Monday, June 18, 2012

I Thought California Was a Mecca For Largemouth Bass?

Proof that Southern California is a world class bass destination.
Having several friends that are guides, I now know how stressful their job must be.  For the last few days I've fished with my friend from Japan.  When he let me know he wanted to catch some salt water bass, particularly calicos, I was pretty confident I could do that for him.  After all my buddies and I have logged hundreds of days at the bay over the years, so that request was moderately easy.  When he let me know he wanted to catch some local wild trout, I knew for a fact I could get him on more than his share of trout.  But when Koji found out he was to have some free time today and let me know he was interested in catching largemouth bass and possibly crappie, this was the first time I was less than confident. 
Koji's trophy SoCal largemouth.  Get it mounted and hang it on the office wall.
Since we only had an afternoon, I was limited to where I could take him for bass.  Much of the better waters are at least an hour away drive and with traffic, which begins about the time Koji could arrive at my house, there was no way that was going to happen.  MVL is private lake that I don't have access.  So I had to pick other waters close to home.  I choose to take him to Laguna Niguel Lake.  I know there is a lot of bass here and with a strong trout stockings during the spring months those fish get big.  Just about a month ago reports of 15-20 bass a day were reported and fish up to 12 pounds were being caught.  Looks like those days are over though and welcome to the dog days of summer.  The water is green and visibility is only a few inches I tried to track my fly and couldn't see it more than 6 inches or so.  Today was brutal.  We only manged dinks.  When I say dinks, I mean DINKS.  These couldn't even be categorized as juvenile bass, more like fry.  We couldn't even get the bluegill to bite.  Koji very much wanted a crappie but no fish would honor us with a take.  What a bust.  Even though Koji is a  reasonable fisherman and understands that fishing sometimes goes this way, I still felt bad that I could not have at least show him a bass that was larger than the 12 inchers or so he can get in and around Tokyo.  Sorry Koji.  We tried everything we could, different flies, different strips, everything.  No luck.  Koji did have a good fish take when he hit the bank with his floating minnow but it would not stay on.  Damn.

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