Mac the Naw: Plenty of fish — for viewing — at Kokanee Salmon Festival on South Shore |

Mac the Naw: Plenty of fish — for viewing — at Kokanee Salmon Festival on South Shore

Doug Busey
Special to the Tribune

Hello fellow anglers; I can tell you where there will be plenty of fish this weekend. The Kokanee Salmon festival will be held at Taylor Creek Visitor Center, located on Highway 89 on the South Shore of Lake Tahoe. The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 1-2. Leave the fishing pole at home and bring the camera to watch kokanee salmon start their fall run up Taylor Creek.

All rivers that run into Lake Tahoe will be closed to fishing Oct. 1. This includes the Upper Truckee River, Trout Creek and Taylor Creek. For those that want to fish, here is your local report:

LAKE TAHOE: Fishing has been good for mackinaw. Best action has been off the Tahoe shelf out of Tahoe City or Carnelian Bay to Cal/Neva Point. Start out early morning in 120 feet and move out to 180 feet as the sun comes up; by 9:30 a.m. the bite will have dropped off dramatically. Blades or flashers with a live minnow have been most productive. Kokanee action has been hit and miss. Most anglers have been fishing off Camp Richardson in 300 to 400 feet of water, with the kokanee suspended between 60 and 100 feet. The Cave Rock boat launch is scheduled to open Oct. 15 if construction goes well.

SILVER LAKE: Water level is down and the boat launch is still open; I would recommend against large boats using the launch facility. Be aware of prop-eating rocks when the water level is this low. Mackinaw action is good this time of year off the points and drop offs with Rapalas or Kastmasters.

CAPLES LAKE: Fishing has been fair for trollers using Rapalas in deeper waters or flashers and a nightcrawler closer to shore. Shore anglers have had better luck off the dam with inflated nightcrawlers. The EID public boat ramp will stay open until the weather changes, and Caples Lake Resort will close down for the season Oct. 15.

For those that would like to pay their respects, there will be a celebration of life for John Voss at 2 p.m. Saturday at Red Cliffs Lodge in Kirkwood. The owner of Caples Lake Resort passed away Aug. 10; in lieu of flowers or gifts, donations in John’s memory can be made to Stanford Cancer Institute.

BLUE LAKES: Lake level is down and fishing has been fair for small rainbows. Salmon eggs or small spinners in the morning and evening have produced a few trout. Beware of yellowjackets this time of year.

RED LAKE: A few reports of small rainbows have come in for anglers using salmon eggs by the dam area.

INDIAN CREEK RESERVOIR: Lake level is lower and weeds are still abundant; fishing has been fair to slow. If you have a float tube or small boat, fish out past the weed line and just off the bottom with a nightcrawler or Powerbait. Shore anglers have had been doing fair between or over the weed line. Fly anglers have had the best luck in the evening on the northwest side of the lake with Woolly Buggers right over the tops and between the weed beds. The campground is scheduled to stay open toward the end of October, weather pending.

CARSON RIVER WEST FORK (California): Fishing has been very slow and the water levels are very low. Anglers fishing the harder-to-reach walk-in pools have caught a few rainbows with salmon eggs. Due to water levels, neither California Department of Fish and Wildlife nor Alpine County Fish and Game Commission will plant here for the remainder of the season.

CARSON RIVER EAST FORK (California): River is flowing great, and fishing has been very good the last couple weeks due to the recent fish plants by Alpine County. Geary and Deanna Ness from Minden fished here last weekend and caught eight trout between them, with the biggest at 2.5 pounds. They were using a small split shot with Powerbait. Renee and I fished the river a couple weeks ago; we kept three fish and released 12 others. The largest fish was 25 inches long and caught on a small Panther Martin spinner. Many other anglers have checked in with many limits of nice rainbow trout.

TOPAZ LAKE: Saturday is a sad day for many anglers, because Topaz Lake closes to fishing until Jan. 1. If you can get out on the last day, I would suggest fishing the south end with Rapalas or a No. 2 Needlefish lure. I fished here last week with a friend, and we worked hard and caught three fish each with the largest coming in at 18.5 inches long.

HEENAN LAKE: Located on top of Monitor Pass on Highway 89; open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays until the end of October. This is a no-kill lake, for catch-and-release fishing with artificial lures or flies only with barbless hooks. Fishing has been good in the early morning and evening for anglers using yellow/silver blade Panther Martin spinners. No motors are allowed on the lake, but you may use electric trolling motors on small carry-down boats. Float tubes are a favorite way of angling on this lake; it sometimes looks like a bowl of Cheerios when the fishing is hot.

Good luck on your next fishing adventure. If you get a photo of your catch, send it to If you have a question or a report in our local fishing area, call the Naw Line at 775-267-9722. Good fishin’ and tight lines.

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