Shaver Lake Fishing Report

David Smith (center) is flanked by his buddies from Tehachapi, Mike and Craig. The trio, all Vietnam veterans from Tehachapi, fished with Dick Nichols on a breezy and cool September day catching these and more. CONTRIBUTED BY DICK NICHOLS

I have said to you before how much I enjoy the September fishing at Shaver Lake. We are into it and all my expectations have become a reality. It is cooler, the lake is serene with few ski boats and most of all the trout are doing as they have for many years, congregated in Stevenson Bay near inlets.

Recently, we bagged our third multi-limit day in as many days. You can’t keep them off your line. I don’t know how long it will last, but it is good now.

What I have found over the years is, the planted trout from the current year disappear from other parts of the lake and head to Tunnel Creek and the south fork of the Stevenson. Basically, my vision of Stevenson Bay today and each fall is similar to salmon looking for their inlet to go spawn. We know that these trout do not spawn as the planters are all triploid trout, meaning they are sterile and do not go through a spawn period. So, what brings them here? I have no factual answer to that, but I know they will be here this year and hopefully future years.

As I clean our kept fish, I find an abundance of insects inside. Simply, the Department of Fish & Wildlife planted fish have developed a taste for insects and other water organisms and look for inlets where their new food is delivered into the lake by the inlets. My theory only. The new food source makes the fish meat more pink and better to eat.

Anybody with a boat can have a successful day on Shaver trolling good ole Trout Busters, tipped with crawler at 4 to 26 feet deep. Very simple to get down there with a weighted Mountain Flasher, which can take your lure down to 25 feet deep.

Using those sources, start in front of Eagle Point island and head toward Tunnel Creek. Right in front of the orange buoys are schools of trout. We usually connect with one to three as we pass. Make a U-turn at Tunnel Creek and return by the tunnel and toward the Eagle Point island. Have you picked up your limit yet? I think so.

I have shared my deepest secrets regarding September with my reader friends of the best paper in Central California, the Clovis Roundup. I am happy with that as I want everyone on the lake to have success. As we move toward the end of September and a winter off for me, I expect the same for a month, possibly more.

The kokanee are doing what all salmon do. They spawn and die. The little second-year fish that we have gently returned to the water will be our main prey for most of the spring and summer next year. You won’t find any second-year kokanee next year. That’s the reason DF&W did not make a fingerling kokanee plant this year, meaning that two years from now there will not be any kokanee. Yes, true! I do not know if they will plant fingerling next year. I certainly hope so.

So, my forecast for the next month: a few spawning and red kokanee will be caught, don’t count on it. An excellent trout bite near inlets. Hey, Boy Scout Cove has an inlet and so does Dorabella Cove, so don’t bypass those areas either. The dam is always a congregating area for trout.

I enjoy hearing from the Roundup readers. Please continue to contact me year round via text, 559-281-6948 or email,