Tuesday, January 31st, 2023
Tuesday, January 31st, 2023

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Arizona Summer End Fishing Report

Rory's tips:
There is a full moon Aug. 31, which is great for Labor Day weekend camping. It's tough to beat a flickering campfire while Luna casts her majic light and shadows across the landscape.
But, a full moon means this will not be the greatest weekend for fishing at night using artificial lights.
Recent rainstorms in many areas made some trout waters turbid and slowed the bite, but that might just make the fish a little more hungry for anglers this weekend: we'll just have to wait and see.
Since I focused mostly on high country outings for Labor Day during last week's report, let's look at some of the desert waters.
Pleasant, Roosevelt, Alamo and Bartlett all got some nice slugs of water and nutrients from the torrential rainstorms splashing the watersheds last week. It's nice to get one last good spurt at the tail end of the growing season. It appears that the water influx disrupted the bite patterns at Pleasant and Roosevelt — it's been a little tough at both ever since, but that could change at any time. I suspect that the bite will return this weekend, but there is no guarantee. At the very least, experiment and be versatile. Drop shots may rule the day if the fish are finicky.
However, according to one of my best fishing sources, Mike McFarland at Hook Up Outfitters, Bartlett is going great guns for 1- to 2-pound bass. Bartlett has a decent topwater bite going off-and-on throughout the day, so it might be worth a visit. Although there is plenty of shoreline camping available at this lake level, the best spaces get taken mighty fast on a holiday weekend.
It looks like Alamo is heating up for bass fishing as well. There are apparently some new rules on second vehicles for Alamo, so check out that report for more information so that I don't interpret it incorrectly. If you want to escape the crowds, an Alamo expedition might be just the ticket this weekend. I doubt you will have problems finding camping spots this weekend at Alamo — it's still mighty hot.
McFarland said the bite has been really good at Saguaro lately, with some really fat and fiesty bass being caught. Mike's even been taking his dad to go fishing there. Now, that's a good son.
I've been getting good reports from both Apache and Canyon lakes. The largemouth bass action at Apache has sure been good this year, and the smallmouth are making a comeback. In the evenings, you might even try for some delectable walleye.
Canyon is the land of the black bass lunkers, but even veteran anglers can get skunked here. It can be a popular place for recreational boaters on holiday weekends. This is an extremely scenic lake where you might see desert bighorn sheep, peregrine falcons or bald eagles along the precipitous cliffs.
I've also been hearing some good things about the striper and smallmouth bite at Lake Havasu. It might be a little crazy with recreational boaters from California this weekend, but keep it in mind for a September trip. Typically the topwater activity will hit a crescendo in September.
Willow Beach might be worth a visit for stocker trout and monster stripers coming in to feed on the stocked trout. The federal fish hatchery there stocks trout every Friday, so every Saturday there are lots of folks catching trout from the new fishing pier there, or catching stripers using swim baits. Be sure to take along your binoculars to spot bighorn sheep.
So, go catch some end-of-summer memories. Maybe I'll see you out there.

Note: If you have a fishing report or good fishing pictures to share (JPEG), send them to raikens@aszgfd.gov. Rory can also be reached at (623) 236-7214.
URBAN LAKES — The final spring stocking of catfish took place the week of June 11-16. The Urban Fishing Program does not stock fish from June 25 through mid-September. Catfish stockings in the Phoenix and Tucson urban lakes will resume the week of Sept. 17-22.

Fishing has been decent for anglers using worms, stink baits, or shrimp fished on the bottom. If you want to use bobbers, rig up a slip bobber and fish 8-12 feet deep.

Catfish are biting irregularly throughout the day, but are more active when the sun goes down. Most catfish are from 13-16 inches, but some lunkers over 3 pounds are being hauled out of the lakes.

Bluegill fishing is good for anglers using worms and mealworms fished under a small bobber in 3- to 6-foot depths. Action for largemouth bass is fair, with the best baits being finesse plastics fished in the early morning hours.

At Green Valley Lakes (Payson), fishing for trout has slowed down since stockings wrapped up on May 11. However, fishing for bass, bluegill and crappie is good. Anglers using worms and meal worms under a small bobber are enjoying plenty of action. Also try small plastic or marabou jigs, plastic worms, and dark-colored nymphs or streamers. Trout stockings will resume in October.
TEMPE TOWN LAKE – Fishing is fair, especially for largemouth bass. the best bite at first and last light for bass and sunfish. This is a good time to try for channel catfish and carp using corn or dough baits after dark. Keep in mind that although this fishery in in the city, it is not part of the Urban Fishing Program, so you will need the regular state fishing license to fish here.
LAKE PLEASANT – Lake level 1,675, 70 percent full with 8,073 surface acres. Full moon this weekend, so fishing under lights won't be as viable.
Mike McFarland, a guide with HookUp Outfitters, said that since the major storms brought water and nutrients to the lake two weeks ago, the bite has been slow — but that may change by this weekend.
The best bet is to be versatile — go prepared for topwater, but be ready with drop shots and other deeper water techniques. For striped bass, anchovies are typically a good choice. The depth may vary for active fish though, so experiment.
Nighttime fishing for catfish, especially from shore, should be good using stink abit. This is prime catfish time. Try stink baits such as chicken liver. Corn can also work for both catfish and carp. Frozen anchovies fished on the bottom are another good choice — you might even catch a striped bass.
ROOSEVELT LAKE – Lake elevation is 2,103 feet and the lake level is 50 percent. Roosevelt did get some nice inflows last week from the Salt River and Tonto Creek due to heavy rainfall in the drainage. However, the bite has been slow or at best, sporadic since then. That may change any day.
There is a full moon this week for Labor Day, which will make it more difficult to fish at night using submersible lights.
Be versatile and go prepared with everything from topwater to drop shots, then see what works best.
This is definitely prime catfish season. For channels, think sink bait. For flatheads, live bait such as bluegills or small carp work best. For channel catfish, try any stinkbait. Although you can catch channels during the day, the prime bite has likely shifted to the nighttime hours.
Not hearing much on the crappie front, but the speckled beauties should be congregated in larger schools, mostly over open water. Once you find them, live minnows and mini-jigs can do the trick.
APACHE LAKE – Lake elevation is 1,906 feet (92 percent full). Only have a couple of reports, but those are very good for a mixed bag of largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, walleye and buffalo fish.
Both anglers who left messages also saw bighorns on the uplands toward the dam.
You might also find bass chasing shad at the surface, especially at first light. Try working the major points using soft plastic crayfish like lures worked along the bottom. Crankbaits can also work well at times. A few good-sized smallies are being caught — please practice catch-and-release on these fish, which are in the comeback mode. Walleye fishing should be decent at first and last light using night crawler rigs, or jigs tipped with worms. Apache is also full of some really nice yellow bass. Try gold KastMasters or yellow/gold Rooster Tails. Catfishing should be good. Carp fishing is very good. You might even catch one of the monster buffalo fish (see picture from Canyon Lake).
CANYON LAKE – Lake elevation is still holding at around 1,659 feet, which is 98 percent full.
While Canyon is the land of the lunkers, it can be tough to fish, especially for novice anglers. Catch rates are typically low and even veteran anglers get skunked here. But the possibility of catching a hawg keeps many anglers coming back time and again. This is a pretty good lake for bluegill and yellow bass. Try small crappie-like lures, such as 2-inch curly tails, along the rocky shoreline. Shore fishing for channel catfish and carp can also be viable both day and night right now. As the season progresses, the better fishing for bottom dwellers will transition to the nighttime hours.
SAGUARO LAKE – Lake elevation is 1,526 feet at 95 percent full. This has been a fishing hot spot, especially during the week, but recreational boating can make it a challenge on busy weekends.
Largemouth bass fishing is fair to good when the recreational boating pressure is lower, especially at night
With a full moon this weekend, fishing under submersible lights won't be as effective. A good tip might for Labor Day might be to get on the lake before first light and then get off before the hordes of recreational boaters arrive.
This is also a great place to take the youngsters at night for some sunfish action on one of the many fishing piers. Try meal worms or night crawlers under a bobber.
BARTLETT LAKE – Lake elevation 1,756 feet, 44 percent full. This is probably the most consistent lake for 1- t0 2-pound bass, with good action throughout most of the day, including some nice topwater action at times..
Haven't heard much for crappie anglers here, but the speckled beauties should be congregating in larger schools suspended in deeper water, quite often off extended underwater points or along the Yellow Cliffs.
Look for a first-light topwater bass bite. Sometimes it is sporadic to non-existent. But if you hit it right, you might be able to get some good action. This bite should continue getting better and better as the season progresses. There might also be a topwater bite right before monsoon-generated storms hit. But be sure to get off the water of there is lightning.
This is the prime flathead catfish season. Try live bluegill or small carp as bait. Look for the deeper holes, especially uplake where there is a little current. For bluegills, try the backs of rocky coves using night crawlers or meal worms on light tackle.

