Berryessa Lake and Reports

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Wednesday, Jun 19
Hi: 95 ° F
Lo: 62 ° F
Precip: 0%
Precip: 0%

Saturday, May 25th, 2019

  • Water Temp: 68

    Water Clarity: Clear (4+ foot visibility)

    Report: We fished from 12:30pm to 7pm. Water was more stained than usual. Launched off Putah Creek Campground and stayed in the general vicinity. It was a fun style of fishing, largies and smallies were biting near shallow cover. Best 5 about 10lbs. 21 fish total. Nothing special considering 50-100 fish days here are possible, but fun nonetheless.

    Tips: Postspawn patterns. Fished near the mouth of coves around the main lake and Putah Creek. Drop shots and finesse jigs. Best fish was a 2.5 lb largemouth that nailed a finesse jig in Putah Creek.

Friday, May 17th, 2019

  • Water Temp: 69

    Water Clarity: Clear (4+ foot visibility)

    Report: Fishing for the season started for me this past Friday. I took Tim and his children, James and Elena, out for the day. We went to the back of the Monticello Ski School for our first stop just to check it out. I saw no real signs of fish activity. Next stop was the Narrows where we trolled along the rock wall with no bites. I decided to go towards the vineyards. We trolled along the shoreline using Speed Trap crank bait and Procure rainbow trout scent and our first catch was a largemouth bass that weighed a little over 2 1/2 pounds which Elena did a good job bringing it in and her dad netted it. Tim was next to get a hit and he brought in a nice size bass and Elena did a great job netting it. Our next bite was a nice size crappie using the same lure. I found a spot where we could worm and throw crank bait at the same time. Using a 4 inch senco chartreuse colored worm with brass and glass set-up and drop shot set-up we had success landing bass. We all agreed that it had been a very enjoyable day.
    ‘til next time.................................................good fishing!!!!!

    If you have any questions or stories you would like to share or are interested in booking a guided fishing trip please email me at or call me at 650-583-3333.
    Sent from my iPad

    Tips: pro cure scents ,senko, speed traps ,brass and glass, drop shots, , top water,are successful ways to fish this lake call me if you need help or want to book a trip on lake berryessa only.

Wednesday, May 15th, 2019

  • Water Temp: 67-70

    Water Clarity: Clear (4+ foot visibility)

    Report: The surface temp at Berryessa is dropping, just like it is supposed to in the fall. Oh wait - this is the spring!! Yes, the water temp has dropped from a 74 degree reading last week to 68 today. And it was stormy today - Left after 2 hours. Will re-scheduled the trip. Yesterday I took Clara Ricabal to Berry and we found outstanding fishing! Maybe a pre-storm bite. We found a school of bait - and bass that bit for hours! I even caught a smallmouth an ounce or two under 4 lbs!! All 3 species were active and feeding.. Really not sure what our biggest 5 weighed, probably between 15 and 16 lbs. Great bite and it lasted for hours! That is rare.

    Today the school had thinned out and were not very active. With the incoming storm, thot it would be better. Water was flat today, but windy yesterday for the whole trip. That probably was the key.

    Tips: Shad crankbaits, salt and pepper Yamamoto grubs, Keitech 4.3 inch swimbaits, and drop-shotting were the keys to our success yesterday Fun to have a wide open bite again, in spite of the wind. But wind is often the key to a good bite in clear water. Lost several fish I'm sure because of the smaller hooks used for the swimbaits. The bass seemed to be hitting the baits on the run - vicious hits yesterday! The hooking percentage is always lower on that kind of bite. FUN though!!

Friday, May 10th, 2019

  • Water Temp: 68-71

    Water Clarity: Clear (4+ foot visibility)

    Report: Well, I guess it's called post-spawn. I took a father, son-in-law team yesterday to Berryessa. We started early. about 7 am. First top-water bite for my boat this spring - fun, fun!! We all had action and one of them lost a big bass. They brought their own equipment and baits and fished very well. The lake was pretty quiet and we could fish several good areas. The summer pattern seems to be setting up already. After the early morning action, a lull for awhile. And then about noon, the bite picks up again and they caught bass thru the afternoon. I had some success with the Keitech swimbaits as usual and their drop-shot baits worked well. We caught lots of largemouth and spots but very few smallies.

