By Doug Neal
Almanor Fishing Adventures

Oct. 8, 2018

Greetings from Lake Almanor

Currently surface temps at 61 to 62 degrees depending where you are. Lake Almanor cooled down a little earlier this year due to the big fires in Redding. Smoked covered the state and the Almanor Basin as well, blotting out the warming sunshine for weeks.
Lake levels are lower, down about 9.5 ft. since peaking in June. However lake level still look great. And water Clarity has been good all summer and into fall.
A few days of wind has diminished clarity, down to about 12 ft. but hey that's still good.
As we moved deeper into fall the boat traffic around the lake is noticeably less.
Zero pleasure boats buzzing around anymore, and the Ski boat crowds cannot brave the cooling water any longer. I miss them, but my aim is getting better.

Trolling lanes are wide open and providing some nice fish. Bait fishermen are anchored up in the usual places. Rec.2, A-Frame, Big Springs, and Rocky Point always seem to have boats anchored up suspending baits or jigging for Browns.
Trolling has been what most guys have been doing. Including me. And it has been paying off. We been getting good action, and all kinds of fish, small fish, medium fish large fish and XL. Biggest fish this week off my boat came in at 6.9 lbs. a Rainbow. We also release several Browns running from 3 to 4 lbs. Other boats around us have been releasing Browns too. That's great, we need to conserve that wonderful angling resource.

Salmon, Rainbows, and  Browns have all been active. Not just deep either, fish are enjoying to rapidly cooling surface and it shows. When you look out across the lake you cant help but notice all the surface area activity. That's right, big fish jumping all morning, chasing smelt to the surface before slamming thru them and going airborne.
Its a spectacular sight. to sum it up? the fish are happy.
I been targeting the top 20 ft. of water early, and dropping deeper as sunlight illuminates down the water column into the deeper areas. Its easy these days, for me anyway. Just slow down and run 'Slow Action Software'. Naked threaded crawlers usually gets the most fish, most mornings. Nothing fancy, no flashers or dodgers. .09 to 1.2 mph should do it, and usually dose.
BUT, some mornings when its nots doing it, we flip out to 'Fast Action Hardware'.  #2 Needlefish, 1/6 oz. red and gold Speedy Shiners, or silver and blue Speedy Shiners.
We have also been running the increasing popular "Moose Looks Wobbler"  in Red/gold, and silver/blue. these are all terrific, proven, fast action lures. Or use your favorite, cuz you never know. However I am wrapping up my 19 season fishing just this lake, and I know what works for me.

Bottom line: Its been a solid start to the fall fishing season, and when this wind subsides, (its been windy the last several days) we will be enjoying the action as long as possible. It wont be long before the cool fall mornings turn to cold and snow once again. But not yet, not yet. Generally Oct. and November have provided big fish.
Check the wind forecast before making the trek up here.
Public ramps: USFS and Canyon Dam are open with docks in place.
Private ramps: Almanor West,  Rec. 1 and 2,  and the Hamilton Branch are all open.

Other Fishing News.
The Almanor fishing Association.
A small group of Almanor Fishing Association volunteers have been working with the Almanor Research Institute located at The Chester High School.
Currently we have approx.1500 Brown Trout that have been raised from eggs, and are now 3.5 to 4.5 inches long.
This has been a learning curve for AFA and we are confident that we can start raising larger number of Browns this upcoming year.
Personally I have never heard of any fishing organization successfully raising Browns. Its a tribute to the new directions the AFA has taken in the last couple years.
A special thanks to AFA /ARI volunteers Phil, Dave, Bob, George, Brett, Gilbert, John, Dallas,and any others I missed.

Additional AFA news:
The Almanor Fishing Association has completed 85% of the repair work on the Hamilton Branch Fish Cage Program.
The hard part is done. The additional work will be preformed Saturday Oct.13th. We welcome any additional help too.
AFA volunteers will be replacing  some of the decking and other minor maintenance work. These cages will hold 50,000 small Rainbow trout this winter.
The 50,000 Rainbows will be trucked in Oct. 23 and 24th. Again, your AFA volunteers will be rolling up their sleeves, and move these fish from the truck and into the cages where they will be fed all winter. Neither snow, rain or dark cloudy days will keep the AFA from completing their appointed rounds.
Want to help or just check it out? call or text me at 530-258-6732

The AFA has purchased 15,000 pounds of food to feed these fish all winter.This food will be delivered this upcoming week. Our volunteers will transfer this food from truck to a storage locker. That's a lot of food man!
The AFA has been working hard this last 2 years. Repairing the access stairway, pouring concrete pads for the stairway. Replacing the loading dock.
Repairing and maintaining the cages, and Working with our Veterans and the local community, all while providing scholarship's for Chester High School students.
All thanks to our membership.
Remember if you fish this lake, you should join the AFA.
If your already a member? well then, you should feel real real good about this all progress, and feel proud of it membership and all its accomplishments.
Want to help? Join? or just contribute a few bucks?
Call or text. 530-258-6732 or checkout the Almanor Fishing Association web page, or follow us 'The Almanor Fishing Association' on Facebook.
Thank you.

D. Neal,  AFA volunteer