AS THE WEATHER warms, fishing should get better at New Melones Reservoir as indicated by some of last week's catches.

The water level appears to be remaining steady at 59 percent of capacity and the surface temperature is slowly rising, standing now at 57 to 60 degrees in many parts of the lake.

Last Friday, Bob Post and Jim Parker of Sugar Pine decided to try for kokanee salmon by using Apex and Uncle Larry's lures, tipped with the usual corn. They came up with one 12-inch koke, but were surprised to add six trout measuring up to 15 inches.

Reports out of the Glory Hole area indicate that no German browns came in last week, but some good catches of rainbows wee made, including a 2.75-pounder caught by Rich Kowski of Angels Camp.

He and Len Green had limits of rainbows, mostly caught in the area of the dam while trolling at a variety of depths, from 15 to 55 feet. The lure of choice was a spinner-nightcrawler combination.

Meanwhile, Frank Ambrosoli had a limit of rainbows while fishing upriver near the Parrotts Ferry Bridge. Joe Hallet had a couple of limits last week while trolling shad pattern lures behind a silver dodger in the main body of the lake at various depths ranging from 15 to 60 feet.

Area guide Danny Layne of Fish'n' Dan's Guide Service has been scouting the waters of foothill lakes, and on Monday he found a good bite at the south end of Melones, catching and releasing several rainbows averaging 13 to 14 inches.

On Tuesday, he tried Lake Don Pedro along with Dave Townsend of Sonora, with the landlocked salmon as the target. They came up with six, up to 11 inches, which were released. These will be much bigger next year.

Meanwhile, there are bigger salmon out there it's just a matter of locating them. They had success with frozen shad, ExCels, Uncle Larry's power spinners and even an artificial worm. Most fish were 25 to 35 feet deep.