Have you made a recent fishing trip to Lake Powell? If you have, please let us know how you did. Post your fishing report on the Fishing Message Board or send it to Wayne Gustaveson (
) via E-mail. Please include who you are and where you are from, dates fished, location, tackle used, species and number of fish caught and any other information you would like to pass on to other anglers.
Our goal here is to save shad by encouraging harvest of striped bass. If we do that then all fisheries benefit from the effort.
Keep the reports coming. I send out high resolution pictures to the media with my weekly fish reports. If you have a good photo and would like it to be displayed in newspapers and magazines then send it to me. Be aware that your photo may be used in other locations.
If possible send, first and last name, and hometown. The media likes pictures of kids (include age) and fishergirls. Be creative when taking photos. Change poses and backgrounds. Use the flash in full sun to avoid hat shadow.
Thanks to all who have contributed because it makes it easier for a newly arriving angler to start fishing with confidence needed to catch fish on this huge lake.
If you have a general question try posting on WAYNESWORDS FISHING MESSSAGE BOARD.
December 12, 2014 - Bullfrog stripers
On the water at sun up on the 10th. Used the ramp near the marina at Bullfrog. Easier to launch solo there. Searched all morning for stripers in the Bay with no bites. Moved to Halls Creek and searched there all afternoon without a hit. Water was so calm that my eyes almost hurt trying to distinguish rock from water. Caught some smb off a point with a jig. One was about like a football in size and girth. Spent the night on the water. Landed one striper and missed a few bites. The water temp was 58 in the evening. That made the temp in the boat tolerable. Water temp 57 in the morning in the bays and if I remember right 54 in the main channel in front of Halls.
Early start on Wednesday. A slight breeze out of the north had lots of water vapor rising off the water. Almost like a fog up Bullfrog Bay. I decided to try to use Dome Rock to block the wind but never quite made it. On the graph with it zoomed in I spotted what appeared to be fish tight to the bottom in just under fifty feet. All day Tuesday I saw what I think are schools of shad with fish underneath. This school seemed to be alone. I changed to a Kastmaster and hook a fish once the spoon is near the bottom. Using the electric motor I get back to about the spot and another hit.
There is a certain adrenaline rush that a bigger than usual fish can give me. The fish on was offering a little. What a fight. What a thrill to see six pounds of fat striper in the net. Haven't netted one that healthy in a while. Great fillets. This fish is followed by a few other good fish half the size but healthy. It doesn't matter that the air temp is still in the 30's. Fishing is fun.
Had to get home so there are still lots of fish for the January trip.
November 30, 2014 - 15-Pound Striper
We got back last night and as promised I am posting pics of my buddy, also BIL, Anthony Catterson's big Striper with a brief report.
We drove through the night and arrived at Wahweap Friday morning pumped and ready to roll. Back the boat in turn on the electronics and my big unit (HDS10) just shuts off. This isn't good. We depend on electronics so much, especially this time of year. Called Anthony before he made the walk down the ramp to bring the truck back down. An Hour and a half later and run into page for fuses we determined that it was the unit itself and not bad wiring. Switched the HDS 8 from the bow to the Ram Mount and hooked up the HDS 5 to the TM transducer, I usually just use the 5 for mapping.
With the late start we were already off to a bad start knowing that it's been primarily a morning bite. We arrived in Rock creek at about 10:45 even with the late start we were able to get school going but once they stopped that was it.
Enjoyed the rest of the afternoon catching fat bass at the very end of the canyon on the smaller Keitech Fat Impact swimbaits. Saturday we were in warm creek by 7:45 ready to roll only thing was the fish weren't. We met Morgan at the Maverick in Page, cool guy, he told us that he found some in Padre so we stopped in on the way to Gunsight. After an hour we did find a school of small stripers with bass mixed in the bunch. It was a real tough bite. They wanted it real slow. The best technique was to throw the 2.8" Keitech past the school and just let it pendulum threw them. They would hit it two three times before an actual hook up. Not exactly what we were after. We found the fishing overall tough. The bass fishing was good but I don't go to Powell to Bass fish.
