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Bad Bass fishing in California?


fishing user avatarCahoots5150 reply : 

Hey guys!

I'm a bit on the curious side, but I have a friend who's not the best of fisherman suddenly break down how bad the bass fishing in California is compared to other states. I'm certain he's only fished in this state, and just overnight he became this "Pro" bass fisherman watching youtube videos, and just pulling stats from out of nowhere, It's unbearable. Thoughts? Facts? Opinions? Analogies? 


fishing user avatarIndianaFinesse reply : 

I think he decided California doesn't have good bass fishing as an excuse for his lack of success..  And I think he is wrong, @WRB has hundreds if not thousands of California dd bass prove it.

 


fishing user avatarGlenn reply : 

Age old problem my friend.  Doesn't matter if it's fishing or auto mechanics, sometimes beginning super enthusiastic people dive-in hard, and instantly think they've learned everything.

 

Time has a way of humbling them.  Just wait it out.


fishing user avatarWRB reply : 

What is the old saying that 18 year olds know eveything and as we get older we realize we know a little but are a lot wiser.

California bass are no different from Minnisota or Florida bass because that is where they originally came from. Bass fishing in small very highly pressured lakes by skilled anglers can be tough at times compared to lakes with little or no fishing pressure, wherever you fish.

Tom

 


fishing user avatarMassYak85 reply : 

Oh yea, it sucks big time, that's why 50lb bags have been taken out of some of the lakes there...


fishing user avatarRB 77 reply : 

I'll just leave this little stat here:

 

The 25 biggest Black Bass ever caught and certified by the IFGA

 

Totals by State Totals by County
Total State Top Bass Total County Top Bass
19 California 22.063 11 San Diego, CA 21.688
1 Florida 20.125 6 Los Angeles, CA 22.063
1 Shiga Prefecture, Japan 22.311 2 Ventura, CA 21.2
1 Georgia 22.25 1 6 others appear once
1 Nara Prefecture, Japan 19.15      
1 Sinaloa, Mexico 19.10    

 

Yeah, down right terrible...

 

*Courtesy of SD Fish


fishing user avatarOCdockskipper reply : 

Of course, that list doesn't include Dottie when she topped the 25 lb mark & was foul hooked, but it does include her twice as she grew towards that weight.

 

Although my home lake doesn't have Florida strain largemouth, just over the hill from me is Lake Mission Viejo, which did (they had a fish die off a couple of years ago).  Lots of DD including a 19 lb about a decade ago for the same reason the San Diego & LA county lakes kicked out so many monsters, a steady diet of hatchery trout.  Many of these Southern California lakes basically "grew" these monsters by feeding them an easy meal, a 10" trout that had never seen a predator before.

 

Although it sounds blasphemous, I never enjoyed fishing Mission Viejo and stopped going there about about 8 years ago.  It is a small, clear water lake, huge amount of pressure and alot of folks who could care less about fishing etiquette.  I found the fishing in Florida, Georgia & Texas to be a lot more fun with more action (numbers) and more fish in the 2 to 5 lb class.  I don't know if the same holds true for the San Diego or LA lakes, but Mission Viejo seemed like it was trophy fish or 10", nothing really in-between.  I never caught a beast out of there, but was in the boat with my buddy when he caught an 11.5.  Although that was thrilling, that day he caught it was a drag, for it was the only bass we caught that day larger than 12".

 

I believe the number of huge bass from Southern California overshadows a lower number of trophy fish when compared to places in the south.  This doesn't apply to the northern fisheries like the Delta or Clear Lake, they are a completely different animal and I do enjoy fishing them.

 

 


fishing user avatarWRB reply : 

 Not claiming a diet of trout doesn't help Florida strain LMB grow to be over 20 lbs, there are a few exceptions ; 20.4 lb bass from lake Hodges, no trout is a example. None of my or Butch Browns bass are listed and most giant don't get on any listing. Fact; No other state comes close to LMB over 18 lbs to California.

No state comes close to numbers of quality bass over 8 lbs to Texas.

Don't know what state has the highest bass caught per man hour fishing? It's not California!

Tom


fishing user avatarBluebasser86 reply : 

I think it would depend what your definition of good fishing is. If it's catching tons of fish, then I can't imagine he would think it was very good. If it's catching a really big fish, I don't think you could be in a better place. 


fishing user avatarBass_Fishing_Socal reply : 

Where in CA? Ca is huge There are some good bass lakes and also pretty bad city park lake. I'm in private lake but still envy some of you guys from farm pond hoping where you can get quite abit of quality and a d**n good number. I can see how bad bass fishing in CA especially for bank fisherman here.


fishing user avatarOregon Native reply : 

Youth....!!!!!

