LAKE POWELL FISH REPORT
April 25, 1997
By Wayne Gustaveson
LAKE ELEVATION: 3663
WATER TEMPERATURE: 55 F

Bass and crappie have completed the first spawn. Some males are still guarding nests and others abandoned nests when the temperatures fell with the recent storm front. Bass can spawn many times during April and May and they will move on and off nests with the changing of the weather. That's natures way of ensuring that each fish is able to bring off a brood or two each spring and ensure the survival of the species. The spawning cycle will begin again with the next warming trend. Usually the second spawn is the biggest with more fish involved and more young fish produced.

Continue to fish shallow for bass and crappie with small plastic grubs, crankbaits and spinnerbaits. Anglers have been extremely pleased with the quality and quantity of fish caught so far this spring. There has been one hot spot and that is Lake Powell. The fishing pattern is the key and it works lake wide. Fish the backs of canyons or coves at the edge of shallow flats, talus slopes or terraces. On cold days fish will be on the deep side of the dropoff and on sunny days fish will be up on the flat in the shallows. Remember that shallow fish in clear water can see the angler and will be hesitant to bite. Fish murkier water to increase number of fish caught.

Bluegill have been a pleasant surprise this spring with big hand-sized fish found shallow around brush in the backs of coves. They willingly attack 2 inch grubs on light jigheads. Crappie and bluegill share the same habitat and a mixed bag is likely. Both are great tasting fish in the pan.

Striped bass are starting to show up. There is no activity yet at the dam or intake but bass anglers are catching stripers while fishing for bass. Look in the backs of canyons in 20-40 feet of water for striper schools. The water will generally be cloudy as stripers search the backs of the canyons for shad. Most stripers have been caught on plastic grubs as bass anglers finish bouncing the lure on the bottom and then reel quickly to retrieve the lure for another cast. The quick retrieve in open water does the trick. Trolling has paid dividends for striper fishermen in the backs of many canyons over the length of the lake.

Fishing is good to excellent. The water is still reasonably stable although starting to rise now. There is no driftwood problem anywhere on the lake at the present time. Launching is accessible at all locations with the exception of Piute Farms and White Canyon.