Colorado River Northwest

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July 24th, 2008
Colorado River Northwest

LAKE POWELL – Lake Elevation: 3633 Water Temp: 79-85 F

July 16, 2008

By Wayne Gustaveson

Lake Powell is still rising, but just barely. It will peak very shortly and then start a slow decline. Stabilization will improve bass fishing success. Striped bass fishing success is slowing with full moon lurking this week. Full moon impact will vary by species of fish and location.
Striped bass are still boiling. Boil personality has changed somewhat in the southern lake. Stripers are feeding in smaller bunches. It seems that 5-6 stripers are chasing smaller pods of larval shad. The result is quick little blow ups are up and gone just as fast. That makes catching very tough unless the school will surface for the second or third time in casting range. It still takes a precise cast, usually at long distance, to hit the sweet spot and get a hookup. Clear surface lures, rattletraps and white swim baits are all working if the cast is perfectly placed just beyond a newly surfacing striper convoy. A lure just behind the lead fish will be ignored.

It may be that shad numbers are declining which limits the amount of time stripers are on top, or it could be full moon effect limiting feeding. When striper schools are larger than 25 fish they seem to stay up longer and are more aggressive, making them more catchable.
Boils in the northern lake are completely different. Shad schools are just becoming visible to stripers in the chocolate-brown water of the Colorado River inflow. Shad schools are large. When shad and stripers get together the result is sustained surface action from 1-2 pound stripers. Large catches of small stripers are now common. The muddy water clears up between Scorup Canyon and Good Hope Bay. Red Canyon has consistent boils making it well worth the trip from either the primitive launch at Hite or from Bullfrog/Halls. Fishing near Good Hope or in the San Juan Arm is the best bet during the full moon phase.

Boats launching at Hite and Halls are required to be clean, drained and dry to prevent movement of invasive mussels into Lake Powell. UDWR Techs are monitoring both ramps and requiring compliance with NPS invasive mussel certification.

Smallmouth bass fishing is much improved this week with small bass now easy to catch along the shallow rocky shoreline. Larger bass are holding at 20-30 feet. Fish grubs and drop shot rigged lures along the 25 foot contour for best success for quality size bass.

Catfish may provide the most consistent catching this week. Hook some table scraps on a number 4 bait hook. Add a small weight. Cast to the sandy beach behind camp and invite a catfish to join you for dinner

LEES FERRY – From Lees Ferry Anglers

July 16th, 2008 by Lees Ferry Anglers

Report by: Natalie Jensen

Today’s Fish rating Upriver: 6.75

Walk-In: N/A

Key: 1 = Go fish somewhere else 10 = Rent a helicopter and get here now!

Today’s Weather: Mostly cloudy again today with isolated thunderheads. There was a 46% humidity level today. Daily temperatures ranged from 72 to 95 degrees.

Today’s Crowd Rating:  Upriver: 2.0 Walk In: 1.0

Key: 1 = Sleep late and fish where you want. 10 = Very crowded, get up early!

Today’s Fly Fishing:

There was a noticeable change in the Cicada activity during the last couple of days. We may have had the best of the hatch already. We have had a water level increase as of Monday. This will inevitably change the fishing activity as of late. Today’s fishing was slower on the cicada bite. However activity was good after the water came up in the afternoon while drift nymphing over gravel bars. Scuds and san juans were the hit. What remains of the foam lines once the water reaches peak flow doesn’t support many trout. We are likely at a brink of change once again. We’ll keep you posted.

Walk in: Sorry no new reports. This area has very low pressure and is a great body of water. Stop in at the fly shop and get all the latest information on where to go and what to throw.

Spin Fishing: Stop in and pick up some egg patterns and ask us about the recommended rig and best areas to fish. The marabou jigs are also working.  We do have maps available in the fly shop as well.

