KEY TO SYMBOLS
FG=fishing good; FF=fishing fair; FP=fishing poor.
OG=outlook good; OP=outlook poor.
MACKEREL: LOUISIANA: Not due until March, Spanish mackerel turned up in Grand Isle waters in force last week and have taken play away from the blues (but Gulf has been too bouncy for all but seasoned sailors); OG through Feb.
FLORIDA: Schools are skimpy and skittish in Biscayne Bay and OP throughout entire area.
COBIA: FLORIDA: Dr. Anthony M. Lance of North Miami set a Metropolitan Miami Tournament record with an 18-pound cobia caught on spinning tackle last week. Dr. Lance is blind.
BLACK BASS: TENNESSEE: Center Hill Lake producing bass to 8 pounds near mud points, with gig fishermen doing best. Dale Hollow Lake reports FG; Cherokee Lake FF; Norris Lake points yielding big bass (and TVA netting crew says they took and released 11-pound 12-ounce smallmouth).
FLORIDA: FF in most central Florida lakes, with best results from slow-trolled deep-running lures; Lake Carlton (near Mt. Dora) is best bet, or try lakes Harris and Howey when cold windy weather improves. In lower Apalachicola River largemouths dote on live shrimp fished at 4-to-6-foot depth, and OG if weather warms. Ochlockonee River at Parkerson's Landing (10 miles north of Tallahassee) is best bet in north Florida—try a silver spoon near new Quincy Highway bridge. In south of state, try unnamed back-road ponds along edge of Everglades with popper plugs or fly-rod bugs.
CALIFORNIA: Lake Mead erupted last week with bigmouth limits to 6 pounds, and old-timers predict early spring season. In northern Calif., Clear Lake (open all year) reports FG on bait.
MISSISSIPPI: Rain-muddied waters make FP in most of state.
MISSOURI: FG in Lake Taneycomo. with live minnows doing brisk business and outlook excellent. Upper Lake Bull Shoals still low but in top fishing condition otherwise, and OG.
STEELHEAD TROUT: WASHINGTON: Next freshet should bust most steelhead rivers wide open; any rise should bring new runs and fast action. Humptulips reports FF with 22½-pounder tops last week; yarn and roe best bait. Puyallup River FF (18½-pounder). FG on Queets River, with Earl Geer's 25-pounder tops. Satsop FG and OG, Chehalis FF. Dosewallips, Duckabush, Hamma Hamma too low and clear, FP. Snohomish and Skagit FF, OF. Cowlitz System FF, OG. Ditto Wynoochee (with Herb Smith's 20-pounder best).
OREGON: FF in most coastal streams as water clears, despite some snow run-off; Nehalem, Nestucca, Siletz, Alsea and Siuslaw should produce fair sport this week and next; roe, yarn and cherry bobbers are best lures.
CALIFORNIA: Most streams are clear after last week's rain, with fresh runs in Russian, Eel. lower Klamath, Trinity; mooching and cherry bobbers making best scores. Some steelhead showing in river lagoons south to Morro Bay, but lack of run-offs has balked runs in southern California streams.
BRITISH COLUMBIA: Snow well down to base of hills has kept all Vancouver Island streams in good shape, but despite rains at sea level the runs are slow in building up. Fair catches reported from Quinsam, Oyster, Puntledge, Little Qualicum, Chemainus and Cowichan. On mainland. Vedder and Cheakamus are only fair, but fish are averaging heavier than usual.
SAILFISH: FLORIDA: Fishing still good and OG in Gulf stream from Vero Beach southward.
MEXICO: Acapulco charter boats averaging five strikes per trip, with blue water close in and weather continuing fine; OG.
WEAKFISH: FLORIDA: Tampa Bay producing good catches from sheltered holes and channels on St. Pete side. Anclote River fair. Further north, cold weather drove trout back up St. Marks, Aucilla, Crooked and Apalachicola rivers last week, where red-and-white plugs produce well.
LOUISIANA: Small speckles abundant in Marques Canal between Lake Catherine and Chef Menteur (New Orleans area); Delacroix Island area also warm and could get hot (but 2-pounders are tops).