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August 8, 2018 - Bass Fishing is Best

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Lake Powell Fish Report – August 8, 2018
Lake Elevation:  3602
Water temperature:  79 - 86 F
By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net
Fishing success on the southern end of the lake is all about smallmouth bass.  Basically smallmouth bass are found on rock structure that is 12-30 feet deep.  Look for rocky outcroppings, drop-offs, rocky points, shelves, rock slides, big rocks, little rocks, rocky coves and virtually anything else rock related.  While traveling up or down lake just scan the shoreline and look at the beauty and majesty of the giant rock walls.  Occasionally you will see rock features that could hold smallmouth bass.  Try those spots that look the most “fishy.”
Smallmouth bass can be caught while trolling a rattletrap or medium diving crankbait parallel to rocky structure.  The best method now is to use crayfish colored (green) or shad colored (white with black flake) plastic baits on a 1/8th to 1/4 ounce jig head bounced along the bottom structure. The most exciting technique is casting topwater lures toward shore before the sun hits the water.   In summary, if you have a favorite smallmouth technique, give it a try.  You will catch some fish.
It is very busy with campers and boaters in the southern lake.  It gets quieter as you go further uplake. Right now the best lakewide bass fishing spot is from Oak Canyon to the Escalante.  Bass catching near the mouth of the San Juan in the main channel is nonstop.
Striper fishing in Good Hope Bay dropped off a bit today. Instead of catching 50 -100 fish, the reported catch today was only 20 stripers caught in boils. There were also a few stripers caught in Bullfrog Bay on topwater lures while traveling uplake to Good Hope. Stripers could come to the top again tomorrow or it could take a few more days.  My guess is that the shad schools are moving and stripers were left behind for while. Broaden the search zone to find moving fish. I predict the next north lake boils will be closer to Ticaboo, Red Canyon or Blue Notch.
Stripers are more difficult to locate in the southern lake.  The common pattern is to troll and graph in 25 feet of water towards the backs of canyons. That is not always easy to do with lots of ski boats and camps in the backs of the canyons. It is better to look for stripers further uplake.
Over the length of the lake, the best time to find boiling fish is morning and evening twilight but they can pop up anytime during the day.  When large schools of shad are seen on the graph or swimming in clear water near shore, hungry stripers will be close by.  Shad do not have many brushy places to hide so they swim in very tight schools hoping stripers will eat those shad on the outer edge of the school first.  It is a difficult time to be a shad.  This is the time when anglers can actually help the forage fish by catching lots of stripers in boils and allowing shad to swim free for another day.
It is time to put on your S.H.A.D. Badge = (Shad Helpers and Defenders) Go catch some stripers!

Lake Powell Fish Report – August 8, 2018

Lake Elevation:  3602

Water temperature:  79 - 86 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net
mgus222
Fishing success on the southern end of the lake is all about smallmouth bass.  Basically smallmouth bass are found on rock structure that is 12-30 feet deep.  Look for rocky outcroppings, drop-offs, rocky points, shelves, rock slides, big rocks, little rocks, rocky coves and virtually anything else rock related.  While traveling up or down lake just scan the shoreline and look at the beauty and majesty of the giant rock walls.  Occasionally you will see rock features that could hold smallmouth bass.  Try those spots that look the most “fishy.”

Smallmouth bass can be caught while trolling a rattletrap or medium diving crankbait parallel to rocky structure.  The best method now is to use crayfish colored (green) or shad colored (white with black flake) plastic baits on a 1/8th to 1/4 ounce jig head bounced along the bottom structure. The most exciting technique is casting topwater lures toward shore before the sun hits the water.   In summary, if you have a favorite smallmouth technique, give it a try.  You will catch some fish.

It is very busy with campers and boaters in the southern lake.  It gets quieter as you go further uplake. Right now the best lakewide bass fishing spot is from Oak Canyon to the Escalante.  Bass catching near the mouth of the San Juan in the main channel is nonstop. 

Striper fishing in Good Hope Bay dropped off a bit today. Instead of catching 50 -100 fish, the reported catch today was only 20 stripers caught in boils. There were also a few stripers caught in Bullfrog Bay on topwater lures while traveling uplake to Good Hope. Stripers could come to the top again tomorrow or it could take a few more days.  My guess is that the shad schools are moving and stripers were left behind for while. Broaden the search zone to find moving fish. I predict the next north lake boils will be closer to Ticaboo, Red Canyon or Blue Notch.

Stripers are more difficult to locate in the southern lake.  The common pattern is to troll and graph in 25 feet of water towards the backs of canyons. That is not always easy to do with lots of ski boats and camps in the backs of the canyons. It is better to look for stripers further uplake. 

Over the length of the lake, the best time to find boiling fish is morning and evening twilight but they can pop up anytime during the day.  When large schools of shad are seen on the graph or swimming in clear water near shore, hungry stripers will be close by.  Shad do not have many brushy places to hide so they swim in very tight schools hoping stripers will eat those shad on the outer edge of the school first.  It is a difficult time to be a shad.  This is the time when anglers can actually help the forage fish by catching lots of stripers in boils and allowing shad to swim free for another day. 

It is time to put on your S.H.A.D. Badge = (Shad Helpers and Defenders) Go catch some stripers!

Last Updated on Tuesday, 07 August 2018 14:33
 

August 1, 2018 - Go North for Boils

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Lake Powell Fish Report – August 1, 2018
Lake Elevation:  3603
Water temperature:  80- 86 F
By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net
The very best place to fish this week on Lake Powell begins at Bullfrog and gets better by traveling further north. The Hot Spot is Good Hope Bay with the target being boiling stripers.
Shad schools that were hiding in the backs of the canyons have now moved out into open water hoping to avoid striper schools that were feeding ferociously on shad hiding in the canyons. That escape tactic did not work very well since shad swim in large schools that are easy for stripers to locate and then attack.  This does work well for anglers who can see the large splashes created when 2-3 pound stripers drive shad to the surface and/or against the shoreline and feed for long periods of time.  It is now possible to see “boiling fish” that stay on the surface for an hour or more. If you can get close enough to cast a lure into the boiling melee you will catch lots of stripers with a few bass mixed in as well. It is wise to take binoculars with you to quicken the search for boiling fish.
There have been a few boils reported near Halls Marina in the mornings or evenings. Boils can pop up anywhere over the length of the lake. It is likely to see boils in the San Juan, Escalante, and main channel from Rainbow Bridge to Bullfrog.  There have been only a few boils seen from Rainbow Bridge to the dam due to a lack of shad schools in open water in the southern lake. Stripers have been very efficient in slurping up most of the larval shad produced in the southern lake this spring. There is some hope for boils occurring in the south later this year as some shad schools are hiding effectively in shallow, murky, warm water in the backs of some canyons.
Larger adult stripers are not able to stay near the surface in 80 degree water (warm temperature intolerance) so they are holding at 30-50 feet looking for food.  They are finding crayfish on the bottom at 20-30 feet in the backs of canyons and on rocky shelves and drop-offs.  These stripers can be caught trolling to find schools and then casting to catch more fish. Spoons work well once a school is located holding on the bottom. From Wahweap to Padre Bay there are many campsites, houseboats, and wake boats in the backs of canyons where adult stripers are found.  It is more successful to go fishing from Last Chance uplake where summer boat traffic is less.
Smallmouth bass provide the best fishing from Wahweap to Rainbow Bridge.  Best success is achieved by getting on the water at first light and casting surface lures toward the shoreline where bottom depth of 10-25 feet.  Look for rocky points, islands, and deep coves along the shoreline where bass like to congregate. Bass feed aggressively as the sky starts to lighten but then action declines as the sun comes up.   Bass then move deeper and can be caught on double and single tail plastic grubs from 15-30 feet.
On our last sampling trip in the south, we caught lots of smallmouth bass at first light on surface poppers fished with a big splash and then a pause followed by smaller splashes. When the sun came out we dropped double and single tail grubs to the bottom at 15-25 feet on rocky points jutting out from shore.   We had a nice largemouth bass, a 3 pound striper, and a big catfish join in with the smallmouth menagerie.  We had a great full day of fishing and returned to the dock by 11 AM.

