Unseasonably warm weather has fish waiting for the fall feeding frenzy, but
for this week fishing success is spotty. The biggest problem is that striped
bass are feeding on their own schedule. Normally productive feeding periods,
such as early morning, may be ignored by fish that choose to feed at noon or
The best strategy is to try fishing spots that have been productive. If no
success is found in the morning then return at noon or early evening and
give it another try. If jigging spoons do not work then try chumming and
fishing frozen cut baits at 40-60 feet. Night fishing under a green light is
another effective technique.
In the southern lake, striper schools have been
located in most canyons and bays with perhaps the best hotspots being at the
back of Navajo Canyon, Warm Creek (Cottonwood Cove), Lone Rock Canyon, and
main Rock Creek. The San Juan is good from Cha Bay to Neskahi Bay and then
in Zahn Bay.
At Bullfrog large schools of stripers were
found in the back of Hansen Creek by meticulously graphing the back of the
canyon where bottom depth was 50-70 feet. Large schools provided excellent
results when spoons were deployed. It is better to find a large school than
to drop spoons on individual fish traces. This graphing and spooning pattern
is effective over the length of the lake.
There are still some boils at Hite but not every day. Evening is still the
best time for a boil to blow up anywhere from North Wash to Trachyte. If
lucky enough to be in position when the boil happens expect to catch 20 or
more fat 3.5 pound stripers in short order. If the boil does not happen then
trolling deep divers (or down riggers) provides a steady catch of the same
size stripers. After a boil, fishing a storm plastic minnow or dropping a
jigging spoon to the bottom in 40-60 feet of water prolongs the catch.
Bass fishing is very successful but the technique is
s-l-o-w and steady. Use a drop shot rig with a Yamamoto shad-shaped
worm in shad or watermelon color. Drop the bait down to 25 to 35 feet and
suspend the bait 12 inches off the bottom (weight rests on lake bottom).
Move the bait every minute or so and then let it suspend again. This slow
deliberate style will consistently catch an amazing number of large and
smallmouth bass. The best spot for bass fishing is Zahn Bay on the upper San
Juan but results are great over the entire lake.
Walleye fishing is best near Hite where they
can be caught trolling the tree tops or casting lures into the submerged
brushy trees. Catfishing is as good as it gets right now on a sandy beach
near your campsite.