Wow, what a year 2016 has been, my wife and I just completed one year in the house we purchased last year and this next week we will celebrate our 41'st wedding anniversary. This year was consumed with a lot of projects for our new place and also with one of our busiest guide years ever. The 2016 season will go down as one of the best years ever for the 19 years we have been fishing the lake. With over 3000 fish caught and released and with more fish caught in the five to ten pound range since I have been keeping records, it has been a phenomenal year. Our lake got full this past year and with the current rain pattern and with the lake rising, it should also be full for the 2017 season. I expect with the sheer numbers of bait fish currently in the lake and with the amazing numbers we caught this year, 2017 season should be a repeat of all the great action we had this year. The 2017 season will start off with fisherman throwing a whole variety of swimbaits, A rig's, using jerk baits, lipless crank baits and now is the season for live bait, (jumbo minnows) for those who like to use them. As 2016 winds down over these next eight days, we are re grouping, enjoying the season, and getting ready for what 2017 will bring. A reminder to buy those new fishing license and if you are bringing a boat from out of the County, be sure to get it inspected and get a clearance sticker before launching. We have been blessed to have good health, love living in Lake County, and loving what we do. We close out this year by wishing all of you who fished with us over the years and to all of you who were new friends this last year, a BLESSED, Merry Christmas. God Bless, Bob & Tary
Wow, I guess it is good to be busy, it's been two months since my last report. This past year my wife and I bought a house, sold a house, moved, did improvements, carport, pavement, fence's, etc and still managed to have one of the busiest guide years yet. We have been in our new home now for exactly a year now and are finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Fishing this year has been phenomenal for numbers and size, one of the best years since I have been fishing here. (18 years) You can practically use anything to catch fish, jig's, crank baits both shallow and deep runners, spinner baits, drop shot worms and baby brush hog's, almost anything except top water. The top water bite this year just hasn't materialized as it has in the past. The fish currently are in the shallows as well as the deeper areas, some big fish are being caught in one to four feet of water. October has started out with a strong bite for numbers but the bigger fish bite has seemed to drop off from a month or so back. I would expect that our current strong bite for numbers will continue into November. The lake is still dropping, we are about 1.40 at lake level, be careful in motoring around the shoreline, some rocks are just under the surface and are not marked. I damaged my prop this week on a rock that I new was there but couldn't see and forgot it about it. Keep your big engine trimmed up while working any where close to shore and don't get up on pad until you are well out into five or six feet of water. All ramps are open, water conditions are good, has been one of the best years in a long time for no bad algae blooms. In a nut shell, the best baits right now are jig's, square bill crank baits, Lipless crank baits, and drop shot worms and baby brush hogs. As we go into November the live bait action will kick in and for those who want to use live bait, the action should be good. It's been a really good year for all the guides working the lake myself included. I suggest if you know you want to book a trip with me, that you plan ahead and get your request in as early as you can. Currently I am making plans for the upcoming off season,( December, January) to update some equipment, repairs to the boat, etc, and then will be controlling my bookings to be more manageable, so book early. Hard to believe that a year has gone by in our new home, my wife and I are blessed to have good health, still best friends, still in love, and are loving life. Stay safe, be courteous, enjoy each day as if it could be your last, God Bless, Bob & Tary
Sorry, when I get busy which I really have been, I forget to keep my reports updated. Since my last report, the fishing/catching can only be rated as phenomenal. I am not sure how much longer this good bite will remain but currently it as good as it has been in many years. Catching 30 to 70 fish for an outing has been the normal now for over a month or so. Yes most of the fish are in the smaller 12 to 15 inch range, (1 to 2 lbs) but many bigger fish are also being caught. Over the past month I have had customers catch a 11.4, a ten pounder, a nine pounder, three or four eight pounders, and several others in the 5 to 7 pound range. The lake has been loaded with shad and the bass are bulking up big time on them. This all bodes well for next years as all of these smaller bass will continue to get bigger. These smaller bass are providing a lot of action and are putting up a pretty good fight on the end of the rods. The number one way these bass are being caught is with a drop shot rigged Robo worm or zoom baby brush hog. Lot's of bass are being caught on crank baits both deep divers and shallow running square billed cranks, along with jig's, & shakey heads and spinner baits. The best action seems to be mid lake, up to Monitor island, along highway 20 at the Glen haven reef and on the rocky banks down from Lucerne. Top water action has been minimal for myself and I have not had any reports of any serious action on top water. There was a good bite along long tule island with anglers pitching a frog early in the morning right to the