Love the Delta for numbers and size.  Clear lake....oh my.

Not to mention Shasta and Orville for flat out fun.

Oh....well


fishing user avatarCatt reply : 

Anyone look at numbers over the last 5 years for any state?


fishing user avatarWRB reply : 

The climate differences between SoCal, Central and northern Cal divided into 300 mile long segments like 3 different states. SoCal is mostly high population urban area small water storage reserviors. Central is mostly rural small towns with a few rivers and farming, northern Cal is a mix of urban and rural areas with several large rivers, the delta and farming areas.  If you think of Cal as SoCal, then giant bass are primary targets, everywhere else numbers with a few giant bass are the targets and don't over look Spotted bass or Smallmouth, we have them all.

Tom


fishing user avatarFisher-O-men reply : 

Am I the only one who does not understand the OP's question?

 

About SoCal, the fishing here is mostly tough.  San Vicente has settled down to a two fish per day lake. Giant fish are NOT the norm.  Maybe a half dozen DDs a year, reported. 


fishing user avatarChoporoz reply : 
  On 8/18/2017 at 12:30 AM, Fisher-O-men said:

Am I the only one who does not understand the OP's question?

No.

 

I especially don't understand what's unbearable.  I get that folks with opinions that clash with ours can be a bit frustrating.  But, don't get upset at statements without facts or data behind them; just because they don't comport with your beliefs/understanding.  Life's too short....I know....I know....the implied question probably had to do more with whether or not CA is a 'good' bass state....still not a discussion worth getting upset about. 


fishing user avatarSmokinal reply : 
  On 8/17/2017 at 1:38 PM, Bluebasser86 said:

I think it would depend what your definition of good fishing is. If it's catching tons of fish, then I can't imagine he would think it was very good. If it's catching a really big fish, I don't think you could be in a better place. 

Came in to say this^^^ In Maine, on most of my home waters, in a 5 hr morning a 15-20 fish day is slow; 30-40 fish day is expected and I have caught as many as 78 in 5 hrs (on Mr Ned btw). So, if I went to California and caught 1-2 bass in a month, even if they were DD's, I'd say it's horrible.

When I go fishing I like to catch fish. jmo

 


fishing user avatarWRB reply : 
  On 8/18/2017 at 1:14 AM, Smokinal said:

Came in to say this^^^ In Maine, on most of my home waters, in a 5 hr morning a 15-20 fish day is slow; 30-40 fish day is expected and I have caught as many as 78 in 5 hrs (on Mr Ned btw). So, if I went to California and caught 1-2 bass in a month, even if they were DD's, I'd say it's horrible.

When I go fishing I like to catch fish. jmo

 

So Mr. Ned didn't work for you. Where in Cal did you manage to catch only 2 bass in a month? If you ever return, ask me where to catch bass and what the current bite is.

Tom


fishing user avatar12poundbass reply : 
  On 8/18/2017 at 3:05 AM, WRB said:

So Mr. Ned didn't work for you. Where in Cal did you manage to catch only 2 bass in a month? If you ever return, ask me where to catch bass and what the current bite is.

Tom

I think he was speaking hypothetically


fishing user avatarWRB reply : 
  On 8/18/2017 at 3:11 AM, 12poundbass said:

I think he was speaking hypothetically

I wasn't! Thank you for pointing that out, didn't read the "if".

It's a common problem with out of state visiting bass anglers who have DD bass dancing in their eyes when fishing in Cal only to discover the big girls don't jump into the boat as they thought.

I have 2 bass lakes within 20 miles where 50 bass days are common and 2 or 3 bass lakes within 50 miles where 2 bass days are the norm. The difference between these lakes is public vs private, it's all about fishing pressure.

Tom


fishing user avatarSmokinal reply : 
  On 8/18/2017 at 3:05 AM, WRB said:

So Mr. Ned didn't work for you. Where in Cal did you manage to catch only 2 bass in a month? If you ever return, ask me where to catch bass and what the current bite is.

