over the lake. While they took their time getting accustom to their new surroundings, the hold overs headed into deep water for a hiatus.
Now back from their summer break the hold over trout and fresh stockers are getting use to their new neighbors and the hood is in harmony once again. Trollers are finding a mix of these fish from 2.5 to 4 colors down. Bait boys and girls are getting the same results when their bait is suspended from 12 to 20 feet down. Oxygen levels are strong from the west ramp (23 feet) to the dam (46 feet). Surface water temps are at 67 degrees, clarity is at 9 feet. The trout are very comfortable and happy to be in their humble home again. Welcome them home with a party complete with plenty of baits and lures for our finned friends.
August 21, 2011
TOUGH SUMMER DAYS
With surface water temperatures at 67 degrees, and oxygen levels good down to 36 feet in the western third of the lake, one would think the trout would be on the bite. Not the case. Guides that had been getting several limits in an hour are having a hard time landing one limit in three hours.
All you can do is keep changing lures, vary depths and hope the trout will bite. It is just a matter of time before the trout get back on the chew.
One species that should be going off this time of year are the Channel Catfish. Strange, but none have hit the scales yet this summer. Water temperatures are pretty chilly, with the bottom at 59 degrees at the dam and 63 degrees at the west ramp you have to wonder where they are. Juniper Pt. is at 69 degrees, but no has reported a catch from that area.
August 15, 2011
BITE FALLS WITH MOON
No surprises this past week as the moon waxed into its full summer glory, the trout action fell off. What was a limits for all bite last week has become a pick at em' bite. Switching out lures and fishing at different depths at various times of the day is the only way to put a few fish on the boat.
While we wait for the moon to fade, their other weather conditions that are important to remember whenever you go fishing. One of the basic rules of lure presentation is that when the sun is bright use light colored lure. When it is overcast, use ones that are darker in color. Fish also react to changes in the weather, high pressure insures a consistent bite, but when the barometer starts to drop fish tend to feed even more as they sense an impending storm and the natural instinct to fill their bellies before storm conditions change the water quality and disrupt their food sources. Now fat and happy it takes a few days after the stormy weather for the fish to go back on the chew.
The current lake conditions are favorable for the bite to pick up once again. Surface water temperatures are at 67 degrees in the western third of the lake. Oxygen levels are good down to 30 feet and the clarity of the water stands at 9.5 feet. Fishing for trout from 12-25 feet will put fish in your boat as the moon wanes away.
August 6, 2011
TROUT STAYS ON THE BITE
As the dog days of summer come to Big Bear Lake, things are not what they should be. The trout are acting like it is spring or fall not summer! With surface water temperatures at 68 degrees in the western end of the lake and oxygen levels good down to 26 feet at the dam, 16 feet at Papoose Bay and 20 feet at the west ramp the trout have set up summer camp there.
Anglers trolling leadcore at 2 to 4 colors are not only finding limits of trout early and late, but inexplicably the fish are biting in the middle of the day. This type of bite is very unusual in the summer time when the sun is hot and high. Drift fishing with PowerBait in the same area has also got the trout on the chew. Slip bobbers are a good idea, but not essential, as long as you count and measure the line as your bait sinks down to the levels noted.
As we creep closer to the August full moon (8/13) the fish will get finicky once again. Look for fish counts to go down with little action midday, but good action early and sometimes late in the day..
August 1, 2011
WHAT ABOUT THE OTHER FISH IN THE LAKE?
It has been well documented that this year is a great year for trout fishing on Big Bear Lake. Trout of all shapes and sizes, from all over the lake have been hitting the scale all season long. As the bite continues, the question becomes what is going on with the other fish that inhabit the lake?
Catfishing has been slow so far this year. With higher lake levels and cooler than usual water temperatures the kitties are still hiding. Habitat that anglers could access in the past is under water now, changing the behavior of the fish and those who target them. With continued run off from this past winter and summer thunderstorms, only time will tell us if the kitties will come out to play this year.
Even though multitudes of bluegill have been put into the lake, they have not done well. A species that should and has in the past grown prolifically just hasn’t caught on and no one knows why. Continued stocking of these classic panfish will hopefully turn this situation around.
