June 11, 1999
Lake Elevation: 3686 msl
Water Temperature: 67-75 F
The runoff has begun. Lake Powell rose over 4 feet last week. Rapidly rising water always makes it difficult for anglers. Fish stay where they were but the shoreline gets relocated each day. A long flat can be covered in one day making 50-100 yards of new lake that really hasn't had time to be populated with fish. To counter the moving shoreline just fish steep areas that really do not change much as the lake level goes up. Steep rocks slides have the same habitat from top to bottom so fish can move freely with changes in lake elevation.
Smallmouth fishing remains good particularly in the upper lake. The pattern is the same lakewide. Use plastic grubs on steep points, cliff edges, reefs and shoals. Put the lure on the deep water side of a submerged island or in the shade created by an overhanging ledge. Fishing is best early morning and late evening but some fish will bite all day long. Smaller grubs (3-4 inch) on a 1/8 ounce jig head is all that is needed. Placing a split shot weight 18 inches above a small hook allows the daintily attached plastic grub to float free. The combination is very enticing to active smallmouth bass. It is a can't miss situation.
Striped bass remain on the canyon walls and points. They haven't moved much from last week. Anchovy bait may need to be fished at 50 feet to get the school started. Each time a fish is reeled up the school tends to follow getting shallower all the time. Really active fish can be seen right at the limit of visibility. Watch the bait descend until out of sight. Then pull it back into view and watch for stripers to chase the bait. When they are actively feeding in this mode they can be caught quickly and in great numbers. When the school goes deep or the boat drifts away it is time to chum again with another 4 or 5 anchovies to get them excited once more and to keep them near the boat .
Bluegill fishing is really heating up. Look in brushy areas in the backs of coves for constant action from the smaller fish. The bigger ones will often school on rocky points or big boulder type structure on steep cliff walls. They are fun to watch and will hit a piece of live worm fished in the upper 10 feet. It is great sport for the kids.
Catfishing is improving rapidly on soft, smelly baits like liver, shrimp and night crawlers. Find a sandy beach free of brush with a deep water access areas near by.