Date Received: May 1, 2000 Dan Spitzer
My plans changed from driving into Blue Notch to going with a friend who had a bass boat. We launched from Farley's Fri. a.m. and set up camp in Four Mile. Once fishing, we immediately caught a couple walleye and a crappie on grubs and tubes. As the day warmed so did the SMB fishing with an occasional LMB. We began using 3" and 4" tubes almost exclusively as we could control them in the brush better than we could a grub. Rigged, with a lead head inserted into the tube body and the eye pushed out, the tube has a slower and more erratic fall than the grub and we were able to avoid hang-ups easier. Colors: dark green, smoke, pumpkin. Brushy/rocky shoreline with edges provided consistently good fishing. Both Four Mile and Two Mile had green stained water. We found that flipping in close to brushy cover and hard to reach pockets in the stained water was possible and resulted in bass that we would not have otherwise been able to reach. It was a good day! Saturday proved a great day! We headed into Red Canyon and Blue Notch and found SMB holding on edges associated with rocky/brushy points and shoals. The water was clear where we fished in Red Canyon but apparently warm enough for the SMB as we caught more than we could try and count while focusing on fishing. Same baits (tubes) - occasionally grubs - both worked - we just preferred the tubes. Sun. a.m. after the cool, north wind all night, we fished awhile in Four and Two Mile before heading back. We found the bass holding back in 15' - 20' of water. Rick, with a heavier tube rig (3/8 oz. jig head) was able to reach the fish in the wind and regularly picked up more SMB and one good LMB. Having run out of 1/4 oz. jig heads, with hook shanks long enough to clear the tube bodies, I was using a 1/8 oz. jig head which wouldn't as readily get the bait deep enough and I didn't fair nearly as well that morning. Wayne's report was right on: look for breaking edges and if you can't find the bass shallow back off into deeper water. They were there - in every canyon we fished!
Date Received: May 1, 2000, Brian Brockbank, Vancouver, Washington
We start fishing the far upper end of the lake in early may. The water had warmed quickly due to the low run off and nice spring weather. We fished in water that was very murky around the mouths of the Colorado and Dirty Devil rivers, but success the fishing was slow for the time of year, and water temperatures. We decided to move down the lake to 2 mile and 4 mile canyons. The water there was tinted, but not murky. Visibility was about 2 feet, the temperature was 68 degrees and the barometer had been holding steady for about 3 days. The fishing really kicked in.
There were times that all three of us in the boat had fish on. Most seemed to be coming off rocks with bushes near by. We caught large numbers of small mouth, and a few large mouth. We found that the best lures were crank baits and spinner baits. chartreuse spinner baits, and white crank baits with glitter type sparkle worked extremely well. When the sun was high, and fishing slowed we turned to our trusted standby lure that never seems to let us down. A chartreuse crappie jig. We caught many fish on the jig when nothing else would work, including walleye.
I laid my pole down for a moment to get a soft drink and left my line about 2 feet in the water. We were in about 40 feet depth, and before I could grab my pole, something had pulled it into the water. I'm assuming it was a striper, but we never did see the fish, but the splash of my new boron rod and reel going overboard.
When the barometer changed again, the fishing slowed down, but we still had good success. For two days we went down the lake to Good Hope Bay to try our skills, but the water was gin clear, and unless the fish came out from an ambush point, fishing was slow, however, we did catch more Large Mouth in the clear water.
Date Received: May 5, Curtis Timothy, Hyrum, Utah
I would first like to thank you for all you do for the lake powell fishery, you do a tremendous job!! I would also like to thanks you for responding so quickly when I had a question of launching in Farley Canyon. The water level was approximately 5-6 feet lower than last year in mid April. Anyway we were able to launch in Farley with no problems. We got down there on Thursday afternoon and fished Trachyete and Farley, we picked up 25-30 fish that evening.
Friday was incredible fishing as we picked up over 100 fish. Our 2 biggest bass were 2.5 lbs, both were LMB. Most of the fish were SMB although we did pick up a few LMB, 3 green Sunfish and 5 Walleyes and a Channel Cat. We Texas rigged using grubs and zipper worms in dark colors for the majority with a 3/8 oz sliding weight. We fished mainly down around Blue Notch on Friday.
Saturday slowed a bit although we picked up 50+ fish during the windy day. We used spinnerbaits and crankbaits while it was blowing into the rocks in the main channel between Trachyete & 2 mile.
Sunday was a little slower as we boated 35-40 fish while fishing for 6 hrs. We fished on Monday for a 1/2 day picking up 20 fish. You couldn't hardly buy a breeze so it made conditions tough an HOT!! Anyway we had a great trip.
P.S. We did not pick up any stripers during our trip. We usually pick up quite a few while throwing grubs, crankbaits, spinnerbaits. (last year we caught 30) Thanks for your great input and your great work.
Date Received: May 11, 2000 BASS MAN
Fished LP April 27th - May 7th out of Farley Canyon. Fishing was excellent for all types , SMB, LMB, stripers, and walleye. Caught an average of 50-70 bass a day mostly (small SMB 6 to 10 in). I finally found out if I wanted bigger SMB I had to fish out further away from the bank in 15 to 30 ft. of water. (I didn't catch as many but the fish I did catch were a lot bigger) the general rule for bigger fish is slow and deep. Best colors were smoke/silver sparkle and darker greens (grubs). Top-water bite was excellent early and late caught a lot of LMB this way, the fish preferred pop-r's this trip.
The wind was hard to deal with (if you want to increase your catch in high winds buy a drift sock) I found the sock slowed the boat enough I could get the grub down where I needed it.
Striper fishing was excellent (I really helped increase the odds of catching the million dollar striper) fish the mouth of Farley, White and 4 mile . I also found a hump just North East of mile marker 126 and west of Castle Butte (every time we trolled over it we caught 1 or 2 stripers.) A deep-diving crawfish colored Frenzy trolled @ 3 MPH really worked well.
Walleye were caught fishing W/ crank-baits and grubs (we caught an average of 3 to 5 a day). Most stripers we caught were female 70% and 90% of the females had olive eggs.
Date Received: May 16, 2000 Dan Spitzer
Arrived in Blue Notch Sat. a.m. (12th) and got out on the water about 8:30. I immediately headed for the back of Blue Notch which I always figure is good for at least one LMB before heading back out and sure enough I got that first one on a couple of casts and then a nice SMB (2+ lbs.). I was using a melon pepper tender tube with the lead head (1/4 oz.) inserted into the tube body. I was also rigged with a smoke 3" grub (1/8 oz lead head) and both medium and deep running crankbaits. I moved out to the shoals and points in both Blue Notch and Red Canyon where I was regularly picking up SMB (tubes and grubs). The SMB were holding mostly on the edges adjacent to deeper water. I later fished a rapidly sloping gravel point with definite shelves and picked up more SMB, 2 LMB, 3 blue gill (one BIG!), and a green sunfish. The LMB were holding just under the shelves and it was more effective to softly "flip" to the edge of the shelves than try and make longer casts. A quiet drift was important for "flipping" success. By 11:30 I had caught a total of 11 SMB, 3 LMB, 3 blue gill, and 1 greenie. Headed back to the car and set up camp.
The fishing that afternoon was much slower. I caught another 6 SMB before breaking for an early meal. I did have 1 striper chase a tube up from the bottom in about 15' of water in a deep cove east of Castle Butte. I immediately started throwing crankbaits all around but couldn't raise any more stripers. With the afternoon sun on the water I did better fishing deeper (15' - 25') with a 3/8 oz. lead head and a pumpkin w/chartreuse claws zipper craw (I cut part of the zipper craw off to make it a little shorter) - SLOW.
By 6:00 the fishing was picking up again. In the shaded water and especially after the sun got behind Castle Butte the SMB fishing really picked up. I caught more SMB that evening than I had in total earlier that day. Add in one LMB and another blue gill. I did find some good fish in the pockets between brush and the shoreline on steeply sloping shorelines where the only way to get in there was by flipping a tube or grub while drifting. The key here was my small boat and lack of noise. I noticed a couple of boats fishing both behind me and in front of me catching very little while making lots of noise. As it got darker I switched to a white w/silver sparkle tube and the SMB went "nuts." A good day.
Fishing was slower on Sun. Mostly found the SMB holding in deeper water so I fished slow with a 3/8 oz. smoke grub. I did find some LMB in horizontal cracks (yes, horizontal and not vertical) in the rock w/ associated brush in a cove as I was drifting through. I flipped into the cracks - caught 1 and missed 3! As the front approached and the wind started picking up I anchored (or tried to) off the deep side of a point and tried dead sticking a tube (threw it out like a piece of bait and let the wind and water move it around). That was good for 1 big SMB and 1 big walleye. As I headed for shore with my mushroom anchor dragging the bottom I gave up and went back to camp for lunch and a nap. That afternoon right after the front pushed through the SMB action was fast and furious for about an hour (4:00 - 5:00). It then slowed to a stop. After dinner I repeated the pattern from Sat. evening and although the fishing was good it was not as good as Sat. evening. I quit counting fish after Sat. I did find some SMB holding off a wall in 10' - 12' of shaded water that were caught on a smoke grub worked very very slow. As the sun went down the fishing picked up. Just before heading back to camp I switched to a small Excalibur 2 1/4" sinking minnow in "clown" color (red head, gold back, silvery white sides and belly) and just like the white tube the previous night the SMB really went for that.
