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Snowtrout
12-04-2017, 08:49 PM
With the roads to Wishon/Courtright and Edison closed for the winter, the water level below the ramp creating a muddy mess at Huntington (plus one snow storm away from access being completely shut off) and Mammoth Pool still 30' below where it is possible to launch a boat (not including the fish kill issue), those wanting to fish for trout in the mountains east of Fresno only have two options: Bass or Shaver lake. If one wants to catch a brown or a large stocked trophy rainbow, the choice narrows down to one: Shaver lake.

I originally wanted to fish Shaver in the morning but after checking the Sierra Marina web cam, seeing the launch wet with patches of white on it and looking back at the weather radar, it quickly became apparent that it had just snowed/rained the night before/that morning. The weather man was wrong again because the storm was not supposed to go south of Yosemite. So instead of leaving at 7am, I left at 11. Roads were a little wet on the way up with a few patches of snow along the road. Launch ramp itself was fine. Currently the water level is right at the bottom of the main ramp. Any lower and the dock will not be usable (for those launching by yourself) as you will be launching off the auxiliary ramp. One other boat was on the lake and was just getting off when I was getting on.

I put on a koke colored rapala and immediately started trolling the shallows. Word of caution. With the lake this low, lots of rocks are right at or just below the surface, creating a bit of a pucker butt condition for myself until I made a few tracks and figured out where some of the rocks were at. Right outside of the first cove off the launch, I had my first hit, a little 12" brown. Continued trolling around the island for a couple of bumps but no solid hits. Trolled the Black Rock area and hooked up with a 13" rainbow. Ran back to tunnel creek and started trolling towards stevenson. A few bumps here and there but nothing would stick. Highlight was a bald eagle flying overhead, checking me out. Near stevenson, I hooked up three times: a little 12" brown and two 14" rainbows. I then headed towards boy scout cove and got the best hit of the day on the flats. Turned out to be a 12" smallmouth. Tried boy scout cove for nada. Ran back to the stevenson area and caught two more rainbows. Sun was getting low and decided to try the black rock area again and got another little rainbow. Clouds started moving in and the temp started to drop. Back towards the launch and right before the cove, hooked another 12" brown.

Total: 6 rainbows, 3 browns and a smalie. The rainbows seem to be in the top 10-15 of water all over the lake (seen feeding on the surface) and the bigger browns still out in the depths. Water temp was 50-51 degrees, depending on what part of the lake you were at. The main creeks were flowing a little higher than normal due to the storm that had just moved through. Overall a good day to be out on the water. Hope to be back in a few weeks when the water temp drops a few more degrees. :cold:

FYI. If the water levels continue to drop, plan on conditions very similar to last late winter/early spring. Watch out for rocks/boulders along the shoreline, especially the rocky outcroppings between boy scout and dorabelle cove.

69ChrisCraft
12-07-2017, 12:55 AM
Thanks for the report. If you make it up to Mammoth Pools at all let us know how bad things are.


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