We checked depths from 20 to 90 feet without any luck so we decided to go Shallow, and that's when it happened. I have stated before that me and Anthony have had success in really shallow water this time of year with swimbaits so we put the spoon rods away and started hitting the shallows. After a couple of cast Anthony threw in what had to be 3 feet of water and out of the corner of my eye I see him set the hook. I thought he set into one of the submerged shrubs because it was rock solid I asked if it was a snag and he said no FISH! He said right out the get go it was big. Honestly I was hoping it was a five pounder because if it was he would have friends with him. I know that for the most parts big fish, especially stripers are solitary creature. Once I saw his line head to deep water I knew it was a big one, Anthony handled him like the good fisherman that he is and about 3-4 minutes later I reached down and lipped the pig.
November 29, 2014 - Southern Bass
Last Updated on Saturday, 29 November 2014 07:37
We had an awesome Black Friday. Shawn Johnson and his family journeyed all the way from Eugene OR. To eat some turkey with Family and get back out on the lake that he has missed for the last 3 years. His son Taylor Johnson(6yrs old) had an awesome day as he and my Son Trace Bennett(4yrs old) pulled our first six small mouth in the boat coming off the rocks along the three mile narrows in the morning.
The small mouth we caught were in the 20-30ft depth and all fat and happy. Some spit up shad and a couple craws. We fished shad imitation baits and the boys had a ball.
Shawn and I could not seem to catch a smallie to save our lives and we didn't care a bit. We moved up lake at about 11:30am and hit a few spots in Padre area. Found some healthy Large Mouth the biggest being about 3.5lbs. The large mouth were caught off old sunken tumble weed piles in the 10-15ft range.
Water temp for the day started at 59 degrees in the narrows and ended up about 62 degrees in the backs of the canyons. Never had a chance to graph stripers as the Black Friday specials on bass were just to good to pass up. For those of you who had to spend the day shopping my condolences.
Big Striper in Wahweap - 10 pounds
Caught this 10 pound striped bass on a anchovy baited Texas rig with a six inch 15 lb. Floro-carbon leader on Thanksgiving morning.
The pole was an Ugly Stick. Caught across from the buoy fields in Wahweap.
Marla Jirak, Tucson, Az
November 16, 2014 - Gunsight Stripers
Last Updated on Monday, 17 November 2014 09:35
Me and my 6 year old and 8 year old arrived at Wahweap Tuesday night and fished Wed, Thurs, Friday and Saturday til 11. Wednesday morning we headed straight to the rock creek area since when I was down 2 weeks ago we had decent success in the area. As we passed Gunsight I thought we should go take a look but then didn't want to waste time as it took a while to get to rock creek. Bad decision. Having high expectations, Wednesday didn't go quite as planned. To start off with as soon as we got there and I pulled my rod out to start fishing the handle caught the line of another rod and sent it sailing right into the lake. I then watched $100+ go drifting out of sight.
Then we trolled while graphing for stripers for a few hours and nothing....I mean nothing. So we hit up a couple coves and all we could find where carp every where slurping on the surface. We ended up catching a couple dinky smallies and that was it. Around 3 PM the wind kicked up pretty good and we took it as a cue and headed back to wahweap.
Starting off Wednesday morning the wind stuck around from the day before although not quite so bad. Well as we were cruising along with plans to head to gunsight and check it out my trolling motor suddenly deployed while going 30 MPH! Dang! It about ripped the sucker off and broke part of the hinge. I started to wonder if this was how this trip was gonna go.....bad fishing, losing stuff and breaking stuff.....I didn't want to spend 3.5 days of that! All I can think is one of my boys must of leaned up against the release just enough to let it slowly get by. Oh, well, at least the views were great.
Once back in gunsight we would just troll a wally diver while watching the graph. Back towards the back of the canyon we found ball after ball after ball of shad in the back and knew it was a matter of time before we got into the stripers. Sure enough we found a small school and dropped some spoons and pulled up a couple. After losing them, we started trolling again. That's when we hooked into this one.
A 6.5 pound striper!
And that is how our day went, trolling, graphing, and watching my 8 year old freak out every time we saw stripers on the graph. We pulled up a couple smallies and a large mouth while trolling and another striper or two, but most stripers where caught on spoons off the bottom. At the end of the day we ended up with just under 20.