Lake Powell Fish Report – August 1, 2018

Lake Elevation:  3603

Water temperature:  80 - 86 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net

The very best place to fish this week on Lake Powell begins at Bullfrog and gets better by traveling further north. The Hot Spot is Good Hope Bay with the target being boiling stripers. 

Shad schools that were hiding in the backs of the canyons have now moved out into open water hoping to avoid striper schools that were feeding ferociously on shad hiding in the canyons. That escape tactic did not work very well since shad swim in large schools that are easy for stripers to locate and then attack.  This does work well for anglers who can see the large splashes created when 2-3 pound stripers drive shad to the surface and/or against the shoreline and feed for long periods of time.  It is now possible to see “boiling fish” that stay on the surface for an hour or more. If you can get close enough to cast a lure into the boiling melee you will catch lots of stripers with a few bass mixed in as well. It is wise to take binoculars with you to quicken the search for boiling fish.   

There have been a few boils reported near Halls Marina in the mornings or evenings. Boils can pop up anywhere over the length of the lake. It is likely to see boils in the San Juan, Escalante, and main channel from Rainbow Bridge to Bullfrog.  There have been only a few boils seen from Rainbow Bridge to the dam due to a lack of shad schools in open water in the southern lake. Stripers have been very efficient in slurping up most of the larval shad produced in the southern lake this spring. There is some hope for boils occurring in the south later this year as some shad schools are hiding effectively in shallow, murky, warm water in the backs of some canyons.

Larger adult stripers are not able to stay near the surface in 80 degree water (warm temperature intolerance) so they are holding at 30-50 feet looking for food.  They are finding crayfish on the bottom at 20-30 feet in the backs of canyons and on rocky shelves and drop-offs.  These stripers can be caught trolling to find schools and then casting to catch more fish. Spoons or bait works well once a school is located holding on the bottom. From Wahweap to Padre Bay there are many campsites, houseboats, and wake boats in the backs of canyons where adult stripers are found.  It is more successful to go fishing from Last Chance uplake where summer boat traffic is less.

Smallmouth bass provide the best fishing from Wahweap to Rainbow Bridge.  Best success is achieved by getting on the water at first light and casting surface lures toward the shoreline where bottom depth is 10-25 feet.  Look for rocky points, islands, and deep coves along the shoreline where bass like to congregate. Bass feed aggressively as the sky starts to lighten but then action declines as the sun comes up.   Bass then move deeper and can be caught on double and single tail plastic grubs from 15-30 feet.  

On our last sampling trip in the south, we caught lots of smallmouth bass at first light on surface poppers fished with a big splash and then a pause followed by smaller splashes. When the sun came out we dropped double and single tail grubs to the bottom at 15-25 feet on rocky points jutting out from shore.   We had a nice largemouth bass, a 3-pound striper, and a big catfish join in with the smallmouth menagerie.  We had a great full day of fishing and returned to the dock by 11 AM.

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July 26, 2018 - Stripers Boil North Lake

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Lake Powell Fish Report – July 26, 2018
Lake Elevation:  3605
Water temperature:  79 - 84 F
By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net
Boiling stripers are busting loose in the northern lake.  Stripers search for larger shad at first light in the morning and drive them to the surface where they surround the shad school and eat as many as possible.  These feeding forays can be seen for a long distance.  Since striper boils last longer than slurps it is possible to see the school and quickly drive within casting range.  In boils, feeding is intense so virtually any surface lure or shallow running crankbait or spoon cast into the boil will be consumed.  This is the beginning of the best striper fishing of the year as stripers switch over from slurping small shad to crushing bigger shad.
Boils have been seen in Good Hope Bay along the shoreline.  Stripers feed more effectively when they trap shad, not only against the surface, but also against the shoreline which limits the escape routes for fleeing shad.  Slurps were previously seen in the backs of the canyons and coves where small shad reside but now the open bays have larger shad so stripers have moved there.  Small groups of stripers are in the open bays but they are either single fish on top or a resting school at depth. The single stripers can be caught occasionally but catching is more productive when a feeding school is found closer to shore.
Wind and rain can stop these boils but stripers are patient and will start feeding on the surface again as soon as the water calms and shad become visible once more.  Stripers go deep while waiting for shad. If a school is seen on the graph stripers can be caught on spoons deployed directly under the boat.
In the rest of the lake there are still more slurps than boils.  These slurps are starting to get a bit “jumpy” as a few larger shad are swimming with the newly hatched shad.  Larger shad swim faster and cause chasing stripers to speed up and hit the surface in the process.  Over the length of the lake it is wise to keep an eye out for any surface disturbance. If it is big and bold it is worth it to stop and fish. If the disturbance is small and quick then it may be better to wait until a bigger more aggressive striper group is found.
Smallmouth bass fishing is steady along the rocky shorelines and over newly visible rock islands that are appearing as the lake level declines.  It has been a really good year for catching larger (2- pound plus) bass on a variety of plastic baits fished along the bottom.  Still the best technique is to use topwater baits in the early morning hours along the rocky shoreline and on rocky points sticking out into the main lake.
Largemouth bass can be found in coves with lots of aquatic weed growth.  The most common weed is Spiny Niada.  Look for coves where the bottom is covered with green plants from the surface to 10 feet deep sometimes covering more than an acre of lake bottom.  Largemouth bass love weedy cover.  Unfortunately it is difficult to work a lure in the weed zone. The good news is that largemouth will come up to hit a loud surface lure like a Whopper Plopper with early morning or late evening being the best time to fish.