Mon. a.m. I got out on the water before the sun was on it - something I should have done Sun. a.m. The SMB were very active before the sun hit the water. Tubes and grubs again - but usually they were hit on the fall after the cast and not while being worked. When the sun hit the water and especially when the water was calm fish were found deeper and one had to work a grub or tube very slowly to trigger strikes - but they were there and willing for the patient fisherperson. With the wind picking up I went out to the mouth of Good Hope Bay and fished the stained water around Castle Butte. I switched to an amber w/metallic green flake tube because it was more visible (at least to me) in the stained water. Picked up several SMB and one large catfish. Before breaking camp I went to the back of Blue Notch one last time. On the way in I noticed "lots" of fish on the fish finder and quickly rigged the first striper lure I found - a shad colored Rattli'n Rapala (lipless crankbait very similar to a Rattle Trap). I think the fish finder was just reading globs of muck in the water stirred up by the wind and I couldn't relocate the "fish" (??). I tossed some tubes around a point and picked up a couple of SMB before heading back to camp. On the way out of the back I trolled the Rapala and before the lure left the shallower water - "BAM!" A 3.6 lb. largemouth had come up and hit the lure. A good time to call it a day and a fishing trip.
I released all fish except for the walleye and catfish. Should have kept a couple of the bigger blue gill as they are good eating.
Date Received: May 16, 2000 - Art Meredith from Orem
Well we started fishing Monday the eighth, in (North wash) not too good for grubs but talked to some that were doing OK on crank bait. Wind was bad hard to hold boat and fish each spot. It was hit and miss as you flew on by. Came in for lunch then went down to Four Mile. Wind blew all day but it was fishable. We caught a lot of SMB & quite a lot of LMB, no Stripers. Years before we picked up some while fishing for bass with grubs. Mud line was about one third into the bay. The back was good and clear water. We did very good in clear water with white tube, and light brown with pepper, in three inch grubs. We were not keeping any fish, but some in three and three half pound class, in LMB & one half to two pound class in SMB. The wind got so bad we quit about four and headed for Hite. As we passed White we went to see if the mud line went back into White. Went into White about the same as four mile. The wind let up so we fished (white). The fish were not as big as four mile but we caught a lot of small ones.
TUE - We went to Red Canyon and the fishing was good as long as you could fish. Wind bad again. Hard to hold boat. The Mud Line in main Canyon went to Blue Notch. Clear from there on down. After lunch we went back to Four Mile and fished the back of it. The Mud line had moved to half way back into Canyon, but good fishing. We each took a limit home and good thing we did because
WEDNESDAY, it blew bad all day. We could not get out on the water. Spent the day in camp. Two bass boats went over to North Wash early that Morning and could not get back. They beached their boats in the back of the bay hiked up to the main road and caught a ride back to camp. Leaving boats all day and all night. Went over early thurs. morning. Brought them in and headed for home. That's the day we left - also another windy day.
Date Received: May 17, 20000 Ken Rasmussen
We arrived at Farley's Canyon on May 08, at about high noon. The water was muddy and the fish were hard to locate. We fished Farley's, White Canyon, Trachyte, 2 mile and 4 mile the first 2 days we were there. This area was extremely slow compared to the usual. Probably due to the muddy water. We managed to land 2 Stripers, 2 Waleye, a couple of Large mouth and a couple of Small mouth during the first 2 days. We went to Hite for fuel and was informed that the water cleared up after the horn going into Red Canyon, so we headed there for our last 2 days.
While up at Red Canyon the water was crystal clear and the fishing dramatically improved. We went on to catch about 10 more Stripers all around 3 to 5 Lbs., about 30 Small mouth a day, a handfull of Large mouth, a few Crappie and a few Channel Cats. We left Red Canyon early morning on the 12th to head back home.
My advise to to any angler going down to Lake Powell in the near future is to head south to clear water. Try to find out what the water color is at Hite. If it is muddy head south. Good Luck to all of my fellow anglers and try to avoid the wind (If possible).
Date Received: May 30, Adam C. Dorfman
My wife and I fished 5/27 - 5/28 at the mouth of Red Canyon. On Saturday morning from 8:00AM - 11:00AM we caught 18 strippers trolling at 3 mph using deep divers (walleye divers, little mac's). We also picked up a few down rigging at 25 feet with a shad rap. Water temp was 70-73.5 and mostly clear. On Sunday, the wind changed and mixed muddy water with the clear, and the action slowed. When we left for Hite on Monday morning we counted 30 fish in total. No huge fish to speak of, but big enough to have a blast!! I think 60 stripper fillets (15lbs worth) will feed us for quite some time. We will be back in the fall when the air temp's drop a bit. You know you had a successful trip when you can't stand to fillet another fish..... so you sleep in on your last day!
Date Received: May 30, Wayne Gustaveson
Striped bass spawning
We know that striped bass are anadromous, meaning that they run up tributary rivers to spawn. Each year there is a spawning congregation that gathers in the muddy, moving current at the Colorado River headwaters near Gypsum and Imperial Canyons. I just received word that this year is no exception. Electrofishing sampling done there on May 14th showed fish stacked shoulder to shoulder in incredible numbers. Most of the fish were 2-3 pound males. My records from pervious years show that the larger females show up sometime during the first two weeks of June. Striped bass abundance was triggered by increased temperature and increased flow. Both of which are occurring now due to the warm ambient temperature.
I know stripers are stacked at the mouth of Gypsum Canyon which is about 15 miles upstream from Dark canyon, the only other wide spot in the river. Main channel depth there is 20 feet but the back water at Gypsum is 4-10 feet deep. Electrofishing done in this backwater turned up an unbelievable number of striped bass. There were also striped bass in the 20 foot deep running water of the channel.
Now just because they are there does not mean they are vulnerable to angling. BUT, if I understand stripers my guess is that they can be caught. I would start with a highly visible rattling crank bait or even a surface lure which could be cast or trolled. I know stripers are able to eat shad in the dirty water so any shad imitating lure may be effective.
I throw this out in case there is an adventuresome soul out there who may want to check out the possibility of catching an incredible number of stripers in a short time realizing that he may also go on a long trip in muddy water and get skunked. If you do venture out that way, stay in the channel, watch for sand bars, and be very careful to watch for driftwood.
Date Received: May 31, 2000 Dan Spitzer
Fished Blue Notch/Red Canyon May 26th - the morning of the 29th. Main canyon points and shoals were the most productive as were some of the many cove entrances in Red Canyon when the wind was blowing and stirring things up. Fishing for SMB was very good on Friday, remained very good on Saturday but declined Sunday and Monday morning. Throw in some LMB and bluegill as usual.
Mostly I fished with various smoke colored grubs and tubes in dark greens but occasionally in puke or white. My most productive bait was a 4" Bass Pro Sops XPS smoke w/purple and black flake single tail grub. Also caught a few bass on crank baits and an Yozuri L-Minnow.
When fish weren't hitting in the upper 10' of water one needed only to gradually start fishing deeper until fish were found. Bigger bass and more mid-day bass were generally found as deep as 30'. Saturday afternoon I caught some really nice SMB and a big LMB deep on a 4" spider grub in pumpkin w/green flake rigged on a 3/8 oz. jig head fished very slowly. Sunday afternoon I tried a mojo rigged floating tube (1/4 oz. weight pegged 2' above the tube) fished 20' - 30' and again very slowly with good results for bigger SMB. The unweighted tube really has good action rigged this way. As I remember from some of Wayne's fishing reports last summer he recommended split shotting a grub on a wide gap hook 16" or so below the split shot.
When the wind became a problem and I wanted to fish deep I fished parallel to the shore both drifting toward the bait which helped keep it down or away from it and letting it drag the bottom.
I did venture out into the main channel south of Castle Butte for awhile one late morning. With the water more stained than in Red canyon I first tried a black grub (for contrast in the brown water) and later switched to a shiny shad colored rattling crank bait. Caught a couple of SMB on each. The main channel south of Castle Butte was fishable but one needed to help the fish find the bait for best results.
I graphed what appeared to be many stripers in Red Canyon but only got a couple of "taps" trolling with deep diving Fat Free Shads and Shad -Rs. Stripers keep me interested when I'm catching them one after the other or when they're the only action in town so admittedly I didn't try trolling very long, hoping instead that I would come across some active stripers while pursuing SMB and LMB - that didn't happen this trip.
As good as the fishing was I'm not sure that the rising sun first hitting the tops of the canyon walls with its orange glow in the morning isn't the best part of a Lake Powell fishing trip.
