Fishing Report: North Central region — fish stockings have begun
Runoff has finally quit and the lakes have stopped spilling. That means that stocking of the lakes has begun. Folks are catching fish on lures fished slowly on the trout lakes. See the stocking schedule.
KAIBAB LAKE — Kaibab Lake is full. Lake was stocked with rainbow trout twice this week. Try using small lures or flies to catch the fresh stockers. For folks who like fishing with bait, I would try worms under a bobber. Campground is closed.
CATARACT LAKE — Lake is full.
CITY RESERVOIR — Lake is full. Scheduled to be stocked this week.
DOGTOWN LAKE — The lake is full. Scheduled to be stocked this week. Camp Ground is closed.
SANTA FE — The lake is full. Scheduled to be stocked this week.
WHITEHORSE LAKE — Gate is closed.
LOWER LAKE MARY – Lower Lake Mary is about ¾ full. About 50,000 rainbow trout have been stocked in the lake so far this year but many were smaller fish. The lake will be getting three loads of catchable size fish this week. The forest plans on opening the gate at the picnic ground this weekend. I would fish with small lures and flies. For folks who like fishing with bait I would try worms under a bobber.
UPPER LAKE MARY — Folks have been catching northern pike and channel catfish on the upper end of the lake using lures or anchovies under a bobber.
ASHURST LAKE — Boat anglers have been catching some nice holdover trout on Joes Flies. For shore anglers, I would fish with small spoons or spinners. For folks who like fishing with bait I would try worms under a bobber. Stocked last week.
FRANCIS SHORT POND – Stocked with trout this week. Scheduled to be stocked with catfish this week.
KINNIKINICK LAKE — The road is currently closed.
OAK CREEK — Stocked this week .
BEAVER CREEK – No report.
WEST CLEAR CREEK — No report.
BLUE RIDGE — The road is currently closed but may be opened by this weekend. Will be stocked in May or June.
KNOLL LAKE — The road is currently closed but may be opened by this weekend. Will be stocked in May or June.
LAKE POWELL —
April 10, 2019
Lake Elevation: 3568
Water temperature: 54-60 F
By: Wayne Gustaveson http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net
The warm, calm weather that we have recently enjoyed was blown away by the strong two-day windstorm with cool temperatures. Before the wind, morning water temperature was as high as 60F. Now the lake temperature is back to the mid 50s which slows down the highly anticipated bass spawn. Expect to wait another week before bass go shallow and start making spawning beds. Bass spawning should peak from the last week of April through early May.
Bass fishing is solid as reported by the participants from the weekend bass tournament held at Wahweap. The winning weight (5 fish) was 16 pounds on Saturday and 18 pounds on Sunday. Most of the fish were caught in Wahweap, Navajo or Warm Creek. Some tournament anglers ran further uplake and caught more fish but they were of smaller size.
Crappie and walleye are being caught more often but they must be specifically targeted. Crappie are found in shallow muddy water and hit small jigs or grubs. Walleye are on the bottom at 10-20 feet and will hit s-l-o-w-l-y moving, dark colored, Ned Rigs. (Check out a discussion of Ned Rigs on the Fishing Forum at Wayneswords.com.)
Crappie will follow the same schedule. Hopefully some tumbleweeds blew into the water with the recent wind storm to give both bass and crappie some more spawning structure.
Striper schools are on the move. They can be in the backs of the canyons in 10-20 feet of water in the morning and then move out to deeper water later in the day. Once in deep water they are prone to come up from the depths to check out shallower humps looking for forage. A 40-foot hump in deep water can be a trolling target. Use shallow running rattletraps and crankbaits for shallow stripers, then switch to 20-foot deep running lures (Deep Thunderstick) when the stripers are in deeper water. When the hotspot is located, retrace the route each time instead of trolling in a long straight line. Stripers are schooling fish and there will usually be more than the one fish caught on the trolling rod, interested in the same bait. Repeat the trolling path to catch more fish. Cast lures in the general area while the hooked fish by trolling fights behind the boat.
Bait fishing is taking off. There have been many stripers caught at the Dam (West side near 3rd barricade), Buoy 3 (south side, on corner before reaching Antelope Canyon), and Navajo Canyon (first point on left after passing the double islands). These locations are very familiar areas where stripers have been caught in previous years. There are many visible stripers swimming in shallow water in the back of West Canyon. These can be caught on bait.
Bait fishing uplake in the Bullfrog area usually peaks a week or two later than in the southern lake.
If you have found a productive bait fishing spots in a previous year it would be worth a try again now as striper schools are on the move.