Fishing at Big Bear Lake California

fishing in big bear lake california

Above: Fishing in Big Bear Lake (Photo courtesy of Big Bear Marina)

Aaron Garcia spent a lot of time fishing at Big Bear Lake in his youth. This is a guest post with tips and hints for successful fishing at our mountain lake resort!

Growing up in Southern California, I think I got spoiled by all of the amazing fishing spots and opportunities the state offers. Bishop, California offers some amazing stream fishing for rainbow and brown trout. Santa Monica Pier gives you a chance to catch halibut and sea bass and chartering a boat for some deep sea fishing could land you quite a few yellowfin tuna. However, my favorite spot of all to fish, when living in southern California, was Big Bear Lake.

A Little About Big Bear Lake
This quaint mountain town boasts a population of nearly 6,000 residents, but its lifeblood comes from the tourists that flock to Big Bear year round for skiing, sightseeing, and of course fishing.

Big Bear Lake itself is a man made reservoir, created by the Big Bear dam. The lake is entirely snow fed and has no other source of replenishment. The lake is regularly stocked with rainbow trout, which are the most common fish found in the lake. Other species of fish include bass, sunfish, and carp.

Unique Fishing Experience at Big Bear Lake
Fishing at this mountain lake resort is a completely different experience than fishing anywhere else. As someone who has fished the streams of Montana, the rivers of the Carolinas and the open oceans of the Pacific and Atlantic, lake fishing presents a unique challenge, especially at high altitudes (Big Bear Lake rests at 6,750 ft above sea level).

Big Bear Lake offers three distinct types of fishing:

  • Pier or Dock Fishing
  • Fishing from the Shore
  • Fishing from a Boat

Choosing a Rod/Reel
Choosing the correct rod and reel depends on what type of fishing you will be doing. Whether you are fishing from the shore, boat, or dock, the most common type of rod is a spin/bait casting rod. The spinning reel allows you to cast great distances, and although not as accurate as other types of rods, this point becomes irrelevant when fishing in an expansive lake such as Big Bear Lake.

If you are fishing only from a boat, another option would be to use what is called a trolling rod. Trolling is when you drop your line in the water with a lure on the end and leave it as the boat travels around the lake. If you don’t want to bring two rods with you on your fishing trip to Big Bear Lake, you can generally troll with a spin/bait casting rod, but they do make rods specifically designed for trolling.

Choosing a Location
If you are fishing from the shore, your location becomes a lot more important than if you are fishing from a boat or from a dock where your options are very limited. When fishing from the shore, you should pay attention to two major factors:

  1. Make sure the sun is in your face – even though this may seem uncomfortable to you, the shadow cast by your body will be behind you and won’t disturb or alert the fish.
  2. Make sure the area above you and behind you is free of trees, shrubs and other foliage – many a fishing trip have been ruined because the angler spent hours untangling line from the tree behind him instead of fishing.

In my experience, there is no such thing as a poor location to fish from when visiting Big Bear Lake.

The scenery is beautiful, the weather is amazing and the fish are almost always jumping. Growing up I spent countless days catching countless fish up at this mountain lake resort, and every chance I get, I try to take the time to go back to the lake where I caught my first fish.

About the Guest Author: Aaron Garcia is a representative for Big Bass Lake, a Poconos Vacation Home Community. Aaron is an avid fisher and traveler, and as a Southern California native, he has over 20 years of experience in fishing the lakes and streams of the region.

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, September 1st, 2010 and is filed under Activities, Mountain Lake Resort, Small Town Living.

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