Yesterday’s post got me thinking about some underwater kokanee salmon pix I shot in Lake Tahoe’s Taylor Creek with the trusty ol GoPro. Love those colors!
Did you know there’s actually a legal kokanee salmon snagging season in some parts of New Mexico…I know, I know: kokanee are non-native and annually planted, but there’s just something about the words “snagging” and “salmon,” that when used in combination make me bristle.
But apparently fishery biologists there say it’s okay, so who am I to judge? Not my cup of tea, though! Especially when you consider how red and mushy those kokes tend to be during the Oct. 1-Dec. 31 spawning season.
While I haven’t fished for kokanee in New Mexico, I can say that in the times when I have encountered them in spawning mode they were actually pretty snappy and bit lures well, so I’m not sure why they have to be snagged…but maybe they don’t bite well there.
You can read the story and see pix here: www.daily-times.com
He’s at it again…Mike Nielsen of Tahoe Topliners checked in on Friday before Memorial Day with some tales of the lunkers he’s been catching at Lake Tahoe lately. Mike is probably the best charter skipper on the lake, responsible for setting a couple lake records for brown trout, just missing the state record for kokanee last season and tons of big macks, including this 38.5-inch, 25-pound, 10-ounce mackinaw.
Mike said the fish hit a Rapala dragged along the South Shore in about 50 feet of water and took over 25 minutes to subdue. Fishing was so good today that he had his 8-fsh limit for his clients in a busy hour and 15 minute session (which included the fight time on the big fish). In fact, his guys landed two fish during the battle!
But that’s not all that Mikey’s been up to later. He’s had a good spring of catching browns, including this dandy…
As if that weren’t enough, Mike says Tahoe looks primed to have a banner kokanee season as well in 2014. The state record was set here last season and limits of landlocked salmon were already showing up in early April. The fish have been big, too…he’s already caught a couple fish in the 2.5-pound class and that means August should really pump out some slabs.
Looks like a good summer to be on the big blue lake!
I rarely get to enjoy it, however, as I’m usually chasing salmon down on the Valley floor.
Well, I had a day off Thursday and was hankering for a change in scenery so BD and I headed to the high country.
First stop was Taylor Creek near South Lake Tahoe, where the fall leaves were all gone, but there were still some crimson Kokanee to see spawning.
Being so late in the season, a lot of the kokes had already fulfilled their destiny…
But there were still some groups of live ones around, too…
After a quick check on the landlocked salmon, we drove to the Carson, where the flows were super low and clear…
And also some smaller cutthroat and ‘bows…
Mostly dinks to be sure, but it was just so nice to get out and think about something other than salmon fishing for the first time 4 months!
All too quickly the sun started to set and our late season Sierra trout fest was over. Man, it was sure great to get away even for a short time!
Capt. Mike Neilsen of Tahoe Topliners had a client boat this 24-inch, 4.6-pound colored up buck while jigging a spoon.
Neilsen said that the fish had a really narrow belly and probably would have weighed quite a bit more had it been caught earlier in the season.
Nobody is quite sure where these big Kokanee are suddenly coming from at Tahoe, but let’s hope the trend continues…