    Tips: If no cold fronts are coming thru, go for the topwater fun! Berryessa has always been a good topwater lake - the most fun in bass fishing!! The lake is dropping very slowly, so the bite should remain good. Just too many tournaments and relocation of the bass. the recent cool night has dropped the surface temp about 3 or 4 degrees. Don't know if that matters much - didn't hurt the topwater bite!!!

Wednesday, May 8th, 2019

  • Water Temp: 68-74

    Water Clarity: Clear (4+ foot visibility)

    Report: After being out of the country for two weeks, it was nice to return to guiding on beautiful Lake Berryessa. It is still beautiful but we are about to loose the spring green hills as the "golden hills" are just around the corner. It didn't take long to realize that post-spawn had set in. Many areas that were "on fire" before I left were a shadow of their former self. Time to "re-dial" the conditions - and we did. My client, who I have guided a few times before, and I figured out the mid-day bite (he didn't want to start early). We finished near the mouth of the narrows with one here and one there. Again, dead flat, clear water. In a matter of minutes, a little breeze, then a little more, and then. waves!! And then - the BITE!! We caught several quality largemouth and spots in an hour!. By the end of the trip, best five around 13+ lbs including two spots at 3 lbs each.


    Tips: The bite was similar to before I left for France. The #980 Senko was still the preferred bait of the day. He was doing a lot of drop-shotting with his favorite color of worms. They were darker colors I think. We saw a big sign of the summer to come. About 2 PM in the back of a major narrows cove, bass started to bust shad. Fun to see again - summer is here!! We were able to catch a few - some of the leftover bass around 12 to 15 inches. Was surprised to see the water temp at 74 already. Guess there was some warm weather while I was gone.

Monday, May 6th, 2019

  • Report: by Duke » Mon May 06, 2019 1:42 pm
    Thanks to the 28 Teams that fished the 8th event of the Pasote Tequila & Berryessa Bass Tournaments Circuit that was on Cinco de Mayo and hosted out of Markley Cove. We had a cool & breezy Blast Off! Wind did pick up by weigh-ins! Most of the teams got there limit while searching for a big bite all day, looks like a ton of bucks are being caught! Most reported catching their fish in 1 – 15 feet of water. Water temps are up into the 68 degree to low 70’s range with the water clarity slightly murky tan/green in areas and crystal clear in other areas. Teams reported catching their fish on Swim Baits, Drop Shot, and Reaction Baits. Most teams were fishing on the Main Body of the lake.

Wednesday, April 24th, 2019

  • Report: by Kyle46N » Wed Apr 24, 2019 6:14 pm

    I've read plenty about Berryessa post spawn, and that there are bass everywhere in the shallows, but up until today, never had the chance to fish this time of the year. Deployed last year mid April and missed it, but my wife and kids had a ton of fun today. Looks like we missed the crappie spawn, but there bass everywhere in 10 ft or less. Threw small craw plastics on light jihheads, darter heads with TRDs, and Neko'd senkos, and ended up with fiftyish largies, spots, and smallies. Too much fun. Nothing big.....also like I've read, but fun. Surprisingly, our biggest fish came on flukes in 30 ft of water over balls of shad. Spots and largies around 3 lbs. Pretty cool. Anyhow, get out there and have some fun!

Tuesday, April 16th, 2019

  • Report: Postby Duke » Tue Apr 16, 2019 11:36 am

    Thanks to the 26 Teams that fished the 7th event of the Pasote Tequila & Berryessa Bass Tournaments Circuit that was on April 14, 2019 and hosted out of Markley Cove. We had a clear and warm blast off with Duke almost forgetting to blast boats 20 through 25! We did have a breezy, sunny, and warm weigh-in with Chili Dogs for all! Most of the teams got there limit while searching for a big bite all day, but a few teams got their kicker! Most teams reported catching their fish in 1 – 15 feet of water. Water temps are up into the low 60’s range with the water clarity slightly murky tan/green, especially after the rain and winds again. A few coves seem to have clear water though! Top weights are getting better slightly, but overall still in the 13-14lb range. Teams reported catching their fish on Swim Baits, Jigs, Drop Shot, and Reaction Baits. Most teams were fishing off the Main Body of the lake in cuts, coves, and creek channel

Monday, April 15th, 2019

  • Water Temp: 61

    Water Clarity: Clear (4+ foot visibility)

    Report: We went out to Berryessa on Sunday, launched from Capell around 10:30 am. We fished the narrows (for the first time) the entire day and the bite was tougher than expected. First of all, the water level was very high. Rather than spend the entire day trying to graph rock structure I love to fish so much, we concentrated our efforts shallow. We pick them up on ned rigs, drop shots, and finesse jigs. We mostly fished coves to beat the wind. Ended the day early with 8, as my trolling motor steering cable broke. Common problem with early Minn Kota Ultrexes! Disappointing but stuff happens. Next time I'll have to do some dedicated graphing, gotta put the time in, shallow water fish aren't always there!

