Potholes Reservoir Fishing Great Despite Hot Weather

Willie Walker caught this jumbo Potholes Reservoir crappie off the dock at Mardon Resort.

Willie Walker caught this jumbo Potholes Reservoir crappie off the dock at Mardon Resort.

The trout fishing on potholes reservoir is now, on July 19th, the best it has been in years. The quantity and size of this world class fishery, the guys with down riggers just let out about thirty feet of line in about fifty feet of water and troll from 1.5 to 3 mph, depending on lure selection. The guys with leaded line are going three to five colors down. The people fishing, trolling with weights, need three to four ounces depending on gear selection to get it deep enough. They are fishing needlefish in a variety of colors. Also, rapalla shad raps in sizes 5-7-8. The baby Hot Lips DC-13 have always been a great lure on potholes reservoir ever since the days of our retired guide Skip Davis. Skip created 8 new colors in the DC-13 while working as a guide @ Mardon Resort. We have been hearing reports of trout all over potholes reservoir. Lately the east end of O’Sullivan Dam where the potholes canal exit’s the reservoir has been producing good trout for  trollers.

The Mardon Fishing Dock continues to attract many friends of mardon that haven’t been at the resort for ten or twenty years, the attraction has been perch and crappie limit level fishing. Many of our diligent crappie fisherman are reporting there best action in ten years.

Bass anglers are having incredible early morning and late evening top water bass fishing. It’s no secret that a focus bass angler can  catch and release thirty to fifty smallmouth on the face of O’Sullivan Dam. (Many of these smallmouth are small fish.) The DFW biologist’s have asked us to ask all anglers to keep their limit of smallmouth bass because potholes reservoir is over populated with these minature fighters. The sandune bass anglers are using buzz baits and stick baits and many other surface lures to catch and release largemouth bass with great success this past week. Warm surface temperatures have moved the rainbow trout deep,but trout fishing remains very, very good.

Again this week walleye anglers report tough walleye days due to the explosion of the yellow perch population all over the reservoir. The more serious walleye anglers are learning that these bugle eyes feed aggressively each morning for sometimes less than one hour and the same condition exist at the end of the day.   Goose Island has been showing the best Walleye catching of any place on the reservoir this past week.

Hot water temperatures greatly increase the chances of a good channel catfish spawn and one can reasonably expect improved catfishing for the next several years.

About Pete Heley

Writes and self-publishes Oregon and Washington fishing books.
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