Lake Tahoe fishing: Fall brings fantastic fishing, wild weather |

Lake Tahoe fishing: Fall brings fantastic fishing, wild weather

Doug “Mac the Naw” Busey displays his catch during a fishing adventure at Pyramid Lake on Friday, Oct. 21.
Courtesy photo |

Hello fellow anglers; it is definitely fall. I took a week off to go fishing and ran into pouring rains one day, 40 mph winds two days later and the most picture-perfect day we have ever had on Pyramid Lake.

Fishing this time of year is fantastic when you get out; unfortunately, there are some closures to remember.

In this report, I will give you firsthand experiences from all the places we fished along with tales of other anglers.

LAKE TAHOE: Great news for fellow anglers, as Cave Rock boat launch has again opened for public use. When the wind is not howling, fishing has been good for mackinaw. Most anglers have been fishing the Tahoe shelf to Cal-Neva Point in 150 to 220 feet of water; Eagle Rock has also been productive. A set of flashers or a medium silver or white dodger followed by a live minnow right on the bottom is the best bet. Average fish have been in the 3-to-6-pound class with a few in the 10-pound-plus club. As the days get shorter, topline action should pick up for rainbows and browns. For more information, call Blue Ribbon Fishing Charters at 530-544-6552.

CAPLES LAKE: Resort has closed for the season and will reopen in spring; due to the untimely passing of owner John Voss, it will not be open for the winter season. The El Dorado Irrigation District launch facility has also closed for the season. Shore angling this time of year can be very rewarding, as the browns will feed closer to shore. Nightcrawlers or Kastmaster lures are most productive around the dam and spillway areas.

RED LAKE: Cooler temperatures have activated some fair fishing on the lake. A few reports of small rainbows have come in from anglers using salmon eggs or nightcrawlers.

CARSON RIVER WEST FORK (California): With recent rains, the water level came up a little and fishing has been fair for anglers that do not mind a little walk through the canyon area. The river has not been planted since September due to water level fluctuation.

CARSON RIVER EAST FORK (California): Renee and I fished here last week for a couple days. We did have to do some walking, but caught and released over 15 fish each day averaging 12-14 inches. We used one-eighth-ounce black and silver or yellow and silver Panther Martin spinners. Powerbait was hot for many anglers, but if you are going to catch and release, use the small spinners. Fly fishing was good using a Copper John with a black wooly bugger. The water has cleared up and fishing has been very good.

INDIAN CREEK RESERVOIR: Lake level has dropped a bit, allowing for a drive around the cove and fishing by the dam. With cooler temperatures, weeds are breaking up and the lake is clearing up — but not yet completely weed-free. We ventured out last week to fish for two hours until the wind came up at about 11 a.m. and blew everyone out of the area. Alpine County is planning to plant the lake towards the end of November and with cooler weather, the fishing will only get better.

PYRAMID LAKE: Ventured out last Friday, Oct. 21, with fishing partner Tom Blotter from Minden. We started about 6:30 a.m. and trolled north through Windless Bay up to Monument Rock. I fished a 1-ounce red and black dotted torpedo spoon while Tom used a 2-ounce, two-tone lime torpedo spoon, and things started off well with fish in the 18-to-24-inch class — but the farther north we ventured, the slower the bite became.

We then headed farther south past the nets toward Popcorn Beach, and fished right on the drop-off areas through the weed lines. By 4:30 p.m., we had at least five double hookups and had caught and released approximately 20 fish apiece.

Fishing season will close for Inyo and Mono counties Nov. 1, 2016. Most of the rivers in California will also close on this day. Check your regulations for special catch-and-release areas that stay open in California though the winter months.

Doug Busey is a fishing columnist for The Record-Courier, a sister newspaper of the Sierra Sun and North Lake Tahoe Bonanza based in Minden and Gardnerville, Nev. If you get a picture of your catch, send it to If you have a report or a question in our local fishing area, call the Naw Line at 775-267-9722. Good fishin’ and tight lines.

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