HORSESHOE LAKE – Lake is empty.
LOWER SALT RIVER (below Saguaro Lake) – Releases have dropped to 525 cfs cfs out of Stewart Mountain Dam from Saguaro. You might be able to catch some bass or sunfish in the deeper holes. Good time for tubing the Salt — take along a fishing rod.

Creeks Below the Mogollon Rim
The following creeks are being stocked weekly right now. but that will end soon:
* Tonto Creek
* Christopher Creek
* Haigler Creek
* East Verde River
Don't forget we have a new interactive 2012 trout stocking schedule that actually shows the locations we stock along the creeks.

Note: If you have a fishing report or good fishing pictures to share (JPEG), send them to raikens@aszgfd.gov. Rory can also be reached at (623) 236-7214.
LAKE POWELL — By: Wayne Gustaveson 
http://www.wayneswords.com, July 18, 2012. Lake elevation: 3,631. Water temperature 80-83 F

LAKE POWELL- By: Wayne Gustaveson  http://www.wayneswords.com, Lake Elevation: 3626  
Water Temperature 80-85 F

Fishing strategy this week is to be prepared for anything. Stripers are being caught night and day but it seems to be in a different spot with a different bait or lure each time. The common thread is to look for small stripers splashing and then react to what stripers are doing.

Shad forage is limited in the lower lake but abundant near the Colorado River inflow and the upper San Juan.  Shad are small in size and not attractive to the bigger stripers.  Small stripers visibly attack shad while larger fish lurk nearby in deeper, cooler water.  Big stripers follow the surface feeders hoping for a chance encounter with larger shad. Find small 2-3 fish splashes to locate larger suspended stripers, bass and walleye.
Over the weekend 2-4 pound stripers were caught in Navajo Canyon on bait between 8:30 and 10:30 a.m. where small fish had boiled the previous day.  Main channel depth was between 100-110 feet at this location (Monitoring gradually changing channel bottom depth in long canyons is a good way to mark a location that can be described to others).  The following day stripers boiled in the same spot between 8:30 and 9:30 a.m. and were readily caught on surface lures and spoons in the same location.

This splash and graph pattern is working lakewide. One time they boil and the next time they suspend at depth in big schools.  Fish are mid way back in the canyons because the backs of canyons with colored water have excessive water temperatures.

My best strategy is to start trolling a deep-diving lure where water color changes from clear to murky with bottom depth near 100 feet.  Look for splashes near shore in shade while graphing for suspended schools in the open channel.  I follow the shade line as stripers really like to hold in shade and look out into brighter water.  In each canyon there will be an area where more fish are marked.  Troll through the fish marks but if they do not respond hover over a school and try spoons. If that does not work then cut up anchovies, broadcast chum around the boat and fish cut bait in 30-60 feet of water.  Look for shade and broken rocks that may harbor crayfish when bait fishing.
Sounds difficult doesn’t it?  It’s a great time to learn about fish behavior because there are a lot of hungry fish just waiting for the right trigger.  It is really gratifying to be able to decipher all the nuances that identify vulnerable fish and catch a bunch of hungry stripers where everyone else has just driven by.

Night fishing is working very well near the marinas. Tie the boat up to the marina breakwater, put out a night light, and watch the shad gather. Chumming attracts the stripers lurking on the outer edge of the light and under the shad school.  Fish deeper than the suspended shad.
On my weekend trip I reluctantly bought anchovies to catch some bigger fish at depth. Trolling while graphing revealed many fish marks on the corner of the channel. I trolled through the fish and was surprised to catch my biggest striper (5 pounds) of the year on a Norman deep diver. While unhooking and taking pictures the familiar sound of boiling stripers echoed off the canyon walls behind us in the shade.  We commenced to catch 20 more 1-3 pound stripers on top in the next half hour.  It was a great trip.
I can try bait next time.

