Big Bear Grizzly Weekender, Fishing for Tips, Aug. 16, 2019

Fishing near the Bear Valley Dam.

Fishin’ for $50K do-over

Well it’s sort of a do-over. Two anglers who caught tagged fish during the 2019 Fishin’ for $50K Trout Derby are back in Big Bear on Aug. 24 to participate in a special drawing at the Big Bear Visitor Center at 10:30 a.m. It’s an extra chance to win $10,000.

Here’s what happened. SCA Promotions Inc. oversaw the tagged fish portion of the tournament in June, including tag numbering and winning number selections. This year a mistake was made during preparation. SCA picked one winning tag out of 30 total tags, instead of five. To correct the error, the two anglers who caught tagged fish will participate in the

Aug. 24 drawing for a chance to win the big money. The public may attend. The Big Bear Visitor Center is at 40824 Big Bear Blvd., Big Bear Lake.

Lake statistics and such

Here is the latest on conditions in Big Bear Lake. The lake has averaged about 2 inches of decline in the lake level each week this summer with the exception of July 22 when there was a week of rain in the area. That week, the lake dropped 1inch.

This is a normal decline for the lake during the summer months because of evaporation.

Water temperature ranges between 66 and 72 degrees depending on water depth. That might be chilly in some parts of the country, but that’s about as warm as it gets in Big Bear Lake.

Stephen Raphael, manager of Big Bear Sporting Goods, said the lake was still producing good catches of rainbow trout as summer advanced into the month of August. His advice to shoreline anglers who don’t want to use a slip bobber, to fish from the sandy beach near the red house at the old Gray’s Landing location.

Early morning or late evening is best when looking for trout this time of year because of the warmer temperatures, Raphael said.

As for trollers, Raphael said prime areas are west of the buoy line, Trout Alley (the Rock Wall to Zebra Room), and dead center from the the buoy line to the SS Relief.

Bullhead catfish and carp are biting near Boulder Bay and the East Launch Ramp. Blue catfish are plentiful during the night along the shore near Juniper Point and the West Launch, Raphael said.

For the latest conditions, give Raphael a call at 909-866-3222. Big Bear Sporting Goods is at 40544 Big Bear Blvd., Big Bear Lake.

Thanks for the tips, Stephen.

Fishing and boating calendar

• Aug. 17: Antique & Classic Wooden Boat Show, classic boats and cars on display at Pine Knot Marina. For more information, visit

• Aug. 31: Free Fishing Day, sponsored by California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

• Oct. 5-6: 15th annual Western Outdoor News Big Bear Lake TroutfesT with thousands of dollars in cash and prizes up for grabs. For more information, visit

Big fish photos

It’s time to hear the zing of the reel as you cast your line in Big Bear Lake. The Grizzly Weekender is looking for photographic evidence of your big catch.

Email a digital photo file along with a complete description of the catch including bait or lure used, location caught and the angler’s first and last name to Kathy Portie at

As much as we may like seeing the fish you caught during your deep sea fishing trip, only photos of fish caught in Big Bear Lake will be published. Deadline for photo and tip submissions is the Saturday before the publishing date. The Grizzly Weekender publishes each Friday.

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