Friday morning, back to gunsight and once again, same strategy. Once again, same results. On and off fast and furious fishing throughout the day. We ended the day with 23. Oh, and the views weren't bad either.
Same strategy and same results, although the stipers were different this morning. They were insanely aggressive! As you get towards the very back of the canyon there is a sandbar / weedbank on the left sticking out of the water. It is pretty abrupt and stays fairly deep (40-50') just before it. The stripers had pushed the shad right up against it and were nailing them. We got in there and it was as fast as we could get the spoons into the water, we would be pulling them out. The entire graph was filled with stripers. If it had been me and one or two other adults we could have both pulled 12+ out of this group, but I think I spent more time unhooking and untangling my 6 year old than spooning. I still managed 4 and my 8 year old pulled 4-5 out of this group (for the most part I require him to unhook his own fish and tie on his own lures, so this slows him down a bit). After they disappeared we kept trolling and looking and we kept hooking up while trolling. We'd stop the boat and reel it on in and it seemed that once we got the striper to the boat suddenly we'd have a school underneath us and we'd drop spoons and pick up a couple more. All I can think is that once hooked while trolling the school would follow the hooked fish to the boat and we'd get a shot at a few more. We did graph this school of stripers and I don't know what their problem was, but we had them under us for 5+ minutes and only had a few small hits and one landed. I literally tried 4-5 different spoons and my 8 year old was the only one to pull one up.
At 11:30 we had to get going and get on the road for the 6 hour drive home. All in all we ended a half day on Saturday with 18 and some great memories. Oh, and the views weren't bad either.
So, another memorable and exciting trip is in the books. My 8 year old is a striper slayer! I can hardly keep up with him! My six year old caught a total of 4 for the trip and he got to reel in all the trolled up fish. He is just happy to be along for the ride and if he gets to catch a few, it's just a bonus. The fishing was best from about 7-10 and then from 2-5. Mid day it was extremely tough to find any stripers. I don't know if they just retire to deep water to rest and digest, but we had very little going on mid day. The lures we used for trolling was a silver walleye diver and a strike king kvd 6 in sexy shad. Both worked quite well. Spoons used where silver kastmaster, and silver / chartreuse kastmaster, deadly dick, buzz bomb and a sebile vibrato. The buzz bomb and deadly dick did quite well as did the kastmasters. My hopkins dressed was doing well on Thursday until I lost it when a knot failed.
Hope this info can help someone get into the stripers. I don't see them going anywhere anytime soon. There is just waaay to much shad back there. So if you are headed down, get to gunsight and fish!mtnpull
October 31, 2014 - Rock Creek Stripers
Last Updated on Saturday, 01 November 2014 12:42
Stripers near Rock Creek
Well this will be a mixed report from my experiences from the week of October 13- 18th (I know, a bit late) and then again the 29th, 30th and 31st. Keep in mind we are new to the striper thing and even though I had a fair amount of bass fishing experience 10+ years ago these were my first trips back out after bass since then. So you are dealing with reports from an amateur. The first trip mid October I came out with the whole family. Wife and 4 kids aged 4-6. I would rotate through two of my 3 oldest boys each day as to not overcrowd the boat and end up with a few new unexpected piercings. Both trips we headed out from Wahweap. The first day out was more of a get to know the lake day as I had only fished out of Bullfrog years ago.
We basically started at just before sunrise and cruised the channel looking for boils. Finally in the last stretch between Gregory Butte and Rock Creek we ran into a boil. This was the first boil we experienced. I pulled one 5 lb striper in off a topwater and missed a couple others but we didn't quite have the spoon thing down yet....mostly knowing where in the water column to fish them. Soon they were gone and we couldn't find them again and they didn't resurface. We went into a few rocky coves to fish for smallies, something I actually had some experience with. We seemed to be only finding little dinks and I was spending plenty of time untangling lines and helping the boys. That one striper was the only one we took home that day. The next day we returned and got into the boils again in the same area. This time, they would come up for a few minutes and we'd hit them then they would resurface a few hundred yards away. We chased them back and forth for a couple hours and boated about 20 between 2-5lbs. I am sure if I didn't have a 6 and 8 year old with me that number would be 40-50. BTW, my 8 year old was killing it and just kept hauling them in one after another with a kastmaster. After they subsided we went back to hang and play with the fam.
