Report from Jay Sorensen courtesy of Cecile Giacoma and the River News Herald - January 4, 2018

The cooling trend has caused the water temperatures to drop below 55° resulting in a less aggressive action for striped bass. Trollers as well as bay dunkers are finding success on one day and the next day a big zilch for their efforts. On the San Joaquin River in front of Eddo’s Harbor drifting or slow trolling live mud suckers producing stripers in the keeper size up to 5 pounds. Some two fish limits reported utilizing this method. Up around Suisun Bay field scouts report taking a few stripers in the 15 to 18 pound range, at anchor, dunking live split tails. The excellent sturgeon bite that took place recently has slowed down due to the downgrade and water temps and clarity. The recent windstorm out of the North caused the water to muddy up resulting in the slower fishing conditions out on the Delta waterways. On your next trip out on the Delta try fishing in the South Delta over in Middle or Old rivers. During this time of the year a good number of striped bass can be had drifting  live minnows and live bluegills or at anchor tossing that favorite bait of yours. Some of the better sturgeon fishing is taking place in Suisun Bay, especially in the shallow water, using either salmon roe or eel strips . The best water depths are between 10 and 15 feet on both the incoming and outgoing tides.
Heavy trout plants continue at Lake Amador. To date over 4750 pounds have been placed in the impoundment. Along with the improving trout fishing here,  there have been some very good catfish taken off the public docks with several over 25 pounds in weight. The key to having a successful day is to fish the shoreline with Power Bait and cut anchovies for catfish. The big honors of the week went to Clifford Larrew who caught a 25.8 pound catfish last week
Some big trout along with the cooler weather are producing some big trout on the troll in the Narrows dragging Speedy Shiners. Mount Lassen trout hatchery delivered 1800 pounds of rainbows on their last trip to the lake. The fishing should improve as we move into the winter months
The steelhead fishing is improving on the lower river below the SMUD powerline at the Southwest boundary of Ancil Hoffman park currently most of the fish are averaging from half pounders along to a few adults weighing in the 3 to 5 pound range. The larger steelies will make an appearance in January and February. The best method of fishing is to toss salmon roe or to cast Little Cleo’s, night crawlers, spinners or Kastmasters.
Good numbers of steelhead in the system from the Gridley to the Oroville Wildlife Area. Fishermen are hooking up with some fish weighing 5 pounds while casting night crawlers, Glo Bugs and flies. For striped bass, fish the area of the lower Feather River off the Shanghai Rapids and Boyd’s Pump.
Keith Frasier at Loch Lomond Live Bait reports that the sturgeon fishing has improved in the past week with good numbers taken in the Sturgeon Triangle in 12 to 15 feet of water, on the outgoing tides. The best bait continues to be mud shrimp. A few striped bass showing in the mix, to 12 pounds.
The Rockfish and lingcod fishing is still producing some quality catches along with an average of seven Dungeness crabs for the pot colors. Rough seas lately have kept most party boats it safe anchor.
NOTE: Note don’t forget to reserve the dates from January 18 through the 21st so that you can attend the International Sportsmen’s Exposition at Cal Expo in Sacramento. This is the biggest show in Northern California.
Now that the Christmas holidays are over, I hope each and everyone will have a prosperous new year. That peace and tranquility will prevail for all. 
Take time to go out and enjoy the great outdoors. Until next time, stay safe to fish another day. For safety sake‘s, be sure to check weather conditions before venturing out into the big waters. Good fishing!
Delta (striped Bass, sturgeon)
Sacramento River striped bass, salmon, Sturgeon
American River (salmon, striped bass, steelhead)
Feather River (salmon)
Mokelumne River (salmon, striped bass)
San Pablo Bay (striped bass, sturgeon)
San Francisco Bay - striped bass, leopard shark
Ocean (rock cod, lingcod, Dungeness crab
“Economists report that a college education as many thousands of dollars to a man’s lifetime income – which he then spends sending his son to college.” …..Bill Vaughan
The salmon fishing season came to a close on December 16 on the Sacramento, Feather and American rivers. The final couple of weeks produced some very good fishing for the late fall Chinook salmon in the Sacramento River in the Jelly’s ferry and Red Bluff sections of the river. The last two days of the season produced limits and near limits at the Barge Hole. Most of the salmon were taken drifting roe and sardine wrapped flatfish with an average weight from 8 to 28 pounds. In the future anglers are expecting a good steelhead fishing season with reports of seeing some big fish in the system. 
Franks Tract Feasibility Study 
The California Department of Fish and wildlife (CDFW) is working on a feasibility study for a project that would fill certain portions of Frank’s Tract and Little Franks Tract to create tidal wetlands and control salinity intrusion into the inner Delta. Modifications would occur on the western side of Franks Tract, above Piper Slough and between Bethel Island and Webb tract, and in the confluence of False River and Fisherman’s Cut. Much of this area is currently dominated by shallow water and snags, and is a known boating hazard. Preliminary biological objectives for the project include enhancing habitat for Delta smelt and other native fish species minimizing habitat for invasive plant species and the establishment of 1000 acres of tidal marsh and tidal sloughs. Preliminary physical objectives include changing tidal circulation to more closely resemble historic conditions, eliminating tidal flow and limiting salinity movement through frank’s into Old River and enhancing turbidity and residence time in False River and areas west of Franks. Navigability through Fisherman’s Cut, False River and Piper Slough will not be affected, however hydrodynamic modeling predicts increased tidal action in Fisherman’s Cut although not to the extent seen with the emergency drought.


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