Campfires and charcoal barbecues are not permitted during Red Flag Warnings

Campstoves which are enclosed and can be turned off instantaneously are allowed

PowerBait is Off the Hook, Bass Still Bite, Catfish Catch On.

Generally trout fishing has slowed compared to the spring but there’s still trout out there and if you’re in the right place, at the right time with the right bait you can still do well. Most of the activity is early in the morning. Trolling down deep (40 to 50ft) is one way to go about it, but with California’s 2021 drought conditions there’s you can only really get into deeper waters along the main channel. The water even 15ft down is considerably cooler than surface and surprisingly there’s still trout picking up PowerBait bumped off the bottom by shore fishers.

Rick Allerton & Family of Modesto (above) caught 14 trout and a big crappie (look carefully…) off the rental dock. It was a good showing of what can be done without a boat. The early morning seems to the best time, then the trout take a siesta until about dinner time.

Mason from San Jose was trolling a Firetiger SpeedyShiner about 44ft down when he hooked this 3 1/4lb beauty of a rainbow trout.

The Walrath Family from Ukiah brought in a limit starring a chunky 6.5 pound rainbow trout fishing along the shoreline near the dam using a Junebug and yellow PowerBait. Yuriy Kolomyza of Roseville also caught his 6.75lb lunker trout by the dam using powerbait:

Marquise from Sacramento (below, Left) caught a nice catfish in the late evening using Sardines. Zach & Cody Madewell of Paradise reeled in a 5.5lb catfish in Elmer’s cove using hotdogs. Catfish will inhale just about anything stinky dropped along a muddy bottom.

The biggest Catfish I’ve seen come out of Collins Lake this year was caught, and released, by Earl Hudson from Antioch back on June 16th. Earl broke some traditional catfish clichés, reeling in this 22 pound behemoth mid-day using a Rat-L-Trap.

On the bass front there’s a healthy bite out on the east side and in and among the coves. I’ve heard several reports but David Delgado sent in proof, so here’s a couple of his pictures:

David reported that he and his friend Justin Leonard caught and released 7 Spots and Largemouth in total using Spoons, Roboworms & a Ned-rig all before 10am and mostly out on the east side near the islands (watch your props folks, it’s shallower than we’re used to for June!).

The lake is currently 47ft from full; In a normal year we might expect a level like this mid November at the end of the Irrigation Season. The surface temperature is up around 78°F and the lake surface area is down around 575 acres (it’s about 1000 acres at spill). Our main ramp remains open, although we expect in the next couple weeks to only have one paved lane for launch.

The lake is busy on Saturdays and Sundays but weekdays, especially before noon, are still pleasant. The same is true of camping, you’ll be hard pressed to find an open site on a summer weekend but there are still tent sites and even a few hookups available mid-week, especially for shorter rigs.

Even with these drought conditions, decent fishing persists for the skilled angler, and even a beginner early in the morning or with the right luck, can still land a lunker.

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