    Tips: The shallow water bite wasn't as hot as I wanted, but then again our plan of fishing the late afternoon/evening was foiled by our trolling motor issue, so who knows. Most of y'all know the drill, drop shots, ned rigs, and finesse jigs work year round. Each cove had a murky side and a clearer side, and the clearer side was always the ticket. There was a tournament off Markley the same day, so if I had to do it over again I would've made the run north to schoolhouse island and fished down the rock garden, I'm familiar with that area and it's always been kind to me!

Saturday, April 13th, 2019

  • Water Temp: 58-60

    Water Clarity: Stained (2-4 foot visibility)

    Report: This short report is late since I have been very busy with family activities lately - like going to grandson's little league games which seem to be every day - lOL!! And - 45 miles away! I did a Berryessa trip with 2 excellent bass fishermen on Tuesday. The day started out with a beautiful morning, clouded up at noon, and rained a little in the afternoon. Then, post-front. Not sure if that was the reason, but the bite was slower than previous trips - and - the bass were a little smaller. Again, we stayed in the narrows as there was a lot of afternoon wind. They caught all three species, and they were all caught in deeper water. Those shallow bank bass that were so willing in recent trips seemed to be less active - lots of pressure bites. They were drop-shotting their favorite baits I tried to get a jig bite going - no luck. I was really surprised at the slow bite, but that is what a weird weather event can do.

    Tips: Nothing much to offer as a tip because the bite was really off compared to previous trips. It is very interesting to see how the bass react in the spring to various weather patterns. One little weather change and they will change in a hurry! Still, overall a good day for numbers, not size.

Thursday, April 11th, 2019

  • Water Temp: 58

    Water Clarity: Clear (4+ foot visibility)

    Report: Enjoyed an awesome midweek day, weather dropped 10 degrees from the previous couple days, overcast all day never saw the sun. Got on the water about 7 off by 2. Caught all three species from 6 to 20 ft, there moving up towards the spawning areas for sure. Besides one reaction bite on a square bill all fish caught on finesse bites, dropshot, shakey heads, wacky, Texas. Nothing big but caught 10-12 fish. Should only be getting better specially when the water temp goes up some.

Sunday, April 7th, 2019

  • Water Temp: 57-59

    Water Clarity: Stained (2-4 foot visibility)

    Report: Again, guided another adult father/grown son team yesterday. I know there weren't any big tournaments out of Markley Cove, but getting out into the narrows about 8 am was weird! NO boats anywhere - coming or going - on a Saturday!! Eventually saw a few around and many coming back in the late afternoon, probably from up north. As was the case during my last trip a few days ago, we never made it out of the narrows. The bite was great IN the narrows - certain areas - and my guests landed another bigger bass - about 3 1/2 lbs - and many, many quality bass. Their limit about 15 pounds. They were self-contained with their own equipment and baits - excellent fishermen!! A lot of drop-shotting. Always fun to watch an excellent fishing team (father/son, etc.) do their thing! I was almost a hero as I hooked a giant fish in the afternoon. Tried to slow it down for about 20 seconds but it came unbuttoned. I will think about that for a few days!

    Tips: I was SO happy that for the second trip in a row, rain cloud gathered and sprinkles began. This looked serious!! But as the last trip - it stopped and just remained cloudy all day. I was surprised to talk to a few tournament guys as they were securing their boats, and heard about their slow bite. One is well-known and was surprised at his somewhat slow day. I started wondering if the north end of the lake was slowing some and the lower end was getting better. That is a normal pattern for Berryessa - and Clear Lake. Just wonderin'. I threw jigs some but didn't get much action. We tried the backs of coves again this trip, but found more action in the main body. The lake is dropping some and that may have move them out a bit. I didn't look this trip but hear the Glory Hole lake release tube is nearly finished for the year. What a sight three weeks ago!!