Date Received: June 1, 2000 Bass Man
Fished L.P. Out of Blue Notch canyon May 26th -29th. Water temp 68-75 degrees. Fishing was good for both Smallmouth Bass and Stripers. Fish have switched to summer time patterns 1) fish the first two hours of light for best success (fish are most active before the sun hits the water). 2) stripers were hitting top-water plugs off the points in Red Canyon (caught 10-15 stripers every morning before the sun hit the water) 3) smallmouth bass (12-15 in.)were shallow at first light and right before dark. The rest of the time you had to fish deep in 15-30 ft. of water to catch bigger fish. 4) stripers could be caught trolling in Good Hope Bay , Blue Notch, and Red Canyon all day, 3 to 4 fish per hr. Troll with traditional shad deep diving cranks such as little mac's, frenzy's and thunder sticks. The stripers liked a fast troll @ 3 to 5 mph. 5) Two walleye were caught while fishing for smallmouth.
Blue Notch is a beautiful place to camp "PLEASE" respect our National Recreation Area!!! I never have figured out why some people think cans and bottles burn. If you are going to leave your cans and bottles behind please leave them in a garbage sack so I can take them out. I hate digging broken glass out of a fire pit. See you when the stripers start boiling in August! Thanks Wayne for such a great site! Bass Man
Date Received: June 5, Dale Eichel
We fished Red canyon to Good hope bay in the last week of May. Crank baits diving 12 to 20 feet all colors. The fish seemed to have a preference to red or natural shad. The eight of us caught about 50 stripers and a mix of walleye a day. Trolling at 4 mph. The lake temp was 70 to 74 and the ambient was hotter than 100. Most fish caught were in the clear water away from the mud line. It did not seem to be a factor on water depth, caught them anywhere. But that is a sign of a good fisherman .. right?
Date Received: June 12, James D. Rogers
Hey - I know those Broomfield guys in the picture, was fortunate to fish Red Canyon with them last year in May! This year my brother and nephew and I camped in Red Canyon again, in the same area. We missed the guys from Broomfield by a day or two. We arrived June 3 and left June 9.
Thanks to the Bassman's reports in Anglers Corner, we knew that Blue Notch was a hot spot. The first evening we started picking up smallies right away off the eastern shorline where the water is just a few feet deep. It was not uncommon to have 2-3 fish on the lines at a time. We were using curlytail grubs of various colors.
But we came for the stripers. As the sun came off the water about 8:00pm we started trolling for stripers - and filled the stringer. We picked up a few inside Blue Notch near an island (soon to be underwater) in the northeast corner. But the hot spot for the entire trip was the notch between the mainland and the easternmost island at the entrance to Blue Notch. The water here goes from 100+ in the main channel of Red Canyon to 12-13 feet on the east side of the notch. Once inside Blue Notch it drops off to 30-40 feet again to the northwest and stays shallow to the northeast. Everytime we trolled through the little notch we would pick up a striper, walleye or smallmouth, sometimes loading up all the rods. Here we used a variety of lures but the yellow-white, red and black-silver Wally Divers were most productive. A Rapala Shad Rap in shad color was also very good. Risto-Raps, floating minnows, Rattle-Traps and everything else we tried brought in fish.
The wind was low most of the trip, which seemed to hurt the striper fishing during the day. The southern point at the first narrow portion of Ticaboo (below the big rock slides) proved fairly productive for stripers. The depth shallowed to about 20 feet, then got deeper as you entered Ticaboo.
The best daytime striper fishing was Thursday when the wind was kicking up 2-3 foot waves in Good Hope Bay. There are two little islands opposite Castle Butte on the west side of Good Hope. Just south of these islands is a point where the water rises from 100+ feet deep south of the point to 8 feet deep about 40 feet east of the point. Teh water gradually deepens as the point stretches out toward a green mile marker 100-200 yards off shore. We trolled over and over the 8 foot deep spot and caught a striper almost every time.
Date Received: June 12, Dan Spitzer
Launched from Farley's Thursday (6/8) evening and headed for Blue Notch/Red Canyon area. Very windy and the main channel was rough. Set up camp and waited for morning before heading out. My fishing report would read like Wayne's 6/9/00 report: SMB active early and late but could be caught all day by fishing deeper. Off and on feeding occurred on wind blown points - sometimes being very good even at mid-day. Occasional LMB and bluegill caught in the mix - add in a walleye and a yellow bullhead. We used a variety of tubes in dark and light greens, smoke, amber w/green flake, and white. I used a smoke colored grub also with good results. Shelves and pockets in the rock on steep structure could also be very good inside some of the smaller coves. Excalibur Swim'n Images in shad colors were dynamite in the evening. Chug Bugs and Pop'n Images worked well as topwater baits.
We could not raise any stripers early or late along the shorelines in Red Canyon, Good Hope Bay, and Blue Notch where we were fishing. Friday evening we did some trolling for stripers and picked up 3 quick fish in the island area of Good Hope Bay south of Castle Butte. For information note that Shad Rs being trolled were bumping bottom in 17' of water on a saddle between islands. Just as quickly we lost the school. We set out Saturday evening to again troll for stripers but because of fuel problems were forced back to camp.
We fished the shoreline with topwater plugs: Neil caught 1 big LMB across the cove from camp; we also caught a couple of SMB (very aggressive). We left Sunday morning without fishing Blue Notch or Red Canyon but once inside Farley's we started throwing some crank baits around points and picked up a few cruising stripers. I'm sure that could have gone on for awhile. Trolling the area probably could have been productive too but we had to get back and trailered the boat late morning.
Date Received: June 15, 2000 W. Adams
Weather great but mild winds were making things challenging at times. Hit White Canyon first day and a half since doing extremely well there previous year on stripers (80+). Water stained, debris, experienced poor at best fishing for striper. Smallies were abundant using just about any typical bait. SMB hit well on 3" & 4" pumpkin or cinammon/green flake grubs. Some cat taken - deep with anchovies. Moved to areas between between Good Hope and Knowles fishing walls and points for 2 1/2 days. Got into heavy striper action in Cedar Canyon and Warm Springs using anchovies over chummed area.
I was rigged with leader and split shot (1/4 oz to 3/8) about two feet above 2/0 hook. The others rigged with plain leadheads either 1/4oz or 3/8oz. Caught about the same on both types rig. Did our best when letting line out at a slow sink rate or retrieving at slow rate. (Wind and drift made this difficult at times.) Depths of catch were usually 20-45 ft in areas that were at least 65 ft deep. Most stripers were between 4-6lbs. If several smaller stripers were consecutively caught we would move slightly. (Stripers on anchovies taken throughout day. Trolling produced early and late.) Also worked grubs and top waters producing an abundance of smallies. Stripers were boiling early morning between 5:45 and 6:30 in Farley. Some nice ones taken using Wayne's suggested top waters and shallow runners.
Date Received: June 20, 2000 Jory Sorensen, Payson, UT
Spent a few days at the north end, camped in Farly from 14th to the 18th. Fished both Farley and White. Farley was stained/murkey all the way back. Fishing was poor for us in the off-colored water and seemed to get better as it cleared. Caught a few SMB and LMB by camp(back of Farley) as well as an occasional striper. We did best though in White canyon. The water started clearing after the two arms split and was clear after the second turn in the south arm. We did great on the SMB and LMB in the clear water along the broken up edges. Twisters and gitzits in about any color seemed to work but pumpkins and dark greens seemed to work the best. But, the best time that we had was Sunday morning. We were in the part of the canyon where the walls are pretty much vertical on both sides, and got into the stripers. They were boiling like crazy!!! We fished boils for about 3 hours solid! They were fairly short-lived but numerous. we fished over a dozen that morning, and couldn't get to several more or had more than one boil going at once. The best striper fishing I've ever had at Powell. Most fish were in the 1-2 pound range, but we caught several in the 5-6 pound range. It didn't seem to matter what you threw into them, just get it into them and hang on!!! Thanks for the great info and keep up the good work!
Date Received: July 7, Dan Spitzer
Fished the Blue Notch, Red Canyon and Castle Butte area 7/1 - 7/4. SMB fishing remains good on main channel and main canyon points, reefs, and shoals. Early a.m. and late evening were especially good. Top water effective early and late. I used a Spook Jr. as my primary topwater bait and 3" and 4" dark green and cotton candy hologram single tail grubs other times for bass. 10 fish in no more than 15 casts before the sun hit the water was the norm. Caught a couple of big SMB in 15' of water next to a shaded boulder in the back of one cove adjacent to Castle Butte. Bluegill hit with reckless abandon on most any rocky shoreline all day long. Caught a few LMB including a 4 lb.er up in the brush in shallow water on a steep shoreline with boulder and chunk rock cover/structure. Caught 5 SMB on a Risto Rap one evening in 5 casts before a "blank" then 2 more in 2 casts. 7 for 8 isn't bad.
Almost all coves in the area were taken by houseboats, cruisers, and other large groups of boat campers. Looking for early morning stripers in these areas was next to impossible. Water skiers and jet skiers dominated Blue Notch until after 9:00 p.m. which made late evening fishing close to camp difficult. Water skiers and jet skiers were also found all day long in Red Canyon. A good area for fishing was the island and rocky reef/shoal structure just south of Castle Butte. The non fishermen stayed out of the rocky "stuff" for the most part. Success here depended on fishing the deep side of these structures where the water fell away to at least 25'. SMB could be caught all day long. The higher the sun the deeper and slower one needed to fish.