LEES FERRY — Report By: Terry Gunn
Fly Fishing Up-River:
Our monsoon season has been active for the past 60 days and river valley is actually green. The Pariah River has flash flooded three times in the past four days (go to our Facebook page for a video http://www.facebook.com/leesferryanglers) which has turned the river to chocolate milk below Lees Ferry. Water Holes Canyon, which enters the river directly across from 4-Mile Bar also flash flooded and brought a tremendous amount of sand into the river. In the long term this is probably good for the river considering that this is likely an input of nutrients.
The fishing this summer was good. I rate the July cicada hatch a 3 on a scale of 10; the hatch was early, of short duration and not as many bugs as some years. It is different every year and we’ll see what next years hatch is like. Recent fishing has been all about streamers; I would say that the streamer fishing the last couple of weeks has been as good as I have ever seen it. We are also doing well with nymphs, both wading and drifting from the boat.
Conditions are getting ready to change on Sept. 1 when the water flows are going to drop to 8,000 cfs constant for all of September and October. This is the last year of a multi-year experiment where the water flows have been held steady for these 2 months. I’m not really sure what this is going to do to the fishing but it will be perfect wading water for both upriver and the walk-in section. If we get some good midge hatches the fishing should be good. Since the conditions are changing and we have no real way of predicting how the fish are going to react to the change we are going to resume regular fishing reports posted on our website so be sure to check back in September for regular fishing updates.
Overall the fish population is the highest that it has been in years. The trout fishing at Lees Ferry continues to be better than we have seen in many years. The Arizona Game and Fish Department has confirmed through creel surveys that fishing is better than it has been in more than a decade. The trout are in superb condition, growing fast, and we are seeing fish of all sizes in the system which is indicative of a very healthy fishery and should continue that way for the foreseeable future.
Walk In Fly Fishing Report, By Dean Wyndam:
Well the fishing has been really great the past few weeks. The upper boulder field is where most of the anglers have been catching good numbers of fish. That being said, I cannot believe that more fishermen are not up here fishing. Today I fished the walk in and counted TWO people other than me fishing. The weather has been decent with the temps moderating up to the low 90’s. We have had some rain but most of the moisture has been in the upper plateau areas. Most days we have had clouds in the afternoon and the midge hatches have been amazing. The fish have been cooperating well by being active from first light until about 11 am and then on and off until picking up again around 5 pm. My suggestion is for you to fish as early as possible until 10 am and then find a place to get a cool drink and take a nap. Then fish again at 5 pm until dark.
The upper boulder field has really great numbers of fish. Yes, some of them are small but be patient there are larger fish there also. Almost everything is working in the boulder field. Small tan or brown dry flies have been very productive. A wine colored San Juan worm with a midge has been working well also. For the streamer fisherman, black wooly buggers have been really the hot ticket, especially in the afternoon. Remember that the boulder field has lots of great holding water but caution needs to be taken when wading due to deep holes and lots of rocks. If you have a wading staff brings it.
The area by the big rock is still fishing well but not as good as last month. There are fish in good numbers here but they have been really picky about what they want to eat. Streamers in the afternoon have been the most productive fly in this area lately. Midges with San Juan worms have been working in the morning and late afternoon.
The area by where the Paria River enters the Colorado is in a state of change. Due to the rains on the upper plateau area there is lots of silt being put In the Colorado River. The river below the Paria riffle is very silty and red colored. However, the area just out from the confluence is still very clear and is being scoured clean from the silt daily. New holes are being formed that will make good holding areas during the afternoon. Fish have not been as active during the morning in this area. That should change as soon as the deeper holes are scoured out. This area is also hazardous for wading due to the heavy deposit of silt. It can be almost like quicksand. So it is better to walk in from the parking lot on the main Lees Ferry road. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO WADE the Paria River.
The water flows are changing to 8,000 cfs constant on Sept. 1. This is going to be great for the walk-in fishing.
So I would rate the fishing at a steady 8 for this week. So if you have a few days to fish come on up and catch some wonderful rainbows. Hope to see you on the water.
Walk in Spin Fishing Report:
The higher flows have improved the walk in for spin fishing. All areas are producing good numbers of larger fish on a daily basis. KastMaster in the gold color is the most productive lure. The silver KastMaster also works but not as well as gold. Panther Martins #6 in a gold blade with a black body have been working well also. The spin fishing pressure has been very light due to the lower flows of the spring and now the higher flows have been giving us some larger fat fish. I fished the walk in from the bottom to the top two days ago and did not see another person spin fishing. In an hour and a half I caught 12 fish with the largest at 17 inches and the smallest at 8 to 10 inches. I have also been using fluorocarbon line and I like the way the lure sinks quickly through the water column. I have been using 4 lb. diameter test.
The upper boulder area from the river boat beach area down river to the big boulder has been really fun to fish with a Kastmaster. The boulder area has some really deep holes and lots of transition water where larger fish can be caught.
The area from the large boulder to the Paria River has not been as productive as in the past. I have tried several different set ups but the bite just appears to be more difficult right now.
At the area where the Paria River enters the Colorado anglers have been catching nice size fish later in the day. As the water comes up the big fish move in closer to shore and are easier to catch. Be cautious if you are wading in this area as the Paria is dumping large amounts of silt into the river making areas that are soft and mucky. A wading staff is helpful but walking in from the main Lees Ferry road would be the safer bet.
Whirling disease detected for 2nd time at Lees Ferry
This is the 2nd time that WD has been detected at Lees Ferry. The first detection was in 2007; this was the year that Lake Powell dropped to its lowest level and as a result, the discharge temperatures from the dam were more than 60 degrees. This past year the discharge temperatures increased again, this time it was a result of the huge inflows into the lake which caused another 60 degree discharge. There has always been the thought that it was our cold water that prevented Lees Ferry from being infected with WD and I find it an interesting coincidence that both detections were made during periods of warm water. Water temps returned to normal (48 degrees) last December.
Like the Green and San Juan, I’m not expecting this WD detection to have an impact on the Lees Ferry fishery. The one thing that it should impact is our awareness to make sure that we all take the necessary steps to clean our gear so that WD is not spread to other waters in AZ or elsewhere.
Here is some great info: http://www.tu.org/whirling-disease
Spin Fishing Up River:
Spin fishing is just OK. The reason that it has slowed down is due to the fact there is so much algae floating in the river that it is difficult to get a good drift.
If you have some news you would like to report about fishing lees ferry, the walk-in section or up river please e-mail your report to: anglers@leesferry.com  Attn. Lees Ferry Fishing Report. We would be happy to have your input, and pass it along.
Here is a report form one of our customers.
To: Administrator
Subject: [Cliff Dwellers Lodge] Fishing
Last Tuesday I had the opportunity to fish with my wife on the boat and Skip as the guide and I just wanted to tell you that we enjoyed the day so much that it’s all I have talked about for nearly a week.

Skip was a great teacher and I enjoyed the day so much with the beauty of the river and I am trying to talk some guys to coming out and fishing a couple of days. It was great and to catch fish on top of that what a deal!

Note: Check out the latest edition of Arizona Highways magazine, there is a nice photo of fly fishing at the Ferry taken by Rory Aikens.aalmarri@asu.edu.

LAKE MEAD –  The current elevation has maintained at 1,116 feet above msl, possibly due to the runoff from the storms that have came through.  The water level will normally continue to drop approximately one foot to six inches per week.  Be careful boating because structure previously submerged may be at the surface and watch for floating debris. There seems to be an abundance of shad currently which may be the reason for the lack of bite.

Cut anchovies are still the bait of choice. Check the moon phases before you go: there is a full moon for Labor Day weekend.   The next new moon will be Saturday, Sept. 15th.  Dark nights work best when fishing under light.

