I went out bass fishing a couple weeks back with Jon VanRenesselaer. Jon is definitely one of the better bass fisherman on Lake Isabella. It was a beautiful Saturday on the lake. A clear sunshiny day and no wind to speak of. The water temperature was from the low to the mid-50s. We threw everything we had at the fish, genbaits, jigs, and spinnerbaits. I even threw a red rig that is supposed to catch finicky bass. We fished around for 5 hours without a bite.
Saturday rolled around and I spent the day in the recliner watching sports and taking it easy. The day of bass fishing wore the old guy out. Jon went out and tore up the fish. He caught and released many bass, the largest five weighing over 27 pounds. If I am not mistaken, that weight would have won all of the last bass tournament.
It’s amazing what can happen in 24 hours on our waters. Not just bass fishing, but on all species. This time of the year, fish are becoming more active and moving out of their winter hang out. Sometimes, all it takes is a degree or two change in water temperatures. The key is to stay on it and do not get discouraged. Spring time is definitely the time to fish the lake. Bass, crappie, catfish and trout are all on the verge of getting hot.
I know some of the trout being raised in the pens for the Fishing Derby were released into the lake. The pens are overflowing with trout for our derby. That means there should be a ton of fish in the water for a great event. It’s getting closer. Maybe with another few flavors of power bait and another few hot trout lures, I will be ready. You know you can never have enough tackle.
The upper Kern is still being stocked regularly. The River flows are a little high and approaching the 2,000 cfs. mark. I can still find many good areas to fish and catch fish. I do pretty well with the 1/8 ounce silver and gold Viluox spinner. I love my 1/32 ounce silver Panther Martin for smaller pockets of water. It’s a great time of the year to fish the upper Kern. Everything is coming to life after winter dormancy.
I had a great first A.B.A. tournament of the year on Saturday, March 30. What a great day it turned out to be. We did not win the tournament but, I won the award for the most layers of clothing. It was a brisk morning, to say the least. Roy and I managed two fish for a total weight just under five pounds. We finished eighth place out of ten teams. A typical King and Smith finish.
The tournament was won by my good friends Bob Howard and Gregg Figueroa, a couple of old school bass fishermen like myself. They are two of the best at the dying art of Texas rig worm fishing. They ended up with a five fish limit for a total weight over seventeen pounds.
Early on during the tournament, I was working a jerkbait at Lyme Point at the end of Joughin’s Cove. I stuck what I thought was a nice bass. It turned out to be a nice two pound plus crappie. The fish was in less than five feet of water. This, along with the shore in Joughin’s Cove lined with fisherman indicated to me that the crappie have moved in.
I would not call it a wide open bite throughout the lake just yet. Talking to some of the guys before the tournament, there are some areas where you can catch a ton of fish. For example, we were talking to some fishermen off Rocky Point that had not done well. Normally, if the bite was wide open, Rocky Point would be a good area to fish.
The longer the water temperature stays around that 60 degree range, the crappie fishing should remain consistent. It was in the high 50s during the tournament. I can see some crappie fish tacos in my near future.
See you on the water.