summer. Water surface is warm and fish have gone deep to cool off. But
"deep" is a relative term.
Chris Wilson with striper caught on
bait at mouth of Dungeon Canyon.
Deep to an adult striper is now 40-60 feet. Stripers are resting in
the cold water beneath the thermocline where they use less energy. But food
is shallow so stripers still must come up to eat. Adult stripers are still
parked on drop-offs in front of tamarisk flats along the main channel. Look
for a school on the bottom near the first break from 40-60 feet. Anchovy
chum will start the school feeding and draw them off the bottom. Then they
can be caught mid depth and shallow on a variety of lures. Many of the hot
spots mentioned in previous reports are still producing what seems like a
never ending supply of 3-pound stripers that are thin, but fun to catch and
good enough to eat.
Deep to a juvenile striper is 20 feet. These cruisers up to 18 inches
are feeding on plankton in the warm surface layers. If a pod of shad happens
by then the striper school shuns plankton and blows up on the surface. The
surface commotion is still more like a slurp than a full boil. Shad are
getting bigger but not necessarily more numerous. Slurp boils in the lower
lake are common but few stay up long enough for anglers to see them and then
catch a fish. Seems the shad supply is dwindling making boils much shorter
in duration. Top water striper catching is declining in the southern lake
from Rock Creek to Warm Creek.
While morning slurps and ghost boils are most common, feeding duration seems
longer at mid day. If lucky enough to see one of these random feeding events
the chances of catching fish around noon is greater than in the morning. The
problem is that the feeding event is random and usually catches one off
guard without a rod in hand. Surface action is seen daily in the lower lake
but not many fish were caught on top this week. If fishing boils is the
goal, go north of Bullfrog to have the best chance of catching stripers on
top. Water is now clear enough in the upper lake (Good Hope to Hite) and San
Juan arm to support good shad numbers and lots of striper surface action.
Cavender with "slurper size" stripers
Deep to an adult bass is 20-40 feet. Bass will be at the first
temperature break above the thermocline. Temperature from the surface to 20
feet is in the 75-80 degree range. Bass reside in the 70-75 degree water
found deeper than 20 feet. Concentrate on structure at that depth to find
some large bass and many small ones. Plastic tubes, grubs and senkos work
well on heavy jig heads (drop shot or Carolina rig) which are needed to get
the baits down to the bottom. Bluegill and crayfish are the food of choice
so watermelon, smoke, and brown colors are working well. Bass fishing is
best early and late. Success seems to decline abruptly after 10 AM.
Catfish really like the warm shallows each evening. Put a hot dog round on a
hook and invite a catfish to dinner.