As far as fish stories go, this one is a bit rusty |

As far as fish stories go, this one is a bit rusty

Column by Doug Busey

Hello, fellow anglers. Well, if anyone knows where spring is, please tell us all. There might even be a reward.

But that old El Nino hasn’t stopped most of us. In fact, I have a fish story for you.

In speaking to Ron Ratti of Stateline, he told me this story.

It seems Ron was on his way home from Carson and just had this itching to wet a line. And Ron always carries his fly-rod wherever he goes. As he came into the Tahoe Basin, on U.S. Highway 50, he thought, “Oh,” Cave Rock. All Ron wanted was to wet a line, not catch anything. But he realized he needed some type of weight on the end of his line. He produced a 1-inch-long rusted old hook, which he said should have been discarded long ago).

But it served the purpose. Ron got his line wet, just casting that old rusty hook, perfecting his technique, when all of a sudden, “splash!” Something that resembled a submarine grabbed that old hook and took off. To his astonishment, he was in for the fight of his life. Not bringing a net, what to do? Thinking, he played the fish to and around the point of rocks, trying to bring it to the boat launch. After 15 minutes of battle, Ron landed his catch – an impressive 28-inch German Brown trout.

But Ron didn’t think of photographing his catch. He ate it.

Now you be the judge. Is this a fish story? If you believe, check out to see if Raley’s or Longs Drugs carry rusty hooks!

Now where else are the fish biting or not?

South Shore Tahoe: Mackinaw action is good around the golf course, or the Ski Run area, trolling dodgers (1-1/2 to 8 inches), and a minnow. Most fish have been caught in 80 to 180 feet of water. Remember to get your presentations as close to the bottom as possible. Top lining has been a little slow for rainbow. For more information, or if you are looking for a charter, George Dupuy of George’s Fishing Trips, has more than 25 years experience fishing Lake Tahoe. Call him at (530) 544-2353.

Caples Lake: Strongly not advised. The lake received one foot of snow last week. The ice is breaking up and is very unstable. For more information, you can call the Caples Lake Resort at (209) 258-8888. Ask for only Cindy or John; they know the true action.

West Fork Carson River: High and muddy. Fishing is poor.

Red Lake: No report on ice conditions. Really not advised.

Indian Creek Reservoir: Was doing well last week near the dam for shore anglers using rainbow or green power bait. Salmon eggs also have been productive. For more information, call The Sportsman, at (530) 542-FISH.

Blue Lakes: Still closed.

Now for those of you who don’t mind a drive, Walker Lake in Nevada, south of Yerington, has been doing quite well using green No. 1 torpedoes with gold or silver glitter. My last trip we came home with nothing under 2 pounds. And yes, I have the photo to prove it.

Now for you float tubers, Kirman Lake is now ice-free and is doing great. Fly-anglers, use an olive, black, or brown woolly bugger. Kirman is just off U.S. Highway 4. But before going your first time, ask someone who has been there for directions. i.e., the Tahoe Fly-Fishing Outfitters, at (530) 541-8208.

Speaking of fly-fishing, let’s check it out.

It’s been a bit of a slow start for fly-fishers this spring, although there are a few spots worth wetting a line. The weather has been doing its thing similar to the ’95 season. High water and continued snow and rain into the month of May. Where is the sun? We keep getting little teasers and then it goes away. We will need some consistent warm weather to thaw all those great lakes that we fish during the early season. The rivers will more than likely stay high well into the month of June. This is a positive for those who like to fly-fish and raft the East Carson River. It should have a longer than normal window with clear water and adequate flows. So keep those positive thoughts in line and hope for some sunshine.

For some of those worthwhile spots to wet a line you might want to try the East Walker River, the Little Truckee River or Indian Creek Reservoir. Indian Creek Reservoir has been OK for those with patience and the eye for seeing rising fish. Most of the fish are big and can be caught most easily from a float tube. Look for the rising fish and lead it with a good cast. Blood midges and callibaetis have been coming off. Throw blood midge emergers or crippled emerging callibaetis out in front by a few yards and hope they continue in that direction. The middle of the day and the evening tend to be the best times to fish.

The East Walker River has high flows but is fishing well with dry flies throughout the day. There has been a great hatch of baetis mayflies from around 11 a.m. to about 3 p.m. Fish stimulators before and after the midday hatch. Blue wing olives in sizes 16 and 18 will do the trick during the hatch. Another spot worth a cast is the Little Truckee River. It is also running high but should fish well with nymphs or baetis mayflies on the surface. There are not a whole lot of places to cast a fly yet, but the few that are fishing are worth the effort.

For those who would like to get into the sport of fly-fishing, now is the time to take an instructional course before the season really gets under way. Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters offers classes in all aspects of fly-fishing throughout the spring and summer. For more information on our local fisheries or any of our classes, call or stop by the shop at 3433 Lake Tahoe Blvd., U.S. Highway 50, (530) 541-8208. Remember to catch and release all of your wild trout!

Well, I hope this helps to put you on fish. And kids, mark your calendar for June 6, for the Raley’s Sawmill Pond Kids’ Fishing Day.

And if anyone has any questions, information, or stories, call the Mac-The-Naw hotline at (702) 267-9722. Or, if you have a photo of your catch or catch-and-release, drop it off at the Tahoe Daily Tribune.

Good fishin’!

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