The San Francisco Bay Area once was rich with wild trout fishing streams and lakes. Population growth and water diverted for agriculture and city use are responsible for the decline of some trout fisheries, but others remain intact. Many of the trout fisheries in the Bay Area are stocked, but wild populations are available for anglers. Fall, winter and spring are the best months for trout fishing in the Bay Area as hot summer temperatures put a high level of stress on the cold-water trout.
Putah Creek is a renowned trout fishery in the Bay Area. The creek has a population of wild, native rainbow trout, and fish over 20 inches are regularly caught. Putah Creek is a technical fishery that is popular with fly-fisherman as it has several miles of special-regulations waters. Putah Creek has mayfly hatches, including a productive winter and spring baetis hatch. The creek also has a steady midge hatch throughout the year.
Coyote Reservoir is known as a Bay Area bass fishery, but the lake is also productive for trout fishing. The majority of the trout are stocked, but holdover fish have large growth potential. The reservoir has crayfish, damsel flies, dragonflies, callibaetis mayflies and chironmids. Bait fisherman can use worms or powerbait, and casting rapalas and spoons gives anglers the ability to catch trout and bass.
Del Valle Reservoir
Del Valley Reservoir is in Alameda County and is a productive place to fish for bass and trout. Bass are the more-targeted species, but stocked trout also can be caught. Holdover trout also have the potential to grow large, but the warm waters limit the number. The reservoir has a large population of dragonflies, midges and mayflies.
Lexington Reservoir is in Los Gatos and has fishing for trout and bass. The summer is best for bass fishing, while the winter and spring is the best time to catch stocked trout. The winter has a heavy midge hatch and fishing with night crawlers is a popular method of targeting the stocked trout. Some trout will survive the warm summer water temperatures and grow to be larger than the average 12-inch stocked fish.