Shaver Lake Fishing Report: The Lake is Closed

In a effort to slow the spread of COVID-19, parks and lakes across the state have been closed to the public until further notice. (Photo courtesy of Dick Nichols/Dick’s Fishing Charters)

Well, it’s official! Shaver Lake has joined the inventory of many closed lakes.

The Southern California Edison staff erected a gate very quickly on Friday, April 3rd on the road leading to the Sierra north ramp and at 5 p.m. the gate was locked until who knows how long. The south or Edison ramp and campground has been closed for sometime.

Coronavirus is the reason. 

For us guides, we were taken out of the game a couple weeks ago until further notice. That’s statewide not just here. For me, I am retired from a great state organization, but for fellow guides up and down the state, they join the ranks of other Americans who have lost their jobs.  I feel for them, I feel for all Americans as we try to defend ourselves and families from this terrible virus.

Before the closure of the lake, trollers were catching fish. Visalia resident Corky Burkoff was one of the successful fishermen to hit the lake a couple days before the shut down. Burkoff picked up his limit of nice rainbows to 16 inches using a frog colored Needlefish near the dam at 20 feet down. Burkoff and I believe it is possible that the Department of Fish and Wildlife (DF&W) may have made a quick plant at Shaver that week.

Other fishermen reported a fair to good bite on trout in the same area and near the island. A couple who are locals up here and are successful regulars on the lake jumped in for a three hour trip before the closure and picked over two limits of third year kokanee to 16 inches. It is looking better all the time for a decent amount of naturally spawned third year kokanee to be in the lake this year. The Shaver couple and I share the thought that we may find 20 to 25 percent kokanee of a normal year when 50,000 `had been planted two years earlier.

It is possible that fishing statewide will be shut down until the virus is under control. Who knows, but I am following directions even if i am going through fishing withdrawals.  DF&W fish planting has gone to the hush. No announcements of planting will be made until the lakes are re-opened.

I will say, DF&W has a lot of trout to plant this year, maybe 35,000 or more. So for you bank fishermen, expect a plant to happen every now and then.

This will be my last Shaver report until the lake is re-opened. Hopefully, by that time I am taking care of my clients who have already booked from June on. I am going fish late in the season because the big DF&W plant will provide ample trout until the weather makes us quiet for the winter. Stevenson Bay will be the hot spot from late August to November. As I close, I wish you all well and hope that you continue to practice safe health.