Fish still biting despite the cold |

Fish still biting despite the cold

by Doug Busey

Hello, fellow anglers. Is it cold enough for you?

Most anglers put up their gear and wait for spring, but let me tell you this time of year is excellent for all types of fishing. Even though it may only be 10 degrees outside, the fish are biting everywhere – off the shore, from a boat or through the ice.

In fact, if you need a little extra incentive, travel on down to Topaz Lake, 20 miles south of Gardnerville on U.S. Highway 395. Each year there is a weekly derby held by the Topaz Lodge and Casino.

There is no entry fee, except for your biggest fish. All you need to do is take your big fish into the lodge and have it weighed. Each week, the largest fish brought in will be awarded $1 per ounce. The derby starts each Monday and goes until 6 p.m. the following Sunday. At the end of the derby, there also will be a drawing for the winners of each week.

So far for the year, the winners are Hugh Fonzo with a 5-pound, 9-ounce trout, and Zach King with a 1-pound, 5-ounce trout. The funny thing is, the second fish was weighed after it was cleaned. We guessed this fish would have been 2 to 212 pounds. My advice, weigh your catch before you prepare it for supper.

Now, let’s see where else you can fish:

South Lake Tahoe: Mackinaw fishing has been good. Last week, a 20-pounder was brought in. The best action has been using flashers and a live minnow. Rainbow and brown action also is picking up around Cave Rock to Edgewood, using rainbow or the new fire tiger Rapalas.

For information, call the Sportsman at (530) 542-FISH.

Caples Lake: Report from John Vogg, owner of the resort:

Anglers have been doing very well around the dam area using night crawlers and pieces of corn.

The ice, as reported, is 12 to 15 inches thick, but remember to take a shovel, as there is 1 to 2 feet of snow on the lake before you get to the ice. Remember to always use caution when venturing out on any frozen waters, and always take a friend.

For more information, call the resort at (209) 258-8888.

Red Lake: With 12 to 24 inches of ice, fishing has been good using inflated night crawlers. The average catch is 12- to 14-inch brook trout, with an occasional rainbow trout.

Indian Creek Reservoir: Fishing has been good for anglers using inflated night crawlers or yellow Power Bait. There is some ice along the shore but don’t let that deter you. These spots have been proven to be the best angling areas.

Just ask Steve Lightfoot of Minden. If you see the ice, you’ll see Steve. He has been very successful just over the edge of the ice using these baits.

Topaz Lake: Fishing is excellent for boaters trolling Rapalas in a black/silver, gold/silver or fire tiger pattern.

Most all trolling action has brought in limits of rainbow and an occasional tiger trout, but shore anglers have had a rough time. The fish have been schooling in deeper waters, closer to the center of the lake, causing shore angling to be very slow.

For more information, call the Topaz Marina at (775) 266-3550. Ask for Chuck or Linda.

Walker Lake: Action is still good, but the fish have moved from the center of the lake closer to shore. The best action is from Sand Point to Barlows in 35 to 75 feet of water, using torpedoes in a chartreuse with black diamond pattern or brass and orange striped patterns.

Shore anglers have had the best success using pink, Captain America or sherbet Power Bait near the cliff area. In fact, last week an angler caught an 8-pound cutthroat at Sand Point from the shore.

For more information, call Bob Tompkins at the Gun and Tackle store in Hawthorne at (775) 945-3266. Bob is also a licensed guide on Walker Lake for those of you who may want a professional education on fishing the lake.

Well, I hope this puts you onto fish. If you have a picture of your catch, drop it off at The Record-Courier, attention: Mac-The-Naw. If you have questions or comments, call the NAW line at 267-9722.

Good fishin’!