edges of the tules as the bass were busting shad against the tules, I believe that bite has dropped way off. Many anglers who are use to punching off shore weed beds are being disappointed with the lack of weeds to be found this year. This is one of the first years that I can remember that we have not had the off shore weed beds. There will be a large tournament hitting the lake this month on the 27th and tournaments will start up again in September and will get even busier as we go into October. The bass have been keying in on the shad and as the shad moves, so do the bass. Some of my hot spots have died off due to the fact the shad is no longer there. You have to keep on the move, switch up your baits and presentations, stay versatile, as I said, many techniques are working right now. The word is out about the good bite we are having and the lake has been busy at times even during the week, there was a fish die off that hit the press a week or so back, but that has cleared up and has not effected the action at all. It was concentrated in one general area and was attributed to a lack of oxygen in that area during a very hot weather spell. That's it for now, feel free to email me at anytime for any information needed on the lake and what is happening. Stay Safe, be courteous, God Bless
Since my last report, most of the spawning has taken place although there will be fish that will continue to spawn through the rest of June and some into July. The bite overall has also changed since my last report and as I write this, the bite has turned much tougher for catching the larger fish. The main reason for this is that the fish after spawning have moved off into the deeper waters in some areas and in other areas have pulled off shore into the vast areas of off shore weed beds while others are following the huge schools of shad into the deeper water. The weed growth has exploded around the lake, especially on the upper West and North ends of the lake. The top water bite is slowly getting better and reports of Frog fish, buzz bait fish and top water popper style baits are catching fish. The smaller fish in the 12 to 15 inch range continue to be caught in big numbers all around the lake. This should bode well for next year as these fish get bigger, but is frustrating for those who are trying to catch the larger fish. Today my two customers had 34 fish for their trip but had no decent size even though they threw a whole variety of baits and covered many past successful areas. The good news is that we have a lot more water than in past years, the lake is loaded with Crappie, bluegill, and 12 to 15 inch bass, the food source is abundant, all of which will make for good fishing down the road. As the lake level drops during the summer and the shad start to die off and pull out into the deeper areas, this should concentrate the bigger fish more into the outer weed beds and the deeper rock piles and drop off's and make catching them somewhat easier. That's it for now, feel free to email me at anytime for any info needed, and or send me your own fishing report, I can always use the help, God Bless, Bob
""""WOW"" time really flys when you are busy. March and April have been really busy times for my guide business and the fishing has been better than I have seen it in six years or so. The Lake is "Alive"" and Healthy and loaded with bait fish, crappie, blue gill, bass and catfish. My customers have already caught more bigger fish in the six to ten pound range than we did all of last year. The crappie have exploded all around the lake and has brought hundreds of people fishing for them on an every day basis. The lake is at it's full level, water conditions are very good, fish are spawning, some have spawned and the spawn will continue through June but the majority of the fish will spawn over the next three weeks or so. Almost everyone fishing on the lake now and over the next month will be concentrating on "sight fishing"" which is seeing the fish on their spawning beds and trying to catch them. Be sure to picture and release right away so they can finish heir spawn. This is the time frame that "fishing"" for the bass can toughen up if you are not sight fishing. The bass have spawning on their minds and not eating, after they have spawned, they rest awhile before feeding up again. With a full lake, there is a lot of cover for the bass to get in and the lake is fishing different as a result. The flip bite will become more of a factor as we go into summer and we have water on flooded tules that we have not had these past few years. The top water action will also kick into gear in the next month, we have already had a little action with poppers and frogs due to the bass actively busting and feeding on the massive schools of shad that are roaming the lake. Currently as I write this, the FLW tournament series is fishing the lake. After they are done this week, the big tournaments will be over and only the normal clubs hitting the lake on weekends will be happening. I am looking forward to a great rest of the season and from what I have seen so far, it should be a fantastic rest of the year here on Clear Lake. If you are bringing a boat from out of the County, be sure to have it inspected and get your clearance sticker before launching. All of the tackle stores and most of the resorts around the lake can do this for a $10 charge. Feel free to email me at anytime for any information needed and specifics on fishing and techniques, God Bless, Bob
