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Delta Regions

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                             Delta Tide & Current 
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Weekly Outdoor Guide
from the San Francisco Chronicle
Weekly Fishing Reports:   from Contra Costa Newspapers
Weekly Fishing Guide:   from the San Jose Mercury News  

Sports Outdoor:   from the Stockton Records
Weekly Reports:  California Delta Chamber/Visitors Bureau
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Get the best information on fishing techniques in the Delta with; Alan Fong's Tip On Delta Striper Fishing  


The fall is arguably the best time to ply California Delta waters in pursuit of stripers and sturgeon. We are only a couple weeks into the fall and the fishing is very good. As a result, angler expectations are running high as they look forward to super productive fishing between now and the beginning of winter.

“Striper fishing is red hot these days,” disclosed Captain Barry Canevaro of Fish Hookers Sportfishing. “Trolling has been the best method, but I’ve been getting some positive reports from guys fishing with shad and bullheads down in the upper part of Suisun Bay. I’ve pulled the Fish ‘N’ Fool IV out of Richmond and I’m now ready to begin targeting stripers and sturgeon out of the Pittsburg Marina.”

“Yesterday my anglers caught a total of 10 sturgeon and 5 of them were keepers,” exclaimed Kevin Yost of Lucky Strike Charters. “The keepers ranged from 48 to 66 inches. Recently, I’ve noticed that the largest fish are hitting during the slack period of the tide. Roe is still the hot bait.”

“Today we are anchored up in 54 feet of water and things are going well. We’ve landed a couple shakers and a 74 inch oversize fish so far. With the water temperature dropping and the full moon behind us, I think the sturgeon bite is going to get even better,” continued Yost.

According to Gene Buchholz at the Hook, Line and Sinker, the surface temperature is 65 degrees in the west delta and both black bass and stripers are providing sport for trollers.

“Swimbaits are producing black bass and there has been some good frog action, drop shotting and crankbait fishing on tap too. In our last Hook, Line and Sinker tournament, we weighed an 11 pounder, a 10 pounder and a pair of 9’s. During the evening, stripers are hitting surface lures,” said Buchholz.  

Trophy caliber black bass are available in the East Delta. To catch them, anglers have to employ proven big fish baits and focus on slowing down their presentations. The fishing is very good at this time, but anglers that rely typical summertime tactics will likely be disappointed.

“We had a pair of monsters over 10 pounds today,” reported Randy Pringle of the Fishing Instructor Guide Service on September 26. “One of the big fish fell for Optima’s Furbit The Frog and the other one grabbed a Optima wake bait. The fishing was just phenomenal today. At one point we had a 3 pounder hooked the Optima wake bait and a fish of about 8 pounds tried to take the bait away from the smaller fish repeatedly.”

“The weather was cool last week and that means the water temperature is down. This drop has caused the bass to become somewhat lethargic. To catch them you’ve really got to slow down your presentation. When working the frog you want to twitch it a little and then let it sit. With the wake bait a slow steady retrieve works best,” tipped Pringle.

“When the wind comes up the spinnerbait bite should come on strong,” he advised. “When the fish are not responding to frogs and other reaction baits, we’ve been getting them on E-Chip equipped Persuader jigs and while flip shotting Berkley Chigger Craws. For guys that are not familiar with flip shotting, you take a flipping stick spooled with braid and add a 36 inch 20 pound fluorocarbon leader to the end of it.”

A sinker is tied to the tip of the leader and a Chigger Craw is rigged about a foot above the weight. The rig is flipped near cover and action is added to the Chigger Craw by shaking the rod tip, according to Pringle.

During the recent cold snap, good striper action was available to pluggers working Mildred Island. Since then it has warmed up again and the striper bite has slowed.

Things are popping in the Rio Vista area. Stripers are providing superb action for both trollers and bait anglers. Sturgeon enthusiasts are catching solid numbers of keepers while bait fishing between the power lines and the mouth of Cache Slough.

“Striper fishing is great,” exclaimed Paul Cunningham at Rio Vista Bait on September 26. “My customers are getting both schoolie size fish and trophy size fish. Recently we’ve seen fish weighed in at 30, 24 and 21 pounds. Trollers are catching their bass while pulling shallow running Bombers, while bait anglers are having the best luck while fishing with shad.”

“Sturgeon fishing has been pretty good too. Today for example we’ve weighed in 3 keepers. Grass shrimp is the hot bait for sturgeon, in fact all the keepers we’ve weighed in over the past two weeks have been taken on grass shrimp,” added Cunningham.

Allison at Hap’s Bait reported that anglers are picking up quite a few stripers while fishing at several different locations. “Some of the stripers are small, but we’ve seen some big fish up to 18 pounds showing too. Both anglers trolling lures and bait fishing with shad have been picking up stripers. A few salmon have been hooked by trollers working out of Vierra’s over the past week or so too,” said Allison.



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Rich Tipton 


Lucky Strike Charters 
707 585 8050
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Local Guides / Sources

Cal. Delta Chamber/Visitor Bureau
P.O Box 6
Isleton, Ca 95641
(916) 777-5007
The Fish Hookers Sportfishing
Phone: (916) 777-6498
Fax: (916) 777-5678
Steelie Dan's "Hook One"
9244 Trenholm Drive
Elk Grove, Ca  95758-6529
Phone: (916)684-7148
Hookset Bass Service
San Bruno, Ca
(650) 583-8600
Deckhand Marine Supplies
14090 Hwy 160
Walnut Grove, Ca 95690
(916) 776-1370
Jolly Jay Guide Service
Brannan Is.,Ca
(209) 478-6645
Bait Boat (we deliver to your boat)
18816 Stone Lake Road
Elk Grove, Ca 95758
(916) 684-1857
Bob's Bait Shop
302 2nd Street
Isleton, Ca 95641
(916) 777-6666
California Striped Bass Assn.
PO Box 55
Bethel Island, Ca 94511
(916) 684-3199
Captain Don's Delta Charters
PO Box 1452
Suisun, Ca  94585
(707) 429-2117
Korth's Pirates Lair Marina
169 W. Brannan Island Rd
Isleton, Ca 95641
(916) 777-6464
Delta Sportsman
6131 Bethel Island Rd.
Bethel Island, Ca 94511
(916) 925-684-2260
Fish-N-Map Company (fishing Maps)
8535 W. 79th Avenue
Arvada, CO 80005
(303) 421-5994

California Regions

Mother Lode
Sacramento Valley
Klamath Trinity River
Northern Foothills
Bay Area Lakes
Eastern Sierra
NorCal Saltwater
North Coast Lakes
North Coast Rivers
Sierra Lakes Rivers
Northeastern Area
Central California
SoCal Saltwater
SoCal Freshwater