Sunday morning I found one brief striper boil inside Blue Notch just after coming around the southerly end of the big island (it's an island now) that separates Blue Notch from Castle Butte. The Spook Jr. got a tail slap and a couple of followers in three casts before water skiers scattered the boil and caused the stripers to sound and scatter only to regroup somewhere else?? They didn't return.
Monday morning about a hundred yards offshore and south of the big island separating Blue Notch from Good Hope Bay I ran into a striper boil. For the next hour and fifteen minutes I chased the boil all around Good Hope Bay - the boil would fragment and would pop up in one or more different places - sometimes close and sometimes 50 - 75 yards away . The stripers were boat and lure shy and would sound anytime the boat got too close or too much commotion was made in landing a fish or sometimes even when the lure hit the water on the cast (especially a big topwater. Consequently I started using a lipless Exc. Super Spot but switched to an Exc. Swim'n Image. The Swim'n Image produced 11 of the 15 stripers caught that morning. The Spook Jr. seemed to scare the fish without catching any.
Monday afternoon and evening was very windy which limited my fishing from my small boat.
Tuesday morning I was in the same general area trolling an Exc. 2 1/2 " deep diving fat free shad and caught one striper out of a school at 30' in 174' of water. They were gone on the next pass. Heading out past Castle Butte about half way between the shoreline and the red buoy I came across another boil. This time I was using a Yozuri L-minnow which had a smaller profile than the Swim'n Image but cast like a rocket. The stripers hit this bait much more readily than the Super Spot or Swim'n Image. I'm going to get a couple more - take off the front hook - replace the rear treble with a bigger one - and assuming that the action is OK with the modification - keep one handy for future trips. The boil was short lived but I did manage 4 fish from this one. These fish were very shy - most often not resurfacing after sounding for quite some time and generally much further away than what I had encountered the previous day - most often more than casting distance away and then resounding again before I could get within casting distance. I did a lot more chasing than fishing Tuesday morning.
The stripers I caught, but for a couple of small ones, were in the 2 to 2 1/2 lb. range.
I also did some midday trolling around the islands south of Blue Notch and Castle Butte as well in Red Canyon - most points and saddles produced SMB in 20' - 30' of water and a rare striper. Lost a couple of 3" fat free shads - they dive really deep when trolling - plus a 2 1/2 ' suspending model. The Risto Rap and a Shad R all produced SMB when trolled.
Date Received: August 3, 2000 Jerry Guhl, Aurora, Colo.
Our group headed out of Hite July 26, and we really didn't get to fish until the 28th. We were camped in the area near Blue Notch when we decided to try bass fishing around the islands. We caught many small mouths and a half dozen large mouths, using a combination of small tube jigs, and trolling a Teeny Weeny Crawfish in 12-15 feet of water. Some undersized fish but most of the smallies were around 1-1 1/2 lbs, with a couple of large mouths going 3 lbs. The next morning we were awakened by a major striper boil at the back of the boats. We targeted the stripers in the evenings and early mornings from shore and did have very good luck with topwater lures and rattle traps. One morning boil lasted 45 minutes and we kept 44 from this fishy outburst. When we moved camp to Ticaboo Canyon we had to change tactics to deep water, after locating a school with the fish finder we started chumming anchovies and dropping our baits down over the fish. We found that we could catch more fish with a 4" white tube jig tiped with a piece of anchovie than with just anchovies. Most of the fish were caught in 40 feet of water. We were able to land 34 stripers in 4 hours during the heat of the day. This last batch of fish used up our available freezer space so no more fish were kept. My advice to anyone going to Powell would be bring a good set of long needlenose pliers, and a good pair of fishing gloves for unhooking those stripers, they are very hard on unprotected hands.
Date Received: August 21, 2000 Tom Mitchell of Redlands, California
Fished the Hite area from Aug 10 to Aug 16. We started at the mouth of Dirty Devil and either the boils weren't staying up long enough or my lack of experience in this type of fishing was scaring them off as I approached the boils. In two days of fishing there I was able to catch only one striper off a boil.
Then we moved to White Canyon. Sunday evening I started out trolling for them between mile markers 134 and 135, but noticed on my fish finder some bait balls and larger fish. When I reeled my trolling rig in I quickly connected with a nice 3 lb. striper. I picked up my jig stick and jigged up two more from about 45 feet down. When I got the second fish off I found myself in a small boil. I got 4 more stripers on top water lures from this boil. The next day we really got into them. The rented houseboat was parked in the back of the cove that is due south of the White Canyon buoy. We found a nice boil that stayed up for at least 45 minutes just east of where we were camped. The stripers were very aggressive and would make repeated attempts at our "spooks." We got about 30 stripers from this boil before they went down. We headed back to camp.
As we came into view of the mouth of the cove where the houseboat was beached, there was my wife in our canoe fishing a big boil that nearly covered the entire cove. Stripers were jumping everywhere. I was so proud to see her out there in the middle of it all. She had my ultra light rod and no pliers. She had to tire the stripers out before she would lip them. Anyway, she got 3 on her own in the canoe.
While still in the cove the stripers would continue to hit our lures even though they were done boiling. We could see them under the boat and next to the cove walls. When it was all over we had caught (50) 3 LB to 4 LB stripers.
Perhaps this information will be useful- don't stop fishing for the stripers just because the boils have stopped. We caught about 17 more in the cove even though they had stopped boiling. We fished this area for 3 more days, but never really saw anymore boils. I highly recommend this type of fishing. The action is intense and exciting. Be sure to bring plenty of top water lures for this type of fishing as we broke off a few fish even though we were using 10 LB test. I still had some extras, but I was getting nervous since the fishing was so good.
Date Received: August 28, BOB SCHWAB
Thanks for the information on Blue Notch, we will try it next time at the lake. We fished Sunday Nite and Monday Morning 20th and 21st in Farley. Fished 1/2 of anchoive on lead head jigs 20 to 30 feet down. Saturday nite my X-85 screen went totally black with fish when we looked down the water was silver all around the boat with shad, we drifted in the back area by the gravel islands where the channel narrows. In an hour we caught about 12 fish (2 fisherman). Had about the same results Monday morning. Talked to some other fisherman Sunday and they caught 35 ( 4 fisherman) trolling and jigging the cliffs on the North side of Farley. We saw only a couple of tiny boils 20 or so surface hits then back down. Suspect the full moon is allowing the stripers to feed all nite long. We caught some nice cat fish at camp on an anchoives, 1 cat went 5.5 lbs and was a big suprise to the 11 year old girl that caught it.
Date Received: September 7, 2000 Brent Prosise
Just returned from Powell with Great success. We returned this year with great expectations from the previous year. The day we arrived we were loading the house boat and stripers were hitting on the back side of hite marina. We loaded up & headed out. We first hit the mouth of dirty devil with a few spotty boils but not steady. We pulled out the jigging spoons & headed down lake to the mail lake point across the lake from the white canyon entrance. The main point has two small islands on the end. We started hitting then hard in the 35 to 60 foot range. The schools were very large and the fish were quite bigger from the previous year. We had a good year last year & brought nine total in the group, we stayed on that point all afternoon picking up well over one hundred fish. All on jigging spoons, There was no top water action on that point except for one evening when one of the boats in our group noticed schooling near the shore but briefly. To make a very long story short we caught well over 1200 fish over the next 5 days.
The areas we were having good success was at the mouth of four mile canyon on the north side, there is a large flat that runs along the channel that stays in the 50 foot range all the way out into the lake. The mouth of white canyou directly south of the white canyon marker (bills point). That point produced the two biggest fish of the trip. The main point due west from the islands on the main lake point described earlier, Dont know the names because we named tham as the trip progressed. If you go due west from the islands you will run directly into the mouth of a canyon. The south point to that canyon has a good flat that runs very far out, It peaks at about 20f & has sharp drops into 75 feet which produced some of the best catches we had. We named that point (81) because one of the boats in the group had 81 alone from that point in one afternoon.
Pretty much you could fish that whole area all week and catch fish. We camped the house boat in white canyon, but never went below four mile canyon or above hite. Some of the guys got into a little bit of schooling fish but all in all we might have caught 30 fish on top out of the whole trip. The key to the trip was lowrance x70 & lms350 depthfinders and the dark moon, the fish were allot more active during the day. Without them we would not have been able to see the difference from the bait to the stripers. We were on the trolling motor allot to stay vertical with our jigging, but as we would get into schools you could never hit the bottom with your lure. I am elso attaching a few of the pictures from my camera for your album. the pictures were trips which we brought in 175, 142 & 135to clean. I appreciate all you have done & want to thank utah for the best trip of my life. The facilities are wonderfull, the store above hite even allowed us to keep 6 ice chests full of fillets in the locker. We shared a little :) .... All in all we had an amazing trip & will be there next august on the dark moon. Look for the white gambler, the brown champion, & the small boat with the crazy utard named paul in it.
