Central Arizona

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February 19th, 2008

URBAN LAKES – Trout were stocked in all of the urban lakes last week.  Anglers using scented dough baits (such as Power Bait), worms fished under a bobber, or small trout lures have been successful.  Try fishing with minnows along the bottom for larger trout and the occasional bass or catfish.  Best time to fish for trout generally is early morning, but some anglers have reported excellent fishing later in the afternoon.  Small spinners such as Rooster Tails and Panther Martins, or spoons such as KastMasters are also working well for trout.  Fly anglers can have success using wooly buggers and small beadhead nymphs.

TEMPE TOWN LAKE –Not stocked due to high pH levels and high flows.

LAKE PLEASANT – Water elevation is 1,687 ft, which is 83-percent full. 
One angler did report doing well for stripers on anchovies, shad, and just about anything else he threw at them. Humbug and Castle Creek have been the most productive areas for stripers.  Be cautious of debris.

One angler reported doing well fishing at night near the marina using cut anchovies as bait, adding that chumming liberally is the key  to holding stripers once you get an initial bite.

Durin the day, watch the gulls; they can point you to some of the action, if you can get there fast enough. 
With the discovery of invasive quagga mussels Lake Pleasant, proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders. Please drain your livewell, then clean and dry your boat. Drain all the water you can from your engine. Also, inspect your vessel and trailer, removing any visible mussels, but also feel for any rough or gritty spots on the hull. These may be young mussels that can be hard to see. For more information, go to the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s Web pages at www.azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

ROOSEVELT LAKE — Lake Elevation is 2,136 ft (81-percent full).  Salt River Project expects this lake to fill – for the first time since the dam was raised in 1996. Tonto Creek runoff was at 999 cfs while inflow from the Salt River was at 2,690 cfs on Feb. 11.

Received a few reports of debris on the water and saw a picture of debris covering much of the surface in the Windy Hill area of Roosevelt early last week.  Fishing has been slow with tournament reports of only a few anglers catching fish.  Things should hopefully start picking up with the recent warm weather. Be careful of debris.

APACHE — Lake elevation is 1,911 ft (97-percent full).

We received a report that the yellow bass fishing is starting to pick up at Apache Lake.  Try using and 1/8-ounce KastMaster for yellows.  Also, Apache Lake received all of the rainbow trout intended for Canyon Lake this year due to the reservoir draw down and a few additional trout.  There should be plenty of trout in Apache to catch.  Try using Panther Martins, Rooster Tails, and Mepps spinners.

CANYON – Open to boating again, but watch out for floating debris. Lake elevation is 1,659 ft, which is 97-percent full. Might be a little challenging to fish until it settles down, but this is shaping up to be a decent year for fishing here once it does, thanks to all the nutrient inflows and the artificial fish habitats installed while the lake level was done.

The Forest Service in planning a grand reopening event at the Canyon Lake Marina from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

SAGUARO — Lake elevation1,528 feet at 98-percent full. Three hundred pounds of rainbow trout were delivered last week.

One angler caught five bass this past weekend fishing Zoom lizards and Zoom finesse worms.  His fishing partner was able to catch four trout and two bass dragging a night crawler behind the boat.  I also heard that the yellow bass and bluegill fishing is beginning to pick up.  Try fishing a 1/8-ounce KastMaster (gold-colored has been working best) for both yellows and bluegill.

BARTLETT – Lake elevation is 1,797 feet, which is 99-percent full.  There was an ABA Team Tournament here on Saturday, Feb. 9 with a number of anglers weighing a limit of fish. The largest bass weighed was 3.04 pounds. Watch out for floating debris. Jaime Orzechowski and Kenny Williamson won the tournament at by weighing 8.63 pounds of bass.

HORSESHOE — Lake elevation is at 2026 feet, which is 98-percent full!  SRP is releasing water at 2,000 cfs and the inflows are 1,980 cfs – it should stay pretty full until outflows well exceed inflows. The road is still closed. Check with the Cave Creek Ranger Station for more information.

VERDE RIVER — Verde River flow at Tangle Creek was 1,980 cubic feet per second (cfs) on Feb. 12.

LOWER SALT RIVER (below Saguaro Lake) – SRP is releasing 8 cfs out of Stewart Mountain dam from Saguaro as of today.  Releases from Bartlett Lake are currently at 2,290 cfs on Feb. 12. Trout have been stocked at the Phon D. Sutton Recreation area (confluence of the Salt and Verde Rivers) downstream from Blue Point Bridge. Fishing has been picking up since the turbid runoff calmed down.

CREEKS – High flows in all the creeks made trout fishing poor. The flows will need to settle down and the weather warm up some. With the excellent snow pack it ought to be a pretty good spring.

One Response to “Central Arizona”

  1. Your lake report for Canyon lake was informative , but what is the date when the Forest service will be having thier grand reopening at the marina? Thanks, Jack in AJ

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