With several days of nice weather and no rain, the water temperature is around 49 to 54 degrees in the afternoons. Water clarity is good on both the North and South arms of the lake. Water Level is currently 4.62 which is higher than at anytime last year. All of this combined with what I call a good bite for this time of the year, makes for a good time to get out on the lake. Fish are being caught in a whole variety of techniques such as drop shot worms, jig's, Carolina rigged plastics, small swim baits, senko's, and the jumbo minnow bite is kicking in big time. Those who are targeting just a "big" bite are tossing the bigger glide baits, swim baits and Alabama rigs. All of these techniques and baits will just continue to get better as we move into march. The warmer water temps has started the bigger fish moving into the the shallows and some bigger fish are being caught. Last weekends tournament was won with 30 lbs for the best five fish for one day. Lot's of 12 to 15 inch are being caught which all bodes well for a great 2016 season. The crappie bite is better than it has been in years, that combined with a good bite and good weather overall has made for a fairly busy lake at times. March will see a couple of big tournaments hitting the lake the third week of March so plan your trips accordingly. Wardens are checking to make sure bag limits are being followed and also making sure you have purchased your 2016 license, don't forget them. Stay Safe, be courteous to your fellow fisherman, don't crowd or cut in, make sure if your bringing a boat to the lake that you get it checked for a clearance sticker before launching. Guides are booking up fast so if your planning on booking a guide, plan well ahead. The only thing that will change current conditions will be any strong storm with substantial rain and or a spell of colder weather that drops the water temps. God Bless, Bob
The last couple of months I have been totally tied up with my time in selling our spot on the lake, buying a home just down the street and moving. We are now settled in, have the boat and truck all tuned up, gear all in order and ready to go for another exciting season here on Clear Lake. I fished with my good friends Steve Kelly and Gary Hill yesterday for my first outing of the year. It was great to get out on the lake and get a rod in my hand and catch some fish. We used live bait on a drop shot rig and moved around trying to locate some fish. Several other boats were out and many of those were keying in on catching crappie in a couple of the hot spots that are holding them. It was a slow and delicate bite even with the live bait and we missed a few that just didn't get the hook. We caught several small fish but did manage to land an eight lber and another nice five pounder. The Lake is rising steadily and we are just about a half a foot below our high of last year. If the rains remain consistent over this next month, we have a good possibility of having a full lake this year. A recent team tournament produced a winning weight of just over 26 lbs for their best five fish. A variety of baits and techniques are working now but it is a winter type bite and you have to put your time in to catch a few fish. The water temperature yesterday was between 47 and 49 degrees. Water clarity mid lake was slightly stained, any area around where the creeks are flowing is very stained to muddy. Those that are targeting the bigger fish and are hoping just to get one good bite are throwing the big swim baits which requires the right rod's, reel's, and the endurance to stay with it all day. The over all bite will get better and better as we move into March and April and the lake will also get much busier as we are now going into full swing for the tournament circuits. Remember to buy your 2016 fishing license, if your bringing a boat to the lake, have it checked and get your clearance sticker before launching, water is cold so wear your life jacket, you won't last long without it if you fall in. The tackle stores are receiving weekly shipments of jumbo minnows and that bite will get into full swing over these next two months. That's if for now for a quick update, feel free to email me at anytime for any or more specific information, God Bless, Bob
For those of you who regularly review my reports and for new visitors, we have spent the last two months buying a new home and selling our wonderful lake house of 17 years. We have sold it to a nice couple that we are sure will enjoy it and be able to create wonderful memories such as we have. We are in the process of moving over these next few weeks and I should be back in action and out on the lake by mid January 2016. We want to take this opportunity to ""THANK"" all of you who have fished with me over the years for your business and your friendship and wish everyone a """BLESSED"" Merry Christmas. Now for a lake update, the lake is currently on the rise with the recent & current rains. With the predicted El Nino, it is a good possibility we will have a full lake for the 2016 season. Considering the facts that the lake is literally loaded with bait fish and with all the juvenile bass that we saw and caught this year, we should have a fantastic 2016 season. January through April will find most fisherman throwing a variety of swim baits, Alabama rigs, jerk baits, glide baits and using jigs to target those big female bass who are putting on weight with their egg sacks getting full of eggs. The end of March and through April will find the action peaking for those bigger bass that will be moving into the shallows for the April spawning period. The one kicker to the start of the 2016 season will be about the amount of rain we receive, how fast and how high the lake rises' and how muddy the water get's which can all impact the fishing conditions. Regardless of the consequences, we will be happy with the excess water if we get it. To close out this report and to put a ""period"" on the end of 2015, My wife and I will be celebrating our ""40th"" anniversary together this next week, it's been quite a ride and we are looking forward to many more years together. We wish & hope for all of us a ""Healthy, Happy, Prosperous 2016, God Bless, Bob & Tary