Date Received: September 11, 2000 Dan Spitzer
The dog, my little 12' boat, the Trooper with my 2 month old Firestone Wilderness ATs, and I pulled into Blue Notch Thursday evening the 7th at about 7:00 p.m.. I quickly got the boat and car unloaded, put the boat in the water, rigged a couple of rods, and headed for the back of Blue Notch. I immediately saw a big balloon on the fish finder, cut the motor, and dropped the trolling motor as the first swirls started. First fish a walleye. Second fish a LMB. Third fish a striper when my new Berkeley Vanish fluorocarbon broke - it would prove to be a problem all weekend. The stripers were isolated and not a lot of them. Isolated splashes sometimes 80 -100 yards apart were the norm. I did get 4 before the action stopped. It was dark by now. I caught the last 3 stripers on a Thunderstick Jr. in a glow in the dark green/white color casting off a point to nothing in particular. Pulled 3 SMB out of the action also. The stripers this night were the fattest stripers I have ever caught at LP.
Headed back first thing in the a.m. As it got light enough to see I could see shad "frolicking" in the back - they never "schooled up" and I only managed a couple of SMB. No boils.
Went looking for striper boils with no luck. Headed across the main channel to the 2 little islands SW of Castle Butte. The SMB action was incredible. Probably caught at least 30 SMB making a circle of the islands. Went back to camp for breakfast stopping at the rocky reef/shoal/island structure just to the south of Castle Butte inside the Good Hope/Red Canyon area. Again, lots of SMB.
SMB were readily caught all weekend using melon pepper and ice (milky blue w/sparkle) single tail grubs on 1/4 oz. lead heads. I also used a dark melon tube with equal results but opted for the grubs as they are easier to rig. Classic main channel points and shoals and main canyon point and shoals produced SMB all day long. The trick was to steadily fish deeper as the day wore on. An occasional LMB and some bluegill were also caught. With the wind blowing, the submerged saddle which connects the eastern most island at the south end of Blue Notch and the eastern shoreline would be "stacked" with SMB feeding on anything that got funneled through that narrow saddle. Some good SMB were caught here.
Friday night I went to the back of Blue Notch again and just before dark heard some splashing in the shallow brushy area on the west side in back. I didn't get to the boil in time, but I did get 9 stripers in a little pocket of shallow water after they had quit boiling. 2 of these fish were so skinny (back bones protruding) that they were simply not worth filleting. I destroyed those 2 fish and threw them back in the water. The other 7 were thin but not unhealthy.
Saturday morning was a repeat of Friday morning except that there was a noticeable absence of shad in the back of Blue Notch. I did graph shad and stripers in Red Canyon but found no boils. I'm not one to sit and jig and chum so moved on to SMB fishing. Same results. Same patterns. I did get into a topwater SMB bite across the bay from Castle Butte with a Pop'n Image cast over and around off-shore rocky reef structure.
Saturday afternoon was a real treat for me. A couple of big dual console bass boats (yeah, I'm envious) came flying into the back of Blue Notch, cut their motors, dropped their trolling motors. I figured I may learn something about the finer points of bass fishing, so I pulled up the lounge chair, grabbed a beer, and watched. The one guy settled his boat into 3' of water and fished the brushy 1' of water on the west shore. Hmmmm!
Saturday night there were no stripers in the back of Blue Notch. The birds had gone by now. I did manage a walleye and a lot of SMB.
Sunday morning I headed straight for Red Canyon looking for stripers. There were some shad just before the S curve in the back - but again they were just playing and not "schooled up." I did graph stripers and some small schools of shad in open water - 30' 50'. I stayed around for nearly an hour until the sun was on the water to no avail. Went out to the reef structure just south of Castle Butte for some fast SMB action before packing up and heading home. Easy pickins'! Off the little island just south of Castle Butte there is a lot of broken slab rock on the west side - dropping a grub straight down into the vertical cracks resulted in SMB coming out of nowhere to fight over the grub! They were so competitive that I could actually watch as one would hit the grub already hanging out another's mouth!
In summary: 13 stripers total, 2 walleye, 3 largemouth, some bluegill, and probably 50 - 60 smallmouth per day on Friday and Saturday and another 20 or so Sunday morning.
The stripers were caught on a Spit'n Image and Swim'n Image in addition to the little Thunderstick previously mentioned. One of the walleye was caught on the Swim'n Image and the other on a Yozuri L-Minnow on which I had removed the 2 small trebles and replaced only the rear one with a number 4 treble ( I actually liked the wounded baitfish action with the 1 large treble better than with the two small hooks).
Although I did catch some of the SMB with the Swim'n Image and some with a Pop'n Image most were caught on single tail grubs. Some thoughts: the back of Blue Notch is shallow right now. I'm sure this affects striper fishing with the warm water and no immediate access to deep water. Also, even though the moon was not full, there was plenty of moon light which if I understand correctly leads to the shad schooling up and being found by stripers at night which may have affected the early morning striper boils. In any event I couldn't find early morning striper boils where I was fishing. I didn't save many shad this trip!
I didn't have the chance to actually fish with it but I did rig and play with from the shoreline before leaving a Sassy Shad (white shad shaped, paddle tailed , soft plastic bait) with a large long shanked worm hook but no weight and found that it had great action on the surface and just under. It was very castable. The size, action and castability of this rig may make a great striper boil lure as unhooking would be easy with the single hook.
Date Received: September 18, 2000 Wayne Nelson
We went to Farley Canyon and fished 9/15/ and 9/16. Between the three of us we caught 319 fish. We caught smallmouth, lmb, bluegill, walleye,stripers, and bluegill. The majority of these were smallmouth. One of guy's on the boat caught and released a 6lb 3oz walleye. Nice fish! We fished the Good Hope Bay, the north walls in the main channel and around Ticaboo. We did go to 4 mile, but it was not as good as the area around Good Hope. We did not fish for stripers, but it was hard not to run into them. We did have a boil erupt in the back of Ticaboo on Saturday around 1130 am. Of course we fished it and caught several stripers. It only lasted around 10 minutes, but the three of us caught 18 1lb to 6lb stripers. We used various top water lures. The rest of the time we strictly used grubs on a 1/4 oz. lead head. The fish were biting all day. We had a great time and will be back up in April or May.
Date Received: September 18, 2000 George M. Borras
7 Day houseboat trip from Sat. Sept. 9-15 yields many bass. On Sat., Sun., Mon., the back of Mountain Sheep Canyon was teeming with fish. Mostly smallmouth bass up to 1.5 pounds. Super Glassy conditions show off boils in every direction. Smallmouths teaming up with the small stripers in boils up against the canyon walls. We fished from shore looking down from the smooth rocks spotting the bass from afar and throwing to them. Almost every cast has a few smallies at least following your lure. Small bait is the ticket, large lures aren't producing. Top water not really hitting but when it does, it's explosive. Lots of shad everywhere and great crack of light and dusk boiling action. Mountain sheep Canyon seems to be a fish haven as there are tons of 2-4 inch baby smallies and even more schools of small baby stripers. Crawdad plastic lures aren't working in any color. Large mouth bass are very few and are very finicky eaters, often ignoring your lures completely - maybe they are already well fed.
Tuesday, Wednesday we hit Warm Creek Bay. On the way in there were Midday boils as far as the eye could see. Great striper action but approach with caution, they dive down quickly disappearing into the green depths. The back of warm creek bay has a scarce bite probably due to the chalky green water with about 1 foot of visibility. I suggest fishing midway up Warm Creek bay and stay to the west side of the bay. Thursday, Friday, Saturday we stayed in the back of Padre Canyon. Best small mouth fishing ever! About 5 fish per hour for each of my friends and I. First morning light reveals splashing everywhere. smallies are on the surface till the morning sun comes over the cliff wall, then break out the plasic worms for the bottom fishing. The bite is on all day long even at high noon. I'd like all the anglers to know that one specific plastic lure single handedly produced about 3/4 of all our small mouth bass. My brother decided to try a bag of the Senko Worm by Gary Yamamoto Lures out of Page, Arizona. The color of this fat worm that was working was watermelon (dark green) with pepper flakes. It's a soft salt impregnated lure that the smallies go crazy for. I had to retire 3 of these worms because they were so torn up from all the action. I'll never again go to the lake armed without them. Small crank baits of all kinds worked in the mornings on the main channel (center-back) of Padre Canyon then the Senko worm came into affect.
Striper would boil 2-3 times a day at all hours. I walked to one boil that I could barely see in the dark and threw out a clear single tailed grub a minute after the boil had ended. I had an instant hit and one of the best fights I've ever had on Lake Powell - about a 4 pounder healthy fat female. A second cast yielded another good fight - about 3 pounds of fighting flesh. These fish have great night vision and I am amazed they could see my colorless lure in complete darkness. The last one bent my pole in half as well but tasted just as good as the other fish we caught. Overall striper action was great and any lure works on these voracious eaters.