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2019

  • Water Temp: 55-60

    Water Clarity: Stained (2-4 foot visibility)

    Report: I guided two very good anglers today, staying in the narrows because of the good bite. I suggested we not start too early - hoping for a better afternoon bite. Love it when plans work to perfection!! We did get an afternoon bite - a pretty good one! We worked lots of points, ledges, and other structure with fair results. I played a hunch with them in the afternoon. We started working walls with cover, and found lots of active bass. Some were very shallow and would hit their baits as soon as they sunk a foot or two. Deepest bass they caught were only down to 10 feet - if that! I don't want to reveal all their ideas, but some included swimbaits. I lost count, but they landed 15-20, almost all smallmouth. Biggest at 3 lbs.

    Tips: With this never ending weather pattern, you may need to move around quite a bit to find active bass. Look for shallow bass in the afternoon. I could not get a Senko bite at all. Hope to see some of you at Sacramento Fisherman's Warehouse tomorrow night. We'll talk about spring fishing!

Sunday, March 17th, 2019

  • Water Temp: 53

    Water Clarity: Muddy (0-2 foot visibility)

    Report: Water remained muddy as we fished the American Bass team tournament Sat. March 16. You needed over 15 pounds to win it. We got fish first thing on MMIII drop shots in the clearer waters in the narrows but the fish we had been finding all week were not there. We went to cranking in and tossing jigs on the east side of main lake by about 10 AM and got more fish but the bigger ones were hard to find. In the end, we settled in to the middle of the pack. There is a big Wild West tourney and a big high school tournament coming this next weekend March 23-24. We can can say the water is still muddy, the farther away from the dam toward Putah Creek the muddier is gets. It is also high and many of the places you like are still underwater. So plan your time accordingly.

    Tips: I will say from our day on the water that if you are going to the clear water in the Narrows for drop shot and jig water, if it does not happen in an hour give it up and move on. Many thanks to American Bass for a great tournament.

Tuesday, March 12th, 2019

  • Report: by Duke » Tue Mar 12, 2019 4:54 pm

    WOW, what an exciting weigh-in! First, a 9.74lb Pig gets weighed in the first flight, then a 11.19lb Mammoth comes to the scale in the last flight! Thanks to the 39 Teams that fished the 6th event of the Pasote Tequila & Berryessa Bass Tournaments Circuit that was on March 10, 2019 and hosted out of Markley Cove. The rain was falling through check-in, but stopped for blast off! We had a sunny warm weigh-in! The lake is full, the Glory Hole is flowing, and the Bass seem to be on the 1st spawning wave, or maybe even 2nd spawning wave! Most of the teams struggled for a big bite all day, but a few teams got their kicker! Most teams reported catching their fish in 5 – 15 feet of water. Water temps are down into the low 50’s range with the water clarity slightly murky tan/green, especially after the rain and winds again. Top weights are getting better, but overall in the 13-14lb range. Teams reported catching their fish on Jigs again. Most teams were fishing all over Main Body of the lake and the Narrows.

Sunday, March 3rd, 2019

  • Water Temp: 51.3

    Water Clarity: Muddy (0-2 foot visibility)

    Report: Today’s fishing pretty much sums up my last few weeks of fishing.. Terrible... started the day on the main part of lake and threw everything at them... Ned, swim, drop shot, Jig, and Jerk. Between two boats we caught two fish and they were Dink’s.... water level has risen quite a bit and water clarity was terrible... tried deep, fried some areas with trees and even went back into a cove to search for them shallow... Can’t wait for the weather to warm up and get the fun fishing back... this dude needs to build up his comfidence....

    Tips: Fish slow and throw the kitchen sink! Many boats on the water and they seemed to struggle as well...

Friday, February 15th, 2019

  • Report: by Duke » Fri Feb 15, 2019 12:47 pm

    It was a Pretty Cold day on the water for all the teams. Thanks to the 25 Teams that fished the 5th event of the Pasote Tequila & Berryessa Bass Tournaments Circuit that was on February 10, 2019 and hosted out of Markley Cove. The rain held off, but it was still Cold! Hot Chili was all gone after the weigh-ins! The lake is still fishing well for numbers, and most of the field found limits, just no fish over 5lbs were weighed in. All the teams struggled for a big bite all day, but a few teams got a 4lber! Most teams reported catching their fish in 15 – 40 feet. Thanks to all teams for obeying the 5mph after Pope Creek Bridge and in Putah Creek! DFG saw no one breaking the law! Water temps are down into the low 50’s range with the water clarity slightly murky green, especially after the rain and winds again. Top weights were a little low overall in the 14lb range. Teams reported catching their fish on Jigs. Most teams were fishing all over Main Body of the lake, Narrows, and Putah Creek.

