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Fishing Cassel yesterday was great fun


Article and photos by Mike Mogler
05/25/15 -- Yesterday, with all the hoopla that is part of the beginning of summer vacation, was just that -- tons of fun. Families were out enjoying the holiday weekend, which was one of the best in several years for Eastern Shasta County and the Hat Creek area.
Driving by the campgrounds that are located on Hat Creek I noticed many if not all available camp sites were full. Rancheria RV Park was filled with campers from tents to RV’s. Small businesses where busy with activity suppling all the forgotten or essentials needed for camping.

My first stop was Cassel, a great place for families to fish for CDFW planted trout. Cassel is near the Crystal Lake CDFW Fish Hatchery so like Baum Lake it receives a generous amount of plantings. The action can be fast and furious keeping the young anglers busy hooking fish while their parents and in some cases grandparents are busy netting fish, baiting hooks and untangling lines. I’m out of breath just thinking of the days when my kids were just starting to go camping and fishing.

Ryan Garcia, Jackie McDonnell, Cassel Forebay, trout fishing, Memorial Day
Ryan Garcia, with help from Jackie McDonell and his family enjoyed fishing the Cassel Forebay on Memorial Weekend.

When I first arrived at Cassel to fish the forebay I counted 25 anglers many whom were young fishermen. A family from Gilroy, the Garcia’s, were there with the kids and relatives. Being from out of town they had a guide, Barry McDonell, who is also a Pro-Cure pro angler representative. All the above where busy fishing, catching, landing and untangling lines and having a great time. Ryan Garcia was hooking-up on a regular basis keeping everyone very busy.

While fishing the forebay I hooked several fish but lost them all without netting a single fish. The kids fishing were hooking fish, landing fish and soon had their fish stringers filled out with limits. My place fishing the forebay was not nearly important as watching these young anglers and families enjoying their adventure.

Next stop on my agenda was the PG&E Powerhouse 1, which I’ve never fished until today. I spend most of my fishing time in a kayak fishing Baum Lake somewhat down stream from the powerhouse.

Ryan Garcia, Jackie McDonnell, Cassel Forebay, trout fishing, Memorial Day
A nice brown I landed while fishing Power House #1 near Cassel on Saturday May 24.

It was a tight fit for a fly fisherman but I could see rainbow and browns surface feeding on insects. Tying on what I thought could “match the hatch,” which were callibaetis, I soon had on a nice 18-inch brown trout followed by several smaller rainbows. Hey, this is hot I said to myself even though I had to roll cast because of the cramped fishing spot I picked. I lost several flies in the willows surrounding this spot but what a way to end my day in such a beautiful place that I’ve not had the opportunity to fish.

Be safe, keep your lines tight and stay close to your family.


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