Arizona Fishing Report: The Reel Deal
For the past 6 months, our days have grown shorter and the nights longer. This year’s winter solstice, which began today (Friday, Dec. 21), includes a unique full moon known as a Cold Moon, which occurs when the December full moon coincides with this solstice. And depending on where you’re at, you could see meteor showers this weekend, too.
Thinking of heading to Lees Ferry? Trout fishing at the walk-in section has been good. See a report. Even more, Travelocity lists the Grand Canyon as one of the best destinations in the U.S. to watch a perfect winter-solstice sunset. Maybe do both.
Of course, some of the best trout fishing in the state right now can be enjoyed right in the city. At Community Fishing Program waters this week, water temperatures in the Phoenix area were around the mid-50s. Anglers at Greenfield Pond in Mesa on Thursday afternoon (above) were catching several healthy rainbow trout that had been stocked. See the stocking schedules below — we just stocked waters in Maricopa, Casa Grande, Yuma, Prescott Valley, and the entire Phoenix area.
In the Tonto National Forest, Saguaro Lake was stocked with trout this week. Speaking of Saguaro, this can be a good time to target yellow bass in deep water by jigging spoons or drifting nightcrawlers on dropshot rigs.
For bass fishing in lower elevations, water temperatures have dropped enough (high-50s to low-60s) to send high populations of bass into deeper water where the water temperature is higher. Bass metabolism is likely starting to slow. Be sure to have a bait in the water when the sun comes out and there’s a spat of warmer weather.
Cooler temperatures also means time is ticking on trout fishing opportunities in the high country and flathead catfish are fattening up for the dead of winter.
Catch of the Week
Send your fishing reports and photos to BFishing@azgfd.gov —
one will be selected for Catch of the Week
Billy fished Hawley Lake during the early afternoon on Friday, Dec. 14 and caught this reported 21 1/2-inch brown trout on a Rapala lure. He added that he had to use 4-wheel drive to access the lake due to snow-covered roads.
This week’s scheduled stockings
Rainbow trout: “Expansion” Community waters (Bonsall Pond, Friendship Pond, Pacana Pond, Dave White Regional Pond, Fortuna Pond, PAAC Pond, Yuma West Wetlands, Council Ave. Pond, Roadrunner Lake, Eldorado Lake, Discovery Park, Greenfield Pond, Water Ranch Lake, Freestone Pond, McQueen Pond), Cluff Reservoir, Roper Lake, Dankworth Ponds, Fain Lake, Dead Horse Lakes, Saguaro Lake, Oak Creek.
Family Fishing Events
Note: At these free fishing clinics, loaner rods are provided, bait is free, and no license is required for those who register at the AZGFD booth during event hours.
Saturday, Jan. 5
Brian Pinney Memorial Family Fishing Event, 8 a.m.-noon, Hirsch Conservation Education Area (Biscuit Tank); Ben Avery Shooting Facility 4044 W. Black Canyon Blvd. Phoenix.
Save time, buy online
Grab a license online (that helps conserve all species of wildlife, not to mention provides funding that goes back into fishing opportunities) and go “Fish AZ”.