July 17, 1998
Lake Elevation: 3696 msl
Water Temperature: 76-82 F
By Wayne Gustaveson
In the early mornings, before the sun really bears down, it is safe to say that the fishing is as hot as the weather. Thatís saying a lot because we are in the middle of a real scorcher. Big stripers are hitting deep, small stripers are cutting up on top and smallmouth are in the shallows. There is very little competition with other anglers or with recreationists in the early morning.
Adult striped bass continue to hold at the same locations that have provided such great action for the past 3 months. Suspend a chunk of anchovy at 40-80 feet at the dam, power plant intake, back of Warm Creek, back of Navajo, West canyon, Last Chance, main channel islands near Slick Rock, Lake Canyon, mouth of Hallís, Moki wall, Red and White Canyon. At Hallís Crossing the point on the left side of the swim beach is hot. Also try the second alcove on the left wall at the main channel entrance to Halls Creek. Bait fishing is spotty with schools happening by at random times. Your patience will be rewarded.
For big boils from little stripers there is much early morning action from Seven Mile to Scorup canyon, back of White, back of Bullfrog and Hallís, Warm Creek, Navajo and many other spots. Small silver spoons cast into the fracas will bring quick results from the 10-15 inch stripers. Once the boils quit the fish can still be readily caught with small grubs, spoons and crankbaits fished at 20-30 feet in areas where boils were seen earlier in the day. Using a graph to find the resting schools really shortens the search time.
Smallmouth have moved into the shallows and are really aggressive. The San Juan is probably the best smallmouth location but it is safe to say that smallmouth can be caught any day on any major rocky point in Lake Powell. Early morning and evenings are best but some fish can be captured anytime of the day. The larger fish are holding at 25-40 feet and it takes a heavy jig to get down and maintain bottom contact while probing the deep end of prominent points or drop off under a good looking ledge.
For just plain fun it doesnít get any better than catching bluegill off the back of the houseboat or in coves with flooded brush. Fly fishermen can sink a nymph down to striking depth in short order. With casting gear try tying a weight to the line and then add a dropper or two tied at one foot intervals above the weight. Your choice of fly can be used, hares ear flies have produced well. Bluegills respond better if the fly is dressed with some high tech smelly jelly or similar attractant. If you tip the fly with a piece of live worm it is almost too easy. Kids can watch the fly or worm descend and then watch bluegill hit the lure. They love it.
Catfishing is great with liver, shrimp, or bait of your choice. Night fishing is good and a good way to beat the heat and end a great day on Lake Powell. .