Fishing for stripers in 50 plus feet of water will normally find the larger fish.  If they are not taking the anchovies try swimming baits and see if you can get them to bite.  Jigging in 50-60 feet deep has been doing well on Mead.  If you can locate the shad, the stripers are not far behind.  Trolling usually works best in areas were shad are found and best done in the early mornings and evenings.  The bite for largemouth and smallmouth was reported good using plastic worms and crawdads with purple and browns in them.  Several fishermen said that top water lures were working for them.  All the fishermen contacted were hopeful for the coming years with rising water conditions and the abundance of baitfish they have seen this year.  
Launching conditions at South Cove have improved as the water level has gone up. There are currently four lanes.  As the water raises logs and other debris can become hazards, so be careful boating.
Important notice: With the 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 lake level has dropped to about 642 feet above msl.  The black bass are hitting soft baits when worked slowly especially on grass beds in 20 to 30 feet deep.  Trolling with anchovies in 30-50 feet has been producing some stripers, while catfish are on the bottom.  Vicki caught a nice 4.74 pound striper at 24 ¾ inches fishing in coves near the power lines.  While the number of stripers in Mohave has been decreasing, the quality of the fish caught has increased.  Reports of good bluegill action off the structures mentioned in the paragraph below.
Submersible lights fished during the new moon are an effective way to catch stripers. Next new moon is Sept. 15.  Cut anchovies usually work the best.
Biologists from both Arizona Game and Fish Department and Nevada Division of Wildlife with the help of volunteers, National Park Service and Bureau of Reclamation personnel have continued to install fish habitat in Carp Cove, Box Cove, Shoshone, and Arrowhead.  Fish habitat consists of PVC structures, wood pallet structures, tamarisk bundles, and some Christmas trees. The largemouth, smallmouth, 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 gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.
Important notice: With the 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 www.azgfd.gov  or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.
WILLOW BEACH – Willow Beach is stocked every Friday with 3,000 13-inch rainbow trout.  Rainbow, peach, garlic and yellow Power Baits and Powerworms were being used most for trout.  Jakes original and Jakes Juniors, Panther Martin and Rooster Tails are also usually effective.   Fishing is usually best near the fishing pier after the Friday stocking. Most of the nice stripers and trout are seem to be caught between river mile 49 and 53.  A picture of a large striper was sent in and was caught around mile 52.  Willow Beach can be hit or miss bait fishing.  Try different baits including swim baits when nobody seems to be hooking anything.
Important notice: With the 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 gcummins@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 www.azgfd.gov  or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.
COLORADO RIVER BELOW DAVIS DAM – Trout continue to bite in the casino area with some larger fish in the deep holes.  Several folks have called and spoke of very large trout being caught in the Laughlin area.  Rusty from Riviera Marina sent a picture of the monster catch of Lensey P. of very large bluegills caught in the Laughlin Bay area on night crawlers.
Topock Gorge- Most bass are being taken on minnows and night crawlers. Smallmouths are ranging from 2 to 5 pounds, and sunfish up to 1.5 pounds.  A 5.5 beauty was the largest black bass so far this year.  Stripers caught in May averaged between 2-5 pounds but have dropped to 1-2 pounds recently.  Catfish have been harder to catch.  A beautiful 7.42 pound channel was recently caught on anchovies by Rex while fishing for stripers. Sunfish are in the river and being taken on plastics like small worms, curly tails, and 4 inch Robo Worms.  The largemouth and smallmouth bass action has been outstanding.  Derek landed a nice 2.9 pound largemouth using a spinner a little ways up river.
Rainbow trout are stocked by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife service monthly during the winter. The fish are normally stocked in two locations; Davis Camp and near The Riverside. Stocking at Rotary Park has made another access point to the river for fishing and has made many people happy.  Trout fishing at the stocking sites is great immediately following the stockings, then the fish move out and you need to find them.
Rainbow trout are located throughout the river below Davis dam, but anglers typically report catching trout on the Arizona side across from the Riverside, off the shore of Davis Camp and in the big bend area. This year we have received multiple reports of larger holdover trout being caught.  Remember to fish for trout, you need a trout stamp on Class A and Lifetime fishing licenses.
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 gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.
TOPOCK MARSH – The action at Topock Marsh has been steadily improving. Night crawlers and live minnows have been tempting catfish from North Dyke.  Dayton sent a picture of one of his largemouth and reports that the bass and sunfish are moving off their nests. Bass can be hit and miss but live bait has been reported to work the best now.  Stripers appear abundant from the February AZGFD survey. Small crappies are being taken throughout the marsh.  Robert and Dennis had a great day on the marsh and came home with a stringer of 11 largemouths, 1 very nice catfish and a striper.  Remember the minimum of 13 inches for largemouth bass in the Marsh.
You can access the marsh by boat at the 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 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 www.azgfd.gov  or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

Note: If you would like more information on southwestern waters, visit http://www.azgfd.gov/h_f/where_fish_southwest.shtml. Our Yuma Regional office has recently updated all the information to provide you more insight into these fisheries.
For more information, visit the updated "Where to Fish" pages at http://www.azgfd.gov/h_f/where_fish_southwest.shtml.
If you have a fishing report or good fishing pictures to share (JPEG), send them to raikens@aszgfd.gov. Rory can also be reached at (623) 236-7214.
LAKE HAVASU — Report courtesy John Galbraith of BassTackleMaster.com, Lake Havasu City, Az.

Lake Level 448.96. Striper Bite Fair in the morning hours from 6 to 8 a.m. from the mouth of the river south to Calif Bay. Boils have been occuring sporadicially during this time. Troll Rattle Traps or
Pointer 100 minnow plugs in areas where the Grebes (water birds) are congragating over schools of shad.
Catfish bite is excellent in the evening hours in bays where grass isn't too thick. Live Bluegills, Cut Mackerel and anchovies work well now, be sure to throw out extra chum to attract cats from longer distances. Smallmouth & Largemouth bass hitting
Poppers, Buzzbaits and super spooks in the  early AM hours. Fish the outside edges of floating weedmats.
Carolina Rigged Plastics like Brush hogs,curly tail Power Worms and Senkos working well over submerged weedbeds in 8 to 15ft of water. 3/8 to 1/2oz weight with 10 or 12lbs test works well. Add a glass bead between the swivel and sinker to attract bass in lower visibility water.
ALAMO LAKE — Report courtesy Mark Knapp, Alamo Lake State Park.
Well folks,  for those of you that want the short version — bass fishing is decent.  Junior and I have been holding our own throwing plastics in the evening. We're starting to see boils, which are always one cast out of reach each time you throw. I'm learning to hold on when I'm in the back of the boat because he likes to put the trolling motor on warp drive and chase them all over the lake. I have tied to explain to him more than once that I have run down many of batteries chasing the boils around the lake and if you stay put they will come back towards you. In one ear and out the other, and off we go.  Reminds me of me, a few years ago.

Moving on; B.J. from Phoenix called me today and said he did very well crappie fishing around the cliffs up by the dam a couple of nights  ago. The bite started around 11 p.m. and ended around 4 a.m.  He was using crappies lights, minnows,  and said 13 to 15 feet of water was the hot ticket.  The night bite is on.

Cat fishing is good.  You can throw hot dogs, worms, or stink bait and catch your fair share of cats.  For the best results head to the upper end of the lake and fish in about 4 foot of water.

Shore fishing is o.k.  Moving on.

To answer the number one question we get every day.  With all the monsoons we did get 3 inches of water.  The lake level is currently at 1098ish with a little inflow still coming in. The dam releases are at 25 cfs.  Cholla ramp is still in operation at this time. We are still using the old rental boat road as the main ramp and it's a matter of time that this will become the only ramp we have.  Monsoons have never done much in the 10 years I have been out here, and now we wait to see what the winter rains have to offer.   When all else fails I will drag out the old portable boat ramp and we will have something to launch off of.   There is no way to sugar coat the news I have next, so here goes.

