July 30, 2008
By Wayne Gustaveson
Lake Elevation: 3633
Water Temp: 80-85

                                       Tale of Two Lakes

Fishing in main Lake Powell is as tough as it gets right now. It is mid summer with surface water temperature at its peak. The lake has stabilized at 3633 which is maximum elevation for the year. Fish hiding cover is more numerous than it has been in over 5 years. The easy answer is fisherman just don't have what it takes this week to catch fish in the trees. Fish can't be bothered to respond to lures with tiny shad and sunfish forage so plentiful in their front room.

Paul Padrnos - When fishing gets tough try for catfish!

The only way to catch a bass now is to put on a heavy plastic grub (one ounce lead head) and drag that along the bottom contour at 20-35 feet. Bass are sulking in the depths waiting for cooling and shad to grow larger. It is tedious fishing but a few quality bass will be taken with this method while other means will be unproductive.

Stripers have all but quit boiling. There is an occasional swirl where a single striper chases two tiny shad. By the time the swirl is recognized the striper is gone. There is little fishing success and not much more fishing pressure.

This is tough but I have to categorize fishing success at Lake Powell. I have never had to classify fishing as poor before except in the deadest of winter. So here goes:

Fishing at Lake Powell is Red Hot! How can I say that? The lake is so darn big that there is always a place that excels. The spot this time is the inflow area around Hite and in the upper San Juan. Stripers are boiling mid day from Hite to the Horn. It is possible to catch 50-100 fish per day - all on topwater lures. That is awesome fishing in anyone's book. Average size is 15 inches and fish are strong and acrobatic.

In the upper San Juan there are occasional decent sized striper boils. Bass fishing is super - again for the smaller fish. Bait fish are prevalent in the coves and bass are working them over. Plastic grubs, senkos, surface lures and crankbaits are all being readily accepted. Fish the Great Bend area and above for the best action. Stripers will provide infrequent big boils but the abundance of shad limits number of boils. Stripers that can catch shad individually do not have to work together as a group to eat. Therefore, boils do not always occur in high forage situations.

So fishing is Hot - if in the right spot!