The Ultimate Guide to the Best Lake Berryessa Fishing

Lake Berryessa FishingResting within a border of oak-tree dotted mountains is the beautiful Lake Berryessa, a fishing mecca located within an hour of Napa. It’s a popular destination for locals and tourists alike during the summer seasons, and it’s the perfect place to spend a relaxing afternoon away from the city’s tourist hubs. For those of you who enjoy casting the line, learn all about the lake and the fish that you’ll find in it with our Lake Berryessa fishing tips! After a full day of fishing, come back to your luxurious room at Churchill Manor and relax. Be sure to arrive in plenty of time to freshen up before complimentary afternoon wine and hors d’oeuvres!

Lake Berryessa Fishing: What’s Biting?

The lake is populated by a wide variety of fish including catfish, brown and rainbow trout, largemouth bass, bluegill, kokanee salmon, and more! For the best chances of catching your choice of fish, these are the lures you’ll want to use during your Lake Berryessa fishing excursion:

Trout and Salmon-Troll with needlefish, silver spoons, salmon eggs

Catfish: Nightcrawlers, crayfish, chicken livers, minnows

Bass: Plastic worms, Zara spooks, crankbaits

Lake Berryessa Fishing Regulations

If you plan on taking any fish or animal from inland or ocean waters, the state of California requires that you have a sports fishing license. There are different licenses and fees for you to purchase depending upon how many days you plan on fishing and where you cast your lines. You may visit the California Department of Fish and Wildlife website for a complete list of these permits, and make sure you take advantage of the free fishing days and cost-less group fishing permits.

Best Areas for Lake Berryessa Fishing

During the summer seasons, most of the lake is occupied by water skiers and boaters, but that does not mean there aren’t quiet areas that run rampant with fish to catch. Numerous successful fishermen claim the southern end of the lake near the dam in Markley Cove is a great fishing area. The Capell Cove and Steel Canyon Inlets have also been reported as productive locations for fishing. The Big Island, Portuguese Point, and Putah Creek Inlet are popular fishing areas as well, especially for catfish! You can take a look at the Lake Berryessa Map for a visual on these fish rich locations.  

To Get the Most Out of Your Experience, Consider Hiring a Guide

If you’re new to fishing or just want someone who truly knows the lake and its hot spots to assist you, hiring a guide may be the best route. Luckily, the area offers many convenient guide services that will have your Lake Berryessa fishing trip mapped out and ready for you before you arrive! These guides will help you improve your angling skills while customizing an excursion that fits your experience level and wants:

Larry Hemphill: Even after 35 years of fishing tournament experience, his biggest pleasure is teaching you the basics of fishing towards becoming an expert yourself.

T-Roy’s Guide Services: T-Roy knows the Central and Northern California lakes like the back of his hand and specializes in Lake Berryessa fishing aboard his fully covered North River Commander.

Beno’s Putah Creek Fly Fishing Guide Service: Since Putah Creek is such a popular Lake Berryessa fishing area, Bono’s is happy to guide you downstream and teach you all there is to know about successful fly fishing.

Think you have what it takes to compete? Put your skills to the test during one of Lake Berryessa many fishing tournaments! Contests are held all year round with a grand prize of a trip for two to Hawaii! For more information about the tournament or to sign up, visit the Berryessa Bass Tournaments website!

Fishing to Vineyard Tours to Luxurious Accommodations

From Lake Berryessa fishing to vineyard wine tastings, you can enjoy it all using our Napa bed and breakfast inn as your home base. Churchill Manor is a gorgeous Victorian-esque inn that delights all visitors with luxury rooms, experience enhancing specials, and 19th-century charm. We’re also dedicated to providing you with the best Napa Valley experience, not just through our quality service, but with suggestions of our favorite Napa attractions and activities.

Take a look at a few of our guests’ favorite rooms. We feature 10 luxurious rooms here at Churchill Manor including (left to right), Stags Leap, Atlas Peak, and the Rutherford. Check our availability and book today!