Stockton Lake

Trolling report thru June 2

Posted by Phil Lilley on June 4th, 2017
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Stockton boat.JPG

Fished 4 days thru the second, and while I brought enough fish home for a couple nice fish fries, it was decidedly spotty.  The high water always throws me, but figured my best bet was trolling, since I can have four lines running constantly; that has to be several hundred percent more active bait in the water than casting!  Just doesn’t work out that way a lot of times.

Ran two bottom bouncers behind the boat in 20-35 fow with crawler harnesses most of the time and a plug occasionally.  Ran a dipsy diver off one side of the boat with a plug or jig, and ran another rod off the other  side with a clip on 4 ounce weight and a plug.  First day I got a 20+ inch walleye on one of the crawler harnesses within 5 minutes.  You know I was thinking “the next few days are going to be awesome!”  Boy is that the kiss of death!  Here’s what boat looked like with 4 rods running:  I was targeting walleye and crappie, and fished from about State Park marina up past Cedar Ridge campground to the bridge.

Fished 4 days thru the second, and while I brought enough fish home for a couple nice fish fries, it was decidedly spotty.  The high water always throws me, but figured my best bet was trolling, since I can have four lines running constantly; that has to be several hundred percent more active bait in the water than casting!  Just doesn’t work out that way a lot of times.  Ran two bottom bouncers behind the boat in 20-35 fow with crawler harnesses most of the time and a plug occasionally.  Ran a dipsy diver off one side of the boat with a plug or jig, and ran another rod off the other  side with a clip on 4 ounce weight and a plug.  First day I got a 20+ inch walleye on one of the crawler harnesses within 5 minutes.  You know I was thinking “the next few days are going to be awesome!”  Boy is that the kiss of death!  Here’s what boat looked like with 4 rods running:  I was targeting walleye and crappie, and fished from about State Park marina up past Cedar Ridge campground to the bridge.

Later that first evening I caught two other walleyes and a couple nice crappie and was thinking i was in the ball park anyway.

stockton walleye.JPG

Stockton crappie.JPG

Next two days were tough.  I trolled for hours at a time without anything.  Trolled around points and back in big bays.  I ran the crawler harnesses off the bottom a foot and a half and the plugs off the side of the boat from 10 to 20 feet down.  Then I ran some long lines off planer boards and took the whole rig shallower, around 20 feet.  A fish here, and there.  Most crappie success was on florescent red jointed Rapala and jig with bright orange swim bait about 4 inches long.  Got two bass trolling,  13 + 15 inches.

Also, I tried my old reliable jigging with a jigging Rap and small spoons in otherwise reliable points and sunken structure, but saw nothing on the graph and caught nothing that way.  That stumped me, especially after floating crawlers over nice structure in 20-30 fow.  Dang, not even a catfish!  Not a single bluegill!  A couple days I dodged continuous thunderstorms and had less fishing time.

Taking out Friday a.m. a I talked to a fellow was just docking, and he had two walleye that am casting jigs and crawlers to points.  That got me thinking that my approach was maybe too preordained, and I should have switched and tried casting more.  Looking at the other recent posts I think some of the other techniques mentioned were more effective, given the amount of lure time in the water.  Stockton is always a challenge for me, but man I like the scenic peacefulness of the lake!

Water was going down pretty quick as I left, so conditions will be altogether different next time I suspect.

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