August 29, 1997
By Wayne Gustaveson

Stripers have gone deep and will hit anchovies! Try to recall some of the good spots where you have caught stripers in the past and give them a try. The most effective pattern is dropping the anchovy to 45 feet with a half ounce weight 18 inches up from the bait. Use a swivel to hold the sinker in place and reduce line twist as the bait sinks. Once at depth, let the boat drift or move the bait with the electric motor to locate the school. When fish are found try to keep the boat directly over the school for as long as possible. Normally adult fish will be found at 45 feet or deeper. When they start to feed they will move shallower and become more aggressive. Try to react to the behavior of the school rather than fishing the same depth all the time. If fish are marked at 60 feet on the graph lower the bait. If most fish are shallower bring the bait up to them. If fish are small use a small bait. For adult fish 1\3 of an anchovy works well. I personally do not use anchovy hooks favoring instead a small circular shaped hook with the barb pointing at the shank eye. Another favorite technique is to fish one bait at 40-60 feet and have another person fish with no weight allowing the anchovy to settle naturally and unobstructed on slack line. Depending on rapidly changing conditions both techniques work well but usually one method is better at any particular moment. Be flexible. Change techniques to match fish behavior to maximize the catch. Remember that we are keeping all striped bass caught so that the overabundant striped bass can be reduced in number. If schools are marked on teh graph but not feeding try chumming with 5 or 6 finely cut anchovies.

Reports of vulnerable schools of striped bass were received from the following locations: Glen Canyon Dam - mostly small fish with an occasional adult. Narrows on steep wall both upstream and down from buoy 16. Mouth of Bowns, Annies and Lake Canyon near main channel - adult fish in large numbers. Castle Butte and Red Canyon - small and adult fish. Also try steep main channel cliffs anywhere that coves, cracks or rocks break up the smooth wall.

The upper San Juan near Piute Farms Canyon has unconfirmed reports of massive striper boils. We will try to provide better information next report.

Fishing pressure is low for smallmouth bass but reports are that fish are still catchable on main channel islands and long prominent points in bays. Catfish are cooperative in early evening lake wide.