Both large and small mouth bass fishing is much improved this year. A mere three years ago the bass appeared to have disappeared from the lake, many wondered if they would ever come back. With improved habit, higher lake levels and the stocking of smallmouth they have. Earlier this year they were hitting jigs and plastics fished near Eagle Pt. The bite has slowed there now and the bass have moved into deeper water off the observatory along the north shore towards Grout Bay. Jigs and plastics cast and dropped to the bottom, with a slow retrieve bouncing along the bottom, have produced smallmouth bass in the two pound range, while their larger cousins are in the three pound class. Early and late in the day these fish will come up for top water action in weed beds in the same area.
Another species that has made a big comeback are the crappie. These scrappy little fish are everywhere. Easy to catch, these fish are great for young anglers fishing along docks and weed beds near the shore. A small hook with a meal worm or a piece of a nightcrawler under a clip on bobber is all you need for instant gratification. Mini-jigs bounced from the bottom up in these same areas also works well and provides for a little more activity as opposed to bait fishing.
Be it from boat or shore, get out on the lake and enjoy some excellent fishing for trout, crappie and bass. While you are there maybe you can figure out what happened to the catfish and bluegill too.
July 24, 2011
MOON VANISHES BITE REAPPEARS
Just as predicted once the moon waned, the trout got back on track and started to bite again. While the majority of the trout caught recently have come to the net, in the west end of the lake, anglers are still finding trout near the observatory. With surface water temperature at 68 degrees in that area, it is a little surprising, but oxygen levels are good to 23 feet and the trout are still ther
Just as predicted once the moon waned, the trout got back on track and started to bite again. While the majority of the trout caught recently have come to the net, in the west end of the lake, anglers are still finding trout near the observatory. With surface water temperature at 68 degrees in that area, it is a little surprising, but oxygen levels are good to 23 feet and the trout are still there.
Oxygen levels are uniform from the dam to the west ramp, holding at 26 to 29 feet below the surface. Water temperatures range from 65 to 66 degrees in the west end of the lake. Trolling leadcore line at 4 colors has produced limits for anglers working that area. The hot lures remain the same with gold Thomas Buoyants and copper chicken wing Needlefish bringing in most of the fish. A lure that has been very good in the past is starting to get good results once again, purple and pink Dick Nite Spoons are a must for those running leadcore off their reels.
It is unusual for the trout fishing to be this good so far into summer. Take advantage of it while it last, for no one knows how long the strong bite will continue. With a little luck it may not change at all, making for one of the best trout seasons ever.
July 17, 2011
FULL MOON FLATTENS BITE
Up until the full moon on 7/15 the trout bite on Big Bear Lake was very strong. In the afternoon prior to the full moon Brad Bush, San Bernardino was casting a small crank bait on the south shore near the dam, when a trout approximately ten pounds hit the lure fished on 2 pound test. Brad worked the 27 inch trout for 20 minutes, before landing it. Unfortunately the fish was weighed on a less than accurate spring loaded scale a fellow angler let him use.
Once the moon went full the bite died. Full moons in the summer time seem to have a greater impact on the feeding habits of fish than ones in the spring and fall. When a full moon rises, the fish feed during the night in the bright light of the moon, they remain active until mid-morning, and then literally take the rest of the day off.
The best time to wet a line is in the morning. West is best and will continue to be during the heat of summer. Some anglers have hooked trout to three pounds on gold Rapalas fished on the surface before 10 am. Anglers heading out later have picked up a few trout at 2.5 to 4 colors of leadcore on Thomas Buoyants and Needlefish.
Surface lake temperatures range from 66 degrees at the dam to 70 degrees off Juniper Pt. Oxygen levels are good from 26 ft. to the surface in the west and 20 ft. and up in the east.
Look for the bite to improve greatly as the moon wanes in the days to come and the fish get back on a regular schedule.
July 10, 2011
GOOD GOOD MIGRATION
Just like summer it took longer to get here, but the annual migration of our trout to the west has begun. While smaller recently stocked fish can still be found mid lake in the "triangle" most of the acclimated trout have headed further west.
Seeking the cooler waters west, which is two degrees lower than middle and eastern thirds of the lake, the trout have taken up new residence along "Trout Alley" (Metcalf Bay to Boulder Bay South Shore) and all the way to the dam.