Anyway, September fishing was great and the weather was the best I've ever had with a full moon on Tues.-Thurs. Good luck fishing Lake Powell.
Date Received: September 25, 2000 Scot Elder
Just completed another trip into Blue Notch. My fishing buddies and I try to make the pilgrimmage annually, hauling a couple fifth-wheels, a Tracker, and any other boats we can manage to beg, borrow or steal for the trip. The road in was well graded and sans major washouts this year, which made for a more peaceful start to the trip.
One of my fishing buddies had set up about a week before my arrival and starting fishing on the 7th. He had trouble locating striper boils of any size, but found shad schools pretty easy to graph. He caught stripers in the bay just before the S at the back of Red Canyon, and experienced consistent smallmouth action any and everywhere around Castle Butte, Blue Notch, and Red.
My partner and I didn't get set up and fishing until Sept. 12th. Based on the above report, we assumed the stripers were staying relatively deep and orienting to the shad schools. The pattern worked. We found the thermocline at 64 feet. We simply tooled the mouth of Red and along the main channel until we graphed shad schools, then we'd look nearby for larger fish just above the thermocline. Every time we marked fish above the thermocline near shad, we caught stripers by vertically jigging spoons or anchovy rigs. It came to be a sure bet that, when numbers of fish were marked above 60 feet, we'd catch stripers.
We generally seek the stripers at night. The first couple nights were slow as we stayed near camp at the mouth of Blue Notch or in Red Canyon. The stripers were holding out near the main lake channel as it turned out, and on the third night we got into 'em heavy. Two anglers, four rods, several three-rod hook ups, a couple four-rod hookups, and 65 or so stripers in about three hours. Kept 27 to filet. The shad continued to move into the Blue Notch area throughout the following week and the night fishing action continued. Over the next several nights two of us boated about 300 stripers, and kept 136 to filet. Body condition of the fish was generally good, but their length was not quite what it has been in years past. The fish averaged about 3 lbs this year. We've experienced 4 and 5 pound averages while night fishing previously.
Smally action was consistent during midday, but no real hogs. Couple thin walleyes and spotty catfish action (picked up while jigging stripers). I was very happy to see a good shad population throughout the area of Castle Butte. Boils were spotty and small-the largest generally included maybe 40 fish or so, and pretty short-lived. Obviously, all of the boils we saw produced fish on Gitzits, Chug Bugs, Spooks, etc. Notes to relay: one partner is now on his third Tracker DV-17, all of which have had serious problems (leaks at the seams, electrical problems, leaks at the transom, etc.) anglers beware; our Lowrance unit on our ProCraft absolutely made the trip this year, with the bulk of the striper population relating to the thermocline and shad schools, electronics were worth their weight in gold..er, stripers.
Date Received: September 25, 2000 BASS MAN
Fished out of Farley Canyon - Blue Notch September 21st-25th . WIND!!!! is a four letter word. 21st - Fished White Canyon, caught & released a 3 ˝˝ pound walleye, on a Tenn. Shad Chug Bug (top-water plug. First Cast!). C&R some 30 Smallmouth Bass that morning in White, Two-Mile and Four-Mile. Then the wind came up!!!! Moved to Blue Notch and the wind never stopped (even my drift sock didn't help). It was a real tough bite! We did manage to fish some areas in Ticaboo (where the wind only blew 20-30 MPH). 22nd - C&R 40 Smallmouth Bass in Ticaboo and the north facing coves across from Blue Notch. 23rd - C&R about 60 SMB in Ticaboo and the south end of Good Hope Bay. 24th - the cold wind switched to the north C&R about 10 SMB and called it a trip. SMB were caught on top-water, crank-baits and rubber grubs. I did not see 1 striper boil during the whole trip! Furthermore, this was the first trip I have had at Lake Powell and not caught a single striper!!
Talked to Dan Spitzer and Dagny in Blue Notch. Dan reported one small boil in Blue Notch Sat. night. There were a lot of shad dancing just as you enter Red Canyon (first canyon to the north) and Blue Notch had numerous shad (where the road comes in) on Sunday morning. I think these will be good places to look for striper boils in the next few days.
Hey! I can not say how much I like my Spring-bar tent. I have had it for over 20 years (and it can still handle those 70 MPH gusts) Spring-bar is a Utah made tent (Kirkams) and are worth every extra penny you pay for them.
Date Received: September 26, 2000 Rick
Thanks for the great information. The weather was terrific! On Thursday, we caught bass and walleye on every rock, brushy point and cove we fished. On Friday, the wind came out of the SW at 25-40 mph all day long. The group spent an hour on the Hite ramp developing the courage to attempt a run across to North Wash. Since we fish out of a Champion Fishunter 190 walleye boat that loves the big water, we went across, and did pretty well. The other boats slowly developed the courage to cross, and a good time was had by all. Every rock in North Wash was fished 10 times by this band of desperate participants. Later in the afternoon, we pounded out to the northeast edge of the Horn, and creamed a school of fat two year old stripers. Some of the most exciting wind I've experienced on my 26 years at Lake Powell!
Tournament day was Saturday, and the weather service issued a high wind warning, 35-50 mph, gusting to 70, with rain. Yippee... I haven't had that much fun since the hogs ate my little brother. To stay on a point, you had to move up with the big motor and slowly drift back with the positioning motor on full. Any bait less than 5/8 oz, and the wind would catch the line, pull the bait out of the water, and fly behind you like a kite. Seriously, the wind whipped water off of the surface and hit you like rain. By two o'clock, we had two small bass in the well, and coming off of the mountain was the blackest wall of water you ever saw. You couldn't see across the lake for the sheets of rain and hail approaching. We were on the rocky points on the east side, north of White Cyn. when the rain hit. My cousin from Florida (and partner) was nearly knocked out of the boat by a blast of hail and wind. Four foot waves crashed onto the rocks, but we kept casting our Yamamoto 1/2 oz. white spinnerbaits, and experienced one of the best 45 minutes of smallmouth fishing I've ever had. We put 5 quality smallmouth in the boat, with a bunch more that wouldn't quite measure. We bashed our way back to the dock to weigh in, and ended up second place, winning a pair of super-fine Loomis crankbait rods.
Sunday, an exquisite freezing north wind blew, which as you well know, makes for some really hungry fish. Never. We looked for stripers and did make a few skinny fish in the back of Roberts Cove in Good Hope on the south fork near the back in 45'. My fingers got cold, and while spooning stripers, I hooked one, lifted, and watched in horror as my All-Star spoon rod and Diawa baitcaster fell out of my hand, bounced off of the boat, into the water and was slowly towed to sea by a hapless striped bass. Nothing $400 won't fix, however. The howling from the guys in the other boats put the fish off, so we went back to the trailers to watch our Bronco's lose to a weak opponent.
We fishing addicts look forward to your weekly reports, especially when we can't be at the Lake, but need a few minutes of inspired dreaming. Please keep up the good work.
Date Received: September 26, 2000 Dan Spitzer
Drove into Blue Notch Fri. a.m. (9/22). Looked for shad and/or stripers in the back and on the way to Red Canyon. Some shad. No stripers. Fished my usual "test" point in Red Canyon for SMB and caught one small LMB and one small SMB on a green/pepper grub. The wind was picking up and I found myself drifting way beyond my retrieval rate. Headed down into Red Canyon checking the coves on both sides for striper boils. Nothing. Headed back out against the wind - tough going in a 12' boat. Swung around the islands south of Castle Butte checking the coves on the south shoreline of Castle Butte and the canyon between Castle Butte and Blue Notch for stripers. Nothing.
I would repeat this pattern whenever the wind was calm enough to let me back on the water during the course of the weekend. No striper boils. Most of the weekend was actually spent in camp as it was simply too windy and rough for my boat. I could watch the back of Blue Notch from camp as easily as from the boat.
Sat. afternoon while at camp waiting (or hoping) for the wind to calm down I noticed a Blue Heron fly in and perch on a rock across Blue Notch from camp. As the wind lulled for a brief moment the Heron got agitated and lept off the rock for the water's edge. I immediately ran for the boat and headed across when I saw the first splash ... then a second. Got there in time for 2 stripers and 3 SMB all on a Swim'n Image cast generally in the area of the last splash (which were few). It was over in 10 minutes. That Heron looked every bit as dejected as I felt. Early mornings and late evenings were good for a few SMB in Blue Notch on grubs, topwaters or shallow running cranks.
A couple of guys in float tubes were catching SMB early Sun. a.m. on buzz baits. I looked for stripers - did see a splash and a shad shoot straight into the air follwed by a couple of swirls 20 - 30 yards apart - yelled at Bass Mann that "they're heading in" but the hoped for big boil ended with that second swirl. Got home and through away the cheap Wal Mart tent and two tarps that had been trashed by the wind.
Date Received: September 27, 2000 Dale Eichel, Broomfield, CO
A bunch of us fished the area around Red Canyon and Good Hope bay Sept 13th through the 17th. The air temps were in the 100s and the water temps were in the 80s. We fished between each outcroping off the main channel and produced 20 to 30 fish in these areas before moving to the next. These fish were caught in the middle of the day between 11:00 am and 6:00 pm. Not all areas yielded fish but enough to supply 60 to 70 fish per day for the group of people fishing.
