June 6, 2006 > Fishing holes
Where to go and what you can catch
by John Fisher
It's been said, "The worst day fishing is better than the best day working." If so, the Tri-City area has a good variety of locations for this leisure pursuit. Fishing is a great and popular sport; a renewable resource. Follow the rules, pick up your trash, be a good neighbor and enjoy our angler recommendations.
At least once a year the California Fish and Game department provides a statewide Free Fishing Day with no license requirements. The next free day is June 10. An annual fishing license costs $34.90.
Below is a list of sites most recently opened to the public:
Quarry Lakes is part of the East Bay Regional Park District. As the name states, Quarry Lakes was once a commercial sand and gravel operation. It is now a park that boasts 462 acres, 350 of which are water. Rainbow Lake and Horseshoe Lake comprise about two-thirds of the lake areas and are open for fishing.
These lakes are stocked weekly with Rainbow Trout and Channel Catfish. If you go on a sunny day be aware that there is no shade. If you go on a cool day, remember, lakes this large create wind.
A handicap-accessible fishing pier has been completed and is in use.
State fish and game rules apply. That means you must have a valid California fishing license. Also, a daily fishing access permit is required, which costs $4. If you drive, parking is $5 per vehicle. Non-gasoline motors are allowed. There is a $4 fee for trailer launches and a $2 fee for car-top or inflatable boats. No lead weights are permitted.
Walk or bicycle in and the parking fee is waived, but pick up a self-registration form (for fishing). Don't forget your pen!
Quarry Lakes is located between Paseo Padre Parkway and Niles Blvd. on Isherwood Way. Isherwood turns into Quarry Lakes Drive in front of the park entrance. The hours depend on the season. May through Labor Day is 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. For more information call (510) 795-2267.
Shinn Pond is part of the East Bay Regional Park District. No daily fishing fee is required, but you must have a valid California fishing license. You can access Shinn Pond by walking or bicycling (about a quarter mile) through Niles Community Park on 3rd Street or from a small parking area on School Street. There are no parking fees.
Be aware, there is a two-acre meadow adjacent to the pond that is popular for its "no leash" rule for dogs.
Niles Community Park
There are two large ponds in the Niles Community Park. Take H Street to 3rd Street and you will see the park. The ponds have sidewalks on both perimeters. Both have fishing piers. No fees are required and parking is free. California fishing regulations apply.
Lake Elizabeth is an 83-acre lake, located at Central Park, 40000 Paseo Padre Parkway in the middle of Fremont. It is also accessible from Stevenson Boulevard with a five to 10 minute walk. Lake Elizabeth is surrounded by a paved path that is used by walkers, joggers, skaters, bicyclist and others. Most of the fishing areas are within a few feet of the path, so don't go expecting privacy. No fees, but a California fishing license is required. Free parking. Boat launch fees are $7 per launch or $50 annually. No motors allowed.
Lakeshore Park, called "The Lake" by locals is located in Newark next to Lake Boulevard and Parkshore Drive. A man-made feature, The Lake meanders behind beautiful homes and under mature shade trees. It has a paved path for easy access. Though not a wide lake, it covers approximately 16 acres with 10 acres of grassland. It is a pleasant place to fish, pleasing to the eye and restful. A California fishing license is required. No other fees. Parking is off-street.
Twice a year a Kids Fishing Clinic, for ages 15 and under, is held at "The Lake." The most recent clinic was April 15; the next will on November 11 or 18. Last April's clinic included a barbeque. Trout are stocked for the events. This is a free, all volunteer event that has been occurring twice a year for at least 10 years. Kids have caught Black Bass between 8 and 10 pounds and Channel Catfish up to 20 pounds. There are Blue Gill, Crappie and Carp along with the Rainbow Trout.
Volunteers will provide loaner fishing rods and gear. If you have children, keep this event in mind; better still, volunteer. Contact Rich Lagevin at (510) 742-4405 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Don Edwards National Wildlife Refuge fishing pier
No license, no problem. None is required to fish from the pier. The center span of the old Dumbarton Bridge was removed and the remainder was left intact as a pier. The pier extends from the east shore almost three-quarters of a mile into South San Francisco Bay. The bridge was built at the narrowest point in the South Bay, thus at pier's end you are in the middle of the Bay.
A visitor center is on Marshland Road, just off Thornton Avenue (one mile south of Highway 84). The access road is closed to vehicles from April to September 1. A shuttle bus runs (from the visitor center) on weekends but reservations are required. Call (510) 792-0222 for reservations. There is an 11 passenger limit on the bus and you should call at least 24 hours ahead. No fee.
You can walk the three miles from the parking area or ride a bike but remember that it is always windy.
Sandy Wool Lake
Located in Ed R. Levin County Park, Sandy Wool Lake was named in honor of E.O. (Sandy) Wool. There is a $4 entrance fee for the park. No other fees are required, but you must have a California fishing license.
Take Calaveras Boulevard toward the east foothills, turn left on Downing Road.
Jordon Pond was built in 1987. It covers approximately three acres. There is a short pier near some picnic benches. It is stocked with Channel Catfish and has native Blue Gill and Sunfish. There is adequate shade. Bring your lunch. The lake is about a half-mile walk from the parking area. It is a quiet, serene location.
Located in Garin County Park in south Hayward, to get there, take Garin Road (a quarter-mile south of Industrial Boulevard) off Mission Boulevard, turn toward the foothills. The road ends at the park.
There is a $4 vehicle entry fee. There are no fees for fishing, but a California fishing license is required.