As of October 1st our agency, Arizona State Parks Board, have decided to re instate the second vehicle fee.  Here's how it works in a nut shell.  If you camp at a state park and the second vehicle is registered to the same household then it's considered one vehicle.  If you tow it in,same thing.  For a lot of you that come out with a fifth wheel, and your friend comes in towing the bass boat, be prepared to pay the $15 dollar second vehicle fee.  We're going back to the way we did business a couple of years ago.  On that note I'm asking that you please do not yell, throw things, curse, hang, or shoot at us.  Were here to make sure you have a good time and keep the place and clean.  Were just following orders from the powers above.  While your sitting there thinking, "what the……" I might as well hit you with this.  Starting Sept. 15  a construction company will be starting work on pouring a high water boat ramp just above the main ramp.  Here's how this came to be:  Back in 2007 when the State had lots of money there were funds put away that could only be used for a specified project.  In our case, and for those of you that remember when the main road was all buckled up pasted the turn off to Cholla, ADOT had the funds put away not only to fix the road but to also build this ramp.  Even through all the legislatures sweeps and trying to privatize us the funds could only be used for this project.  So here we are today.  This is an a ADOT project, not a State Park project.  There is a very big difference for those of you thinking, " this is what we got for helping you out."  I'm here to tell you that what you people did to donate and keep us open went to paying the electric, park maintenance, and keeping the park safe and clean.  We will always be grate full for what you did to help us.  I guess this why I'm having a hard time trying to explain how all this works.  Anyway for the next 3 months be prepared for delay's at whatever ramp we have open and give us a call before coming out.  If you have questions feel free to give me a call at (928) 669-2088, or come out and see me.  I will be the guy beating my head on my desk and eating every aspirin in sight.  Well, that's allot to swallow but it's all I got.


COLORADO RIVER (PARKER STRIP AREA) — Fishing for smallmouth bass over 2 pounds in size is expected to be good to excellent. In addition, redear sunfish should also be good in the pound-plus sizes. 
The Parker Strip is well known for its smallmouth bass fishing, especially in the area from the dam to several miles downstream. The Parker Strip is also home to some really impressive, dinner-plate-sized redear sunfish of 2 pounds or larger.
Channel and flathead catfish fishing is always fair in this section of the Colorado River. Below the dam, striper fishing should also be fair, using live shad or anchovies. Largemouth bass are abundant, especially in the downstream portions of the Parker Strip. Channel and flathead catfish fishing will be fair to good in this section of the Colorado River as the weather warms up.
Take precautions to make sure your boat and equipment are clean before leaving the water to make sure you don’t spread quagga mussels to other water by accident. 
COLORADO RIVER (Picacho State Park to Imperial Dam, including backwaters and Martinez Lake)

This stretch of the river is best known for its trophy-sized flathead catfish, with some over 70 pounds, and largemouth bass, with some over 10 pounds. However, it can also be good for channel catfish, sunfish and carp, and to a lesser extent, striped bass, crappie and tilapia.
Largemouth bass fishing is generally best in the backwaters or near the mouth of the backwaters. There are many different techniques used for largemouth bass. As a general rule, most people will use topwater lures such as buzzbaits or spinnerbaits in the early morning and then switch to jigs, crankbaits, or swimbaits as the day progresses.
Using plastic baits that resemble worms, crawdads, frogs, or lizards often work well. It is generally best to fish around structure such as weedbeds, emergent vegetation, tree stumps, brush, or boat docks. Fishing picks up as the water temperatures warm up in the spring and summer, but largemouth can be taken any time of the year.
Flathead fishing is generally best in slack water areas, deep holes, or near overhanging vegetation along the main channel of the river. Flatheads prefer live bait such as bluegill or small carp, and fishing is best at night during the summer months. Channel catfish are widespread in the main river channel and backwaters and will bite on night crawlers, chicken liver, stinkbait, or about any other “smelly” bait. They can be caught year-round but probably bite best at night.
Bluegill are also widespread but are most likely to be found around structure in the backwaters or slackwater areas. Bluegill will bite on meal worms, night crawlers or small crappie jigs.
MITTRY LAKE — The topwater bite should still be going here.
Mittry Lake is located just above Laguna Dam and supports a good population of largemouth bass and channel catfish, and even some good-sized flathead catfish. There are shoreline fishing opportunities at this lake in the form of about a dozen rock jetties, but you’ll probably have the best success in a small boat. Mittry Lake can be frustrating, as the bite seems to be real variable, but the fish are there. It is just a question of getting them to respond to your presentation. The water tends to be very murky most of the year, except for the upper end of Teal Alley where the lake inflow comes in, so play to the fish’s sense of hearing and smell, rather than sight. There are also crappie and sunfish to be caught, although they tend to average relatively small in size. Mittry Lake is well-known locally for the quality largemouth bass it produces, and fishing during the spring spawn will increase your chances of success.
YUMA AREA PONDS — The Department has stepped up efforts to encourage the recruitment of new anglers, and retention of existing ones. To this end, the Department has increased stocking efforts in a few ponds in the Yuma area that are easily accessed without a boat, within a short distance of the urban center. Those ponds are the Yuma West Wetlands pond, located in the City Park, and Redondo and Fortuna ponds, located about 10 miles northeast of Yuma. Access to Redondo Pond was recently improved with the addition of an ADA-compliant fishing pier, and thick cattail growth was removed at Fortuna Pond this summer, improving shoreline access by many orders of magnitude. All of these waters received multiple stockings of rainbow trout in the winter months; Redondo Pond will be stocked with channel catfish during the spring, and the Yuma West Wetlands pond will receive channel catfish and bluegills. Depending on available funding, we hope to continue regular stockings into all three of these shoreline-accessible waters, and perhaps add additional waters to our stocking schedule. These ponds provide an ideal place to take the family. All three waters now are provided with restroom and trash facilities. Special regulations on fish limits are in effect for these waters, so be sure to consult the regulations before you take fish.
REGIONAL HOT SPOTS — Alamo Lake will continue to be a hot spot for plentiful largemouth bass and channel catfish, although trophy-sized fish will be uncommon. Lake Havasu is probably currently the premier lake in our region (and perhaps the state) for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass and redear sunfish. Numbers caught will likely be lower, but the quality of the fish much higher. The Parker Strip should remain excellent for smallmouth bass and redear sunfish, and the Colorado River below Walter’s Camp down to Imperial Dam the best bet for large and plentiful flathead catfish. Our spring surveys indicated that there is a very impressive population of flathead catfish in the lower Imperial Division between Picacho State Park and Imperial Dam. Expect many in the 5- to 10-pound size class, but we know of at least one state record lurking in those waters. Backwaters in the Imperial Division above Imperial Dam will continue to yield impressive largemouth bass, up to and exceeding 10 pounds.
If you need any additional information or assistance, don't hesitate to contact the Yuma regional office at (928) 342-0091, and we will be happy to give you whatever information we have. A very good resource for local fishing information in the Yuma area is the website and forum at http://www.yumabassman.com/.

Note: The summer trout stocking schedule can be accessed at http://www.azgfd.gov/pdfs/h_f/fishing/stocking/2012SumTroutStockSchedule.pdf
Fire restrictions have been lifted on the Kaibab and Coconino national forests.
Note: If you have a fishing report or good fishing pictures to share (JPEG), send them to raikens@aszgfd.gov. Rory can also be reached at (623) 236-7214.


Note: Upper Lake Mary was stocked with trout last week.  Fossil Creek is closed to fishing.  
Angler report:
Hey Rory – did some fishing in the high country over the last week and thought I'd send along some reports.

Kaibab Lake – Fished from shore b/w the boat ramp and the fishing pier from first light until 9 a.m. Picked up several stockers on yellow Power Bait, fished off the bottom or under a bobber. No luck on other baits (mealworms) or lures. Beautiful lake/scenery in the early morning – saw several turkeys amble up to the opposite shore, and enjoyed watching ospreys plunge into the water and pluck out fish.