I must also note that 90% of the fish were caught by 25% of the fishermen even when we all had on the same type of lures trolling 5 boats in single file. (what a sight that must be for a bass). We caught all of our fish trolling with 20ft diving crank bait. Parrots, mustard colors and those light variations.
Date Received: September 29, 2000 Brent Stevens
Spent four days on Powell in the wind. Departed from Hite and camped 14 miles downlake. Fishing started slowly but soon got onto the smallmouth. I've never seen them so color sensitive. Once I found that a jig in colors close to the crayfish worked I caught bass with great regularity. One quirk was the fact that every day they were in a slightly different area. Could never repeat sucess in the same spot two days in a row. Key was to move and try until you found them. Once located it was always 35-60 fish in 3-4 hours of fishing. I quit using my boat because of difficulty in fighting the wind. I got in my float tube in semi sheltered spots and I outfished the boat 5 to 1. The fish shied from the boat but the float tube didn't even bother them. They act like the movement of your fins actually makes them feel like you're just a big fish. I caught smallies right under my feet. I didn't try for stripers but was still surprised by the fact that I didn't catch any. Testament to the fact that they are deep. Caught 1 walleye, about 10 sunfish, 3 cat fish, and 1 carp. Even with the cooler weather Sunday on the way out the smallies were still biting on the rocks and points. RIP THEM LIPS !!!!
Date Received: October 24, 2000 Dan Spitzer
Three of us fished out of Farley Canyon Thursday afternoon (10/19) through Saturday afternoon (10/21) after which we were rained out. We had poor fishing success. We looked for boils in Trachyte, and although we found shad and inactive herons, we could not find stripers. We were there from first light and last light a couple of times. We also fished Farley Canyon, White Canyon, and the island structure where Farley, White and Trachyte come together. Went up the Colorado Fri. afternoon and picked up SMB trolling and casting medium cranks across the points. Coming back on the Hite side of the bridge I picked up a nice walleye with a medium running fat free shad. Bill had a striper chase a crankbait with no hit. I immediately dropped a Wallylure off the deep side of the boat (about 30') and got my first striper (healthy). Although we could see stripers on the finder we couldn't get anymore hits. SMB fishing was slow in the other areas we fished but could be caught occasionally - a couple of small LMB in the mix. We did graph stripers Sat. morning off the island structure mentioned above scattered between 30' and 80' with the biggest concentration around 60', but again I could only manage one fish (healthy) caught at about 60'. We had better luck SMB fishing with cranks than soft plastics, although the SMB kept by Bill had been eating crayfish not shad. Bill did catch SMB trolling out of and into in the little cove on the north end of the back of Farley Canyon where we were camped almost overtime we left or returned to camp much to the delight of fellow campers (or should I say RVers). There were some shad back there. Total stripers: 4, 2 of which were caught on 1-1/2 oz. Wallylures (as mentioned above) and 2 on crankbaits near the back of Farley Canyon (one of which was the smallest striper I have ever seen and the other very skinny). Others where we were camped also found the fishing slow although one group was catching stripers at night with anchovies in the main channel of Farley Canyon. They mentioned that the stripers would move in (as seen on the finder) and provide a 2 hr. bite.
Date Received: October 24, 2000 John Bramhall
Attached you will see some pictures from our recent trip to Hite. Six of us from the Denver metro area (Scott and Dave Jefferson, John and Bill and Bob Bramhall, Scott Jolley) and two hunting buddies from Franklin, Pennsylvania (Garrett Jolley and Randy Proper)decided to skip the big game season this year and spend a week at Lake Powell instead. It was a good decision and we had a blast. We pulled 3 boats from Denver and arrived at Hite on October 7th and spent the first night in Blue Notch. We fished Sunday the 8th in the main channel outside of Blue Notch and Good Hope Bay. The water was calm all morning Sunday, so we decided to start out by throwing 3/8 oz. dark green/red flake tube jigs along the shore just south of Ticaboo canyon and caught dozens of smallmouths. Size varied but most fish were small.
Garrett caught the 4 pound Largemouth shown in the picture on the other side of the Lake opposite of Blue Notch. At the same time Scott Jefferson caught his 9 pound Pike at the mouth of Ticaboo Canyon while throwing a silver Rapala FR-7 Fat Rap. It was the biggest fish of the trip and the first northern any of us had caught while at Powell. Saturday afternoon was hot with temperatures in the 90's. We decided to try dunking some anchovies in 40-50 feet of water in Good Hope Bay again just south of Ticaboo. We really got into them and at times had two and three on at the same time. The photo of Bill, John and Bob Bramhall holding the stringer of fish is a result the afternoon bite. Most stripers we caught that day were between 3 and 4 pounds. The wind came up Sunday night and the fishing in the main channel went down the drain for us on Monday. We were joined Monday by some more friends of ours in another houseboat and they told us of the weather front that was due to hit us on Tuesday, so we decided to duck into Ticaboo to escape the wind and the weather. We spent Tuesday and Wednesday in the back of the canyon. Monday afternoon Randy walked to the back of the canyon and caught some stripers that were chasing a school of shad up against the wall at the very back of the canyon. As soon as we heard that we rigged up some spinning reels with Zara Spooks and walked down to the end of the canyon. Well, this wasn't just a school of shad the fish were chasing, this was a huge swarm of them and they boiled the rest of the day Monday in the back of the canyon. We were throwing the spooks to the opposite side of the canyon up against the wall and slowly walked them back right through the huge school of shad. The stripers were hitting the spooks so hard that when they missed the spook it would literally come about 2 foot out of the water. At times they would hit it two or three times before we could hook up with them. This was our first experience with top waters and boils at Lake Powell and it certainly was an unforgettable one. Tuesday the shad moved out of the back of the canyon to the opposite shore directly across from the houseboat and the boil started first thing in the morning. The shad were jumping clean out of the water to get away from the fish and the birds were eating them right on the shore. We caught 15 or 20 more stripers during that boil, most of which were 3-4 pounds. Thursday we left Ticaboo and spent the night in North Wash close to Hite and using nightcrawlers while fishing on the bottom of a sandy little bay, we caught a stringer full of catfish. Friday we checked in the houseboats and went home. All of us had a great time and will no doubt seriously consider skipping more big game seasons in the future.
Date Received: November 14, 2000 Spooner group fishing report
Wayne asked we provide as much detailed info as we can to help our readers know and understand what techniques and type of fishing tackle our group uses to catch stripers. For vertically jigging, we use 7.5 foot flipping rods from Bass Pro. Reels are Abu Garcia 5500 C 3 bait casting type. Stren 14-17 LB and Trilene 15-20 LB Big Game line is what we use. Lures used were 1 1/2 oz. and 2 oz. shad minnow Wallylures. For boils, we used 5 inch tube or gitzet lures in a white or clear/silver flake cooler 3/4 oz baby shad and a new 1/2 oz. wallylure I am experimenting with were thrown on a spinning rod/reel and bait casting rod/reel.
The following report is rather lengthy as I said I would report on each days activity.
Spud Swanke and I arrived at the Hite store at 10:00 AM on 3 Nov. After making trailer arrangements for our stay, we decided to go fishing until we could get in our trailer. We went into North Wash and graphed fish at 57 feet. We started fishing with 2 oz spoons and both hooked up on walleyes. By 1:30 PM we had caught 9 walleyes and 8 stripers. The wind started to blow so we went in, got our trailer, unpacked and called it a day.
4 Nov. On the water by 6:30 AM and fished the islands at the east end of Trachyte. Graphed fish at 48-61 feet. Fished the 2 oz spoon and picked up a few stripers but they were on the move and we had to keep moving to find them. Found stripers at 57 feet in Trachyte and again they would move after we had caught a few. Went back to the trailer for lunch and fillet the mornings catch. Our other partners Brent Bosworth, Wayne and Jerry Myers arrived and joined us for the afternoon funfest. We fished by the ramp at Hite and back down to the islands with about the same results as the morning. We ended the day with 50 stripers and 1 walleye.
5 Nov. On the water at 6:30 AM and fished in the Hite marina area. Found stripers at 65 feet and suspended at 30-40 feet. Caught quite a few stripers on the 2 oz spoon until 10:00. Went back down to the islands, found a school at 48 feet but the wind started blowing so hard we couldn't stay on the school. Went back to the trailer by noon and had to quit because of strong winds. Ended the day with 59 stripers and 3 walleye.
6 Nov. The weather was calm and we were fishing in North Wash by 6:45. Not much success so we headed back down to the islands. Graphed fish at 57 feet and the war was on. The stripers moved west, then north and they couldn't get away from the 2 oz. shad minnow. We finally lost the school at 71 feet but we then found more at 48 feet closer to one of the islands. I observed a boat south of us with a bunch of rods standing up rigged with Wallylures. I wondered if that was Bass Man and his partner but they left and we didn't talk to each other. At least they knew what lure to fish with. We went into 2 mile and graphed some fish at 53 feet. Caught a few stripers and then the moved on us. Finished the day with 83 stripers and 2 walleye.