LAKE MEAD – Lake Mead water levels have held steady as the elevation is currently at around 1,105 feet above msl.  Nighttime Striper fishing has been really good again.  Anglers using artificial lights were catching as many 13 to 18-inch stripers as they wanted to clean.  Catfishing under lights was also very productive using anchovies.  Artificial lights tend to be most productive if fished with a new moon.  August 1st, 2008 is the new moon so trolling crankbaits during the day should be good now and begin to drop off a little in the coming weeks, but the night bite should be great.  Launching conditions at South Cove have continued to deteriorate with the dropping water.  The new concrete ramp the National Park Service just completed is one lane with buoys marking the edges.  Use caution not to go off the sides of the metal extensions at either side.  National Park Service is working to keep the ramp open.

Important notice: With the recent discovery of invasive quagga mussels in Mead, Mohave and Havasu, proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders.  Please drain and dry your livewell and bilge on land. 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 azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

LAKE MOHAVE -The fishing for small striper has been pretty good.  Try using cut anchovies at night.  If you have submersible lights try using them around the new moon.  The lake has dropped a little and is running at 640 feet above msl. The stripers seen in the fall were fat and full of shad, with schools of shad being chased by striped bass.  No sign of shad this year so far.  If you can find schools of shad, throw a small crankbait.

Biologists from both Arizona Game and Fish Department and Nevada Division of Wildlife have continued to install fish habitat in both Carp cove and Box cove.  The largemouth,  bluegill, and catfish are really utilizing the new structures.  Additional habitat will be added at several locations over the next two years.  These structures are fish magnets.

There is a wheelchair accessible fishing pier just south of the main launch ramp at Katherine’s Landing. If you fish Mohave and are having luck, please e-mail me at mchmiel@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.

Important notice: With the recent discovery of invasive quagga mussels in Mead, Mohave and Havasu, proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders. Please drain and dry your livewell and bilge on land. 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 azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

WILLOW BEACH – Trout are stocked every Friday. The fishing for trout has been good from shore immediately following the stocking.  Try using a Jake, Panther Martin, or other spinner’s or spoons.  If that doesn’t work you can always use Power Bait.  Look for the striper fishing to really be picking up.  As the water in the basin of Lake Mohave warms, the bigger fish move into the colder water in the Willow beach area.  The new fishing dock is open for fishing.

Important notice: With the recent discovery of invasive quagga mussels in Mead, Mohave and Havasu, proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders. Please drain and dry your livewell and bilge on land. 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. If you fish Willow beach and are having luck, please e-mail me at mchmiel@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.

For more information, go to the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s web pages at azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

TOPOCK MARSH -No new reports – Water level is up, but still be careful while launching.  The catfish are biting on night crawlers and anchovies.  Bass bite is still not bad.  Crappies have shut down.  Try night crawlers or anchovies for catfish.

Game and Fish biologists surveyed the Marsh starting on the week of Jan. 15.  The largemouth bass population was observed to be very healthy, as well as channel catfish.  Crappie were also present, but in smaller numbers.

You can access the marsh by boat at North Dike, Catfish Paradise, and Five-Mile Landing. All three also provide plenty of area for shoreline fishing too. For more information on the marsh, contact the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge at (760) 326-3853 or go to http://www.fws.gov/southwest/refuges/arizona/havasu/index.html.

Important notice: With the recent discovery of invasive quagga mussels in Mead, Mohave and Havasu, proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders. Please drain and dry your livewell and bilge on land. 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 azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

COLORADO RIVER BELOW DAVIS DAM -The striper bite has been slow.  Trout were last stocked on March 24-25.  This was the last trout stocking until next winter.

Water levels on the river fluctuate, so be careful. You can check the Bureau of Reclamation Web site for flow predictions http://www.usbr.gov/lc/riverops.html before you go. If you fish the river below Davis Dam and are having luck, please e-mail me at mchmiel@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.

Important notice: With the recent discovery of invasive quagga mussels in Mead, Mohave and Havasu, proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders. Please drain and dry your livewell and bilge on land. 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 azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

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