Dogtown Reservoir – Fished from shore all around the lake from first light until 8:30 a,m. Awfully slow – this was in the midst of the heat wave, and it made us wonder if a lot of the fish had moved deep. No action on baits of any kind, and it looked like our fellow fishermen weren't having much luck either. Finally snagged a healthy rainbow on small Super Duper, but that was it for the day. Water levels were low, especially on the south shore. Still, quite a pretty area, and the road in to the lake is in great condition.

Upper Lake Mary – Started at The Narrows at first light and couldn't get so much as a bite, fishing a variety of lures – inline spinners, minnow imitations, etc. Moved shop to the dam area (from shore) and continued the shutout until a decent sized pike finally got on the end of a soft paddle tail minnow swimbait. With the low water levels, ULM is even worse than usual as a lure magnet – we donated several to the murky (and rocky!) depths.

Aaron Mertz

KAIBAB LAKE —  Campground is open. Fishing has been good with trout being caught on rainbow Power Bait. Crappie and bass were being caught on small jigs.  Please try to leave the larger bass in the lake to spawn.    Stocked last week.

CATARACT LAKE —  Campground is open.  Please try to leave the larger bass in the lake to spawn.
DOGTOWN LAKE —  Campground is open. Crappie fishing was excellent over the weekend when the wind wasn’t blowing.  Fish along the shore on the opposite side of the lake from the boat ramp. Stocked last week.
JD DAM — No report. Remember the lake is managed as a catch and release fishery.
RUSSELL TANK –   The lake is to shallow to stock.
SANTA FE — No report
WHITEHORSE LAKE — Campground is open.   Fly fishermen were catching a lot of small crappie on bead head prince nymphs.   In addition folks were catching trout.  With the warm water temperatures trout fishing will be best early in the morning or late in the evening.
LOWER LAKE MARY —  Almost dry.
UPPER LAKE MARY —   Has been liberally stocked with trout for two weeks in a row.  Water quality problems at many of our trout lakes hassled to us stocking Upper Lake Mary.   Water levels are dropping and larger boats can only be launched at the second boat ramp.  Boat anglers are doing well fishing for northern pike and walleye.  Fishing is slow from the shore,
ASHURST LAKE —   Fishing was good during the week on green Power Bait and worms.  Boat anglers were catching some of the large brow trout and brook trout that have been stocked in the lake over the last couple of weeks.
FRANCIS SHORT POND –  Fishing was good last week. Catfish were being caught on hotdogs. Trout were being caught on green powerbait.
KINNIKINICK LAKE — Road is open.  No report. A lot of nice Brown trout and channel catfish were caught during fish sampling.
OAK CREEK — No report. Stocked last week.
LONG LAKE — We have had a few reports that the pike fishing has been good on Long Lake,
BEAVER CREEK – Has been Stocked
WEST CLEAR CREEK-. Has been Stocked
BLUE RIDGE —  Fishing has been good.  Trout were being caught on Cicadas

KNOLL LAKE — Fishing has been good. 

DEAD HORSE RANCH STATE PARK – Catfish were last stocked for the Free Fishing event. Trout were last stocked the week of March 19. The catfish and largemouth bite has been fair.

Catfish are still being caught on night crawlers, chicken liver, and stink bait. The bass are being caught on small plastic worms and Gitzit-type plastic grubs, bounced slowly along the bottom. Sunfish have been doing well on worms, salmon eggs, or small piece of Powerbait under a bobber. They bite best in the early morning hours and the evening.

OAK CREEK — Stocked last week. Creek was a little turbid due to runoff last weekend, but is likely running clear again.
VERDE RIVER (throughout Verde Valley) – Trout were last stocked the week of March 26. Carp fishing has been good using corn or dough baits. Always check your regulations before fishing this area with live bait. Game and Fish Commission rule requires anglers to only use live bait that has been caught in the river. No transporting of live baitfish or crayfish is allowed.

Prescott Area
FAIN LAKE — The last stocking was the week of June 11.   Stocking should resume the beginning of September.  The reports from regulars at the lake say the trout are biting, but the morning bite is the best. Anglers are having luck throughout the day using Power Bait and Berkley Gulp. Rainbow and yellow seem to be the popular colors.
Fishermen using their fly rod gear are having the best luck.  Flies are less likely to get swallowed so releasing the fish is much easier. 
GOLDWATER LAKE — Trout were stocked for the Free Fishing Event on June 9, and most of the kids at the event caught trout and had a great time. This lake holds the state record for hybrid sunfish and this is a good time of year to fish for them.      
If you fish Goldwater and are having luck, please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.
GRANITE BASIN LAKE – Robert and Michelle fished from the boat launch at around 10 o’clock and caught fish non-stop for 2 -2 ½ hours.  They were using a bobber with worms and caught 23 bluegills and a black bass.  Robert tried a popper and had a strike but was unsuccessful in landing the fish.  Thanks for your report Robert and Michelle!  If you fish Granite Basin and are having luck, please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.
LYNX LAKE –Rainbow trout were last stocked the week of June 11th.   
Cut anchovies, night crawlers or hot dog are your best bet for catfish. Lynx also can be an exciting place to fish for carp.  Common carp are very strong fighters and will provide an excellent table fair. A quick search on the internet will produce tasty recipes for these robust fish. Corn and an assortment of other baits will attract these fish. Lynx can be difficult to fish, if you are not catching anything try moving to a new spot. There are some good spots on the north end of the lake that don’t get fished as heavily as the south end does.
MINGUS LAKE – The last stocking was scheduled for the week of June 11.  For trout the best bait is usually orange, pink, or white Power Bait, fished on the bottom with a treble hook and an egg sinker.  Fishing can be really good at times, because angler use is lower than other lakes in the area.
Yellow bullhead catfish are active and easy to catch with nightcrawlers on the bottom.
This lake is more remote than the other Prescott area lakes and not very big.  The lake is open as weather permits.  Forest Road 104 is relatively impassable when wet.  The lake is still open to foot traffic.
Someone illegally stocked yellow bullhead into Mingus several years ago. These fish compete directly with the trout and keep growth rates very low. If you witness anyone, anywhere, moving fish like bass, bluegill, catfish and stocking them, please report it to our Operation Game Thief Hotline at 1-800-352-0700.  Illegal stockings cost YOU money!
WATSON – The last trout stocking was the week of Feb. 13.   Folks have caught 16- to 17-inch holdover trout from the shore near the new boat launch. Peter, fishing from a kayak caught a 17-inch bass weighing approximately 3 pounds using a live worm.  He saw several other large bass but could not get any others to take his bait.  The Wildlife Manager for the Watson area sent me a picture of some nice trout an angler caught from shore. Both of these fish looked like they had been in the lake for a period of time because of the size and condition of the fish.  If you have fished Watson Lake please send me a report of your trip to share with folks.
Game and Fish Biologists surveyed Watson recently and found the bass, sunfish, and bullhead to be plentiful.  Crappies were also doing well.  Look for the crappie fishing to pick up in a year or two. If you fish Watson and are having luck, please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.
WILLOW CREEK RESERVOIR –   The challenge with this lake is finding access to the shore and fighting the aquatic vegetation.  If you fish Willow and are having luck, please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.