Lake Powell Fish Report – July 26, 2018

Lake Elevation:  3605

Water temperature:  79 - 84 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net

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Boiling stripers are busting loose in the northern lake.  Stripers search for larger shad at first light in the morning and drive them to the surface where they surround the shad school and eat as many as possible.  These feeding forays can be seen for a long distance.  Since striper boils last longer than slurps it is possible to see the school and quickly drive within casting range.  In boils, feeding is intense so virtually any surface lure or shallow running crankbait or spoon cast into the boil will be consumed.  This is the beginning of the best striper fishing of the year as stripers switch over from slurping small shad to crushing bigger shad.

Boils have been seen in Good Hope Bay along the shoreline.  Stripers feed more effectively when they trap shad, not only against the surface, but also against the shoreline which limits the escape routes for fleeing shad.  Slurps were previously seen in the backs of the canyons and coves where small shad reside but now the open bays have larger shad so stripers have moved there.  Small groups of stripers are in the open bays but they are either single fish on top or a resting school at depth. The single stripers can be caught occasionally but catching is more productive when a feeding school is found closer to shore.

Wind and rain can stop these boils but stripers are patient and will start feeding on the surface again as soon as the water calms and shad become visible once more.  Stripers go deep while waiting for shad. If a school is seen on the graph stripers can be caught on spoons deployed directly under the boat. 

In the rest of the lake there are still more slurps than boils.  These slurps are starting to get a bit “jumpy” as a few larger shad are swimming with the newly hatched shad.  Larger shad swim faster and cause chasing stripers to speed up and hit the surface in the process.  Over the length of the lake it is wise to keep an eye out for any surface disturbance. If it is big and bold it is worth it to stop and fish. If the disturbance is small and quick then it may be better to wait until a bigger more aggressive striper group is found.

Smallmouth bass fishing is steady along the rocky shorelines and over newly visible rock islands that are appearing as the lake level declines.  It has been a really good year for catching larger (2- pound plus) bass on a variety of plastic baits fished along the bottom.  Still the best technique is to use topwater baits in the early morning hours along the rocky shoreline and on rocky points sticking out into the main lake.  

Largemouth bass can be found in coves with lots of aquatic weed growth.  The most common weed is Spiny Niada.  Look for coves where the bottom is covered with green plants from the surface to 10 feet deep sometimes covering more than an acre of lake bottom.  Largemouth bass love weedy cover.  Unfortunately it is difficult to work a lure in the weed zone. The good news is that largemouth will come up to hit a loud surface lure like a Whopper Plopper with early morning or late evening being the best time to fish.

spinyniada

 

July 18, 2018 - Slurps, boils and smallmouth

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Lake Powell Fish Report – July 18, 2018

Lake Elevation:  3606

Water temperature:  79 - 84 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net

Lake Powell’s water level is declining at the rate of about 1-foot per week. That will slow down slightly in September or level out if the monsoon season provides more inflow to counter that being released. This decline will bring the lake level back down to near the 5 year average of 3590-3600 feet (MSL). That means the Castle Rock Cut will remain open for those boaters launching at the south end of the lake and running upstream. We certainly hope that the winter of 2018 will provide more moisture to the parched southwestern area of the US and allow the lake to remain in this comfort zone.

Fishing continues to be good for smallmouth bass over the length of the lake. The hot spot this past week was the San Juan Arm. Bass there average a 1-2 pounds but they are super aggressive. If looking for a great family fishing trip the San Juan is a good choice.

Over the length of the lake smallmouth bass fishing is consistent, with the best lures being green (crayfish colored) plastic grubs.  A wide variety of lures, baits and techniques work well, with time of day being as important as which lures are used.  Make sure to get out early and stay out late for the best bass fishing results.  While jigging along the 12-25 foot bottom for bass, a few walleye, largemouth bass and catfish will join in the fun.   Topwater action at first light in the morning is still the best bass fishing technique.

Striped bass are boiling in the northern lake from The Horn (just upstream from Good Hope Bay) to Trachyte and White Canyon.  Boils happen there because the shad crop is larger in size and numbers.   It’s a long run to launch at Halls or Bullfrog and run to Trachyte but the fishing results are quite productive.  Boils are performed by a wide range of small to adult size stripers. Adult stripers are only able to stay up in warm surface water for short period of time. They feed quickly on 2-inch shad and then dive down to deep water to cool off before hitting the surface again. This behavior makes stripers vulnerable to topwater lures when fish are boiling. When they are resting, deep trolling with down riggers works well, along with spoons when the striper school is seen on the graph.

From the Horn downstream, stripers are still slurping on the surface because they target the small shad that were recently spawned and have not found a good hiding place. Shad that were spawned last month have to find murky colored water to be able to hide and survive the constant onslaught of juvenile striper predation. These slurps are seen virtually every day in most canyons.  A school of stripers finds a shad pod, comes to the surface for 15 seconds and then goes back down.  Anglers awaiting the slurpers see the school and rush to get in range to cast.  The hard part is trying to predict where the school will resurface for the next 15 second burst.    If the boat is in casting range when the school pops back up, a good cast, beyond the school, will likely catch a fish as the lure is retrieved through the surfacing school. If they come up out of range, then the boat has to be repositioned again to hopefully be in range when the school resurfaces. It’s a real ‘cat and mouse’ game with the fish winning most of the time.  The visual portion of seeing a lot of fish and catching a few makes for an exciting day.

[Next week's fish report will be late since Wayne is going on vacation for a week]

Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 July 2018 09:44
 

July 11, 2018 - Boils in Far North Lake

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Lake Powell Fish Report – July 11, 2018
Lake Elevation:  3608
Water temperature:  80 - 84 F
By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net
Water temperature is now in the 80s all day and night.  That is great for swimming, wake-boarding and scuba diving but it makes fishing a bit more challenging.  Here are some ways to beat the heat and catch some fish.
Fishing success lakewide is best for smallmouth bass.  Bass are caught morning and evening on plastic baits fished near shore or around submerged islands that are now coming out of the water as the lake goes down.  Target rocky structure at a depth of 10-25 feet, for best results.  Use plastic single or double tails grubs, swimbaits, Yamamoto D-Shad, and topwater lures.  If you hit the lake just before dawn, the top water fishing for bass is incredible.  Once the sun comes up bass fishing slows down as fish go deep looking for crayfish. It lights up again near sunset as the light diminishes and fish get more aggressive.
Walleye are still being caught occasionally trolling in the morning near rocky structure but the catch rate is declining.  Walleye are more active at night now and can be caught on rocky habitat at 15-30 feet right as the sun comes up and goes down and the daylight fades.
Each year in July we are challenged to catch 60 stripers for a disease certification check up.  The common result is that stripers are disease free of viruses. This year the results are still undecided, not because some diseases have appeared, but for the first time we failed to collect our required numbers of fish.  A slight breeze this morning, kept the slurping stripers away from view.  Our fallback position was to use bait along the walls in Navajo Canyon but that was not up to par.  In fact, we only caught 5 stripers with 3 boats and 9 anglers fishing from Navajo Canyon to the San Juan.  No boils or slurps were seen in the main channel from Wahweap to Cha Canyon because of the slight breeze that kept the fish down. Some days fishing is not as good. We chose one of those days.  That really makes me want to go out tomorrow because I know it will be better then.
The best striper fishing is in the far northern lake where full blown striper boils are wide open from North Wash to Good Hope Bay.  Launching at Hite is no longer possible due to dropping lake level, but it is worth the long run uplake from Bullfrog to the Horn to chase boiling stripers.
If you go, pick a day with calm water and no wind in the forecast to make sure the fish will come to the top to feed.
Many are now camping on the shore of the lake in houseboats or tents.  There are more fishing opportunities than those mentioned above.  Catfish are really aggressive now and are easy to catch on the sandy beaches where boats can park.   Both Bluegill and Green Sunfish are in the shallows and can be seen in shallow water where brush resides.  Many of the brushy sites are drying out as the lake declines but sunfish are still near those areas.  Look for blocky rocks, that fish can use as shade, near the dried brush to find sunfish. Use small hooks and small worms to catch some very impressive sized bluegill that are now just finishing up their spawning ritual.  After spawning fish get hungry and are easier to catch.   Fishing is always great at the lake if you pick the right species, at the right time, and the right spot.

