Angler Report: “Priceless” experience at Willow Springs Lake
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Willow Springs Lake
Robert W.: My brother and I took a trip up to Willow Springs Lake on Wed, May 15. We headed up from Peoria early, made a few nostalgic stops along the way and had the boat launched about 8:30. The day met us with gorgeous weather and the highest level the lake has been in many years, while the Valley hit another 100-degree day. The wind was a factor on-and-off all day, but we would troll on the leeward side of the creeks divide when it would sporadically lift throughout the day. We drug Cowbells & Ford Fenders of 2 different colors trailed by some “big hawg” night crawls we threaded on No. 1 hooks.
I struck first with a fat 15-inch rainbow in 23 feet of water about 10-12 feet deep. We typically troll very slow, zig zag, and stop occasionally to mix it up. A few fisherman crossed our bows trolling way too fast with their gas 2 & 4 strokes in a straight line, A to B. I never saw them land a fish all day. I know because we never left the water until 6 pm and they clung to us all day. We caught mostly rainbows and I believe one sleek 10-inch tiger. I changed out to flippin/trolling a Z-Ray and caught another fat 12-incher.
We caught fish all day long with some long delays. Not enough to quit and head south to the furnace and rush hour traffic. No, we fought off the doldrums as we would suddenly catch another. There were an abundance of fish on the finder most at around that level. Some spots many big fish hugged the bottom. We fished the weed banks, trolled the 60′ deep old creek bottom, but did best our of the wind, in 18-25 feet along the bank of the old creek (75-100 feet from shore). There were lulls but if you love Arizona like us (55 yrs), you still marvel at the scenery going up/down the Rim and the beauty of the area surrounding Willow Springs.
We chatted with some of the ole boy fisherman there waiting for a report who feel the same. Catching is the icing. My wife asked me (ex AZ Fish/Game employee) what the price per pound of the 5 keepers we ate tonight and shared with our neighbor … I of course replied, “Priceless.”
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