Trollers working those areas with leadcore down from 3 to 4 colors, and Neddlefish in copper and nickel finishes have been finding nice holdover trout to 3 pounds with smaller fish in the mix and an occasional big boy to boot.
For bait anglers soaking PowerBait, the only way to go, is to suspend you bait from a slip bobber. Oxygen levels at the dam have diminished below 20 ft., while Papoose Bay is at 29 feet. Adjust your slip bobber at 15 to 20 feet to find the fish.
Not much surface action, except for very early of very late in the day. If you are working the surface, try to find an area where the wind has blown the dead weeds away, if not, your lure will constantly be fouled.
Ed Sullivan, Chino Hills was working a fly/bubble rig near the dam on 6/28 when he got into a nice trout, the 7.37 trout hit a wooley bugger on the surface. Ed was in for a "Really Big Shoo", as the bow put on a 10 minute fight, testing the strength of his 4 pound test line, before coming to the net.
It is time to head west young man and grow old with the fish.
July 2, 2011
NEW BIG BEAR LAKE SMALLIE RECORD
Brad Matz, Big Bear Lake set a new Big Bear Lake record for smallmouth bass on 6/27/11. The 3.50 pound bass beat the previous lake record held by Gary Kalina, Big Bear City. The old record stood at 3.12 pounds and was set less than a year ago on 8/12/10.
Brad is the owner of snaprco.com a company that is famous for inventing the SNAPR, a hook setting device that is sold worldwide. Brad was curious when he arrived at the Big Bear Marina/Big Bear Municipal Water Dist. Official Weigh Station at 5 pm on June 27th. Not sure what the fish would weigh and not allowing himself to contemplate a lake record. Brad said, "Here we go", as he laid the smallie in the scale basket.
As the scale read 3.50 Brad exclaimed, "Wow, that's a nice one...what is the lake record?" As I turned to reveal the lake record board, he couldn't believe his eyes! "Congratulations Brad you have a new lake record!"
Brad was so happy, because not only did he have a new lake record, he caught the record fish on a new jig he is developing for his company Snaprco. The jig is called the Aquatic Predator, and should be a big seller in the bassin' market. The jig is not yet available to bass anglers, but you can bet it will be very soon.
All Big Bear Lake Records can be found at BigBearMarina.com, or stop by the marina and check out the lake record wall of fame. No lake record for bluegill has been established yet, and the crappie record at 1.26 pounds could be an easy one to beat.
June 26, 2011
WATERS WARM, TROUT FISHING STAYS HOT
Even though the surface temperature of the lake has jumped up to 65 degrees across the lake, the trout fishing remains great. Trout Triangle is still producing limits of trout in a short time. Some fish are starting to show in the west end. It is a bit surprising that the trout haven't moved further west yet, but they seem to still like life in the triangle.
Oxygen levels are good except for the bottom. If you are bait fishing, it is time to rig up your slip bobber, to keep your bait off the bottom, where there are no trout and the weeds are thick.
For trollers, leadcore at 3 to 4 colors is still the best way to catch your limit, as it has been all year. Needlefish and Thomas Buoyants in various colors are getting the best results. The trout are in the one plus pound range with a few going to three pounds. Not as many big fish coming in recently, as the majority of the trophy trout stocked for the May Trout Classic have been caught.
Get out on the lake and wet a line before the 4th of July crowd stirs up the water and the fireworks make the trout dive for cover.
June 18, 2011
FLAG DAY IS BIG FISH DAY
What happened on Flag Day 2011? I know we are all proud to be Americans and live in this great country, but can fish feel the same way? Apparently so, every time I turned around another huge fish hit the scales of the official weigh station. The thermometer was the highest it's been since last summer, high pressure was building, the sun was hot and a full moon was rising. Conditions that would make any angler smile, but not always the best for fishing. None of it mattered when first Tom Jordan, N. Hollywood showed up with a 14.11 pound rainbow he caught off Windy Pt. on Berkley Gulp. His is the largest trout brought to the marina this year. The trout was 30 inches long with a girth of 21 inches, a true trophy; Tom plans to have a mount made of it.
