Irvine Lake hammered by weather; hybrid stripers to be planted next week
Here's this week's Irvine Lake fishing report, written by veteran angler Steve Carson:
Irvine Lake was closed for several days this week, due to the extreme weather conditions. Pro Shop manager Jimmy Getty observed, “Once we reopen, most all of the roads around the lake will be closed to vehicle traffic due to slippery mud. Any heavy rain activity may see more road closures, requiring up to 24 hours drying time after the rain stops. Call the Pro Shop at (714) 649-9111 for up-to-the-minute road conditions.”
A special bonus stocking of 4,000 pounds of hybrid striped bass in the 1.5- to 2-pound class will be going into the lake late next week. These fish will be strictly on a “catch-and-release” basis, the same as all other bass species in the lake.
The holiday weekend’s trout action at Irvine Lake was variable, reported Getty. “The bite was very good on Friday,” he observed. “By Saturday things were just fair, and Sunday was pretty slow. Trolling was definitely better than bait fishing this week, and Santiago Flats was the hot spot.”
Irvine Lake Pro Staffer Ken Lewis instructed: “The ‘go to’ trolling lure most of the time is the Rapala Countdown CD05 in firetiger, gold and brown trout patterns. Flat line trolling with 4-pound test line early in the morning is highly effective.
Lewis added, “Targeting trophies with bigger lures means moving up to Rapala countdown CD07 and CD09 in rainbow trout and brown trout colors.”
Most trout on the stringers this week were in the 1- and 2-pound category, with nicer fish from 3 to 5 pounds fairly common. Enough trophy-class fish from 6 to 9 pounds were around to keep things interesting.
Using jigs, bass anglers found fair action on largemouth in the 2- to 3-pound class at the red clay cliffs.
Several bass were also caught incidentally by trout anglers offering nightcrawlers or plastics, including a 7-1 lunker by legendary trout angler Marlon Meade.
The Kids Lagoon was very good for families with children age 12 and younger. Water temperature on the main lake is in the mid-50s, with the water level holding steady.
Outstanding catches of the week included:
-- Vince Restra of La Puente, 12-6 rainbow trout on a Rapala at Trout Island.
-- Josh Manley of Orange, 9-10 rainbow trout on a nightcrawler at the flats.
-- Brian Carter of Orange, 9-8 rainbow trout on a Rapala at the flats.
-- Ryan Messick of Chino Hills, 8-14 rainbow trout on a Roostertail.
-- Gary Johnstone of Norwalk, 8-10 rainbow trout on a Rapala at boat dock cove.
-- Robert Simmons of Hesperia, 8-8 rainbow trout on a spoon at the west shore.
-- Marlon Meade of Anaheim, 7-1 largemouth bass (released) on a Power Worm at Trout Island.
Photo: Trout expert Marlon Meade subdued this 7-1 largemouth bass by using a 3-inch Power Worm on 2-pound test line near Trout Island. The fish was released. Credit: Irvine Lake