By Wayne Gustaveson. Lake elevation: 3,591. Water temp: 47-50 F. Lake Powell is fishing like two separate lakes. The extreme northern lake is typical for February with challenging fishing for most species. Forage was abundant last fall. Fish are fat and have gone dormant for the winter. Walleye, stripers and bass are caught sporadically on deep diving lures trolled near brushy cover where bottom depth is 25 feet.
The southern lake, (defined as Bullfrog south) features more consistent catching. Forage was scarce last fall. Stripers are hungry, making them vulnerable to anglers. Bass and walleye have started an early feeding spree. Two patterns are working well.
First, stripers are cruising main channel canyon walls from the dam to Navajo Canyon. Best catches have come from the barricade line in front of Glen Canyon Dam. Tie the boat or drift near the west side of the barricade line and cast anchovy pieces on a small jig head toward the wall. Chum often. Stripers usually hit as the bait is sinking. If no fish are caught within an hour try a different location. The power plant intake, Antelope Canyon, and Navajo Canyon are likely locations to find cruising stripers.
Second, many species of game fish are feeding in the backs of the canyons from Warm Creek to Halls Creek. Schools hold at 25 feet and make periodic sojourns into the very shallowest water. Canyons with sandy beaches where aquatic weeds and sunken tumbleweeds have emerged with are the best spots. Small sunfish hiding in the weeds are vulnerable to predators as the weeds dry up. Troll or cast suspending crankbaits (bevy shad, deep Husky Jerks) fished with a stop-and-go retrieve for best results. In very shallow water a rattletrap yo-yoed along the bottom is effective.
The weather is warming. The coming weekend is expected to be excellent fishing for pre-spawn walleye, bass and stripers.
LAKE MEAD ? No new reports. During winter, stripers group up and go deep. The threadfin shad will be doing the same, so look for ?balls? of shad on your graph and fish below them. Annual fish population surveys were done the week of Oct. 10 in the Virgin and Temple Basin areas. Gillnetting and electro-fishing surveys showed many striped bass in the 1- to 3-pound range remain skinny. Several 2- to 3-pound smallmouth and largemouth bass were sampled in the Boulder Wash and Monkey Cove areas respectively. Channel catfish and Tilapia were all well represented in the survey. Catfish are very sensitive to any changes in temperature and really come on strong in fall. Most anglers are launching out of Temple Bar, but the ramp is still open at South Cove. The courtesy dock is down to only a few slots and the launching is shallow. The lake level continues to be fairly stable at or near 1,137 feet. Try slow trolling to locate the schools of striped bass. Once you find them you can drop anchor and fish them.
LAKE MOHAVE ? Boating anglers have been catching large-mouth bass near the Nevada side of the power lines and stripers near Nevada Telephone Cove. One angler wrote that he caught largemouth bass and smallmouth bass using drop shots fished 40 to 60-feet deep, but the fish ?were very fat.? For shoreline fishing, Davis Dam and Cabinsite Cove continue to be the best spots. The stripers have been near the shoreline by the dam in the early morning hours. It?s not uncommon for the bigger stripers to be located in this area during the winter months. Davis Dam has plenty of shoreline for numerous anglers to enjoy. Both stripers and catfish have been biting really well. Anchovies continue to be the most popular bait for stripers, but if you want to try something different, use shrimp or squid. Also, there is a wheelchair accessible fishing pier just south of the main launch ramp at Katherine?s Landing.
COLORADO RIVER BELOW DAVIS DAM ? Fishing for trout is good immediately following stockings. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service stocked trout last week and will be stocking again next month. Remember to fish for trout, you need a trout stamp on Class A or on a lifetime fishing licenses. Cooler temperatures and lower river flow in the mornings and evenings make for a good time to get out and fish for trout along the shore. The water level has been high in the mornings and dropping down later in the day. If you are fishing by boat, plan accordingly. You can also check the Bureau of Reclamation Web site for flow predictions http://www.usbr.gov/lc/riverops.html/
before you go.
Early morning fishing has been best for catching the stripers along the Colorado River.
HAVASU ? No recent report has been received. I don?t anticipate there has been much of a change. As things start to warm up fishing will also pickup. Site Six is hot right now for stripers. Small ones are coming into the dock area and biting on cut anchovies. Try live shad for the bigger fish. Several boat anglers were having success with large mouth and smallies. They found working the rocky points productive and would switch between Sassy Shad, medium-size tube baits, and live shad. Anglers on the docks at the Bill Williams found fishing a bit slow but the weather perfect last Sunday. One landed a 12-pound channel cat using cut anchovies.
MARTINEZ LAKE/COLORADO RIVER ? The weather is starting to warm up and so will the fishing. Striped bass continue to bite in the coves of Martinez Lake and in the river on anchovies. Water temperatures are still a little cool so the bass fishing is still slow but it will be improving. Fishing is fair for channel catfish. Some large bluegill and redear sunfish are also being harvested around the boat docks on meal- worms.