Next was Tony Jackson, Big Bear City who just after midnight 6/14 landed the first large channel catfish of the year. The 20.44 pound kitty swallowed a chuck of salmon fished off the east end in the China Gardens area. Tony caught the fish using an antique rod and reel he bought at a garage sale. The only thing new, and most important, was the 12 pound test Maxima he spooled onto the old reel.
The third fish to show its colors on Flag Day was brought in by Cody O'Niel, Joshua Tree. His 10.62 Big Bear Bow hit a trout jig fished near the dam. He too plans to have the fish mounted, but only after he was reassured by his father, that he had never caught a trout that big, and there was a good chance that this would be the biggest trout that Cody may ever catch.
What a great day for Tom, Tony and Cody! Proud Americans, proud fish on a very proud day at Big Bear Lake.
June 13, 2011
RAPALA RULE BIG TROUT
Big trout keep hitting the official weigh station scale. Within two days, two beautiful bows came in on Rapalas. Steve Caines from Riverside nailed a 7.69 pound bow off Lagonita Pt. He had a deep diver Rapala out on straight mono. Steve and his fishing buddy Jack had been fishing the lake for three days, when just before the end of their fishing adventure the big trout hit. "What a great way to end our trip. After catching limits for three days we found a big one", Steve exclaimed.
Fishing stories are always interesting, sometimes hard to believe, the next one is funny. Ronald Couture up from Riverside was tied up to the S.S. Relief by the observatory; his fishing buddy Andy needed some relief.
Bored and waiting for Andy, Ronald began casting and retrieving a CD Rapala. On the sixth cast a 10.22 monster bow whacked the Rapala. Ronald realizing he was into a big fish, starting yelling to Andy to hurry up! Ronald needed a net man as urgently as Andy had needed the restroom. Being a good fishing pal Andy came to the rescue and netted the trout. What are fishing pals for?
Moral of the story, take care of your fishing buddy, and he will take care of you.
June 5, 2011
TROUT STAYS STRONG
Luhr-Jensen Needlefish ruled Big Bear Lake this past week. Anglers trolling the lure with leadcore from 2 to 4 colors found the fish with ease. Trout Triangle continued to be the hot spot on the lake, but there was an exception.
Randolph Orozco up from LA was trolling a new UV needlefish in flo-pink on the surface near old Gray's Landing when he hooked and landed a 8.08 Big Bear Bow.
The colors of choice for the needlefish coming out of Trout Triangle were the copper chicken wing, brown trout and what is known as wonder bread. Wonder bread is actually a white-chartreuse crs blue dot needlefish, which unfortunately is no longer carried by Luhr-Jensen, but is still available at some tackle shops.
6/11-6/12 brings "Fishin' for $50K" back to Big Bear Lake. Come on up and take a shot at walking away with $50K, a boat load of great cash and tackle prizes from Berkley, Shakespeare, Pflueger, Rapala, Luhr-Jensen and Flambeau. There are still plenty of trophy trout in the lake too. What do you have to lose?
May 29, 2011
It's all coming together, the world didn't end last Friday, the moon is waning and Mother Nature is in a better mood too. The fish in Big Bear Lake got the news somehow, and they are very happy.
Curt Dills of Fish Big Bear Charter Service said this is the best year he has ever seen on Big Bear Lake. Curt has been fishing the lake for over 40 years. Last year the master guide caught 3000 trout for his customers during the season. This year his customers have netted 1000 trout and it is still May. Incredible numbers that support what a great trout fishery we have. Dills release rate is over 60% and insures a continued strong fishery.
Harry Jones, local bass master agrees. Harry has been fishing the lake for bass for over 30 years and reports this is the best bassin' he has seen in quite a few year. Jones is working the Eagle Pt. area and bays tossing plastic jigs and worms near docks. He has caught largemouth bass to 4 lbs. and smallmouth bass up to 3 lbs., with a 50-50 mix for both species and a 100% release rate. The bass are still in pre-spawn mode with no evidence of bedding nest being built yet.
Crappie are everywhere. Sheltered near docks around the lake these scrappy little fish are inhaling mini-jigs in a flash. They are also in pre-spawn mode, feeding on everything, with their spots getting bigger and blacker by the day.
With the lake full, new habitat and forage areas exist for the bass and crappie like never before. Submerged willows, weeds and tree roots provide great food sources and areas to spawn and for the fry to hide in as they grow into fingerlings and finally catchable fish.