Recommended Waters to Fish

Fishing is fair  for boat anglers at Big Lake.   Fishing is good at Silver Creek,,  the Little Colorado River in Greer, Sheeps Crossing, and at The West Fork of the Black River bridge . 

Week of Aug. 20-24
Little Colorado River-Greer-500 rainbow trout
Silver Creek-400 rainbow trout
Willow Springs Lake-1,870 rainbow trout
Woods Canyon Lake-1,867 rainbow trout
Week of Aug. 27-31
Little Colorado River-Greer 700 rainbow trout
Sheeps Crossing-700 Apache trout
West Fork Black River bridge-200 Apache trout
Silver Creek-600 rainbow trout
Woods Canyon Lake-3,500 rainbow trout
Willow Springs Lake-2000 rainbow trout
Show Low Creek-800 rainbow trout

Note:  Days are hot, so fish early in the morning and late in the day.
BEAR CANYON LAKE – Fishing is fair to good for stocked trout.  The lake was stocked two weeks ago with  rainbow trout.
BLACK CANYON LAKE – Fishing is poor. Anglers have been catching a few trout, sunfish, and bass on worms.  The water level is very low, and launching a boat will be difficult.
BLUE RIDGE RESERVOIR (CC CRAGIN) — No recent reports. There had been a decent cicada bite. This is a steep-sided canyon lake with very little viable shoreline access for anglers. It is best fished from a canoe, kayak or float tube.  Trout are likely holding fairly deep and you can expect the best bite at first and last light.
CHEVELON LAKE – Fishing is fair to good. Anglers are catching trout on spinners (Panther Martin and Rooster tails), Z-Rays and KastMaster spoons. Trout usually are active in the evening, so fly fishermen should try dry flies such as Parachute Adams, Adams, and caddis patterns in sizes 16-18.
KNOLL LAKE — No recent reports, but this is typically a good summer producer. It is one of our most remote trout lakes. There is only limited space in the nearby campgrounds, but your can also do dispersed camping in the national forest. Expect the best bite at first and last light. Trout may still be holding fairly deep so try Power Bait, corn or night crawlers fished on egg sinkers.
WILLOW SPRINGS LAKE – Fishing is fair for shore anglers and fair to good for boat anglers.  Anglers are catching trout near the lake bottom on night crawlers.  The lake will be stocked this week with 2,000 rainbow trout.
WOODS CANYON LAKE – Fishing is fair to good. Anglers have been catching trout on orange and rainbow-colored Power Bait in deep water near the lake bottom. Boat anglers should try trolling slowly with cowbells with and attached night crawler, fly or small lure. The lake will be stocked this week with   3,500 rainbow trout. The store is open, and boat rentals are available.

Note:  Water temperatures are warm, so fish early in the morning or late in the day.  Be cautious of lightning during afternoon thunderstorms. 
BECKER LAKE – Fishing is fair. Fish early morning before 7 a.m. to hit the coolest water temperatures and minimize stress on trout.  Also, bring hooked fish in quickly and release them without taking them out of the water.  Taking photos of your catch at this time of year may lead to delayed mortality of that fish. Becker Lake is catch-and-release only, with artificial lures and flies only with single, barbless hook.
BIG LAKE – Fishing is fair. Trout are staying deep in 20-25 feet, just off the bottom of the lake. Fishing is poor to fair for shore anglers. Boat anglers are catching some trout by trolling cowbells with worms or drifting slowly with night crawlers, lures (Crickhoppers and Z-Rays) and flies. Shore anglers should try fishing in deep water off rocky points with worms or orange, rainbow colored, and purple Power Bait.  The store is open, and boat rentals are available.    

CARNERO LAKE – Fishing is fair to good for stocked rainbow trout. Fish open water areas near the dam.  The lake is very weedy. Flyfishers are catching trout on small nymphs and dry flies such as caddis patterns and Parachute Adams.
CLEAR CREEK RESERVOIR – Fishing is fair.  Some anglers are catching a few bass.
CONCHO LAKE – Fishing is poor. The lake is very low, muddy and weed-covered.  
CRESCENT LAKE – Fishing is fair. Anglers have been catching some nice brook trout and a few large rainbow trout in the deeper parts of the lake. The lake is weedy. The store is closed. 
FOOL HOLLOW LAKE – Fishing is poor for trout. Sunfish are being caught off the fishing piers. Anglers are catching bass in the evening hours before sunset. Channel catfish are being caught on night crawlers, catfish-prepared baits, chicken livers, and hot dogs at night in deep water.  The lake has been stocked    with rainbow trout.    
GREER LAKES – Fishing is  fair. River, Bunch and Tunnel Reservoirs are very low. The water levels are down below the ramps at Bunch and River Reservoirs, and launching boats there will be very difficult.
HULSEY LAKE – The lake was drained immediately following the Wallow Fire to help reduce expected flooding on Escudilla Mountain and will not be stocked this year.
LEE VALLEY LAKE – Fishing is poor to fair. pH levels are high.  The lake level is very low. Flyfishers have been catching a few Apache trout and grayling on dry flies during the late evening hours.
LUNA LAKE – Fishing is poor. There is a heavy algae bloom present in the lake, causing high pH levels. There was a very small fish kill several weeks ago.
LYMAN LAKE – Lyman Lake State Park is open through Sept. 17.  Fishing is fair for channel catfish, bass, carp and walleye. Anglers  have been catching walleyes from 18 to 30 inches on brown colored jigs.  Largemouth bass are hitting spinners. Try night crawlers, chicken livers, hot dogs, and stinkbaits for catfish at night. The store is open until Sept. 17.
NELSON RESERVOIR – Fishing is fair. The lake is nearly full and was heavily stocked with rainbow trout in May. Try green chartreuse and red Power Bait, and night crawlers. There is an algae bloom present in the lake.  

RAINBOW LAKE – Fishing is fair for bullhead catfish and poor for trout. The lake is weedy.
SCOTT RESERVOIR – Fishing is poor for trout. Fishing is fair for channel catfish, small bass and sunfish during the evening hours. The lake  has been stocked with  rainbow trout. 
SHOW LOW LAKE – Fishing is poor to fair for stocked trout.  The lake  has been stocked with rainbow trout. Boat anglers are catching a few trout on cowbells with worms, flies and lures. Boat anglers should troll slowly.

Shore anglers are catching a few smallmouth bass,  sunfish, and trout on nightcrawlers off the fishing piers and rocky shorelines. The lake is  low, but the boat ramp is still usable.  Boat rentals are available, and the campgrounds are open.  The creek below the dam  will be stocked this week with rainbow trout. Fishing  should improve. Try night crawlers and small spinners. Please do not park on the dam, which is a one lane road with insufficient pullouts. Park at either end of the dam where there is better parking.
WOODLAND LAKE – Fishing is poor for trout and fair  for largemouth bass and catfish.  The lake is weedy and low.  Anglers are catching a few catfish on the bottom with bait.  Largemouth bass are being caught in the early morning and late evening hours.  The trout bag and possession limit here is four trout. 
Note: Trout stocking in the streams will continue through the end of August.
EAST FORK of the BLACK RIVER – Fishing for wild brown trout and hold-over stocked Apache trout is fair.  Forest Road (FR) 276 and associated campgrounds on the East Fork Black River are closed due to flooding danger. Access at the FR 24 bridge at Buffalo Crossing is still open, but anglers will have to hike to access the river upstream and downstream of that bridge. The East Fork is currently not being stocked because of high water temperatures. 
WEST FORK of the BLACK RIVER – Fishing is fair in the lower reaches. The weekly trout stocking at the FR 68 crossing on the West Fork has been suspended due to a shortage of catchable-size Apache trout at the hatchery.  One final stocking is planned for Labor Day weekend.  Fishing in the middle and upper reaches is fair to good for wild trout, where the fire had little impact Flyfishers have been catching small Apache trout on dry flies and small nymphs in the upper section.  Access is open at the FR 25 bridge, FR 68 crossing and FR 116.