Monday, December 31st, 2018

  • Water Temp: 53-55

    Water Clarity: Clear (4+ foot visibility)

    Report: One who almost never guides on Sunday - guided yesterday - a Sunday!! I am usually in church, but decided to take a great young bass fisherman up from Texas, attending a bay area family wedding. We started about 9 am, hoping to take advantage of the usually good afternoon bite this year at Berryessa. Thousands were there earlier - but I did find a parking place in the Markley parking area. I have been complaining about the lack of wind this fall - making conditions tough with the clear water. It was even that way when we taped the Angler West Berryessa program (with Clara Ricabal) this fall. Made the bite tough, but ok that day. After seeing the north wind today, yesterday was a blessing!! As is normal for winter fishing, the bite was slow until around 2 to 3 pm. He went crazy as we (HE) got into them. They went on a 45 minute feed. He landed 7 or 8 up to 4 lbs - all largemouth except the smallest one, a spotted bass, the first he has ever caught! His limit was between 13 and 14 lbs! He had a 3 1/2 + largemouth to back up the 4. He also landed a few undersized and 2 smaller keepers before noon. Once the bite was over abound 2:45, nothing after. We fished until 3:30 as I had to get him back by 4 pm. He WILL have a great memory of California fishing, I'm sure!!

    Tips: So, what else is new. We drop-shotted 6" Robo worms, mostly in the MM111 color. Saw very few shad on the meter. Where do they go?? Up Putah Creek I've heard. I think the best news I can tell you is that we (he) caught them as shallow as 5 feet, but mostly 10 to 15 feet. Only one maybe at 20 feet. I have seen this happen with all different fishing positions in the boat, and have seen back-seaters do some amazing things! The dummy is in the front, working the Minn Kota 112 all day. This dummy (the guide) didn't get a bite! I was trying different baits to see if there were variations on the bite. I forgot - I did catch one small bass on a shad colored Robo worm.

    In a situation like ours, or during a tournament, when there is no bite -- is it the turned-off bass or the wrong baits? Ah, the eternal question!!!

Sunday, December 23rd, 2018

  • Water Temp: 55

    Water Clarity: Clear (4+ foot visibility)

    Report: Fished Berryessa for the first time in a long time today. We knew the day would be tough with the full moon the previous night. The day started out a little sunny but then the clouds moved in and it started raining. We were on the water from 12pm to 6pm. I barely graphed any fish shallower than 30 feet. Either they were really shallow or pretty deep. Most likely pretty deep. That being said my partner and I decided we were going to try fishing really shallow just because we wanted to. My friend was throwing my jerkbait rod with a vision 110. He backlashed and as he was picking it out something swirled on the jerkbait in about 4 feet of water. He quickly picked out the backlash and commented "wouldn't it be funny if there was a fish on the end of this?" Well there was. We caught one more on the jerkbait and I caught one on a popper in the same area (both in really shallow water).

    Enough screwing around. Got to our second spot and graphed around. Noticed a fair bit of activity in ~45 feet of water. Hit the spot lock and dropped the dropshots straight down. Reminded me of fishing for rock cod. Soon enough we started getting bit. Dead sticking was key, they would bite it very light. Had one bite where I was reeling it up then it realized it was hooked. Started digging deep. Got it close to the surface, a solid 3 lber. Broke me off. Like an idiot I had my drag set way too tight. Painful lessons are the easiest to remember. Ended the day with 8 fish boated and a satisfactory amount of bites. Considering the conditions, a satisfying day.

    Tips: I've been fishing my local lake a lot and noticed a similarity in that fish were hanging out around 45+ feet of water. Find the deep rock. This time of the year electronics are almost a necessity.

Monday, December 3rd, 2018

  • Water Temp: 57

    Water Clarity: Clear (4+ foot visibility)

    Report: Horrible day of fishing ... launched in Markley and started fishing east side up from Dam. Worked my way out to the main lake... started in 20 ft and worked my way up to 50ft... tried crank baits, drop shot, Ned rig, swim baits and could not locate the active fish... I heard it was slow but my performance was pathetic!