JULY 20, 2000
By Wayne Gustaveson
Lake Elevation: 3682
Water Temperature: 76-88 F

Anglers venturing out from Hite Marina are reporting boiling stripers in both directions. Look for surface feeding stripers at the mouth of the Dirty Devil, main channel near the Colorado River bridge, Hite launch ramp, White, Trachyte, Farleys and as far downstream as Ticaboo Canyons. Some of the boils have been staying up 15-30 minutes. Fish are definitely catchable but very few anglers have been seen. Boils are going all day long. I would suggest fishing during the cooler morning and evening hours.

Duplicate reports coming from the San Juan where overall bottom depth is at least 50 feet or deeper. That would coincide with Mikes Canyon downstream to Copper Canyon which is the center of activity. Boils are early and late but stripers can be taken on jigging spoons when a school is graphed on the bottom. One boil lasted over 4 hours. It is safe to say uplake striper fishing for boiling stripers is somewhere between fabulous and stupendous.

When a boil is found, determine direction of fish travel and cruise to intercept or parallel the school. The boat should be positioned so that casts may be made immediately from the side of the boat as it decelerates. Casting in front of the boat allows the boat to overtake the lure before it can swim rapidly enough to attract attention. When cast from the side, the drifting boat will pull the lure along causing immediate swimming action as it hits water.

Schools feeding on larger shad will hit larger lures like zara spook, spitting image, jumping minnow. Small shad mean short boils and small lures are needed like, white jigging spoons, white jigs and grubs. These small lures can be cast long distances if placed behind a larger lure or a casting bubble combination.

While the best sustained boils are found in the upper San Juan and at Hite there are boils in almost every canyon from first light to 8 am and then again in the evening. Downlake (Wahweap, Bullfrog, Halls) boils may be easier to see than catch fish from.

Smallmouth fishing continues to be good. They feed right with the stripers in the morning and top water fishing is super for the first 2 hours of daylight. Later in the day grubs, tubes, and soft plastic jerk baits are working at 10 - 35 feet on rocky points, shelves, reefs, and ledges along main channel and main bay structure throughout Lake Powell. Fishing is excellent overall but best before 10 AM and after 4 PM. The very light fishing pressure means that more big fish (1.5 - 2.5 pound) are being caught by those willing to venture out after bass. Smallmouth are gorging on crayfish, sunfish and shad. Stomachs are rotund as forage is very abundant. Fish are very aggressive as they are eating with abandon and not at all hook, line or boat shy. As it gets later in the day fish deeper and slower with the same soft plastic jig.