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Original Issue


A digest of last-minute reports from fishermen and other unreliable sources


SO=season opened (or opens); SC=season closed (or closes); SV=season varies by district or water.
C=clear water; D=water dirty or roily; M=water muddy.
N=water at normal height; SH=slightly high; H=high; VH=very high; L=low; R=rising; F=falling. WT50=water temperature 50°.
FG=fishing good; FF=fishing fair; FP=fishing poor. OG=outlook good; OP=outlook poor.

BLACK BASS: MISSOURI: A few limit catches are reported from Miangua region of Lake of the Ozarks but white bass are providing most action. In Gravois Arm area, fishing is poor despite good weather and water conditions; old-timers say rising level made natural food too abundant for good fishing; OF.

TENNESSEE: Cherokee and Douglas lakes producing fine catches of largemouth bass on deep-running plugs but cold weather makes outlook poor. Douglas is almost surrounded by impassable mud flats but bait fished deep in Norris and Cherokee should get results next two weeks.

LOUISIANA: While weather stays dry, bass should keep on hitting well in Old River (10 miles east of Jena) and in Saline Bayou (25 miles south of Jena). Local experts are getting limits (50) on canned-shrimp bait but bugs and plugs should produce lots of action.

FLORIDA: Best bass bet in northwest Florida is Lake Jackson; try trolling with spoon-and-pork rind or topwater plugs (but water levels are still too low in this area for top fresh-water fishing). For central Florida Lake Kissimmee and Kissimmee River look good, with an 11-pounder reported at Route 60 highway bridge 30 miles east of Lake Wales last Saturday; live shiners favored by fish and fishermen. Lake Martin (6 miles east of Haines City) was fairly hot last week and should still give good sport on deep-trolled plugs by day or bugs and top-water plugs fished along shore and weedbeds early and late. In southern Florida Lake Okeechobee, Tamiami Canal and canals off State Road 27 are still providing fast fishing in early evening but most bass are under 2 pounds.

NEVADA: Lower Colorado River reservoir bass fishing has fallen off sharply; even old-timers don't dig this situation; OP until somebody figures proper strike-breaking strategy.

STEELHEAD TROUT: BRITISH COLUMBIA: Thompson River is high and apparently the run has passed through although few fish were taken. Winter run hasn't shown yet in the Coquihalla. Vancouver Island streams are falling but Qualicum, Englishmans River and French Creek are still high and cloudy; some steelhead have been taken from Little Qualicum River and one or two from the Quinsam but runs are late; the Campbell is clear and at good fishing height but not yet producing. But unless last week's rains raised rivers, OG for mid-December fishing.

OREGON: FG and OG for Nestucca as big steelies are in the clear-and-falling river; Lawrence Brown of Salem took two topping 17 pounds last Friday; best lures are salmon roe, red yarn or cherry bobbers. Siuslaw River is full of fish to 15 pounds and OF next few days (but bring 10-pound-test-minimum tackle—this is big, fast water and river is high); boating is best bet, with cluster eggs and red yarn. Steelheading is fair to good in lower Siletz River, now slightly high but clear; this is easy boating but tough bank fishing; OG through next 10 days.

CALIFORNIA: Heavy rains last week muddied coastal streams north of San Francisco but goosed new runs up rivers; if no new storms develop prospects are dandy next two weeks; Russian, Gualala, Garzas and Sacramento are best bets for moochers and hardware brigade (but big flies may work in riffles). South of San Francisco, season opened Dee. 1 and rain should start runs in San Mateo, Santa Cruz and Monterey counties (but sandbars still bar fish from more southerly rivers).

MARLIN: FLORIDA: Although no big catches are reported, blue marlin are showing in Gulf Stream and bill-fishermen are checking gear.

MEXICO: Two striped marlin brought into Acapulco last Saturday and several raised; blue water is five miles offshore and weather is cold (for this area) but next two weeks might see strong upturn; check weather before taking off for Acapulco, Mazatlan or Guaymas.

WEAKFISH: NORTH CAROLINA: Surf fishermen from Kitty Hawk to Hatteras Inlet are taking speckled trout by the thousands; weaks are hitting almost any lure or tin squid, and spin-fishermen are having themselves a time; OG through December as Morehead City and other southeast North Carolina coast towns report weaks abundant.

FLORIDA: Northwest Florida agent reports St. Marks River fairly hot, with best spots buoys 11 and 12; Carrabelle waters producing trout to 5½ pounds, but accommodations are scarce. FG in Anclote River (Tarpon Springs) and Tampa Bay, live shrimp first choice in baits.

MISSISSIPPI: Capt. H. L. McQueen and Sgt. Grady Cook of Biloxi boated 146 speckles to 3 pounds in Bayou Graveline (near Pascagoula) last week, then cruised up the Tchouticabouffa (pronounced "Tchouticabouffa") River and caught 93 more, mostly on shrimp. To break the monotony, McQueen and Cook hooked three small tarpon in that river. OG along whole Mississippi Gulf coast.

LOUISIANA: Big catches reported in the Delacroix Island area below New Orleans, bayous and oil-company canals in the Petit Lake area are worth a try.

CHANNEL BASS: LOUISIANA: Seventy medium-sized reds were landed last week by eight anglers in a small bayou out of Cocodrie in Terrebonne Parish (southwest of New Orleans); OG in most coast spots.

FLORIDA: Heavy redfish starting to show on west coast, with occasional bulls to 20 pounds being taken at river mouths and around oyster bars; good bet is Ocklocknee River above the old wooden bridge at Ocklocknee Lodge

STRIPED BASS: OREGON: Isthmus Slough in Coos Bay producing a few bass despite cold, rainy weather; OF and will improve with warmer days.

CALIFORNIA: Rain and heavy fog loused fishing last week but Delta waters are best bet when weather clears; a 40-pounder reported last week from Ditchman's Slough, tributary of Napa River.