Fishing report for Southeastern Utah
|Steve Harris, Syracuse, with one of many stripers caught north of Bullfrog, Lake Powell.|
CLEVELAND RESERVOIR The reservoir is ice-free. There was a lot of fishing pressure over the weekend, but no report came back to the DWR.
ELECTRIC LAKE Ice off has finally arrived. The best bait will be a dead minnow. Redside shiners can be caught in nets or minnow traps along the shoreline. Other baits include worms with salmon eggs, or PowerBait in green or rainbow colors. Fly fishermen may want to try #8 dark wooly buggers or leeches.
FAIRVIEW LAKES The ice is off. No report on fishing success.
GIGLIOTTI POND The pond was stocked in early May. Good fishing is expected.
GOOSEBERRY RESERVOIR The US Forest Service gate will be locked until the Memorial Day weekend.
HUNTINGTON CREEK Fly-fishing has been good with an elk hair caddis, blue-wing nymph or pheasant tail. Traditionally, Tom Ogden has had good luck with a size 10 beadhead Montana at this time of year. Conservation Officer Casey Mickelsen says that worms with salmon eggs or worms with marshmallows have been especially good.
HUNTINGTON NORTH STATE PARK State Park Manager Dan Richards says Huntington North Reservoir is gradually filling. He hopes that boat launching will be possible in the next few weeks. Dan has heard several reports of one-three pound bass being caught off the dam. Jigs or spinnerbaits seem to work best. Trout fishermen aren't having any luck, except for a few chubs and very small trout.
HUNTINGTON RESERVOIR (also known as MAMMOTH RESERVOIR) The reservoir is totally ice-free. Tressa Christianson fished last Friday and reported a lot of hits with worms and salmon eggs. She stressed sensitivity to bites and setting the hook quickly. The reservoir is closed to the possession of cutthroat trout. As of June 7, using motorboats with 10 horsepower or more will be prohibited.
JOES VALLEY RESERVOIR Aquatics biologists Justin Hart and Kenny Breidinger fished the reservoir last weekend. They caught about 40 splake inside the slot limit. They vertically jigged Ã¯Â¿Â½ oz. jigheads with 3-inch curlytail grubs from a boat on the east side south of the dam. Chartreuse and white were good colors for the grub. They always tipped the hook with chub meat. They also had good success on the west side near the mouth of Little's Creek, where they tossed out whole chubs or chub pieces on minnow hooks.
Two fisheries biologists from DWR's Springville office fished Joes Valley last week and did exceptionally well. One of the biologists, Richard Hepworth caught a 10-lb. splake on Friday morning. The other biologist, Mike Slater brought his daughter along. She lost an estimated 8-10 lb. splake just as she brought it to the bank. Richard and Mike used chub meat on minnow hooks cast from shore.
Special regulations apply at this reservoir. The limit is two fish. Only one may be over 22 inches. All trout from 15-22 inches must be immediately released.
LASAL MOUNTAINS If you're a fly fisherman and want to try Ken's Lake, use a streamer for bass or sunfish. Hidden and Dons lakes are accessible. No recent report on these ponds. Conservation Officer Casey McVay reports that the gates to Oowah and Warner will remain locked until the Memorial Day weekend. The rest of the mountain lakes remain inaccessible.
LOWER FISH CREEK Tom Ogden has had good luck with a #10 beadhead Montana. The creek is full of brown trout, which generally range from 8-12 inches. The road from Highway 6 to lower Fish Creek is expected to be muddy for a week or so.
MILLSITE RESERVOIR Fishing continues to be slow to fair, due to a rising water level, which puts a lot of natural food in the water. Fish fill up on insects and ignore angler offerings. Park Manager, Dan Richards has seen a few 2 pound rainbows come out of the reservoir. Apparently, the best technique is still-fishing from a boat on the north side. Try jigging plastic grubs tipped with bait.
SCOFIELD RESERVOIR Fisheries Biologist Justin Hart reports that fishing was great over the weekend. Shoreline anglers with egg sacs had some of the best success. Another excellent bait was a worm and marshmallow--this was effective lake-wide. Justin says tiger trout ran about 18 inches. Rainbows measured from 12-20 inches, although his creel survey technician checked two rainbows at the fish cleaning station that probably weighed 5 lbs. before they were gutted.
Tom Ogden fished the reservoir from a tube last weekend. The fish seemed to be moving to deeper water, 7-9 feet deep. Tom's catch consisted of one cutthroat, and the rest were a split between rainbows and tigers. Tom used dark-colored wooly buggers or leech patterns on size 8 hooks. Tom said the best technique was what he called the "cast, sink and strip" method.
WRIGLEY SPRINGS RESERVOIR The reservoir is ice-free. No fishing report.
WILLOW RESERVOIR The USFS gate remains locked. Inaccessible.
If you'd like to see reports of waters around the state, visit the following Division website: http://www.wildlife.utah.gov/fishing/reports.php
Stripers and bass at Lake Powell
Lake Elevation: 3604
Water Temperature: 67-74 F
Smallmouth bass have gone ballistic. The open water reefs that were vacant last month are now red hot. Smallmouth bass from 6 inches to 2 pounds are surrounding reefs and long rocky points. Smaller bass are right on top of the reef in a few feet of clear water. Larger fish are residing off the reef edge at depths from 15-25 feet.
It's a sure thing to toss a single tail plastic grub (smoke, green or pumpkin) on a quarter ounce jig head to waiting bass. Just let the grub hit the reef and drag it a few feet at a time. Smallmouth bass will be all over it like a puppy chewing a bone.
Bass spawning is all but over. There may be a few bass still guarding nests but the rising lake covered the nests beyond visibility. Just fish the open reef structure now and maybe a guarding male can be caught. If not, there are so many bass hitting that spawning is no onger significant.
Other fish have made the switch to the 25-foot bottom contour on outside primary points leading into deep water. Stripers, walleye, and largemouth bass are consistently found on irregular bottom contours marked by "yellow water reefs" mixed with "deep blue water".
Look for the flat shoreline with lots of reefs and extended points to find a mixed bag of fish. Points often have a "saddle" just off shore with another reef much further out in the bay. This is the best habitat to fish this week.
To effectively fish reefs, employ a combination of casting or trolling the reef edges (with shallow runners like jerk baits or Wally divers), to spooning deep on the reef edge, or dragging a plastic grub or tube at 20 feet. Bass, stripers and walleye will all hit the same lures when the hot spot is located.
I caught nothing but fat stripers today using the end of reef technique. The reaction bait (spoon or crank bait) was appealing to stripers that feed on sunfish and crayfish. These fish have left the schools to forage on their own. They have fared better than the schooling stripers that do not get fed every day.
Schooling stripers are still being handily caught on bait in the main channel between the dam and the back of Navajo Canyon. At Bullfrog/Halls bait fishing is good from Lake Canyon to Hansen Creek.
Spring fishing is now at a peak. It will remain good for the remainder of May and then slow down in June. Morning and evening fishing is best with fish shallow along the shore. Fishing slows midday with the sun straight overhead when fish move deeper. Concentrate on the deep edges of open water reefs to catch fish all day long.