This last weekend of October finds the last major tournament of the year winding up. Weights are solid with 20 lb bags up to even a 33 lb bag in a tournament last weekend. While the top finishers always have weights of over 20lbs for their best five fish, many of the teams are coming in with 12 to 16lb limits due to the tremendous amounts of smaller fish currently in the lake. The tournament people are catching their fish on a whole variety of techniques and baits. Jig's, Carolina rig's, Shallow and deep running crank baits, chatter baits and Kitech swim baits with an under spin blade, are all working to put fish in the boat and are also effective type baits to keep the smaller fish from biting. Water clarity is decent, water level is at it's lowest point of the year but most ramps are still open for launching. Water temp's are slowly dropping but are currently starting out at around 65 degree's. Fish are being caught both in shallow water and on the deeper breaks and drop off's. The tackle stores are getting regular shipments of the Jumbo minnows and that bite has kicked in for those who want to fish them. Catfish are also being caught on the jumbo minnows for those who want to target them. If you want to have pretty much non stop action, a drop shot six inch Robo worm in almost any color will result in lot's of six to 12 inch bass. Even though we have been in a major drought period, the lake has remained very easy to fish and the bass population is setting up for another great 2016 season with lots of smaller fish coming up the chain and lot's of good size fish being caught in the tournaments. Currently the weather pattern has been pretty mild and these next few weeks should be a great time to hit the lake and try your favorite pattern.
On another note, our house on the lake is still for sale. We have bought another house just down the street from where we currently live and will be moving there once we sell the one we are currently living in. For $59,000, plus space rent, you are buying a million dollar view, right on the water's edge, makes a great weekend retreat or vacation home or even your permanent residence such as we have done for the past 17 years. See the pictures, click on the photo tab, then click on, ""Home For Sale"". That's it for now, stay safe, wear those life jackets, be courteous to other fisherman, enjoy this great lake of ours, ""God Bless"" Bob
UPDATE: For those of you who regularly visit my site, my wife and I are selling our home on the lake, located in the town of Nice on the North West end , and moving just down the street. We have lived here for 17 wonderful years enjoying a fantastic view of God's creation everyday. We are at a point and time in our life that we need to make this move. We will still be running our guide business with no changes to that operation. Pictures of our home and info can be seen here under the 'Photo Tab"" of Home For Sale. This will be a perfect opportunity for someone to have a Vacation type home, or permanent home, or to buy into it with someone else and split the cost. For only $59,000, plus a monthly space rental of $535.00, you are on the water, with a great location, a place where people rent houses for the week, buy into time shares, rent air bnb's, and come from all over the country to vacation and fish. You can have your own place for under what you would pay for a new boat or suv. Please share this information with anyone you may know that may be looking for a place here on Clear Lake. This value and this spot will be hard to beat and we expect it will go quick. We will not be financing this so if your interested, figure out how to do it, two couples splitting it would be a great way to go. Call Mark Lavine at Keller Williams Realty, 707-245-7230 to see this great bargain.
Now for the fishing report: The bite for me these past two weeks has gotten slower and tougher. The fish are definitely keying in on bait and are following it. One day they are in a particular spot and the next day you may not get a bite there. Fishing structure such as drop offs, ledges and rock piles and finding the bait is key. The water through out the lake is currently a darkish brown, something I haven't seen before, I have been told it is a form of algae. For me it seems that the darker colored baits are needed for this low visibility conditions. Jig's, crank baits, spinner baits, shakey head jigs, are all working. My best success has come from drop shotting baby brush hogs in the water melon candy red color but then I am also limited to my customers ability to use certain techniques and rod set ups. This is the time of the year that deep diving crank baits and also shallow running square billed crank baits come on strong. For those who can stay with and like to flip and punch baits into the off shore weed bed's, it can pay off for some quality fish but it definitely requires a ""stick to it attitude"". We are headed into a week of hot weather so the topwater action around the weeded areas should also improve with baits such as frog's, flukes, horny toads and buzzbaits. The annual Bob's Marine tournament starts this weekend, (9/12 & 9/13), then the FLW will follow that starting 9/24 through 9/26. The Lucerne ramp is getting very shallow and may soon be closed. I don't recommend launching there, the oaks ramp, redbud ramp and Lakeport ramps are all fine and okay to launch. For those of you coming from out of the area, be sure to get your clearance sticker before launching, don't risk the big fine if your on the water without it. That's it for now, stay safe, be courteous, God Bless, Bob