July 29, 2016
San Joaquin River, East Delta Sloughs
Water temp: 74
Visibility: 4 feet
LMB - Fishing is excellent
Largemouth from six to less than a pound are scattered
throughout the delta. Almost any wall will produce from 25 to 30
fish per rod on a good day's fishing. Plan your trip so that you are
fishing around the time of a high tide. It really doesn't matter
whether it is an incoming or an outgoing, as long as the water is
high enough over the heavy weeds of summer to allow you to cast to
the shore and retrieve without the fly totally fouling in weeds and
You'll want to be on the water just before daybreak and fish for the
first three hours of the day, or arrive late in the afternoon and
fish until dark. While the evenings fish slightly better and you
have a longer fishing day, the summer winds can be a problem.
This fall is my last four months of guiding. I'm hanging it up on
the last day of November. I'd love to fish with all of my past
clients at least one more time around. I hope you all feel the same
Topwater - The best time to fish topwater is during a high
tide phase. The fish move into the troughs between the rocks and the
weeds and over the weeds themselves. Cast within inches of the
shore, expect a grab at any time. If no action, use short strips to
bring the popper out to the inner weed line. Stop and wait for a few
seconds and then chug the popper to the outer edge of the weed line.
Wait again until the boat motion starts dragging the popper making a
Gurglers, crease flies, pole dancers, hair poppers and my own
flip-flop poppers all bring non stop action when the bite is on.
Subsurface - The fast growing delta weeds make
subsurface fishing tough during anything other than a high tide.
Fish an intermediate line with weightless fly such as a Puglisi or a
large woolly bugger or leech. Work the fly as deep as you can
without ending up in the weeds.