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Lewiston Fishing Derby is July 18

Gary Heffley author photo,

By Gary Heffley
07/10/15 -- The always popular, family-oriented and down-right fun Lewiston Fishing Derby is being held on July 18 at Pine Cove Marina on beautiful Lewiston Lake. The event raises funds to support the cage-reared trout stocking program located at Pine Cove Marina. These trout are raised in the cold nutrient rich waters on the lake and many of these trout reach trophy, 5-pound plus status at the time of release.

What is unique about this derby is that all manner of fishing (except electro shock and dynamite) is allowed. Fly anglers will be competing with bait dunkers. Trollers outfitted with the latest electronics, downriggers will be doing battle with children with worms using Barbie or Batman outfits. Everyone is equal and having fished numerous times at this derby sometimes the youngsters win out.

Pine Marina patrons holding fish, photo by Frank Galusha
Pine Cove Marina’s annual Lewiston Trout Derby is very popular with families. Photo by Frank Galusha

For those who have not fished Lewiston before let me describe what a beautiful location it is and a lake that is well worth the drive either from the coast or Redding via Hwy 299. Lewiston is a Forebay of Trinity Lake and controls water releases into the Trinity River below while also supplying supplemental water to Whiskeytown Lake and the Sacramento River to the east. The cold (very cold) water releases from the lower reaches of Trinity Dam supply keeps the lake always at full capacity, a plus during this time when many other area lake levels are down and at a trout friendly water temperature of between 40 and 50 degrees. When water is being released from Trinity Dam, the northern reaches fish more like a stream as the water has a steady current conducive to drifting flies or night crawlers. As the lake broadens and currents slow more traditional methods such as trolling or anchoring with PowerBait are utilized. The water is nutrient rich providing a rich food base for growing big and strong trout. Rainbows and Browns are the predominant trout found in the lake with an occasional 10-pound plus trout providing proof of the potential of this lake

Another plus is that there is a lake-wide 10-mph speed limit so this lake is very popular with kayakers, canoe paddlers, personal pontoons, car toppers as well as full size family boats that must keep the horsepower down.

With the lake being constantly full, the tree lined surrounding area is stunning. Wildlife abound as deer are a very common sight along the bank. Bald eagles and osprey are constantly soaring overhead looking to catch a trout on their own and many anglers are startled as a trout is taken with a swooping splash nearby. Families may also enjoy picking the wild blackberries that line the shoreline. (A word of caution, while I have not personally seen any here, this is rattlesnake country. As with any area in the north state be aware.)

Visit the Pine Cove Marina website for derby information and early registration. Prizes will be awarded in many categories, raffle prizes will be offered and who will want to pass up the free hot dog lunch for participants?

From experience I can vouch that this is one fun event for everyone. Many make this a yearly get together and if it was not for work I would be there as well. I almost forgot… some of these big cage reared trout will be released just in time for the derby.

Even if you can’t make the derby keep this beautiful lake in mind for a nice quiet, scenic getaway. If you visit once you will want to come back again.

Gary Heffley has been a valued contributor to MyOutdoorBuddy for over seven years serving as manager, sales representative and reporter for much of Northern California. He is an avid outdoorsman and loves to fish and write about his adventures. He has long history in the Sporting Goods field and is presently managing the Gift Bar and Camping Department at Sportsman’s Warehouse in Redding.

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