With just about all the lakes in California now closed to boating and fishing, fishermen are seeking ways to keep occupied. When the lakes will reopen is anyone’s guess but there are more hurdles on the horizon for the anglers. At a meeting scheduled to be held in Sacramento on Thursday the director the California Dept. of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) was going to ask the California Fish and Game Commission for permission to close the entire state to all fishing. The meeting was postponed until a later date. It is almost certain that the commission will give the director permission to close all fishing at various locations throughout the state. What waters and when he will close down the state is unknown but it’s sure to really upset the fishermen. A closing of all fishing for even several months would be devastating to the Lake County economy which is already feeling the current restrictions. With many of the small businesses already shut down due to the coronavirus, to keep them closed longer than necessary would be the final nail in the coffin.
A lot of people think that the DFW sets the fishing and hunting laws, but it’s the commission that sets the seasons and regulations.
For the outdoorsmen and women who have cabin fever than a hike in the woods could be the answer. A couple of areas that are great places to hike are the Clear Lake State Park and the Lakeside County Park. Be sure and take a pair of binoculars to view the birds and other wildlife. The ospreys are nesting in both locations and they are great to watch. The birds are allowed to fish and it’s not unusual to see them fly to the nest with a fish in their talons.
Another great place to hike is the Mendocino National Forest. Here you will see deer, elk and even an occasional bear. One person called me last week and said that he saw a huge bear near Lake Pillsbury. Some of the campgrounds and recreational areas are closed but most are open.
Any areas that you visit be sure and obey the rules that state that no more than six people be in any group and even here be sure and stay at least six feet away from all other humans. This rule has been very successful and Lake County has one of the smallest number of coronavirus cases in the state. Actually, it’s even better to keep your group to three or less.
Fishermen that live on the lake are allowed to fish from their docks and they have been catching some big crappie, bass and catfish.
The spring wild turkey season is in full swing and a number of local hunters have been successful. Most of the turkeys have come off private land but several have reported bagging turkeys at Highland Springs and in the Mendocino National Forest. Many of the hens haven’t yet nested and they are still out looking for a tom. The best part of the turkey hunting season is still at least a week away.