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Nothing tastes better than fresh grilled trout that you’ve caught while enjoying gorgeous mountain scenery. Here are three great fishing spots in Northern California for you to try your luck.

Whiskeytown National Recreation Area, Redding, California

Whiskeytown Reservoir is a popular place during the summer months. Located near Redding, California, Whiskeytown is a huge lake, but there’s plenty of room for everyone who enjoys trout fishing. Of course, you can also fish for bass, crappie, and catfish. I had my best luck near the powerhouse. I fished from shore, using Powerbait™ and night crawlers. You can also visit the little town of Shasta in the afternoon on your way back from a successful morning trout-fishing trip. The town features an old country store, complete with a wide variety of goods sold when the town had its heyday years ago. To get to Whiskeytown, take Interstate 5 to Redding. Follow the signs through town to 299 west. Whiskeytown is clearly marked, as it’s a National Park.

Carson River East Fork Trout Fishing near Markleeville, CA

If you enjoy fishing for catch-and-release trophy trout, you’ll be glad you made the trip to Markleeville, CA, a lovely little town nestled in the Sierras. Take your hiking boots with you, because access to the river requires hiking in. The trophy trout section is 14.5 miles long and starts at Hangman’s Bridge, the first bridge after you leave Markleeville on Highway 89. The trail is well worn. Fishing season starts on the last Saturday in April and lasts until November 15th. There are clear regulations posted along this stretch of the river. They include using only single barbless hooks with artificial bait. Fly- fishing here is exciting. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself with trout up to 22”. There are also white fish in the river up to 20” long.

Plan on making reservations to camp at Grover Hot Springs State Park near Markleeville, where you can relax in a mineral spring bath after walking the river all day. If you want a more exciting atmosphere after fishing, you can stay in South Lake Tahoe and visit the casinos at night. It’s only about an hour or less to get to Tahoe.

From Stockton, CA, it’s about a three-hour trip along CA Highway 99 East to US 50 SE to CA 89, NV 88, and CA 89 to Markleeville.

Red Lake, CA

You might miss Red Lake if you’re not looking for it. A beautiful Alpine lake tucked away near the top of the Carson Pass on CA Highway 88, there are some great trout in here for the angler who’s willing to spend some time. Tube fishing is one of the best ways to catch the trout here, and while most rainbows average about 10 to 14 inches, the National Forest Service has introduced Lahontan cutthroat trout that give a great fight and can range up to eight pounds. Dry fly fishing is productive, especially if you go to the west end of the lake close to the inlet. Early spring after the ice thaws and fall until the lake freezes are the best times to go, because fewer people visit this lake during those times.