While fishing in the Eastern Sierras this month, in the area surrounding Bishop California, I was nearly skunked on the entire trip. I mean, multiple days, multiple baits, and multiple places with no fish. On the very last day, Dee decided to pull out Google Maps and check out the flat lands following the Owens River that we’d never explored before.
To my surprise, we saw multiple ponds, which looked fishable. We loaded up in the 4×4 and said, “Let’s go!”
We drove down the dusty road, just off Poleta Road, along Rawson Canal for maybe a mile when we came to three big ponds! At the last and biggest pond I saw a landing and decided Little Man and I could fish there without any problems.
From the landing, I could see Bass and Bluegill in the canal and on my first cast with a small Rapala, top water crank bait, I caught about an 8” Bass. Not bad for the little canal. On the second cast, I caught about the same size Bluegill! The curse was broken and I was not going to get skunked on this trip!
Directly across from the canal in the pond, I could see a dozen or more Bluegill, multiple 3+ lbs. Bass, and a couple large Carp.
With Little Man and I rigged up and ready to go, we fished for several hours and by the end of the trip, we caught many Bluegill and small bass. We even learned a very important lesson – at some point or another all fishermen fall in the water, which is why daddy is always there to make sure he’s safe. This was a very important lesson for the little guy but, overall, we had an awesome time!
I haven’t been able to find the official name of these ponds, but have heard them called Rawson’s Ponds. For future fisherman that might try these ponds, they are loaded with weeds, algae, and native grasses.
Looking back, I wish I had a top water frog with me to skip across the water. Near the shore are small openings in the vegetation through which you can successfully fish. Some of the shore is muddy, slimy, and slippery so take care not to fall in the water.
From fellow fishermen, I have seen monster Bass and Bluegill come out of both the canal and the ponds. Don’t overlook these ponds or count them out of your fishing plans, especially if you need a little pick-me-up during your trip. My biggest Bluegill was about 9” and Small Mouth Bass was about 11”. I have seen pictures of Bass up to 3 lbs.
Bottom line, if you are staying in Bishop overnight, for a few days, or are just looking for a place to spend a couple hours, hit up these ponds and have fun! This is a place I will definitely take the kids back to, to keep their lines tight and have a positive fishing experience.