AUGUST 2, 2000
By Wayne Gustaveson
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Lake Elevation: 3682
Water temperature: 80 - 90 F

Striper boils tend to peak, diminish and then rebuild as shad hide and stripers seek after them. There is obviously an environmental impact based on moon phase, weather and host of other things that I don't understand or can explain that drive the cycle. But the end result is boils wax and wane over a two week cycle.

The cycle in the lower lake is toward diminishing boils. Stripers are seen feeding on top every morning but lately there hasn't been enough activity to justify getting up at 4:30 AM to chase them. The surface feeding peak in the lower lake was July 30th. I think that by August 10th the boils will be peaking again around Wahweap.

Hite on the other hand just keeps churning with boiling stripers seen in large numbers each day in the general vicinity from the Colorado River bridge as far downstream as Trachyte and many points in between. Fish can be caught from boat and shore.

The upper San Juan has seen a decrease in boiling activity but good boils are still seen in the magic hour at dawn and dusk.

Stripers that do not boil are more likely to be caught on bait and artificials fished near the 60 foot thermocline layer. Boiling stripers tend to ignore anchovies until they get in the resting mode in deep water later in the day.

The same cycle that controls striped bass feeding seems to be in effect for smallmouth bass. They too are hitting with less aggression this week in the lower lake. There has been no let up in the bass bite in the upper lake, Hite and San Juan, with bass attacking soft plastic baits morning and evening. Uplake, there is an incredible topwater bass bite prior to the sun's rays hitting the water each morning that IS worth getting up for. Shad are more numerous in the inflowing tributary areas and forage availability offsets whatever is causing the slowdown in fishing in the lower lake. Bullfrog/Halls are included in the lower lake slow down.

Catfishing is as good as it gets. Bluegill are actively seeking shade with room service. They move under your boat just as soon as it hits the beach. Use live worms and small hooks for panfish.