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Ever fished on a mountain top? Try Kilarc!

A the risk of sounding like a broken record (you do remember what a record is don’t you?) I’m going to dwell on Kilarc Reservoir again. I know there are other places to fish for trout in our region, but work has allowed me only a few hours here and there to get away from the house and, lately, Kilarc has been my fishing destination of choice.

Let's see, I was there on the last Sunday in June, the following Monday, and again on Friday, July 3. Eight of my family members participated in the Sunday outing. Included were sisters RaeLynn, age 10, and Kasey age eight and their twin brothers Johnathan and Jordan, age six. Their parents Meredith and Robert Feamster were there, as were my better half Sharon, and me.

Kasey Feamster holding trout she caught at Kilark Resevoir, photo by John Higley
Author’s granddaughter Kasey Feamster is no stranger to Kilarc. Here she is with one of the trout she caught recently. Photos by John Higley

Yep, it was quite a crowd but the point is we all caught fish, as did most of the other 35 or so anglers we saw there. The fishing was so good that I went back on Monday with Sharon’s 17 year old grandson Harrison Redden. Harrison caught his first fish ever at Kilarc when he was around five years old, and he still likes the place enough to go there occasionally with me. We had no trouble at all catching plenty of fish for the Reddens to feast on that evening.

Harrison Redden with fish on pole, caught at Kilark Reservoir, photo by John Higley
Harrison Redden caught his first fish ever at Kilarc when he was a small boy. Now 17 years old, and no longer small, he still likes to fish and Kilarc is one of his favorite places.

On Friday, while my computer was in the repair shop, I went back to Kilarc with my buddy Russ Herrick, who was getting out to fish for the first time this year. Russ and I have fished Kilarc many times together because it’s a place where he can get around despite a bum leg compliments of the Viet Nam war. That isn’t to say he’s house bound in any way, but some things are easier for him to do than others.

Russ Herrick patiently waits for another bite at Kilark Reservoir, photo by John Higley
Author’s friend, and frequent Kilarc visitor, Russ Herrick patiently waits for another bite.

The story here is not Russ or me or, for that matter, the wheelchair bound guy who showed up while we were there. His name was Agustin Arriaga and he was here on vacation from San Jose with two of his cousins. Arriaga was injured in a motorcycle vs. auto accident and lost his right leg as a result. He discovered Kilarc and it’s become one of his favorite places to fish whenever he’s in the area.

Wheelchair bound Agustin Arriaga holding up his trout caught at Kilarc Reservoir, photo by John HIgley
Wheelchair bound Agustin Arriaga, a visitor from San Jose, says Kilarc is an ideal place for him to fish, and he does just that whenever he’s in the area.

The main reason I’m writing this is to tell anyone interested that Kilarc is fishing very well these days, and it’s an ideal location for kids and old codgers like me to enjoy less than strenuous fishing in a picturesque location. Starting in April, Kilarc has been planted at least four times. That includes the injection of 900 pounds of catchable trout (around 1,500 fish) that Russ and I witnessed while we were walking back to my truck on Friday. The driver of the hatchery truck told us that because of the drought, water quality in some of the places normally planted was not good, so the fish are being directed to other locations, one of which is Kilarc.

So there you have it. Fishing for planted trout at Kilarc is better now than it’s been for quite a while. I’m thinking it will hold up for the rest of summer. Hope so! My grandkids are clamoring to go fishing again, and I might be invited to go with them. Currently the trout are going for PowerBait, nightcrawlers (inflated so they’ll float above the bottom) and a variety of lures such as small Kastmasters and Panther Martin spinners.

The only complaint I have is the folks who don’t pick up after themselves when they get ready to leave. The scenery is not improved by discarded bottles, beer cans, worm containers, fishing line and assorted other trash that doesn’t belong. I’m sure the good folks who read these My Outdoor Buddy pages will agree.

Author and writer John Higley is a resident of Palo Cedro. His articles have appeared in outdoor magazines hundreds of times and his columns appear regularly at Higley has written four books the latest of which “Successful Turkey Hunting” was published in May, 2014 by Skyhorse Publishing in New York. This hard cover, full color book is being sold at Barnes and Noble Book Stores and on Amazon. Autographed copies are available direct from John Higley, P.O. Box 120, Palo Cedro, CA 96073. Cost is $28.95 postage paid.


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