JUNE 15, 2000
By Wayne Gustaveson
Lake Elevation: 3682
Water Temperature: 72-80 F

Inflow to Lake Powell is only half of what it was last week. The lake came up a foot with low flow releases going out of Lake Powell but it looks like the lake will not fill this year. This is a positive note for the future since flooding new terrestrial vegetation rejuvenates bass and forage fish populations. It is necessary to grow new brush before it can be flooded so 2-3 years of under- filling and brush establishment is needed for good fish health.

There is much more boating and swimming than fishing going on now. Angler reports are harder to come by. When this happens I do short mid week fishing trips in the lower lake to verify fishing results. On June 14th I fished with my 14-year-old son Mark and his friend Kyle. We got out early before the sun hit the water but did not find any top water bass in Warm Creek. The first cast with a grub in the back of a shallow cove netted a fat 4 pound striper for Mark. Stripers continue to feed shallow in morning twilight. Try top water, spinner baits and rattletraps in shallow weedy coves for early stripers.

Grubs worked moderately well for smallmouth on broken rock in the back of Warm Creek but not fast enough for us. Last year at this time bass catch rate was much faster in the main channel so we headed for the narrows between Warm Creek and Padre. We raced a tour boat trying to get in position to fish a rocky shelf before the giant wave hit. We were fishless until the waves smashed the rock and then started to catch smallmouth for the next few minutes until the commotion subsided. We steadily caught about 20 bass working the reefs and points with soft plastic grubs (dark green and chartreuse) on 1/4 ounce lead heads. Mark and Kyle had 10 bass each when we headed back down the narrows after 2 hours of casting.

On the way back we tried a broken rock shelf and caught one fish each. We tried the next point and repeated the process. It appeared that between 10 - 11 am smallmouth that had been holding deep moved shallow to feed. Virtually every point and cove on the south shore line of the narrows came alive with bass. We caught at least one fish on every yellow-colored finger protruding into the deep blue main channel. Some spots produced much more. Smallmouth were bigger than normal. We put 7 fish between 1-2 pounds in the live well in one 15 minute stretch. We had 2 bass over 2 pounds.

Our catch jumped from 25 fish to 40 in a hurry. This is the best smallmouth fishing for numbers and size that I have experienced this spring. So, in my estimation I would have to say bass fishing is still very good. I think this pattern is repeatable lake wide. Try main channel rocks and points for fast bass fishing. There will be a short period when bass fishing peaks. On this day it was from 10-11 am (MST).

Stripers are still hard to find but I will work on them next week. I still suggest main channel rock islands like red buoy 22 and white hazard buoy at the mouth of Rock Creek. Fish get more predictable and stationary in the summer. Don't put the rod away too soon.

Just received word that fishing the walls and points between Good Hope and Knowles paid off for Walt Adams who got into heavy striper action in Cedar Canyon and Warm Springs using anchovies. See report on anglers corner.