Is Lake Berryessa Open for Bank Fishing?

Lake Berryessa is an important recreational area for California’s Napa Valley and is open for bank fishing. The lake offers a variety of activities, from fishing to swimming, boating, and camping. Bank fishing is allowed from the shoreline of Lake Berryessa and from any boat on the lake.

Fishing Regulations

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife regulates all fishing activities at Lake Berryessa. Anglers must possess a valid California sportfishing license when fishing in any public body of water, including Lake Berryessa.

Anglers 16 years of age or older must also have a valid second rod stamp if they plan to use two rods while fishing. Fishing regulations vary by species and season, so anglers should consult the current regulations before heading out.

Fish Species at Lake Berryessa

Lake Berryessa is home to a variety of warm-water fish species, including largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, crappie, bluegill sunfish, catfish, and carp. Trout are stocked in the lake during the winter months for additional angling opportunities. The lake also supports populations of native fish species such as Sacramento pikeminnow and Sacramento sucker.

Tips for Bank Fishing at Lake Berryessa

Bank anglers should bring along a variety of lures and baits to Target different species. Live bait such as nightcrawlers or minnows can be effective for catching catfish or carp.

Lightweight spinners can be used to Target bass or panfish near weed lines or other structure. For trout anglers using bait or lures near tributary streams or coves can be productive.


Lake Berryessa is open for bank fishing year-round with proper licensing and permits. Anglers should check the current regulations before heading out on their trip.

With its diverse fish populations, Lake Berryessa offers bank anglers plenty of opportunities to land some great catches! So yes, Lake Berryessa is open for bank fishing.

Photo of author

Lindsay Collins