Red Hot Kokanee Bite at Stampede Reservoir

Not many other lakes throughout California can say that 75-100 fish by late morning is the norm.  Non stop action is to be had at the beautiful gem of a reservoir nestled about 15 mins northeast of Truckee.  Currently I’m mainly fishing Stampede Reservoir due to the incredible catch ratio and the lack of heavy boating pressure.  Typically we see Bald Eagles and Ospreys diving down to grab a quick meal everyday.  And, oh yes, the fishing is spectacular!!!!  I do not update these fishing reports regularly as its much easier to report on my facebook page Tight Lines Guide Service.

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deckfull of Stampede Kokanee 6/29/19

3/21/14 Stampede Reservoir Kokanee

We launched at 7:00 AM (a little later than planned) and headed straight across from the ramp and started targeting Mackinaw. We fished for Mack’s for a couple hours without a touch. We noticed Kokanee breaking on the surface all morning, I threw out a top line with a dodger and spinner. It wasn’t long before we hooked two Kokanee landing one.  As we got close to the island I marked some nice schools of Kokanee at 30 to 50 feet deep. We rigged up two Kokanee rods and dropped one to 25’ and the other to 50’. Both rods hooked up. We ended up fishing this school for a half hour or so and putting a nice bunch of Kokanee in the box.  We found another nice school off the point by the dam. We caught our Kokanee on Sep’s Watermelon Strike Master Dodgers and a pink Uncle Larry’s spinner. As far as corn, we didn’t have any! I had stripped my boat so they could use it in a show last week and forgot to put any back in. I did have some Berkley Power Grubs so I cut them in chunks and used that as corn. The Kokanee we caught on the surface were only about 10” and the deeper ones were up to 12”. That’s small but it’s early. The surface temp on Stampede today was 43 degrees.  Launching is no problem; unfortunately there is no snow anywhere around the lake.


Working with the Department of Fish and Wildlife

Today Ed Fisk and Myself took Kasie Barnes out on Bullard’s Bar. Kasie is the Coldwater Specialist for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Kasie e-mailed me a couple days ago asking if I knew where we could get a few Kokanee this time of the year for a project she was getting ready to start. My boat was sealed for Lake Tahoe so I called fellow Guide and friend Ed Fisk of Fish Tales Guide Service. I knew Ed had just caught a few Kokanee at Bullard’s Bar. Knowing the size of Kokanee at Bullard’s were going to be small I check with Kasie regarding the size. All she needed was Kokanee regardless of size. We Launched at Dark Day a little after 7:00 AM and spent our time on the water in the same area. We caught fish from the surface down to 40+ feet. It seemed like the best producer was a Sep’s Goldstar Dodger with a Pink Uncle Larry’s spinner. We put 9 in the box and lost at least 15 more. Keeping these little guys on the hook was a challenge. My thanks to Ed for helping us out with this project today. Attached is a little video explaining what this was all about. Click on this link to view the video Bullard’s Bar Kokanee