Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Best Lures for Los Vaqueros

For the last four years we have been trolling Los Vaqueros, and seeing which lures catch the most fish. Now for the results: The number one lure by a large margin was the Cripp Lure from Shasta Tackle in the Silver Scale pattern. This metal spoon has caught Stripers, Trout, Bass, Sacramento Perch,and King Salmon. It is the go to lure for us.

Up until this year the number two lure was a J5 broken back rapala in gold. This lure was the best at catching King Salmon. With the Kings growing to 16+ inches, the time for the Rapala is near.

Another Rapala is our third choice, the J8 X-Rap also in gold. This lure can be top-lined or run out on lead -core. It almost always catches the biggest trout of the day.

This year we have been trying new lures. So far the best have been the Michigan Light Stinger Spoon in dark colours, The Apex 2inch lure in dark or shad colours, and the Tomic Lures in black or shad colours.

Many other lures have caught fish like Cast Masters in Silver or Gold, Lucky Live Pointers in Silver and a small no name caterpillar which just catches salmon.

All of these lures are run out on leadcore with a10 foot leader,to ten to twenty feet deep. We troll at about 2.5mph, and go to about 10 different spots in the lake. All of these spots are nearsunken road beds, humps and deep banks. We use a portable depth finder to locate depths and fish. I have even tried a down rigger to get to those salmon deep on the bottom.

This is what works for us. Let us know what works for you. God Bless.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Stripers,Jewlery, and the $50.00 Fish at Los Vaqueros

With no money for catfish for fish and game to put in the South Bay, I decided to go for the trout that the East Bay is beginning to put in their lakes. With the weather only in the low 100's, it seemed like the perfect time. The winds at Los Vaqueros were gentle for the first time in two months so at the crack of 10:30 We went out to troll Los Vaqueros. After stopping at a quilt store, got out on the lake for that cool afternoon bite. I wanted to try some of the Lake Shasta tackle to see if it was as productive down here. No downrigger as 95% of the fish are caught in 10 to 20 feet of water.That depth is easy to fish with lead core line.

I put on flashers, dodgers, spinners and all of those Canadian hand crafted lures. These were trolled around the lake for two hours with no luck. So off comes the jewlery and out go the lures with nothing but scent. It was all of five minutes when the shad coloured Tomic plug gets hammered. The fish is on for a few seconds then shakes off. But the damage is done , the fish has crossed two other lines and we now have a huge tangled mess with lead core and leaders and lures all together. So we set out to the deep water and start to untangle the mess. Finally were back in business. Soon a fish hits an apex in purple and dark pink, so I look in the box for a spoon that has those colours. I find a Michigan Lite Stinger Spoon in that colour pattern,( I have all kinds of colours in this spoon since it caught the12.44lb. rainbow at Del Valle,), I think that I now have the magic colour. Not long after the apex gets bite. As I am about to net the 2.5lb. trout, I notice a tag on it's back. So in the cooler it goes. What is the tag for? We will see later.

At 3:30 pm we are trolling along watching the birds when the little old antique pole starts to sing out. Ferne takes the pole and I turn the boat to the fish. The fish just keeps peeling out the drag. I start winding in the other lines so I can go after the fish. By this time the fish has taken out over 125 feet of lead core and is into the backing. I go after the fish before it spools us. The fish finally stops and we get some line back. The fish is now near the boat, than it turns and dives down toward the bottom 89 feet below. We still do not know what kind of fish it is. But we do know that it is BIG. Finally pumping the rod Ferne gets the fish to the surface. The fish sees the boat and goes bezerk. Another 10 minutes pass before the net closes in on a perfect 10.50lb striper. The fish had taken the Michigan Stinger spoon and would not let go. I opened it's jaws and found that the spoon was clamped to the jaws. The hook had not penetrated the jaw. It just fell out! We quickly snapped some photos. Ferne said that the striper was too beautiful to kill. I agreed. It fought to good to be killed so we put it back in the lake to fight another day.

After that it was trolling in, catching another trout on the way When we got in we found out that the tag was worth a 1\2 day boat rental worth up to $50.00. The striper on the digital camera was worth a whopper mug and a picture on the wall. So get a camera, and snap a picture of your trophy. You can then let it go to fight another day.

God Bless, Michael