Let me begin by saying night fishing on lake Berryessa is extremely underrated. It is a little more difficult to fish the lake at night compared to other Northern California lakes. That may be why I never hear anyone talk about it, but anyways the fish get up shallow and they tend to feed in couple hour periods. When they decide to feed it can get crazy in a hurry. I've had some of my best night fishing trips ever out on berry, this night unfortunately was not one of my best nights but was still very fun. Once again the size just isn't there. I began my trip fishing the vineyards a little north of Gosling Canyon about 2 hours before sundown, throwing flukes and Underspins. The fish were straight up munching those two baits up until sundown. It was honestly hard to keep the little ones off of it. I was running out of Flukes and Keitechs so if I noticed it was a small fish chasing I'd try to reel it in faster but that just made them want it more. They were blowing my baits out of the water fighting for it. Very fun bite but with my baits running low and the 1-2 pounders seeming endless I decided to make a move further north to a pocket protected from the north wind that was starting to blow. Up there I found more of the same bite. just a bunch of 1-2 pound Smallmouth, Largemouth and Spotted bass.
With the sun basically down and the visual Fluke and Underspin bite fading I switched to my night time baits. This time of year I love throwing a big Wakebait and a dark colored Chatterbait at night. I choose these two baits because they are classic night time baits that either make a lot of noise or put off a lot of vibration. The Wake Bait usually draws the big bite at night especially during the post spawn. Don't ask me why but for some reason big bass love big wake baits after the spawn. I personally have caught a lot of big bass during the post spawn on wake baits and I know a few really good bass guys that can agree with me when I say the bass freaking love them. I also like Throwing the Chatterbait. This bait gets me a lot of bites this time of year on Berryessa due to the shad spawn. The shad start moving up into the buck brush and the shallows to spawn as soon as the water hits 60 degrees but they don't spawn during the day they generally do it at night and low light conditions associated to the Full moon and New moon, and on lake Berryessa I've found the shad like that 65-70 degree range to spawn and the Chatterbait reeled through the buck brush slow can get you some serious action. Anyways I made a Run further north to some buck brush pockets that I've had good luck with in previous years but the bite just wasn't happening. I only got two bites in about two hours. I Thought to myself that it may be a night where they feed later or maybe they just don't like what I'm throwing and they want something slow on the bottom.
At about 11 PM I decided to call an audible for what spots I had planned to hit for the night, and ran down south to the Smittle Creek Area. First Cast I picked up a healthy 2 1/2 pound spotted bass off a secondary point going into the area. It was ON! From there about every 5 or 7 casts I was able to get bit, slow rolling the Chatterbait near the bottom and through buck brush in the depth range of 5-15 feet. That continued for about an hour and a half then like a light switched they stopped biting. I stayed in the area alternating to different baits like the wake bait and the jig trying to find the bite again but at about 2 am I called it quits. I finished the night with a little under 15 pounds for 5 fish, and total of around 30 fish for the trip. Once again nothing big but I did pick up some healthy 2-3 pounders throughout the night. The weather was chilly out there due to that north wind that was blowing most of the night. The Surface temps were right around 73-71 degrees I Caught all my fish throughout the evening and into the night in less than 20 feet of water. I plan on doing another night trip this weekend for memorial day weekend. hopefully I can put the pieces together and find the Big Lake Berryessa Bass.