Bass, trout and crappie still on a roll at Irvine Lake
Here's this week's Irvine Lake fishing report, written by veteran angler Steve Carson:
A fast-moving weather front went past, and the fish started biting furiously again at Irvine Lake this week, reported Jimmy Getty at the Pro Shop. "The overall bite is still very good," Getty said. "There are schools of shad all over the place. If you find the bait, you can catch a lot of bass, trout and crappie all mixed together. We have even been selling a fair number of 'Triple Limit' passes!"
Getty advised, "This Saturday [April 17] will be our big Western Outdoor News trout event, so the admission policy is changed slightly. All anglers must register for the WON event, but that can be done when they arrive at the lake on Saturday morning. Admission price for Saturday only will be $45 for adults and $30 for kids, which includes entry into all of the various WON contests."
Trollers did best on trout at Santiago Flats, with both flatline and leadcore trollers scoring extremely well. Leadcore trollers dragging three or four colors of line did well on cop car-color Luhr Jensen Needlefish, along with firetiger-color Rapala CD05s, hot pink X-Rap XR06s, and brook trout-color Jointed Rapala J05s.
Bass fishing got hot again for weekday anglers, with reports of 15 to 20 released bass per boat being common. Largemouth in the 2- to 7-pound class were hitting plastics, jigs and crankbaits at 5- to 15-foot depths. Top locations for bassers were Rocky Point, Sierra Cove, the red clay cliffs and in the trees at Woody’s Cove.
Crappie action remained good among the bait schools and in the trees at the back of the flats. Little directed catfish effort was made, but numerous incidental whiskerfish in the 3- to 5-pound class were caught by anglers soaking nightcrawlers.
The previous weekend also saw the lake run its "Trout Trophy Tournament," with some unusual categories included. Peter Soteros won for the "largest trout" at 4.14 pounds; "Smallest trout" went to David Aguon for his 1-pounder; "Best colors" went to 8-year-old Nyla Smothers, and the dubious award for "ugliest trout" went to Dan Petz.
Action in the Kids Lagoon was slow, primarily because of lack of effort. The main lake level is rising steadily, and the surface temperature is in the low 60s.
Outstanding catches of the week included:
-- Chris Lopez of West Covina, 9-14 rainbow trout on a swimbait at Boat Dock Cove.
-- Nick Sepulveda of Orange, 7-1 largemouth bass (released) on a crankbait at Sierra Cove.
-- David Connor of Placentia, 7-0 rainbow trout on an SC Shiner at Boat Dock Cove.
-- Frank Petrocelli of Orange, 4-0 channel catfish on a nightcrawler at the flats.
-- Chris Mason of Tustin, 3-0 hybrid striped bass on Rapala at mid-lake.
-- Nick Sepulveda of Orange, 2-0 crappie on a crankbait at Sierra Cove.
Photo: Hubert Zamora of Long Beach limited out on power worms in Woody's Cove. Credit: Irvine Lake