Lake Powell Fish Report – July 11, 2018

Lake Elevation:  3608

Water temperature:  80 - 84 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net


Water temperature is now in the 80s all day and night.  That is great for swimming, wake-boarding and scuba diving but it makes fishing a bit more challenging.  Here are some ways to beat the heat and catch some fish.

Fishing success lakewide is best for smallmouth bass.  Bass are caught morning and evening on plastic baits fished near shore or around submerged islands that are now coming out of the water as the lake goes down.  Target rocky structure at a depth of 10-25 feet, for best results.  Use plastic single or double tails grubs, swimbaits, Yamamoto D-Shad, and topwater lures.  If you hit the lake just before dawn, the top water fishing for bass is incredible.  Once the sun comes up bass fishing slows down as fish go deep looking for crayfish. It lights up again near sunset as the light diminishes and fish get more aggressive. 

Walleye are still being caught occasionally trolling in the morning near rocky structure but the catch rate is declining.  Walleye are more active at night now and can be caught on rocky habitat at 15-30 feet right as the sun comes up and goes down and the daylight fades.

Each year in July we are challenged to catch 60 stripers for a disease certification check up.  The common result is that stripers are disease free of viruses. This year the results are still undecided, not because some diseases have appeared, but for the first time we failed to collect our required numbers of fish.  A slight breeze this morning, kept the slurping stripers away from view.  Our fallback position was to use bait along the walls in Navajo Canyon but that was not up to par.  In fact, we only caught 5 stripers with 3 boats and 9 anglers fishing from Navajo Canyon to the San Juan.  No boils or slurps were seen in the main channel from Wahweap to Cha Canyon because of the slight breeze that kept the fish down. Some days fishing is not as good. We chose one of those days.  That really makes me want to go out tomorrow because I know it will be better then. 

The best striper fishing is in the far northern lake where full blown striper boils are wide open from North Wash to Good Hope Bay.  Launching at Hite is no longer possible due to dropping lake level, but it is worth the long run uplake from Bullfrog to the Horn to chase boiling stripers.   If you go, pick a day with calm water and no wind in the forecast to make sure the fish will come to the top to feed. 

Many are now camping on the shore of the lake in houseboats or tents.  There are more fishing opportunities than those mentioned above.  Catfish are really aggressive now and are easy to catch on the sandy beaches where boats can park.   Both Bluegill and Green Sunfish are in the shallows and can be seen in shallow water where brush resides.  Many of the brushy sites are drying out as the lake declines but sunfish are still near those areas.  Look for blocky rocks, that fish can use as shade, near the dried brush to find sunfish. Use small hooks and small worms to catch some very impressive sized bluegill that are now just finishing up their spawning ritual.  After spawning fish get hungry and are easier to catch.   Fishing is always great at the lake if you pick the right species, at the right time, and the right spot.

 

July 4, 2018 - Come Join the Crowd

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Lake Powell Fish Report – July 4,  2018
Lake Elevation:  3609
Water temperature:  75 - 83 F
By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net
Lake Powell is BUSY on the 4th of July week.  There are lots of visitors lakewide enjoying the sun and warm water. Houseboats, fast running boats, kayaks, wake boats, and all other watercraft are on the lake now. When heading to Lake Powell for vacation it is wise to bring along a fishing rod to broaden the whole lake experience.  Fisherman need to get up early and then stay up late to catch fish.
Early morning is the best time to catch fish.  Rig up with a surface lure and toss that lure toward shore to attract smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, and stripers.  Bass will be near stickups or rocky cover. Stripers will be slurping anywhere from the mid channel in most long canyons to open water in the main channel.  All these fish are very cooperative from the time the sky lightens in the east until the sun hits the water.  The best lures for slurpers are small narrow topwater lures, small white jigs or swim baits, and Kastmaster type spoons.
As the sun comes up, so do the skiers, wake boarders and surfers.  The lake gets busy and rough so be selective in choosing your fishing location.   Run to the end of the long canyons like the Escalante, San Juan, Navajo, or near Hite. Or join in with those that are celebrating their time on the water with swimming or water toys.
In busy areas it is still possible to find a deep canyon or cove and fish with bait for stripers. Schools are moving along the canyon walls and can be found with a little effort.  There were recent reports of striper schools at the mouth of the San Juan, the main channel in the Escalante Arm and at the mouth of Moki Canyon.
Big walleye have been caught recently while trolling with deep diving Fat Free shad lures.  Down rigger trolling is another way to get the lure down to the cooler temperature zone where most fish hangout while waiting to head back to the warm surface water to chase some more small shad.  During the day, fish move quickly from cooler, deeper water to the surface and then they go deep again in short order.  This up and down activity really makes fish fight well during the hot days of summer.
Catfish are actively spawning in the backs of many canyons.  When in spawning mode catfish are very active and catchable.  Head to the back of the canyon where water is less than 25 feet deep.  Use hot dog rounds, shrimp, worms or 3 inch artificial Gulp minnows.  Begin fishing for catfish at dusk and continue into the night.  Circle hooks are great hooks for catching catfish.  It is possible to catch catfish with just a rod propped up in a rod holder with a bell on the tip to announce when a catfish come calling. But I prefer to hold the rod in my hand to feel the first bite and then set the hook when the cat comes back for the second look. You will catch more catfish if you hold the rod instead of propping it up.

Lake Powell Fish Report – July 4,  2018

Lake Elevation:  3609

Water temperature:  75 - 83 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net

Lake Powell is BUSY during the 4th of July week.  There are lots of visitors lakewide enjoying the sun and warm water. Houseboats, fast running boats, kayaks, wake boats, and all other watercraft are on the lake now. When heading to Lake Powell for vacation it is wise to bring along a fishing rod to broaden the whole lake experience.  Fisherman need to get up early and then stay up late to catch fish. 

