I confess, there was a 20-year gap between trips to San Diego’s Lake Murray, but it’s good to know the little pond is still worth the trip. Instead of just a scenic photo-shoot with Bassmaster Elite pro Dean Rojas and his long-time friend Kelly Salmans, we caught enough fish to seriously consider a return trip.
We never found the 58-degree water advertised yesterday, but 55 to 57 showed lake wide and the shad were generally in open water, 10 to 20 feet below the surface. When Dean stuck the first, he couldn’t contain himself, smacking us for his use of pale green reaper fished on a Carolina rig. It turned out this was the area (the west side of Del Cerro Bay toward the buoy line) is where we should have spent more time.
While checking out the reed line there we spotted some breaking fish, as well as birds chasing bait, that turned our attention out instead of in around 9:30 or so. The flurry there produced a 2-, 4- and 6-pounder, two of which fell for white Road Runners from 20 to 30 feet down, fishing uphill.
Somewhat disappointing was Padre Point, a popular area with broken concrete water pipes all over it for structure, but the fish on the meter would not respond to anything we threw from Carolina rig, to under-spin to BBZ. We tried it four different times during the day, but little changed.
The city report said trout had been planted on Dec. 22, but there was little evidence of those fish except near the buoy line where there were some lighter marks, but active bass all seemed to be around clouds of bait at mid depth or a few near the surface.
For Dean, it was a nostalgic return home. But don’t worry about him. His next stop is the Bassmasters Classic in February.