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Bass Lake Outing April 12
UPDATE – Bass Lake Outing – April 12
For those of you planning to attend the Bass Lake outing on Monday April 12, be aware, the lake is very low. CA Fish and Game was not able to add water to the lake this winter. The gravel ramp is high and dry, so you cannot launch a boat now. You can only use watercraft that you can carry to the water. The Wildlife Area manager said that they did not stock trout in the lake this spring, but that people are fishing for bass. He didn’t know how the fishing has been. There are several of us that still plan to fish there on Monday. It may be good fishing, but it could be a bust. Those of us going figure we can scope out the area (including Trout Lake, which doesn’t open until late in April) even if the fishing is poor. You can decide if it is worth buying a CA fishing license and making the trip given the conditions.
The Shasta Valley Wildlife Area, located just east of Montague, California, has a couple of small lakes that offer excellent fishing during the spring for both trout and a variety of warmwater species. Trout Lake is open only on
Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays from the last Saturday in April through the end of September, and is managed
for trophy rainbow trout and largemouth bass fisheries. Bass Lake is open for fishing every day of the year. Since our
outing will occur on Monday April 12, we will go to Bass Lake. Bass Lake is stocked with rainbow trout during the spring and has an interesting assortment of warmwater species. In addition to bass and crappie, which are found in many of the lakes and ponds in our area, Bass Lake has walleye and white bass—two excellent gamefish we don’t usually find in our area. There are opportunities to fish from the bank, but emergent vegetation along much of the shoreline makes fishing from a floating device a better option. The lake is small and has a gravel launching area, making float tubes and pontoon boats great options. Small boats can also be launched. Electric motors are allowed, but gas engines are prohibited. The equipment and techniques that you typically use to fish for trout, bass, and panfish in lakes and ponds around here will work: Five or six-weight outfits with floating and slow-sinking lines should
be suitable for any of the species in the lake. Stripping Woolly Buggers is usually a great technique in these multi-species fisheries, but you could also fish nymphs, streamers, poppers and balanced leeches. The Shasta Valley Wildlife Area is about an hour and a half drive from Grants Pass. Take I-5 south to Yreka, CA, then take Hwy 3 east to Montague. From Montague, take E Webb Street, which becomes Ball Mountain Little Shasta Road, east to the Wildlife Area. I plan to be there by 8:00 AM, but you can arrive when you like. (It will be easy to find us on the small lake.) In addition to your usual fishing gear, bring food and water, sun and weather protection, and a PFD for your floating device. You will, of course, need a California fishing license. Oneday licenses are available, and can be
purchased online or at the Blackbird in Medford, as well as at vendors in California. Anyone going along that does
not have a fishing license will need a California Department of Fish and Game Lands Pass to enter the Wildlife Area. It will be best to purchase licenses or passes ahead of time since it will not be convenient to do so the day of the outing. I have listened to quite a few anglers here in the Rogue Valley talk about the great fishing in Bass and
Trout Lakes and have wanted to give them a try. This outing will be a great opportunity to try something new.
David Haight, Outings Chair