Tom

 

  On 8/18/2017 at 3:11 AM, 12poundbass said:

I think he was speaking hypothetically

Definitely hypothetically. I guess I'm just repeating what Blue said in that it all depends what you call "good" fishing. I found this little pond up here that has some big smallies in it. I can only manage to catch 2-3 in a morning, but they are good ones. I'll be honest with you , I don't know that I'll return to the place just because it's slow for me. I'd rather spend my time in a spot where my line will be tight, even if it means sacraficing size.

I think I need A-Jay up here to show me how to fish this place!!


fishing user avatarcontium reply : 

Southern California's highly pressured, tiny public lakes are definitely a tough place to fish. 


fishing user avatarth365thli reply : 

I think we're being a little hard on OP's friend. With some exceptions, the Delta being one of them, I do believe California is much tougher on the numbers side. @WRB you know how much we all respect you but you do have decades of experience and perhaps access to some amazing private lakes. To newer people like myself who have never encountered as highly pressured waters as here it can really throw us off. Some of us are used to just pulling up to a pond we've never been before and pulling fish. In California you have to put time and effort and be mentally strong but forgive us if we get frustrated by multiple skunk or 1 or 2 fish days.

 

I think all of us would love to catch a DD and we recognize that's not gonna happen every one, two, maybe even 10 trips. However, the argument that California has the most trophy bass doesn't have much to do with numbers, we can all agree.


fishing user avatarFisher-O-men reply : 
  On 8/18/2017 at 1:14 AM, Smokinal said:

So, if I went to California and caught 1-2 bass in a month, even if they were DD's

The chances of that are very remote, unless you did nothing but throw huge swimbaits and knew where the big bass are.  There are a handful of guys that actually make this happen.


fishing user avatarFisher-O-men reply : 
  On 8/18/2017 at 3:28 AM, WRB said:

The difference between these lakes is public vs private

Down San Diego way most all the lakes are public, and most are really tough right now.  Even Barrett is tough most days. The extra 20' of water from winter rains have many lakes trying to recover.  Lower Otay seems to be the only lake that has benefited from the influx of water.  Even there the guys catching are the ones who know the lake.   


fishing user avatarNorcalBassin reply : 

Cool thing about CA is if you want to chase a DD there are a number of lakes (plus the Delta) where you can be confident they're in there, and if you want numbers you can usually find them in those same lakes by downsizing your baits and hitting the high concentration areas. I've had some bad days over the years but we probably have 20+ good trips for every bad one. As far as I'm concerned we're pretty spoiled with how great the bass fishing is here.


fishing user avatarsoflabasser reply : 

California has good bass fishing but its nowhere as good as it use to be in the 1970's-1990's. You can still catch double digit bass , but nowhere near like the ''good ol' days'' that California use to have. It doesn't help that most of California is experiencing a severe drought that has lasted years and doesn't seem to be going away completely anytime soon. Largemouth bass are now seen as a invasive fish in California as well, so that means the state might not try to improve the bass fishing to its old glory.

  On 8/18/2017 at 1:14 AM, Smokinal said:

In Maine, on most of my home waters, in a 5 hr morning a 15-20 fish day is slow; 30-40 fish day is expected and I have caught as many as 78 in 5 hrs (on Mr Ned btw). So, if I went to California and caught 1-2 bass in a month, even if they were DD's, I'd say it's horrible.

When I go fishing I like to catch fish. jmo

 

 

Sounds like your state has very good fishing and similar to South Florida. I fish places where I can expect to catch 30 to +50 bass in a normal day and I have had several trips where I have caught over 100 bass in less than 6 hours of fishing. Many of these places are in/near the Everglades which is probably the best place in the world to catch a large amount of bass in a short amount of time when the conditions are good. There's also trophy bass in these waters and every year people catch double digits from the Everglades and surrounding areas.


fishing user avatarCaliyak reply : 
  On 8/17/2017 at 8:03 AM, Cahoots5150 said:

Hey guys!

I'm a bit on the curious side, but I have a friend who's not the best of fisherman suddenly break down how bad the bass fishing in California is compared to other states. I'm certain he's only fished in this state, and just overnight he became this "Pro" bass fisherman watching youtube videos, and just pulling stats from out of nowhere, It's unbearable. Thoughts? Facts? Opinions? Analogies? 

