California Trout Fishing at Pinecrest Lake Serves Up a Surprise

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California Trout Fishing at Pinecrest Lake Serves Up a Surprise

For better or worse, for richer or poorer. I think fishermen should know these vows, married or not.

I was fortunate enough to take a vacation last week and visited my wife’s side of the family out in California. We were there for a wedding, congratulations Shannon and Javier, and my future brother-in-law planned to rent a pontoon and take everyone out for a day on the lake.

The weather was better than it had been but was too cold to go swimming. I found myself getting chilled when the sun ducked behind the clouds. We headed across the lake near where the river fed the lake. Evidently rented boats don’t utilize anchors so we drifted the pontoon to shore and climbed out onto the rocks to try our luck for a few rainbows.

Drew described the lake as a decent fishery but not spectacular. Fish and Game regularly stocked the lake and had just stocked it the week before. This meant that there should be 800 more 9″-11″ fish swimming around and that was what he was used to catching.

I shipped some of my fishing gear the week prior but had not planned on trout fishing much. Instead, I was set up to tackle bass on New Melones Reservoir.

I looked through my hard bait selection and came up with one decent option. A Bass Pro Shops brand spoon that is no longer in production to my knowledge. It’s a simple shad type pattern, black top, silver side, red throat, and a silver backside. It was a bit over-sized but it was the best I had in my box, so naturally I decided to give it a try.

I climbed out on the rocks and looked for a spot. The wind was creating some mild waves and I tucked into a small bay surrounded by massive boulders. I began throwing my spoon and almost instantly I had a hit.

No hook-up though, so I slowed my retrieve. Another bump and another bump. The slow retrieve was getting attention but no hook-ups.

“Maybe the fish are too small for this larger spoon offering”, I thought to myself.

I decided to stick with it and I sped up my retrieve to a medium speed and threw in a few erratic jerks immediately after it hit the water. Steady medium speed, all the way in. Bam. Hook-up!

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