Early morning is the best time to catch fish.  Rig up with a surface lure and toss that lure toward shore to attract smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, and stripers.  Bass will be near stickups or rocky cover. Stripers will be slurping anywhere from the mid channel in most long canyons to open water in the main channel.  All these fish are very cooperative from the time the sky lightens in the east until the sun hits the water.  The best lures for slurpers are small narrow topwater lures, small white jigs or swim baits, and Kastmaster type spoons.  

As the sun comes up, so do the skiers, wake boarders and surfers.  The lake gets busy and rough so be selective in choosing your fishing location.   Run to the end of the long canyons like the Escalante, San Juan, Navajo, or near Hite. Or join in with those that are celebrating their time on the water with swimming or water toys.

In busy areas it is still possible to find a deep canyon or cove and fish with bait for stripers. Schools are moving along the canyon walls and can be found with a little effort.  There were recent reports of striper schools at the mouth of the San Juan, the main channel in the Escalante Arm and at the mouth of Moki Canyon.

Big walleye have been caught recently while trolling with deep diving Fat Free shad lures.  Down rigger trolling is another way to get the lure down to the cooler temperature zone where most fish hangout while waiting to head back to the warm surface water to chase some more small shad.  During the day, fish move quickly from cooler, deeper water to the surface and then they go deep again in short order.  This up and down activity really makes fish fight well during the hotamymcbeth days of summer.

Catfish are actively spawning in the backs of many canyons.  When in spawning mode catfish are very active and catchable.  Head to the back of the canyon where water is less than 25 feet deep.  Use hot dog rounds, shrimp, worms or 3 inch artificial Gulp minnows.  Begin fishing for catfish at dusk and continue into the night.  Circle hooks are great hooks for catching catfish.  It is possible to catch catfish with just a rod propped up in a rod holder with a bell on the tip to announce when a catfish comes calling. But I prefer to hold the rod in my hand to feel the first bite and then set the hook when the cat comes back for the second look. You will catch more catfish if you hold the rod instead of propping it up.

 

Amy McBeth with Walleye from Navajo Canyon

Last Updated on Tuesday, 03 July 2018 10:45
 

June 27, 2018 - Chasing Slurps

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Lake Powell Fish Report – June 27, 2018
Lake Elevation:  3610
Water temperature:  75 - 80 F
By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net
Slurping stripers were visible all over the lake on our weekly trip.  Average size of slurping stripers was 14 inches but they range from 8 to 18 inches.  Water was warm (78-80 F) on top which means that adult stripers cannot come to the top and spend much time without suffering severe stress due to warm water. Young stripers see a larval shad school near the surface, form a scavenging line and attack the small shad.  Since these shad cannot swim fast, stripers eat as many shad as possible in 15 seconds and then go back down to 30 feet.  That makes it hard to see the striper school and then get in range to make a cast while they are still on the surface.  Normally the striper school goes down and then quickly pops back up on the next shad school.  If they surface near your boat then a quick cast will possibly catch a fish. If stripers are out of casting range then the boat has to be moved quickly to get in range.  The action is exciting but catch rate is low.
Lures that worked well included a small white clouser minnow fly attached behind a bubble filled with water and a small skinny surface lure (Ima Skimmer) and a Kastmaster spoon.  It is necessary to throw long casts to the quickly moving striper school. That is not easy with a small lightweight lure with limited casting range.
The cast must land in front of the lead striper. If it lands in the middle of the school they often spook, jump and then go deep.  It is better to throw well in front of the school and let it rest until the school gets in range.  Then start working the lure, bringing it right in front of the slurping fish.  When all this happens a fish is caught.  When any of the other possibilities occur; casting too short; casting behind the school; or not casting soon enough, the school will sound and you will have to wait for the next school to surface.  When one school goes down, just look around to see more schools surfacing in the vicinity.  Also look at the graph to see if the fleeing school goes under the boat.  If so, deploy a spoon to the depth indicated on the graph to catch more fish.
Slurps were recently seen from Warm Creek to Rock Creek in the main channel and midway back in many canyons; from Bullfrog to Trachyte; and in the Escalante and San Juan Arms.  Slurps are lakewide but the intensity and catch rate is greater further north.
Bait fishing for larger stripers is still working particularly along the main channel and in many canyons.  It takes a few tries to find fish and it is more likely to find fish in spots that are not reported that often.  Recent reports have come from the mouth of San Juan and Lake Canyon where big catches of stripers were found.
Trolling for walleye in the shade of the canyon walls early in the morning is working. Lures that have been effective include; Live Target threadfin shad (Copper color), Lucky Craft 78 or 100 XD pointers in chartreuse shad.  The shady walls between Piute and Deep Canyon in the San Juan are a good place to try but any similar landscape may work lakewide.
Smallmouth bass are hitting surface lures at first light in the morning.  Then they go deeper so fish at 20-40 feet to catch bass during the daytime.
Bluegill are still spawning and the circular nests can be seen in 3 feet of water near the shoreline or any large rocky area.  Use a tiny jig head with a piece of live worm attached to catch these brightly colored fish.
Catfish are active from sundown and into the night. Use table scraps, worms or anchovies on the sandy beach behind the houseboat. It’s a great activity to keep the kids interested as it cools down after a hot day at the lake.

Lake Powell Fish Report – June 27, 2018

Lake Elevation:  3610

Water temperature:  75 - 80 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net

Slurping stripers were visible all over the lake on our weekly trip.  Average size of slurping stripers was 14 inches but they range from 8 to 18 inches.  Water was warm (78-80 F) on top which means that adult stripers cannot come to the top and spend much time without suffering severe stress due to warm water. Young stripers see a larval shad school near the surface, form a scavenging line and attack the small shad.  Since these shad cannot swim fast, stripers eat as many shad as possible in 15 seconds and then go back down to 30 feet.  That makes it hard to see the striper school and then get in range to make a cast while they are still on the surface.  Normally the striper school goes down and then quickly pops back up on the next shad school.  If they surface near your boat then a quick cast will possibly catch a fish. If stripers are out of casting range then the boat has to be moved quickly to get in range.  The action is exciting but catch rate is low. 

Lures that worked well included a small white clouser minnow fly attached behind a bubble filled with water and a small skinny surface lure (Ima Skimmer) and a Kastmaster spoon.  It is necessary to throw long casts to the quickly moving striper school. That is not easy with a small lightweight lure with limited casting range. 

The cast must land in front of the lead striper. If it lands in the middle of the school they often spook, jump and then go deep.  It is better to throw well in front of the school and let the lure rest until the school gets in range.  Then start working the lure, bringing it right in front of the slurping fish.  When all this happens a fish is caught.  When any of the other possibilities occur; casting too short; casting behind the school; or not casting soon enough, the school will sound and you will have to wait for the next school to surface.  When one school goes down, just look around to see more schools surfacing in the vicinity.  Also look at the graph to see if the fleeing school goes under the boat.  If so, deploy a spoon to the depth indicated on the graph to catch more fish.  