If this isn't enough to get you and your fishing buddy out on the lake how about the chance to catch a trophy trout from 8 to 12 pounds? The trout from the May Trout Classic are still out there and are hitting the scales daily.
Mario Castelan, Rancho Cucamonga too home a 10.73 pound rainbow trout this past week. The fish bit a ball of PowerBait fished off the North Shore near the dam.
May 21, 2011
BIG HOLIDAY WEEKEND ON TAP
Finally the weather is improving and the Memorial Day weekend is upon us. Highway 330 (the front side) will be open for the holiday weekend (5/27-5/30) then close again for continued repair. The fishing has been outstanding! Trout Triangle in front of the marina has been kicking out a lot of trout. Trout are hitting a variety of Needlefish at 3 to 4 colors of leadcore. Surface action is heating too, flat lined mono trolling Thomas Buoyants and Rapalas has gotten some great results. Water temperatures are holding in the low fifties, perfect for trout. Trout fishing has improved in the West end too. Bait anglers are still find trout along the North Shore from Stanfield all the way to the dam. PowerBait is the way to go.
Joe Doyel (father) and Nathan Doyel (son) from Bloomington, have a great fishing story to share the rest of their lives. Dad caught a 11.50 lb. trout trolling a gold Thomas Buoyant near the dam and son caught a 9.75 lb. beauty on the same lure 2 hours later in Trout Alley. Two trophy trout in two hours on the same lure, amazing!
May 16, 2011
Mother Nature just keeps kicking our butts. We knew going into the 29th May Trout Classic that the weather could be a little tough, but 15 to 25 mile an hour winds with heavy fog and snow just didn't seem possible. It was and sprinter just won't go away. As daylight dawned on the second day of the Classic, you could not see across the lake. The wind churned the waters up so much, and with snow blowing about, it reminded me of how Lake Erie looks in the winter. Not fit for man or beast, we closed the marina and left the lake to a half dozen boats (what were they thinking?) and Lake Patrol. A disappointed Jason Hall summed it up, "What can you do?" Nothing!
364 anglers participated in this year's Classic. A small turn out unfortunately, but these anglers and the thousands before them in the last 29 years have helped to stock the lake with 224,500 pounds of trout at a cost of $553,000.00! What a great effort by the Hall family to enhance our fishery. Most only fished on Saturday. Due to the light fishing pressure on Sunday, only two spots changed from Saturday's weigh-in, 5th place in the adult division and 3rd place in the juniors. The big winner with a 9.10 pound trout was Jack Storti of Westlake Village, Jack walked away with $1875.00 for his catch. Local Big Bear City angler David Marshall took second place with an 8.78 pound trout worth $1275.00. Third place was claimed by another local Bob Mc Grew from Fawnskin with an 8.37 pound trout good for $900.00. In the junior division (12-15 yrs.) Cody Hemsley from Fontana took top honors with his 2.39 pound trout. Pee-wee division (5-11 yrs.) was claimed by Michael Torres from Orange with a 2.59 pound rainbow. The majority of the large fish were caught on Berkley PowerBait while drift fishing or Luhr-Jensen Needlfish trolled with leadcore, all tried and true methods.
There are plenty of trophy trout cruising the waters of Big Bear Lake. Don't let the opportunity to catch one pass you by. Wet a line from shore of boat and you too could go bendo on a big bow. Tight lines and good fishing to you and yours.
May 8, 2011
May 14 and 15 will bring us the 29th Jim Hall Memorial Trout Classic. Jason Hall has ordered $8000 of trophy sized trout for the event. Jason says the mix of fish will included trout from 13-15 lbs., a large number of trout from 6-8 lbs., and balance running 2-4 lbs. The event is open to 525 anglers and as of May 8th has 330 entered. This is a great trout tournament and the granddaddy of tournaments on the lake. Don't miss out on your chance to catch a huge trout and possibly walk away with cash and prizes.
Trout fishing is excellent now. Bob Miller of Big Bear City who fishes the lake at least 4 times a week reports trout from 2 to 3 pounds hitting jointed Rapalas fished on the surface with straight mono. Bob is also scoring quick limits of trout around 1.5 lbs. These fish are hitting Needlefish in brown trout and copper chicken wing patterns that are trolled at 3 to 4 colors of leadcore.
