August 9, 2001
By Wayne Gustaveson   Home Page:
Lake Elevation: 3668  Water Temperature: 78-83F

Boils ceased lakewide on August 3, 2001. Similar events occurred last year during the full moon which has just passed. With the moon darkening boils will start up once more. Last year boils started at Hite within a week after the shut down. Down lake it took two weeks for surface action to resume.

Expect striper boils to build during the next week with better action happening when nights are darker. A cloudy night that covers the moon seems to enhance morning boils. Infrequent light rain showers without wind seem to be the very best time for boils. Boils will still be better at Hite for size of fish and duration of morning and evening activity. But mid and down lake surface feeding action will continue for a short time each day. Look for boils in Padre Bay in the back of all the canyons, also Neanderthal Cove, Halls Bay on the west end, and from Two Mile canyon to Hite. The best recent boils were in the Colorado River well above the bridge. Feeding intensity is best from first light until 8 am and then in the evening when the sun sets and throws a shadow across the water. Boils last until dark.

Bait fishing and deep spooning may result in a bigger striper harvest. Look for bottom feeding and resting stripers in Neanderthal Cove near Buoy 30, Last Chance in murky water, Rock Creek in shade of steep cliffs, Mountain Sheep Canyon, mouth of San Juan River, main channel cliffs near Iceberg, Halls Creek near mouth and west end, Red Canyon, Trachyte and White. Drift anchovies at 30-55 feet for best results. Chumming works once fish are located.

Smallmouth fishing is excellent in the upper San Juan and near Hite. In the main lake it is essential to find a 25-30 foot ledge or contour and consistently work that depth strata to catch fish. Soft plastic grubs are working deep, while some bass can be taken on surface lures during twilight periods. Use a 3/8 to ounce jig head to keep the lure in contact with the bottom and to feel the slight change caused when a fish mouths or picks up the bait. The free floating split shot (carolina rig) rigged grub works well in these conditions.

Catfishing is at its peak for the year, especially near flowing water of tributaries. Cats are prowling all day and night near Hite and upper San Juan. The gently sloped sandy beaches in the main lake are visited regularly at twilight and after dark. Use table scraps in areas of lots of camping activity for quick results. Catfish are some of the best eating fish in the lake so invite a few for dinner. Keep some smallmouth and small stripers for an unforgettable banquet at your campsite.