The next day back to the same area as we knew it was producing but it was a bust and we didn't see a single boil and went home empty handed. The next day we found the boils again, same area although they didn't last as long and we ended up boating about 13 3-5lb stripers. We were really starting to figure out the spoon thing and my boys were doing great. The last day (Saturday the 18th) I took my brother and his two boys (14 &17) out again the same area. We were there early and nothing! We kind of stuck around just expecting something to show and nothing! So we moved over to rock creek and started fishing the rocky shoreline for smallies and after catching about 6-8 small ones we decided to head back to camp. On the way back (around 11am), same spot as always boiling stripers! We hit them hard for about 2 hours and hauled in around 30 stripers. Again, folks with experience could have probably boated twice as many. Many times after the boils disappeared the graph was insane. There had to be thousands of those buggers below us and they were hammering the spoons. That trip ended up being a great introduction to striper fishing.
Now fast forward to the last three days. I made a special trip down with just two of my older boys (8 &10 year old). We fished all day Wednesday and Thursday and till 10:30 today and then jetted home so the kids could do some trick or treating. Well, on Wednesday we headed back to what we had now began to call Striper alley and although I figured we wouldn't see any boils and that the fishing would be tougher we sure hoped they would still be in that area and hopefully get lucky and see a boil or two. No luck. We didn't see a single boil any of the three days. So we decided to just look for schools on the graph while idling along again in the same area. And wouldn't you know it, we kept finding pockets of stripers at the bottom in depths between 50-80' of waters and we'd drop spoons on them picking up a few from each group. Most the groups were pretty small on the graph and many times I thought we were just seeing debris on the bottom, but the kids would get excited and were impatient with idling along, so I thought we've got all day, lets drop some spoons and many times we pulled up 2-3 fish.
Occasionally we'd see bigger balls of fish just off the bottom. We pulled up a couple smallies at these depths too. All in all we took 17 fish home. That night I read waynes experience in Padre Bay and finding the stripers holding shad in the backs of coves so we started off in the same area graphing and found a few and pulled in a few stripers here and there but wanted to start checking coves and canyons so we could hopefully get into some fast and furious fishing. We pulled out a few good smallies out of Dungeon on topwater and moved on. We probably checked 30 different coves and each one had the same result. No shad and no fish on the graph. We went home with 9 total fish. 4 decent smallies and 5 stripers. This morning we had to be on the road by noon to get the boys home in time for halloween, so that meant if we were gonna fish striper alley again we'd have only till 10:30 to fish. So we headed straight to dungeon canyon again and caught a couple dinks and one good smallie on a topwater and then decided to head back and use the graph again in striper alley. Bingo. We found them again, mostly small groups. The boys were knocking them dead. We'd drift out of a small school and idle the boat back up again, find them, shut it down and pull a few more out. At one point we found a school that filled the graph pretty well and was pretty well suspended throughout the water column. The boys kept pulling them out, but for some reason, I couldn't get many hits today! It did seem the bigger school wasn't as anxious to hit the spoons as the smaller ones. We did this right up until 10:30.
Right before we left we got quite a surprise. My 10 year old hooked into what we thought was another striper but when he got it to the boat he had a catfish on the line. The catfish hit a spoon in 75' of water! He was stoked as he really, really wanted to catch a catfish. Today we came home with 15 fish. 13 stripers, 1 smallie and a catfish. I caught a smallie and a striper and the boys killed it with the rest of them. All in all it was another successful trip. We were catching most the fish right off the bottom and mostly in 75' of water. We were using a hopkins shorty dressed, cotton cordell spoon and a kastmaster. The first two days my hopkins was killing it and today not really. Today the cotton cordell (actually looks much like a hopkins) did the best. In hindsight, I wish each day we would have just worked that same section of water watching the graph and not spent time in some of the canyons and coves fishing for smallies and looking for shad. We had a good thing going, but the kids get impatient easy and sometimes just idling around looking for fish on the graph gets pretty old quick to them. Hope this helps any body getting out here soon!