The hot spot on the lake is "Trout Triangle." The triangle is right in front of the marina and and runs form Lagonita Pt., to the Observatory and then to Eagle Pt.
May 1, 2011
It has been a tough week for fisherman and boaters on Big Bear Lake. High winds that just got stronger throughout the week, became ridiculous over the weekend. With the waters white capped and the wind blowing from all directions, most boats stayed in their slips.
Those that braved the churned up lake still caught trout as they found shelter from the wind in bays and behind points. Bait boys bundled up like Eskimo, fishing PowerBait in Papoose and Boulder Bays filled their stringers with nice holdover trout in the one to two pound class.
For trollers the toughest thing for them was keeping control of their boats. Four colors down on leadcore was still the magic for them. Some fish were caught at two colors as the water temperatures begin to rise. Needlefish and Rapalas are still the lures of choice for trolling. Before the chilly air blew them away, a hatch of various insects started and the trout became more active on the surface. Look for the bugs to return with better weather and the trout rocketing out of the water like little marlin.
Kaelee Haggerty, a local Big Bear Lake nine year old got in a good day of trolling before the winds came. Fishing with mom and dad she landed a six and a half pound rainbow, while trolling mid lake between the Observatory and Lagonita Pt.
April 23, 2011
The trout fishing is so good on Big Bear Lake; fisherman are getting more hits than Google! From boat or shore anglers are catching quick limits of trout in the one to two pound range. Larger fish are starting to show as the brood stock comes out of spawn. Bait anglers are seeing fish from 5 to 8 pounds on PowerBait, off of Grout Bay and Boulder Bay. Fishing off the North Shore remains steady from Stanfield Cutoff to Juniper Pt. Trollers working “Trout Triangle” defined by Eagle Pt., Lagonita Pt. and the Solar Observatory are getting limits in an hour. Leadcore down 3 to 4 colors with Needlefish and Rapalas in tow works the best. Remember to troll slowly. Five year old Kayla Knoob from Fountain Valley landed a 7.94 lb. Big Bear Bow. The fish hit rainbow PowerBait in the mouth of Boulder Bay before Grandpa could get the other lines out.
April 17, 2011
Mother Nature just can’t seem to make up her mind. Just when it looked like winter was over and spring had sprung, Big Bear went back to winter. Now we are back to spring! So what to call this time of year? How about "Sprinter?" A mixed bag of weather between winter and spring is what you get in Big Bear this time of year. As we cleared the snow once again, anglers got back on the water with great results. Trollers working leadcore at 3 t o4 colors saw limits in a hurry. The trout are in the one to two pound class and hit Needlefish in a variety of colors. Brass, copper and nickel back spoons all worked, regardless of the color pattern. Rapalas in various colors and styles are getting the job done too. It doesn't seem to matter as these hungry trout inhale anything that is trolled SLOWLY.Bait anglers working the North Shore at Juniper and Windy Points; continue to get limits too. It's all about GARLIC, Powerbait, nightcrawlers, GULP attractant, your mamma's meatballs, just as long as it's garlic. Richard Garber from Huntington Beach landed a nice Big Bear Bow fishing the shore off Windy Pt. The 4.88 pound trout inhaled a PowerBait cocktail made up of rainbow and garlic.
April 7, 2011
Well just when we got off to a great start of the 2011 season, Mother Nature changed her mind about winter being over. With high winds and accumulating snow, it just isn't a very good time to go fishing. I’m sure Mother Nature will get back to spring soon. Hang in there and look for more updates soon.
April 3, 2011
The season got off to a good start with a full lake, full of fish. The marinas and launch ramps are open. Trollers found the trout holding in the East end of the lake from Eagle Pt. to Stanfield Cutoff. With water temperatures a chilly 40 degrees on the bottom and 42 degrees on the surface the trout are staying in shallower water that warms in the sunlight. Trolling slowly is important during the early part of the season. Leadcore trolled at 3 to 4 colors accounted for the best catches. Luhr Jensen Neddlefish and Thomas Buoyant spoons in fire pearl and pearl bikini patterns caught limits of trout in the one to three pound range.Bait anglers working the shore from Juniper Pt. to Stanfield Cutoff continued to do well. Fishing off the bottom with PowerBait and nightcrawlers in garlic scent produced limits. Cast your bait 25 to 30 feet from shore and vary your leader length from 1 to 3 feet. Once you find the zone the fish are feeding in adjust the distance and depth of your bait to catch more fish.It's time to hit the water, wet a line and watch your rod go bendo!