Cahoots, if he can't put bass on the boat, he's nothing and let him talk. Proof is in the pics. Cali is a great bass state. Looking for the giants and the numbers is the fun part of the Cali game. I only worry about my PB, my numbers and my skills and I let everyone else do their thing. Enjoy the Cali bass fishing and if Cali was not a great place to fish, no one would come. 


fishing user avatarguest reply : 

That's funny because CA is one of the few states where DD bass is common. However alot of big bass lakes don't have numbers


fishing user avatarSpider reply : 

As a native San Diego fisherman, I can tell you that the lakes here are highly pressured. Add to that that most of the lakes I fish are very clear making fish skittish. Pressured fish techniques are a must here. There are a couple of lakes that have dingy water but are just as pressured.

 

I pull fish most times I go fishing, but one or two are the normal, though some days I get skunked, others I pull runts one after the other.

 

I can understand the op's friends thinking, if he came here thinking he would catch vast numbers of fish. That would not be a normal day here.


fishing user avatarburrows reply : 
  On 8/20/2017 at 1:40 AM, contium said:

Southern California's highly pressured, tiny public lakes are definitely a tough place to fish. 

Agree

Central California and higher up the state bass fishing gets a lot better. Southern California is definitely tuff with castaic and lake Perris being the best places to fish.

Edited by Burro
fishing user avatarBradley reply : 
  On 8/18/2017 at 3:05 AM, WRB said:

So Mr. Ned didn't work for you. Where in Cal did you manage to catch only 2 bass in a month? If you ever return, ask me where to catch bass and what the current bite is.

Tom

Where can I catch a bass, and what is the current bite?? Have been struggling for weeks to get anything more than a nibble. I used to catch enough to have fun on the east coast, but I've been very, very humbled recently at my california results.
Located in San Diego. Thanks!


fishing user avatarAngry John reply : 
  On 5/27/2018 at 10:01 AM, Bradley said:

Where can I catch a bass, and what is the current bite?? Have been struggling for weeks to get anything more than a nibble. I used to catch enough to have fun on the east coast, but I've been very, very humbled recently at my california results.
Located in San Diego. Thanks!

Guessing he ment a pm because he would help but not want to broadcast to the entire net.


fishing user avatarWRB reply : 
  On 5/27/2018 at 10:01 AM, Bradley said:

Where can I catch a bass, and what is the current bite?? Have been struggling for weeks to get anything more than a nibble. I used to catch enough to have fun on the east coast, but I've been very, very humbled recently at my california results.
Located in San Diego. Thanks!

Get yourself a copy of Western Outdoor News and look at the fishing formcharts for San Diego area lakes. Example; El Capitan the north end has a good top water bite early with buzz baits and frogs, with 6"-8" Roboworms T-rig or drop shot also working. Hodges has a Shad spawn going on and square Bill crankbaits are working in the narrows, plastics also working.

Miramar a few swimbait bass and 6" Roboworms for 2-3 lbs range. Poway a few DD bass  last week. San Vicente plenty of shallow water bass on jerk baits and underspins around the secondary points.

Remember the WON reports are about 2 weeks behind current news.

Tom


fishing user avatarkenmitch reply : 

I guess if one was to watch some episodes of Bill Dance, Roland Martin, Zona's, etc they could easily jump to the conclusion that CA fishing sucks compared to other states....Although Zona did have a awesome Bullards Bar Spot episode.

 

I like to watch a episode of Major League Fishing the night before I plan on going out again. Seems more realistic when some anglers get skunked for hours and fight their way up the pack while others struggle on or even begin to struggle as day goes on. 

 

I can relate to the hours of nothingness as I've done it many times on Lake Perris as I'm kind of set in my ways on how I wan't to fish. I know that I could change up and possibly catch more fish in the end and I do carry a full variety of offerings....But in the end I'm a lipless crankbait grinder. You just got to find the flavor of the day. Guess it's the rush I get when it gets slammed that keeps me chucking along or possibly the areas I like to target.  Kayak fishing gravitates me towards the shallower water which is infested with lots of submerged vegetation, brush,cut down trees, rock piles, etc. Luckily for me the lipless works pretty good in these areas.

 

I get skunked once in a while just like everybody else. It's more about the fun and relaxation I get from the experience so in the end it doesn't really matter how many fish I catch. Anything from 1 Bass to 6-7 is a good day too me. Think the best day I've had was 6 Bass for 17lbs with a 5.12 lb and 4.53lb. The water level at Lake Perris has risen 23ft or so in the last 6 months. I'd imagine the Bass are somewhat dazed and confused as I doubt there's a fish alive in Lake Perris that remembers the good old days. 




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