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Angling is Great in the North State

Gary Heffley, author photo,
By Gary Heffley
07/06/16 -- Many vacationers are learning what the locals already know, the North State currently offers a full complement of angling options at hand ranging from outstanding ocean angling for rock cod and salmon, to fine trout fishing in many of the lakes and streams that dot the interior and mountain reaches of the area. Mix in some excellent warm water angling for bass, crappie, and catfish, not to mention the Central Valley River Salmon opener on July 16 that will overshadow the excellent shad and trout river fishing being enjoyed, and really what more can you want.

With the crowds of the fourth of July past, many lakes are getting back into a normal summer flow of activity. Fishing is picking back up as anglers are able to find some seclusion from the constant drone of personal water craft, aka jet skis, blasting through their fishing areas. Anglers should get on the water early before letting the PWC, waterskiers and tubers take over the water in the heat of the day. The last hour or so of the evening is also another great time for anglers to find success. And for those lake camping or utilizing houseboats as a base camp, don't forget to toss some lines out at night. Lakes like Shasta, Oroville and others offer some great catfishing at night.

Lake Britton near Burney, continues to kick out great numbers of Crappie for those looking for a mess of slabsides. Adjacent Burney Falls is a must see for those traveling in the region and of course nearby Baum Lake, Cassel Forebay and Hat Creek all offer exceptional trout fishing for the entire family. Another popular crappie option is Black Butte Lake, west of Orland.

Whiskeytown Lake, just west of Redding continues to provide excellent Kokanee fishing for those boaters with downriggers and the means to fish a controlled depth of 55 to 80 feet. For those without boats, they too can get in on the action by contacting local guides. Right now this is the closest thing to “catching” not just fishing.

Shad and Trout continue to offer great options on the Sacramento River and are best sought by utilizing one of the many guide services on the river. While trout is available year round, especially in the Redding area, shad should be around until the end of August with the Los Molinas area very popular on the Sacramento River along with Shanghai Bend area of the Feather River. While there are numerous areas for shore access angling again utilizing guides when fishing the rivers will increase catch rates exponentially.

Popular vacationing areas around Mt Shasta; Lake Siskiyou, the Upper Sacramento River, McCloud River and Reservoir all offer great angling options for trout. While standard spinning tackle will produce results on most waters, fly angling is king in this region, with some reaches offering wild native trout that will test the skills of the most ardent fly fishing practitioner.

And for those looking to escape the heat of the valley and interior the coast offers great options. From San Francisco Bay to Crescent City the ocean fishing offers a cool respite with rewards of offshore salmon and a full variety of rock cod. Many open charters are available for anglers to enjoy a great angling experience.

If you are planning to visit the North State or if you are one of the lucky locals who get to explore the some of the many opportunities make sure to take advantage of some the great angling available.

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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