February 14, 2011
THE 2011 SEASON IS COMING!!!
Due to the epic rain in December 2010 Big Bear Lake is full! Look for the fishing to be better than ever with areas of the lake now under water, making for new habitat and forage. We plan to open on or before April 1st. Keep on eye on this site for the official start of the 2011 season. In the mean time; Tight Lines and Good Fishing where ever you fish!
October 8, 2010
Troutfest 2010 is in the books. The weather was better than the past few years, but the trophy fish stocked for the event just didn't want to go on the bite. A week later the trout are starting to show. Oxygen levels and water temps are good east to west and top to bottom. The fish are being caught on PowerBait and nightcrawlers along the shore line and by trollers working a variety of lures from 2 to 3 colors of leadcore.
As long as the weather holds, the fishing will be good. Come on up and land yourself a big trout before they and the weather leave us.
This will be the last report for the 2010 season. Hope you all have a good one. Tight lines and good fishing.
September 12, 2010
COOL NIGHTS = GOOD FISHING!
Cool nights have made the water temperatures drop and the trout are loving it. With temps in the mid 60's across the lake and from top to bottom, the trout are hitting a variety of Needlefish and Rapalas from the surface down to 12 feet. When the wind is up the surface action on Rapalas has been working well, with no wind, leadcore at one and a half to two and a half colors with Needlefish in tow has produced limits. For bait anglers, drift fishing with a slip bobber rigged to the depth of 8 to 12 feet with PowerBait floating behind will get the job done. The fish are holding from Windy Pt. west to the dam. Look for them to start heading east towards "Trout Triangle" as temps continue to drop and oxygen levels increase for uniform conditions throughout the lake.
Catfish and carp fishing has slowed as the shore cruisers are heading off to deeper water.
Bass and panfish continue to hit small spinners and jigs pitched near weed beds and structure.
Western Outdoor News TroutFest is only three weeks away. Be sure to get in on this great event, if you haven't already. For more info go to WONews.com
August 28, 2010
MOON WANES TROUT SHINE
Trout fishing was pretty slow during the first part of the week as the full moon lit up the lake. By the end of the week as the moon waned the trout fishing improved greatly. A surface bite down to 10 feet is working in the early and late hours of the day. As the sun gets high the fish are holding from 10 to 15 feet down. CD Rapalas up top, and Needlefish or Dick Nite spoons down are putting the fish in the boat. Limits are common with trout from 1 to 3 pounds coming in.
Catfish remain active on the sandy bottom of the lake, for nocturnal anglers using hotdogs, shrimp, mackerel and stinkbaits. Large and small mouth bass are hitting small spinners and jigs fished near docks and rocks. Crappie and bluegill are also chewing on minijigs tipped with mealworms or nuggets.
August 15, 2010
NEW SMALLIE RECORD/FAT CATS PROWL
Gary Kalina aka “Bass Assassin” from Big Bear City established a new Big Bear Lake record for Smallmouth Bass! Gary's 3.12 lbs. bass hit an orange crank bait off the Solar Observatory on 8/12. Gary's wife Pam is the current Largemouth Bass Lake Record holder with a 5.90 fish! What a great angling couple!
Trout fishing remains fair on the lake. Oxygen levels have stabilized from the dam to the West ramp at 26 feet and up. With clarity at 7 feet, the trout are holding in the top 12 to 20 feet. Trolling leadcore at 2.5 to 3 colors with Dick Nite Spoons and Needlefish is working the best. Bait anglers with slip bobbers rigged to the same depth are finding fish on the drift, using PowerBait.
Big Catfish are starting to show. Jeremy Northam from Lake Forest brought in a pair of fish hitting the scales at 24 and 17 lbs. Jeremy caught the fish along the North Shore east of Forest Turn. Both the fish inhaled a hot dog offered up at 1:oo am on 8/9.