It’s fishing derby time for kids |

It’s fishing derby time for kids

Liam Dolan is enthusiastic as he shows off his first catch at Baily Fishing Pond at Fuji Park in Carson City on April 10.
Courtesy of Trent Dolan

Hello, fellow anglers. Oh, is there a lot going on in June, and I will be fishing with about 2,000 kids over the next couple of weekends.

First up, the 29th annual Kids’ Fishing Derby at Lampe Park in Gardnerville on Saturday and Sunday. I will be on hand to assist on Sunday, and on Saturday, I will be helping the Optimist Club of South Lake Tahoe and the Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters with the Sawmill Pond kids fishing derby from 8 a.m. to noon in South Lake Tahoe.

The following week, I will be out of town for another kids fishing derby. I highly recommend if you have time, to become a volunteer at any of our kids fishing derbies. It will reward you the rest of your life, plus it is a good and fun way to help give back to kids and families.

Now that majority of our upper lakes have completely thawed out, the California Department of Wildlife has started planting trout, which you will see in your report:

SILVER LAKE: The lake level is up and the boat ramp is open. Kit Carson Lodge has opened for the season and has rental boats available. Silver Lake Campground has opened as well. The CDFW planted the lake with rainbow trout last week and Plasse’s Resort is opening soon.

CAPLES LAKE: The lake is clear of ice and the Eldorado Irritation District boat ramp and day use facility is open. The lake level is up and the fish have been biting. Caples Lake Resort is due to open any day now. CDFW has planted the lake with rainbow trout. Call Caples Lake Resort at 209-258-8888 for information.

RED LAKE: The lake is up and the fishing has picked up. CDFW has planted the lake with rainbow trout.

BLUE LAKES: The road was open seven miles in to the fourth gate as of last Wednesday and could be open all the way any time now.

BURNSIDE LAKE: The road as of this week has not opened.

WOODS LAKE: As of this week has not opened for the season

INDIAN CREEK RESERVOIR: The campground and boat launch are open. The water level is still up with minimal weeds. CDFW planted the lake recently with rainbow trout. The lake has also been planted with cutthroat trout from Heenan Lake. Anglers have had good success with green power bait or inflated night crawlers.

CARSON RIVER WEST FORK CALIFORNIA SIDE: The river is still running fast in the canyon area. Best areas have been in Hope Valley or in the lower Woodfords area. If you are in the area next week, on June 9 the Mad Dog Café will celebrate its grand opening, along with a guided tour and a book signing from a trio of local authors. They will have free Hors d’oeuvres and their signature coffee. The location will be the old Woodfords General Store. On June 10, a benefit concert will be held for the Friends of Hope Valley at Sorensen’s Resort. They will feature the Back Forty Blue Grass Band and appetizing food from the Sorensen’s Cafe. Alpine County and CDFW have planted the river over the last couple weeks. Stop by Creekside Lodge for more information.

EAST FORK CARSON RIVER CALIFORNIA SIDE: Waters are still high but very fishable. There has been a few trout brought in from 1 to 4 pounds. Spinners or salmon eggs right on the bottom have been most productive. CDFW and Alpine County have planted the river with rainbow trout over the last couple weeks. The river is full of fish and with our rising temperatures. I feel the bite will come on strong this week. Stop by the Carson River Resort for more information or to get your picture taken..

TOPAZ LAKE: The lake level is still high and there was a large algae bloom over the last couple of weeks. The lake has a nice green tint to it, but the shore anglers have been doing well with Green or rainbow Powerbait.


June Lake Marina (760-648-7726): Hillary tells me that fishing has improved, mainly due to recent weather changes like we thought it would, increased CDFW plants, and periodic releases of larger rainbows from their private pens. One group had a 75 fish day, mostly rainbows. Quite a few cutthroats have been seen this year, up to 4 pounds trolling lead core up to 9 colors with Tazmanians, Needlefish, and Bouyants in pink, red, and frog patterns. Nine colors is deeper than I would expect this time of year so make a couple laps at that depth and adjust up on ensuing passes. Also, contact the Big Rock Resort (760-648-7717):

Gull Lake: Gull Lake Marina (760-648-7539) “Home of Monster Trout”: Looks like Gull is living up to its nickname, with an 11-pounder and a 10.4-pounder that were recently reported. Both rainbows measured 27 inches in length along with numerous ‘bows in the 3- to 6-pound range. Go with the typical baits mentioned or troll 3 to 5 colors as Gull is not as deep as June. A bit of advice: When visiting the marina don’t do what William says (he knows nothing about fishing) but rather what Emma and Sergio tell you. Just joking of course. They’re all great!

Silver Lake: Silver Lake Resort (760-648-7525): Silver is still cranking out a lot of 2- to 6-pound rainbows with an occasional brown. This is mainly due to the abundant stocking of those Oregon rainbows with another load due in June. As I was standing in the store a guy came in with a 3.8 ‘Bow tube fishing with wooly buggers — good approach to try in any lake. Tom the dock man is adamant that leaders must be 5-feet long with floating baits due to up to 3 feet of weeds in the lake. He says pink and white mice tails are working best right now. He should know, he’s right there on the lake. Please note that Silver Lake Resort RV Park has full hook-ups and propane service.

Rush Creek: Stop in at Silver Lake Resort to get the latest: Rush produced a nice 3.8-pound brown last week caught with a nightcrawler. The creek flows out of Silver down to Grant Lake with the best fishing in about the first half mile due to CDFW plants near the campground and larger trout migrating from Silver. What I like to do is “Shoot and Scoot” with lures the entire length between both lakes as it is best way to become one with the water.

Grant Lake: Grant Lake Marina and Campground (there is no reliable phone service here so just stop in): According to Doug and Harold at the marina fishing has been a bit off here probably because the lake is rising 6 inches or so a day due to spring runoff, which is about at its peak. We expect that to change for the better as the lake level stabilizes. They asked me to pass along that their privately run campground is booked full from mid-June to mid-September, with openings before and after, and they offer a two-day boat rental deal that allows folks to stay out later and start earlier the next morning. On the other hand, Dan’s Guide Service (661-478-0036) has been doing well like usual trolling in the eves for 16- to 20-inch browns using a Rapala/spin gear or streamer/fly rod set up which are both effective and a fun way to fish Grant. As a note, the nearby hike-in lakes are clear of snow and ice with great fishing and scenery. June Lake Loop area reports are provided by Scott Champion from Ernie’s Tackle and Ski Shop in June Lake, Calif.

Good luck on your next fishing adventure. If you get a photo of your catch send it to and I hope to see you on the waters. Good fishin’ and tight lines.