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CALIFORNIA'S ONLY SPORTSMAN'S NEWS SINCE 1953

Southrn CA Freshwater

Lake Isabella: Trio of boaters pile up limits for all on crappie

Tout at Lake Isabella

BY MIKE STEVENS/WON Staff Writer Published: Jul 17, 2019

LAKE ISABELLA — The crappie bite is still red hot – probably the best in the state – but a double digit, mid-summer trout has stolen the show. That fish was part of limits of quality holdover rainbows for three anglers.

Steve Duncan reached out to Western Outdoor News when his buddy, Raymond Cleveland hauled in a 14-pound rainbow to go along with crappie limits for three guys. Cleveland was using PowerWorms rigged “double wacky style” which is a rigging innovation by Duncan who calls the rig, “Chunkin’ Duncan.” The money-maker of the rig is two Power Worms rigged criss-cross and wacky style on the same hook so it looks like an “X.” The worms were dipped in Bite-On garlic and fished on 4-pound line, and the whole haul, including the 75 slabs, came from a boat near the dam.


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RAYMOND CLEVELAND CAUGHT this 14-pound rainbow at Lake Isabella using a pair of criss-crossed and wacky-rigged trout worms, also known as, the “Chunkin’ Duncan” rig. He was fishing out of a boat near the dam with two other guys, and each of them put together limits of big trout and crappie.

The 14 pounder was not the only trout caught, and the crappie weren’t the only limits bagged y the trio consisting of Duncan, Cleveland and Bakersfield anglers Daniel Kirkley and Shawn Bacque. The big rainbow was simply the kicker for triple limits of bigger rainbows.


Word from those guys is, the catfish bite has also been excellent at night. That bite (daytime,too) has been providing consistent action for weeks as have the crappie other than for a short lull a couple weeks ago.


“Crappie are still chomping down in the trees, water is warming and algae is starting to bloom,” said Kris McKinney at Bob’s Bait Bucket in Bakersfield. The North Fork is your best bet for trout and bass.”


The Bucket has a catfish and carp derby going on this month. All it takes to register is signing up at the shop for buck. Bob’s is kicking is $100, the rest goes to the pot which is awarded to the angler having largest of the target species at the end of the month. Local angler Ivory Shepherd is the current catfish leader with a 21 pounder he caught on a hunk of mackerel at Buena Vista Lakes.


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THIS 21-POUND CATFISH ate a mackerel at Buena Vista Lakes for Bakersfield angler, Ivery Shepherd. Bob’s Bait Bucket in Bakersfield is running a catfish and carp derby this month, and this is the current leader in the cat department. To get involved with the derby, register at Bob’s for a buck. Winner takes the pot at the end of the month, which includes $100 kicked in by the Bucket.


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