Slurps were recently seen from Warm Creek to Rock Creek in the main channel and midway back in many canyons; from Bullfrog to Trachyte; and in the Escalante and San Juan Arms.  Slurps are lakewide but the intensity and catch rate is greater further north.

Bait fishing for larger stripers is still working, particularly along the main channel and in many canyons.  It takes a few tries to find fish and it is more likely to find fish in spots that are not reported that often.  Recent reports have come from the mouth of San Juan and Lake Canyon where big catches of stripers were found.

Trolling for walleye in the shade of the canyon walls early in the morning is working. Lures that have been effective include; Live Target threadfin shad (Copper color), Lucky Craft 78 or 100 XD pointers in chartreuse shad.  The shady walls between Piute and Deep Canyon in the San Juan are a good place to try but any similar landscape may work lakewide. 

Smallmouth bass are hitting surface lures at first light in the morning.  Then they go deeper so fish at 20-40 feet to catch bass during the daytime.  

Bluegill are still spawning and the circular nests can be seen in 3 feet of water near the shoreline or any large rocky area.  Use a tiny jig head with a piece of live worm attached to catch these brightly colored fish.

Catfish are active from sundown and into the night. Use table scraps, worms or anchovies on the sandy beach behind the houseboat. It’s a great activity to keep the kids interested as it cools down after a hot day at the lake.

 

June 20, 2013 - Beware of Buzzards when fishing

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Lake Powell Fish Report – June 20, 2018
Lake Elevation:  3611
Water temperature:  73 - 76 F
By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net
My weekly fishing trip began in perfect fashion.  We stopped at Padre Butte and trolled with great hope of catching a walleye.  The lures were deployed and we trolled for 50 yards before both rods jerked and loaded hungry fish.  My partner caught a smallmouth bass but my fish was a 14-inch walleye. This seemed like the perfect start to a perfect day.  However, within a few minutes the wind picked up and conditions changed.
Our plan was to chase slurping stripers from Padre Bay to Rock Creek.  We saw lots of stripers slurping shad near the surface but they were up quickly and usually gone before we could get in range to make a decent cast.  Surprisingly, the slurp that stayed up the longest was in the main channel on the return trip where boat wakes were stirring up the water into 2 foot waves.  This school of stripers stayed up long enough to make a decent cast and catch some fish.  Reports from Bullfrog were identical with quick slurps and no fish caught.  Striper slurps are still going strong but in calm water it is much easier to see the surface disturbance, approach quickly and make a good cast. This will continue until the rapidly growing larval shad are big enough to swim fast which causes the stripers to boil as they round up the shad school and then attack.  That will happen in July and August.
As we gathered fish reports at the end of the day it was obvious that anglers using bait for stripers along the canyon walls all caught more and larger stripers than we did. Average catch for anglers using bait was 10 - 20 stripers. Good bait fishing was found in Antelope, Navajo, Labyrinth Wall, and Rock Creek. In the northern lake Moki Wall and the cove just upstream from the mouth of Moki were good bait spots. Night fishing under green lights in Bullfrog Bay is the best way to catch large numbers of stripers.
Another hot ticket in the northern lake is to chase slurps in Red Canyon and the Good Hope Bay area. There are more stripers, more shad and more fish caught there. If I had a day to fish up north, I would go to Good Hope Bay.
The best is saved for last.  Smallmouth bass are the best fish to target and catch right now.  They really like topwater lures at first light in the morning (lakewide). After the sun comes up, switch to plastic shad-shaped worms on a drop shot rig. Fish those rigs from 10-15 feet early and switch to 17-22 feet later in the day.  The best habitat is submerged ledges, scattered boulder-sized rocks and even muddy points where crayfish gather. Smallmouth bass will hit plastic baits all day long. Bass caught this week ranged from small to 3.5 pounds. Kids fishing for this first time will be able to catch both bass and stripers by following the directions given here.
Walleye are still caught trolling and casting early and late and under muddy colored water durng the day.  Bluegill and green sunfish are still holding at nest sites where a few stick ups or tumbleweeds are submerged. Channel catfish are spawning and active both day and night in the backs of the canyons from 10-29 feet on a sandy bottom.
In conclusion, I suggest to those exploring the lake that canyons that have buzzards in them are not a good place to fish. In fact, I am quite sure that the two buzzards we saw in the back of Rock Creek spoiled our fishing trip.  It seemed fine when they were perched on the rocks just looking at us, but when they turned their backs and spread their wings and maintained that posture the whole time that we fished in the canyon that our fishing trip was spoiled for the rest of the day.  Just a word of caution: DO NOT fish near buzzards with outstretched wings.

Lake Powell Fish Report – June 20, 2018

Lake Elevation:  3611

Water temperature:  73 - 76 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net

My weekly fishing trip began in perfect fashion.  We stopped at Padre Butte and trolled with great hope of catching a walleye.  The lures were deployed and we trolled for 50 yards before both rods jerked and loaded hungry fish.  My partner caught a smallmouth bass but my fish was a 14-inch walleye. This seemed like the perfect start to a perfect day.  However, within a few minutes the wind picked up and conditions changed.

Our plan was to chase slurping stripers from Padre Bay to Rock Creek.  We saw lots of stripers slurping shad near the surface but they were up quickly and usually gone before we could get in range to make a decent cast.  Surprisingly, the slurp that stayed up the longest was in the main channel on the return trip where boat wakes were stirring up the water into 2 foot waves.  This school of stripers stayed up long enough to make a decent cast and catch some fish.  Reports from Bullfrog were identical with quick slurps and no fish caught.  Striper slurps are still going strong but in calm water it is much easier to see the surface disturbance, approach quickly and make a good cast. This will continue until the rapidly growing larval shad are big enough to swim fast which causes the stripers to boil as they round up the shad school and then attack.  That will happen in July and August.

As we gathered fish reports at the end of the day it was obvious that anglers using bait for stripers along the canyon walls all caught more and larger stripers than we did. Average catch for anglers using bait was 10 - 20 stripers. Good bait fishing was found in Antelope, Navajo, Labyrinth Wall, and Rock Creek. In the northern lake Moki Wall and the cove just upstream from the mouth of Moki were good bait spots. Night fishing under green lights in Bullfrog Bay is the best way to catch large numbers of stripers. 

egsmbnet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another hot ticket in the northern lake is to chase slurps in Red Canyon and the Good Hope Bay area. There are more stripers, more shad and more fish caught there. If I had a day to fish up north, I would go to Good Hope Bay.  

The best is saved for last.  Smallmouth bass are the best fish to target and catch right now.  They really like topwater lures at first light in the morning (lakewide). After the sun comes up, switch to plastic shad-shaped worms on a drop shot rig. Fish those rigs from 10-15 feet early and switch to 17-22 feet later in the day.  The best habitat is submerged ledges, scattered boulder-sized rocks and even muddy points where crayfish gather. Smallmouth bass will hit plastic baits all day long. Bass caught this week ranged from small to 3.5 pounds. Kids fishing for this first time will be able to catch both bass and stripers by following the directions given here.

