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A good-sized crowd settles in at J&J Grizzly Store for the drawing of numbers, after the Derby weigh-in has determined the winner of the trout derby, for additional prizes. Photo submitted

Annual fishing derby held at Lake Davis; anglers visit Lake Almanor

Compiled by Mari Erin Roth

[email protected]


Lake Davis

A foot trail in the snow leads across Lake Davis Feb. 18 during the Annual Maybe Ice Derby. This year, it was an Ice Derby with a great turnout of participants. Photo submitted

The annual Maybe Ice Derby took place last Saturday, Feb. 18. Derby headquarters, J&J Grizzley Store, reported a good turnout and a good time was had by all who attended. Entry fee for the derby was $20 and all proceeds went to benefit the Eastern Plumas Rural Fire Protection District.  The official start time was 7 a.m. and no fishing was allowed by participants on the day of the derby before start time. It was a trout derby and only trout were accepted for weigh-in. Weigh in began at 1 p.m. and ended at 3 p.m. No transferring of fish took place between participants. Points were determined by the weight and length of the fish. One fish per participant was used to determine standing.

How was the derby? “Huge, bigger than expected,” said Jeanne Graham of J&J Grizzly Store. “Lots of really nice fish were caught.” The first-place winner was Paul Stoner with a 20” beauty weighing in at 2lbs. 13.1 ounces. Second place was close, caught by Zeb Wilcox, a 2lb. 9.7-ounce trout measuring 20.25”. Third place: Gabriel Davis with an 18.25” 2lb 2.2-ounce catch. Fourth place was John Fritz with a 19.5” 2lb. 5.1-ounce trout, and Dave Valle earned fifth place with a 19” 2lb. 5.2-ounce catch.





Lake Almanor


Spring was in the air for a few days in Plumas County. Anglers took advantage of the 50-degree weather on Presidents Day; the Canyon Dam parking lot was full. “I counted nine boat trailers in the parking lot and more than a dozen anglers along the shore lines,” said John Crotty of Almanor Fishing Association. “All enjoying a day off work. Catching was tough, the fishing was fantastic.”

Ice remains on the northwest section of the lake and in coves. The ice around the Canyon Dam boat ramp is gone, for the time being. Lake temperature remain in the mid-30s. There are a series of storms and cooler weather headed to the area over the next 10 days. “We could see ice return and the ramp being unusable once again,” said Crotty. Lake water level remains unchanged, and there has been no increase in lake level for the past thirty days.

There were a few fish caught on Monday (Feb 20), they were just far and few between. “The bite was early and short for trollers,” said Crotty. “Hamilton Branch is your best shot at catching fish from shore.”

Highway 70 remains closed and there is a short delay on Highway 32 heading toward Almanor. “It’s time to put the chains back in your vehicle and check road conditions as we have chances of wind, rain and snow for the next eight days,” cautioned Crotty. “Our predicted highs for Wednesday and Thursday (Feb 22-23) are 27 and 24 degrees.”

Veteran’s fishing day on the calendar

Veterans Fishing Day hosted by Almanor Fishing Association is Saturday, June 24. The event is hosted by Almanor Fishing Association, Lake Almanor Country Club, Field of Dreams, Chester Elks Lodge, guides and anglers who want to show their appreciation to Veterans by providing them with a day of fishing and a BBQ. Sign up for Veterans to participate began this month, February. All Captains and Veterans are encouraged to sign up early to ensure a spot. Captains and Veterans can call Deb (707) 845-2493 to reserve a spot.


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