Fishing at Los Vaqueros
Los Vaqueros Fishing Report
April 17, 2018
Fishing is good with trout and striped bass being the main fish caught. There was a 1000 pound Lassen plant on April 11. There will be a plant later this week. A 5.2 pound trout was caught in South Cove using powerbait. Cowboy and Peninsula Coves also report some good action trolling with rapalas 5-9 feet down. A 5.25 pound trout was caught as part of a limit in South Cove using powerbait. A 7.67 pound fish was caught using powerbait in South Cove. A 41” striper was caught using shad and released in South Cove. The weight was around 22 pounds.
2018 Fishing Licenses are now available. Don’t forget to pick one up at the Marina. Bring a driver’s license or an old fishing license with you.
2018 Annual Parking Passes are also available at the Marina, the North Gate and the Watershed Office.
As of February 1st the Fishing Access Pass is $6.
The reservoir is currently storing 149,000 acre-feet. Water is now being pumped into the reservoir. Water temperature is between 57 and 59 degrees. Water clarity varies between good and fair.
If you are looking to rent a boat, it is a good idea to call ahead to check current wind conditions at (925) 371-2628 or check the weather conditions. We continue to see occasional high winds, which stop boat rentals, so please check ahead if you are planning to rent a boat.
April through August hours are 6 a.m. to 8 p.m., with boats due in by 6 p.m.
The Interpretive Center is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.
Last week saw quite a few limits and near limits especially from boat all over the lake. Cowboy Cove, Howden Cove and Peninsula Cove all saw a lot of good action. From the shore fishing past the Rock Wall was doing very well. South Cove is always a very popular choice. The baits of choice for shore anglers is garlic scented PowerBaits, nightcrawlers or Kastmasters. Trolling using Rapalas has been reported as good to great in some of the coves. You want to be trolling at a depth of 5-9 feet. Trout average a pound and a half but range to over 5 lbs. There was a 1000 pound Lassen plant on April 11. There will be a plant later this week. Light tackle is important for catching trout with 4-6 pound test being plenty. Quite a few fish are still being caught from Cowboy Cove to South Cove and from Peninsula Cove. A 5.2 pound trout was caught in South Cove using powerbait. Cowboy and Peninsula Coves also report some good action trolling with rapalas 5-9 feet down. A 5.25 pound trout was caught as part of a limit in South Cove using powerbait. A 7.67 pound fish was caught using powerbait in South Cove.
Most anglers were focused on stripers or trout. Keep in mind that largemouth need to be 12 inches to be kept. Please release any big largemouth bass you might catch, they are the future of largemouth bass fishing in the reservoir. If you catch any undersized fish please release them gently and allow them to grow up.
Striper fishing is mixed with both shakers and legal sized fish being caught from around the reservoir. Cut anchovies or shad is the bait of choice, either from shore or a boat. Just a reminder, stripers need to be 18 inches or more to be legal. Please release the small fish as quickly and carefully as possible. They are the future of our striped bass fishery. A 41” striper was caught using shad and released in South Cove. The weight was around 22 pounds.
Catfish are still being caught here and there even with the cooler water and mixed weather. For those wishing to target catfish, chicken liver and anchovies are the best choices of bait. There was a 5000 pound plant of catfish on March 26. Quite a number of catfish are being caught in South Cove and in Cowboy Cove.
Whopper Mug rules are: Trout must be 8 pounds to receive a mug, Striped Bass need to be at least 10 pounds and Catfish is at 12 pounds or more. Largemouth Bass remains at 5 pound and must be released. ONLY a photo with a scale or a measuring tape showing the fish being at least 18” will count.
Frozen Bait Available At North Entrance Gate on Weekends
We have frozen bait available for purchase at the North Entrance gate (near Brentwood) on the weekends. We have anchovies, chicken liver and shad. You can only buy the frozen bait at the gate, not the watershed office.
Los Vaqueros, A Popular, Beautiful, Fishing Destination
Los Vaqueros is not only the largest reservoir in the Bay Area, but has also become a popular fishing destination.
Trout, stripers and catfish are commonly targeted. With the expansion of the reservoir in 2012, habitat for largemouth bass have been added and that fishery is expected to soon begin to produce exciting opportunities for largemouth anglers.
The beautiful Los Vaqueros Marina on the reservoir's south side near Livermore offers fishing licenses, bait, snacks and electric boat rentals.
On the north side of the reservoir near Brentwood, there are no services available, but anglers can park at the John Muir Interpretive Center and take a steep hike about a half-mile to fishing areas near the dam and in Peninsula Cove.
Here is a map of the watershed.
There are three fishing piers along the shore of the reservoir. The pier near the Marina is ADA-accessible.
The Marina and the south entrance to the watershed is accessible from Vasco Road at the Alameda-Contra Costa County line near Livermore. Here are Directions. The lake has been stocked with game fish including rainbow trout, salmon, catfish and largemouth black bass. The reservoir is available for day use only.
A California State Fishing License and a CCWD Daily Fishing Access Pass Permit ($6) are required for fishing. There is a $6 parking fee to enter Los Vaqueros.
Please call the Marina at 925-371-2628 for more information.