Walleye are still caught trolling and casting early and late and under muddy colored water during the day.  Bluegill and green sunfish are still holding at nest sites where a few stick ups or tumbleweeds are submerged. Channel catfish are spawning and active both day and night in the backs of the canyons from 10-20 feet on a sandy bottom. 

In conclusion, I suggest to those exploring the lake that canyons that have buzzards in them are not a good place to fish. In fact, I am quite sure that the two buzzards we saw in the back of Rock Creek spoiled our fishing trip.  It seemed fine when they were perched on the rocks just looking at us, but when they turned their backs and spread their wings and maintained that posture the whole time that we fished in the canyon that our fishing trip was spoiled for the rest of the day.  Just a word of caution: DO NOT fish near buzzards with outstretched wings.

badbuzzards

Last Updated on Wednesday, 20 June 2018 09:35
 

June 13, 2018 - Slurps Continue

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Lake Powell Fish Report – June 13, 2018
Lake Elevation:  3612
Water temperature:  72  - 75 F
By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net
Striper slurps continue over the length of the lake.  Typically slurping stripers begin feeding when the sun hits the water.  If in a shaded canyon just randomly throw surface lures toward the shore in areas where bottom depth is about 25 feet.  Stripers, smallmouth and largemouth bass respond well in low light to a surface lure hitting near shore, or the edge of a drop off, or even in open water in the middle of the bay.  Watch for splashes in the back of the canyon and cast in that direction.  Those splashes could be bass or stripers or gizzard shad.  Any of these are worth targeting. It is fun to catch bass and stripers while gizzard shad tend to attract sport fish so they are worth targeting with surface lures.
On my fishing trip this week, the first random cast with an Ima Skimmer surface lure resulted in a 2-pound striper, followed by 4 smallmouth bass over 2 pounds and one largemouth bass.  As the sun started to break over the high cliff wall we noticed a small surface disturbance in the middle of the bay in deeper water. After seeing one fish jump we confirmed that these were slurping stripers and we headed toward the school.
The trick is to get the boat close enough to cast but not close enough to spook the school. On this day we had more schools spook and go down before we could make a good cast that landed just beyond the school so we could work our surface lures back over the feeding fish. It is definitely best to come up behind the school so the fish are swimming away from the boat.  We had way too many schools that were coming toward us and spooked before we could get a good cast off. It is worth it to take an extra turn or two and approach the school from the side or from the rear.
Surface lures work well with a perfect cast and a great retrieve.  Watching fish hit the topwater is almost as fun as catching them. You can probably catch more fish on a white jig or grub that is closer to the size of the tiny shad stripers are eating. These slurps only stay up for a few minutes at best. Once they go down, the school often goes right under the boat and can be caught on spoons or other fast falling lures like a heavy rattletrap. The school is in range for less than a minute so react quickly when the graph lights up with 30 or more fish.
In the southern lake striper slurps were found in Padre Bay near Dominguez Rock, Gregory Butte, Dove Canyon, and Rock Creek. In the northern lake slurps were seen in Bullfrog Bay, Halls Creek, Cedar Canyon to Good Hope Bay and Red Canyon.  This is a lakewide event but with more shad in the northern lake the best place to try is from Bullfrog to Trachyte Canyon.
Smallmouth bass fishing is great in the early morning on surface lures lakewide and later in the day on plastic grubs and senkos near isolated rock slides and along rocky shorelines where water depth is 10-20 feet.  Larger bass are deeper at 20-35 feet.
Walleye are being caught trolling, and casting in cloudy water.  Wind is forecast to blow in the afternoon this week. When the wind comes up try trolling along windy points and flat ledges with a bottom depth of 10-30 feet.  Catch one walleye and return to that spot to catch more. You can cast for walleye using a plastic bass grub with a piece of worm attached and a slow retrieve while maintaining bottom contact.  Walleye group together. Catch one and more are likely to be found in the same spot.
Blue gill and green sunfish are quite visible now as they are nesting in shallow water. Look for a 12-inch circular nest on the bottom and drop a tiny plastic jig on to the nest and watch the bluegill come over to remove it. Set the hook when he picks it up. Male, nest guarding,  bluegill are the most colorful fish in the lake.

Lake Powell Fish Report – June 13, 2018

Lake Elevation:  3612

Water temperature:  72  - 75 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net


Striper slurps continue over the length of the lake.  Typically slurping stripers begin feeding when the sun hits the water.  If in a shaded canyon just randomly throw surface lures toward the shore in areas where bottom depth is about 25 feet.  Stripers, smallmouth and largemouth bass respond well in low light to a surface lure hitting near shore, or the edge of a drop off, or even in open water in the middle of the bay.  Watch for splashes in the back of the canyon and cast in that direction.  Those splashes could be bass or stripers or gizzard shad.  Any of these are worth targeting. It is fun to catch bass and stripers while gizzard shad tend to attract sport fish so they are worth targeting with surface lures.

On my fishing trip this week, the first random cast with an Ima Skimmer surface lure resulted in a 2-pound striper, followed by 4 smallmouth bass over 2 pounds and one largemouth bass.  As the sun started to break over the high cliff wall we noticed a small surface disturbance in the middle of the bay in deeper water. After seeing one fish jump we confirmed that these were slurping stripers and we headed toward the school.  

The trick is to get the boat close enough to cast but not close enough to spook the school. On this day we had more schools spook and go down before we could make a good cast that landed just beyond the school so we could work our surface lures back over the feeding fish. It is definitely best to come up behind the school so the fish are swimming away from the boat.  We had way too many schools that were coming toward us and spooked before we could get a good cast off. It is worth it to take an extra turn or two and approach the school from the side or from the rear. 

Surface lures work well with a perfect cast and a great retrieve.  Watching fish hit the topwater is almost as fun as catching them. You can probably catch more fish on a white jig or grub that is closer to the size of the tiny shad stripers are eating. These slurps only stay up for a few minutes at best. Once they go down, the school often goes right under the boat and can be caught on spoons or other fast falling lures like a heavy rattletrap. The school is in range for less than a minute so react quickly when the graph lights up with 30 or more fish. 

In the southern lake striper slurps were found in Padre Bay near Dominguez Rock, Gregory Butte, Dove Canyon, and Rock Creek. In the northern lake slurps were seen in Bullfrog Bay, Halls Creek, Cedar Canyon to Good Hope Bay and Red Canyon.  This is a lakewide event but with more shad in the northern lake the best place to try is from Bullfrog to Trachyte Canyon.

Smallmouth bass fishing is great in the early morning on surface lures lakewide and later in the day on plastic grubs and senkos near isolated rock slides and along rocky shorelines where water depth is 10-20 feet.  Larger bass are deeper at 20-35 feet.