October 28, 2014 - Stripers in Padre Bay
Last Updated on Tuesday, 28 October 2014 18:13
We went to Gunsight early to find the striper school that has been there for the last few weeks. At 7 AM we trolled over a school and hooked a fish. We immediately shut down the boat and backed up to stay over the school. It was a good move and we caught a dozen fish before they moved away from us. That was very gratifying after being able to only catch a few fish on the last 3 trips.
But we did not find the school again and finally moved on. We searched for another hour in the Padre Bay Canyons without success. At 10 AM we tried one more canyon and this time found shad trapped in the back being pummelled by stripers, smallmouth bass and largemouth. For the next 2 hours we did battle with all these fish. When the cooler was full we headed in with big smiles on our faces.
At the fish cleaning station we filleted 48 stripers from 8 inches to 4 pounds. It was a great day.
October 27, 2014 - Southern lake bass and stripers
My son Brad and I went back up to Powell for a quick trip this past week getting on the water a little after 9 this past Friday, 10/24 and starting to fish close to 10 up near Gregory Butte to Rock Creek. No boils noted after driving around awhile so we went to some previous producing areas and caught a few here and there on drop shot, grub, and spooning, mostly in 15-25’ but they were all smaller sized smallmouth. We also went into Dungeon Canyon area after an ice cream run to Dangling Rope and saw loads of small stripers in packs. We fought off the temptation to run up to San Juan and stayed in this same area for the rest of the day picking up a few fish here and there but definitely not the numbers of a month ago.
The next morning we hit the lake early and buzzed right to Gregory Butte before slowing down and driving around looking for boils as this was our main goal. After an hour we went into the back of Rock Creek where my son fished while I worked on my dash graph but no fish were boated. After another hour we went back out to the main channel looking for boils and finally saw a few quick ones going into the Dungeon Canyon bay but they were up and down quickly. We ended up back at the SW corner of the main channel where the softball sized rock hills are at and started catching a few when just into the middle of them we had the packs of small striper blowing up here and there. We couldn’t catch them on top but spooning started putting them into the boat with regularity including some good smallmouth and a big sunfish. 25’ seemed to be about the right depth here and as long as we could stay over the action we were catching fish regularly until we had to leave them at 11 to head home.
It was beautiful weather again with little wind but my last trip to Powell this season. Glad to see the water level holding and hope this means great things again next year!
Sam Sherwood, Mesa, AZ
October 25, 2014- Good Hope to White
Last Updated on Saturday, 25 October 2014 11:48
Motored up north of Good Hope on Tuesday. Found one striper school that hit my spoon a few times and allowed the good angler in the boat (Richard) to land one. Lost the school and nothing more that afternoon although we searched. Saw three quick boils at about the mud line in front of White Canyon. They did not stay up long enough that evening to get to in time. Nightfished at the mouth of Trachyte in 43 foot deep water. Hardly brought in any shad and only a catfish boated.
No boils or bites the next morning. In the evening we found very little. Set up for nightfishing in 70 feet of water. Brought in shad slowly. Landed seven stripers between about 10 pm and midnight.
On the morning of the 23rd we woke to small mouths working the surface. Finally they started taking our topwater lures after sun up. Also hooked a few stripers. When that slowed we caught a couple of stripers on spoons. Of note there was one striper that upon filleting at the cleaning station we found that it had an 8" striper in its stomach. In addition to shad swallowed later. This was a 23" striper about four pounds. See the pictures.
October 24, 2014 - Northern Lake Bass
10/20 Water temp 69-72
Headed to the boulder flat with spoons at the ready. First drop we started to hit stripers but could only boat one. The schools of fish were scarce and bite was different. Ran to submerged brush and hit a good LM and SM on spinner baits but those must have been the only two fish in the area.
We then ran to shad choked cove and hit some LM on spinner baits but when I changed one rig to a buzz bait the bite got exciting. LM schools would chase and they were all different sizes. Ran to another cut and found fish on the graph and we spooned up several SM and stripers. Ran back to boulder flat with no luck on fish schools so we started casting spinner baits and buzz baits along the shore line where nice SM bass schools were blowing up on the buzz baits. SM on top were real fighters no matter what size but we were hitting some nice ones. The big SM came on the spook jr. On the way in we trolled an area that holds stripers and SM and the rattle trap did the trick. The bite was a little different today. Fish were chasing but wary to bite.