By Steve Carson

Good numbers of channel catfish and largemouth bass continued to make anglers happy at Irvine Lake his week, but the big news was yet another monster lake record carp, reported Whitney Curry at the Pro Shop. “The same angler caught a new lake record carp for the second week in a row”, observed Curry. “Mr Luis Montes was fishing to the right of the dock with Pineapple bollies when the big Carp bit. He fought it for about 25 minutes on 12lb line. The fish was netted, weighed and quickly photographed before being released back into the lake. Also, the catfish are biting very well in the Santiago Flats and the West Shore near any submerged vegetation with Mackerel, Shrimp and Skipjack being the best baits.
Curry added, “We are also counting down the days until our big public Trout Season Opener next month, which will take place on Friday, October 30. Thousands of pounds of beautiful Nebraska Tailwalker-strain rainbow trout will be stocked just before the opener. After that, the lake will be re-stocked with trout every week all winter long.”
Good numbers of catfish were caught on mackerel, shrimp, bonito, and skipjack baits, fished both flyline and Carolina-rig style. A new trend has been fishing with chunks of liver under a bobber. Success can be found via a standard fixed bobber with this method, but best results are found via a slip-bobber, with the bait set to suspend about 6 inches above the bottom. Plenty of 3 to 6-pound catfish and a few larger ones were caught along the west shoreline and at Trout Island.
Bass anglers scored best by methodically walking the bank and covering areas with obvious or even subtle structure and vegetation. The west shore, Trout Island, and the flats all yielded bass. Daytime anglers walked the bank and used plastics and jerkbaits, while evening and night time hours were best with poppers and other reaction baits. The majority of the bass were in the 2 to 4-pound range, but some larger fish were available to patient swimbait presentations.
Families with children age 12 and under found good numbers of 1 to 3-pound catfish in the Kids Lagoon on mackerel or the marshmallow/mealworm combo. Surface temperature on the main was 76-80 degrees, with the lake level receding slowly. The public is reminded that boats and watercraft of any kind are currently not permitted on Irvine Lake.
Outstanding catches of the week at Irvine Lake included:
Luis Montes of Orange, 45-0 carp [released] on a vanilla boilie at the west shore
Timothy McKenzie of Irvine 11-6 Channel Catfish caught on Mackerel at the West Shore
Mitz Onizuka of Irvine with a 1-6 Bluegill at Trout Island on a mealworm
Kyle Ishi of Santa Ana 5-9 Largemouth Bass (released) on a Gantral Swimbait
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