Walleye are being caught trolling, and casting in cloudy water.  Wind is forecast to blow in the afternoon this week. When the wind comes up try trolling along windy points and flat ledges with a bottom depth of 10-30 feet.  Catch one walleye and return to that spot to catch more. You can cast for walleye using a plastic bass grub with a piece of worm attached and a slow retrieve while maintaining bottom contact.  Walleye group together. Catch one and more are likely to be found in the same spot.  

Blue gill and green sunfish are quite visible now as they are nesting in shallow water. Look for a 12-inch circular nest on the bottom and drop a tiny plastic jig on to the nest and watch the bluegill come over to remove it. Set the hook when he picks it up. Male, nest guarding,  bluegill are the most colorful fish in the lake.

 

June 6, 2018 - Slurps Begin

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Lake Powell Fish Report – June 6, 2018
Lake Elevation:  3612
Water temperature:  72  - 75 F
By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net
Stripers Slurps Begin:
Stripers have now completed spawning and they are really hungry! Shad have started to spawn and tiny larval shad are found near the lake’s surface. Stripers are now looking up in search of a school of larval shad. Once located stripers feed carefully on these tiny fish.  It takes intense concentration to slurp in these tender morsels that are only a quarter to a half inch long.  Stripers line up and feed shoulder to shoulder through the tiny shad gathering.  Occasionally a striper gets frustrated and jumps out of the water while the rest of the fish swim just below the surface as they try to find some food.
From the boat this feeding action looks like a mild surface disturbance. Look for the 2 or 3 fish that jump and then join back into the small wave created by the slurping fish.  Get in casting range and then throw surface lures well beyond the striper school and work it back through the surface feeding stripers; or use a small white jig or grub and reel it right under the surface; or use a small spoon and reel it through the surfacing stripers.
Of course, as soon as any cast is made the striper school tends to dive for safety. The usually pop back up within a minute but just out of casting range. When they reappear cast again as described above or watch the graph when they dive down again. They usually descend to 25-40 feet and glide right under the boat.
If this sounds confusing that’s because it is. The end result is that a few stripers will be hooked on topwater, and some on shallow grubs and spoons.  A few more fish will be caught on spoons fishing in deep water under the boat. There is no one right way to do this. The best method is to be prepared for all circumstances.  You will catch fish but not on the same scale as fishing summer striper boils. That comes later. For now chasing slurps is fun and some fish are caught. Perhaps the best slurp lure is a white crappie jig.
Slurps have been found in the main channel at the mouth of Rock Creek and Last Chance and in Dove Canyon.  Uplake they were found in Bullfrog Bay, Moki Canyon, the back of Halls Creek and in open water at Buoy 102.  The biggest and most consistent slurps are found in the morning.
Back at the fish cleaning station we found one striper with quagga mussels and crayfish in his stomach.  The other fish had the grey ooze of decomposing tiny shad.
Smallmouth bass are still the most commonly caught fish and found on various rocky structures over the length of the lake.  Best bets include: Plastic jigs, senkos, ned rigs, and shad shaped worms. The most fun is found throwing topwater baits at low light morning and evening.
Bluegill and green sunfish are actively spawning now. They can be seen near blocky rocks or where woody stickups or tumbleweeds are congregated. The water is not as clear as it has been but these sunfish nests can be seen very well in 5-10 feet of water.   The nest is a small depression about a foot in diameter with the male bluegill guarding.  A small jig with a piece of worm attached can be dropped on the nest.  Wait for the male bluegill to pick it up to move it off the nest and then set the hook.  These bluegill are some of the brightest colored fish that swim in Lake Powell.
The added bonus while fishing for bluegill is that largemouth bass share the same habitat and can be caught right alongside the bluegill school.
Walleye are still being caught in good numbers over the length of the lake with the northern lake from Escalante, to Bullfrog, to Good Hope Bay being the best spots to try.

Lake Powell Fish Report – June 6, 2018

Lake Elevation:  3612

Water temperature:  72  - 75 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson   http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net

Striper Slurps Begin:

Stripers have now completed spawning and they are really hungry! Shad have started to spawn and tiny larval shad are found near the lake’s surface. Stripers are now looking up in search of a school of larval shad. Once located stripers feed carefully on these tiny fish.  It takes intense concentration to slurp in these tender morsels that are only a quarter to a half inch long.  Stripers line up and feed shoulder to shoulder through the tiny shad gathering.  Occasionally a striper gets frustrated and jumps out of the water while the rest of the fish swim just below the surface as they try to find some food.  

From the boat this feeding action looks like a mild surface disturbance. Look for the 2 or 3 fish that jump and then join back into the small wave created by the slurping fish.  Get in casting range and then throw surface lures well beyond the striper school and work it back through the surface feeding stripers; or use a small white jig or grub and reel it right under the surface; or use a small spoon and reel it through the surfacing stripers. 

Of course, as soon as any cast is made the striper school tends to dive for safety. They usually pop back up within a minute but just out of casting range. When they reappear cast again as described above or watch the graph when they dive down again. They usually descend to 25-40 feet and glide right under the boat.

If this sounds confusing that’s because it is. The end result is that a few stripers will be hooked on topwater, and some on shallow grubs and spoons.  A few more fish will be caught on spoons fishing in deep water under the boat. There is no one right way to do this. The best method is to be prepared for all circumstances.  You will catch fish but not on the same scale as fishing summer striper boils. That comes later. For now chasing slurps is fun and some fish are caught. Perhaps the best slurp lure is a white crappie jig. 

Slurps have been found in the main channel at the mouth of Rock Creek and Last Chance and in Dove Canyon.  Uplake they were found in Bullfrog Bay, Moki Canyon, the back of Halls Creek and in open water at Buoy 102.  The biggest and most consistent slurps are found in the morning. 

Back at the fish cleaning station we found one striper with quagga mussels and crayfish in his stomach.  The other fish had the grey ooze of decomposing tiny shad. 

Smallmouth bass are still the most commonly caught fish and found on various rocky structures over the length of the lake.  Best bets include: Plastic jigs, senkos, ned rigs, and shad shaped worms. The most fun is found throwing topwater baits at low light morning and evening. 

Bluegill and green sunfish are actively spawning now. They can be seen near blocky rocks or where woody stickups or tumbleweeds are congregated. The water is not as clear as it has been but these sunfish nests can be seen very well in 5-10 feet of water.   The nest is a small depression about a foot in diameter with the male bluegill guarding.  A small jig with a piece of worm attached can be dropped on the nest.  Wait for the male bluegill to pick it up to move it off the nest and then set the hook.  These bluegill are some of the brightest colored fish that swim in Lake Powell.  

The added bonus while fishing for bluegill is that largemouth bass share the same habitat and can be caught right alongside the bluegill school. 

Walleye are still being caught in good numbers over the length of the lake with the northern lake from Escalante, to Bullfrog, to Good Hope Bay being the best spots to try.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 05 June 2018 14:58
 
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