The West Fork campground will be closed through the year due to safety reasons.  The middle and upper reaches of the West Fork Black are open to catch-and-release artificial lure and fly only, while the lower end is open to bait fishing with a six-trout bag limit. Flyfishers have been catching small Apache trout on dry flies in the upper reaches of the West Fork of the Black River. Try caddis patterns, parachute Adams, Royal Wulff’s, and light Cahills in size 16-18.
BLACK RIVER – Fishing is poor.  The mainstem of the Black River was heavily impacted by the Wallow Fire last year.  Very few fish were found during intensive surveys last fall and this summer.
LITTLE COLORADO RIVER IN GREER – Fishing is fair for wild brown trout and good for stocked rainbow trout.  Trout will be stocked this week in front of the Rendezvous Cafe and at Government Spring at the end of the road.
SHEEPS CROSSING – Fishing is fair. The weekly trout stocking at the Sheeps Crossing area has been suspended due a shortage of Apache trout at the hatchery. One final stocking is planned for Labor Day weekend. Fishing should improve this week. Fishing is fair to good for wild Apache trout in the wilderness portions of the West Fork Little Colorado River.
SHOW LOW CREEK – Fishing has been poor for stocked rainbow trout in the large pool immediately below the outlet below Show Low Lake dam.  However, rainbow trout   will be stocked   this week, so fishing should improve.   Please do not park on the dam, which is a one lane road with insufficient pullouts.  Park at either end of the dam where there is dedicated parking.
SILVER CREEK – Fishing is fair to good.  Rainbow trout are now being stocked weekly through the end of August.  Silver Creek is currently open to bait and a bag/possession limit of six trout (April 1 through September 30).  The upper section is closed to angling, which is well signed.



Please send me your fishing reports from Southern Arizona!  Fishing reports can be sent to Don Mitchell, Regional Fish Program Manager by email at dmitchell@azgfd.gov.  These reports will then be complied and reported in our weekly fishing reports.

Warm temperatures are getting hot and so is the fishing action! Anglers will need to concentrate their efforts to the cooler times of day as the temperatures continue to rise.  Summer trout stocking will begin soon at Rose Canyon Lake and Riggs Flat provided water quality parameters are favorable.  The summer stocking schedule for the entire state can be found here:  2012 Summer Stocking Schedule .  This schedule is updated as changes occur so check back often!

Need ideas on where to go fishing?  Try the Departments new interactive Fish and Boat Map: Fish and Boat Arizona

URBAN LAKES — The final spring stocking of catfish took place the week of June 11-16. The Urban Fishing Program does not stock fish from June 25 through mid-September. Catfish stockings in the Phoenix and Tucson urban lakes will resume the week of Sept. 17-22.

Fished Silverbell Lake last night from the south end from about 7-10 right after the big monsoon. Tried spinners and frog lures but had no success so switched to hot dogs about 3' 6" under a lighted bobber for catfish. Caught a 1 ft Channel Cat but released him — had 2 or 3 other bites that escaped. Another angler there had 4 14-15 inchers caught on blood bait. Other anglers were using bacon and frozen shrimp. The toads were sure making a racket!

-Phil Lacovara

RIGGS FLAT — The lake is open for the summer. Stocking has been suspended at this time due to high Ph levels and stocking will not resume until summer rains have added sufficient water to the lake to reduce the pH.  Fishing has been good for both rainbow and browns.

The department stocked white amur  in an effort to reduce aquatic vegetation and control water quality problems that have prevented stocking in the past.  Anglers are being asked to immediately release unharmed all amurs they catch. Check the stocking schedule here: 2012 Summer Stocking Schedulefor summer stocking dates.

CLUFF RANCH —No recent reports of success.  The pond is full and there should be no problems with boat launching.  For lake information call (928) 485-9430.

ROPER LAKE —  No recent reports of success.  For lake information (928) 428-6760.
DANKWORTH POND — Remains closed to access during renovation.  The pond should be ready for fishing during November.  Look for a grand re-opening ceremony then.

FRYE MESA RESERVIOR –Anglers continue to report success in catching Gila trout.  Remember that the daily bag and possession limit for this species is 1 fish. Frye Creek above the reservoir remains closed to fishing.

ARIVACA — Open to anglers, water levels continue to be severely low and the lake continues to drop.  It is extremely difficult to launch boats at this time.  All boat launching is at the risk of the owner.  Boaters using gas motors are asked to be courteous and not create wake problems for others boaters.  Sporadic success is being reported with fish being caught in the early mornings and late evenings.

PENA BLANCA –  Some reports of channel catfish being caught.  Sunfish continue to bite well on worms just off the shoreline where the water gets deeper.  Anglers are reminded that all largemouth bass caught must be immediately released alive.  Additionally all mercury advisories against the eating of warmwater fish caught at Pena Blanca Lake remains in effect.  Future testing will determine if and when these advisories will be lifted.  Boaters using gas motors are asked to be courteous and not create wake problems for others boaters.

Angler report:
Made my first trip down since the drain, refill and re stock. Awesome ramp and nice docks for people to fish off of. We put in around 8am and worked most of the shoreline until 4pm. Far and few between on the fish as expected but at least there are some there. Saw a few nailing dragon flys in the big cove. We boated 3 bass and one catfish. Largest bass only 1.5 the cat went 2. Lost 2 other bass one probably would have neared 2 lbs.All fish including cat on senkos. Tried the frog and had one swipe. Mainly threw senkos but did toss other baits with no bites.

PATAGONIA — The lake has come up and is nearly full.  Be cautious of floating debris.   Fishing continues to be good with bass anglers having success working the shorelines in shallower water.  Recent surveys at the lake show outstanding numbers of large healthy largemouth bass and redear sunfish. Don’t forget that the lake supports a very healthy flathead catfish population as well that can provide some exciting opportunities for anglers.

PARKER CANYON — Fishing remains fair for all species.  The lake level has come up a couple of feet.  The Department is currently cutting and harvesting the aquatic vegetation and anglers should find improved conditions in the coming weeks.  The Department is currently working to establish a breeding population of channel catfish at the lake and is asking anglers to please limit the harvest of catfish at this time to allow larger members of the population the opportunity to spawn.  Contact the Parker Canyon Lake Store for up to date information on lake levels and fishing activity at www.parkercanyonlake.com or by phone at (520)455-5847.

ROSE CANYON LAKE —  Anglers continue to report success in the early mornings and late evenings.  The summer trout stocking schedule can be found here:  2012 Summer Stocking Schedule.

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