Trout Move Off Shore… Fishermen Follow!

The end of February was finicky with trout catching coming and going in waves; The pattern was almost three days quiet and three days with a good bite. The weather has been much warmer and dryer than usual, in fact its starting to look full on like spring, and that means the shoreline has been pretty busy with fishermen casting Kastmasters & PowerBait. Now as we get into March it seems that catching is moving off shore as we start to see trolling pick up.

June Karlonas caught a huge trout dragging a needlefish out in the middle of the lake- I believe the first catch on a needlefish reported so far this year.

Alyssa & Madison caught nine trout on gold & silver Kastmasters from the beach and brought up the five biggest to get a free picture at the Collins Lake store.

Justin Bullock from Walnut Creek topped the chart with a 10 pound rainbow trout caught trolling a needlefish along the dam down at 30ft. His catch ushered in what would become a week of big fish to finish February. Ralph Brown of Gridley caught a 8+ pound trout on PowerBait across the lake. Dan Cowan of Vacaville caught a pair of trout, one just under 7 pounds and one just over, both on broken back Rapalas along the main channel. Eric Phillips caught an 8 1/2 pound fish by the dam on a Kastmaster.

Coming up April 4th, 2020 – Official Rules

Matt Garcia of San Jose spent his leap day morning landing a 7+lb rainbow trout, hooked on a worm & dodger combo taught to him by long-time Collins Lake catcher Cal Kellog. Later the same day he tipped the scale again at 8 pounds with a trout caught on a Yakima lure. The last catches of the month were both reeled in by Bobby Vyvlecka of Woodland who caught 9.25lb & 9.75lb trout trolling broken back Rapalas in the middle of the lake. Nice catch Bobby!

Since the end of February it seemed like we might be in another lull in terms of trout…and then Mark Evans of Marysville & Dan Mateo of Meridian showed up for Mark’s birthday and caught a double limit trolling “Silver Lures” out in the middle. Hopefully it’s a harbinger of good catching for the week to come.

I would be remiss if I didn’t also mention Carl & David West of Roseville who caught 5 trout including 6 1/4lb and 7 1/4lb fish, on Powerbait from the shore. Folks are still catching from the shore but it looks like trolling has an earlier start this year than most.

We continue to receive trout plants almost every week, most recently a DFW plant and next week a Mt Lassen Trout plant is scheduled.

I don’t have any pictures of bass for this week but the few who are out doing catch & release report good activity at the North end, mostly with Senkos & Roboworms.

If you’re fishing plastic lures you might just do what Dennis Eddings from Marysville did and reel in a 9.25 catfish. I don’t expect catfish activity to heat up until later in the year- but if it stays dry and hot, who knows? We might be seeing more catfish than normal in early spring.

So far it’s been a great March for camping and outdoor activities. Check availability and reserve online online through CampLife.

There is a little light rain in the forecast- when it’s intermittent I always pay more attention to the wind than the rain and it looks like from Saturday evening on it is forecast to be calm winds and great weather to be out on the lake.

See you on the water!

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