7 Nov. The big day for the Shad Rally had finally arrived. We were in the water at 6:30 and started catching stripers north of the ramp at 62 feet with the 2 oz shad minnows. We saw a small boil that Brent caught 3 stripers on his tube lure but then they all disappeared. Went down to the islands at 8:00 and found a school of stripers at 48 feet. Caught quite a few and then the wind started and it was hard to stay on the school. We headed to 2 mile to get out of the wind about 9:30. Found a school at 43 feet and caught stripers until 11:00. The wind let up a bit so we thought we would try 4 mile before heading to Blue notch for the rally. Caught 2 smallmouth at 35 feet on 2 oz shad minnows then all hell broke loose with all 5 fishermen in 3 boats hooked up with a striper, at 40 feet, and the wind blowing 2 foot white caps midway into 4 mile. We tried our best to stay on the school but it was hard. With these type of conditions, this is why we fish the 2 oz spoon as much as we do. You have better feel and control of where and what your spoon is doing. We finally gave up at 1:00 and found a less windy cove to eat our lunch. At 2:00 we decided it would be foolish to try to go down to the rally and headed back to Hite fighting 3-4 foot waves all the way. Our tally for the day was 102 stripers and no walleye.
8 Nov. Relatively calm so we headed for the islands north of Castle Butte at 6:30. Graphed stripers at 44 feet on a hump and all 5 of us were hooked up on 3-4 LB stripers. Chased the school around until the sun hit the water and it was all over. Headed for Blue Notch to see if any one was still there from the rally and arrived around 10:00. Found Wayne and his crew and Top Cat still there and glad to see us even if we were a day late. Delivered the cake and a set of Wallylures to Wayne for a prize for someone participating in the rally. This was the highlight of my trip to finally meet the "Master" of our tremendous fishery at Lake Powell. Wayne, thanks again for every thing you have done for all of us that enjoy coming down here. We finished the day with 72 stripers and 2 walleye.
9 Nov. clear and calm but the full moon was still up when we launched at 6:30. Back to the islands by Castle Butte hoping for a repeat of yesterday. We all should know by now what stripers do in this moon phase, they eat all night and go rest in deep water in the day time. Nothing in 4 mile. Caught a few jigging at 53 feet in 2 mile. Fished the main channel structure on the South side heading toward White canyon. Caught a nice smallmouth and a few stripers in 53 feet of water on the 2 oz spoon. Went into White canyon on the right hand fork and found a lot of fish suspended at 30 feet in 40-50 feet of water. They had lockjaw and wouldn't bite. Caught a few late in the afternoon up by the ramp at 63 feet. Ended the day with 31 stripers and 1 walleye.
10 Nov. Woke up to rain and sat around and told lies and drank coffee till 2:00 PM. We finally got a sucker hole and went out and fished around the Hite area and ended up with our worst day of the trip. Ended up with 15 stripers and 1 walleye.
11 Nov. Launched under cloudy skies ay 7:00 and headed for the islands east of Trachyte. Found a nice school of stripers at 44 feet and stayed on this school until 10:30, catching 49 on the 2 oz spoon. Back out at 1:30 with a light wind and headed for the Dirty Devil. Saw a boil going on and headed for it. I caught a striper on my new 1/2 oz shad spoon while Spud and Brent were catching a few on their tube lures. After the boil ended, we went to jigging at 44 feet with the stripers suspended about 10 feet from the bottom. We would reel up 4 or 5 times and bang. They would hit the spoon with their heads or tails trying to kill the spoon and then would eat it. A striper rolled on Spuds line and broke off his best 2 oz spoon. He went to his other rod with a 1 1/2 oz spoon and kept right on catching fish. The wind started, it snowed and we were able to stay on this school until after 5:00. We caught 51 stripers this afternoon for a total of 100 for the day.
12 Nov. our last day. On the water at 7:00 in light windy weather. Went back to the Dirty Devil where we finished the day before. Spud dropped his spoon, using the same method as the day before and boated the first fish of the day. We caught 5 or 6 stripers when we noticed our friends, the seagulls, working on a boil across the bay from where we were. When we got there, the stripers had the shad pushed up into the rocks for a stretch over 150 yards long. Spud and Brent went to their tube lures or gitzits and I went to my 3/4 oz Baby Shad. I caught my first striper on the Baby shad on the second cast and lost it on a snag with my next cast. After losing 2 tube lures I went back to my faithful 2 oz spoon and started catching stripers again. They out fished me that morning for sure on their tube lures. Brent said he caught 17 on tubes and Spud didn't keep track. All good things must come to an end and we quit at 9:30 so we could get back and get the fish done and be out of the trailer before noon. Our morning catch was 58 stripers.
This is the end of our report, we caught a total of 578 stripers, 20 walleye and a bunch of smallmouth mostly on the 2 oz Shad Minnow. I have mentioned our catching of walleye throughout this report because you can catch them with this spoon while fishing for stripers on the bottom. If our hands and aching muscles get better we may do this again in early DEC. Save a Shad. Dave Wallace Wallylures L.L.C.
Date Received: November 16, 2000 Bassman
Fished L.P. Nov. 3rd-7th out of Farley Canyon. Nov 3rd - water temp. 61-Caught 40 SMB on various lures Zara Spooks, Pop-r's, Devils Horse, and various grubs (smoke + silver sparkle and electric blue) Most fish were caught in White Canyon and some in Trachyte. Caught 11 stripers that day in Trachyte and around the islands west of Farley. Stripers were caught on crankbaits and 1 ˝ oz. W.L. Shad minnow.
Nov 4th - water temp. 60- Caught 30 SMB on same lures as the 3rd. Fished Log jams South of North Wash , North Wash, Dirty Devil, Colo. River, and Farley Canyon. Caught 5 stripers trolling the Colo. River on Norman Deep N's. Found a striper Boil in the back of Farley caught 16 fish on Zara Spooks, jumping minnows and silver and black yozuri pop-n-splash.
Nov. 5th - water temp. 59- Fished Blue Notch, Red canyon area Caught 50 SMB on Various Lures already mentioned . Caught 8 stripers on 1 ˝ oz W.L. shad minnow.
Nov.6th - water temp.-58- Caught 30 SMB. Most fish were caught in 2-mile canyon . Caught 3 stripers in the back of 2-mile on W.L. shad minnow and crankbaits. Caught 4 stripers on islands west of Farley on the shad minnow. Total striper count 47. I personally caught 37 (that I counted toward the shad rally total).
Nov 7th -water temp.- 58- strong north winds. Caught 1 LMB on the way to the shad rally and 1 SMB fishing W/ Wayne. Caught both fish on a crawfish crankbait (Shad -Rap).
Now that the water has cooled down I would suggest fishing for stripers w/ the Wally Lure Shad Minnow. Go to the islands west of Farley, The islands east of four mile, the back of 2-mile, back of Trachyte, and White canyon. Look for striper schools in 40-80 ft of water. I was also told recently (by a local from Richfield Ut.) That the LMB and SMB fishing can be very good on the Dirty Devil River During November and December. Look for a nice day and fish 4-6 " rubber worms very slow!!! And deep!!!!
Date Received: November 30, 2000 Rob Adams
Here is our fishing report for Nov. 24, and 25.
We got on the lake Friday the 24th - 11:00 am. The sun was up with a few clouds and about 50 degrees with very little wind. We played around with the graph just off of Hite Marina for a few minutes then headed up the Dirty Devil. I have not used my fish finder with the fish ID off very often so I was trying to get a feel for it. The water at 51 degrees was colder than I thought it was going to be.
We graphed the Dirty Devil for about 15 minutes and stopped when I saw activity on the screen that looked promising. My brother pulled out a striper almost immediately on a silver and green $.97 Wal-Mart spoon. He then proceeded to catch another one shortly after, much to the frustration of the five of us that were using Wallylures. My daughter put her Wal-Mart special on and caught the next one. We were getting excited about the possibilities of pulling in quite a few fish. Then just like turning off a spigot we could not catch anything and tried to stay on top of the school with not much success. We fished the Dirty Devil close to the mouth, North Wash close to the mouth, and Trachyte.
We mostly jigged but did troll a little with no success and couldn’t get them to bite an anchovy for anything. We ended the day with 6 stripers and one nice smallie. Two out of the eight of us got skunked the first day. I noted that the two that had been skunked were using an anchovy scent, one was using paste and the other liquid. The rest of us were not using scent. I wonder if that had anything to do with them not catching anything.
Saturday the 25th we got on the water early. There was a lot of activity just East of the marina with about 5 boats. We spent a few minutes playing around there but decided to go back up the Dirty Devil. We jigged most of the day and worked the Devil and North Wash. One of the guys that had been skunked the day before caught 4 on Wallylures but he did not use any scent this time. He also caught a carp jigging with a Wallylure. We ended the day with 8 stripers and one carp. Saturday was a little windy in the morning but by afternoon the water was glass and the temp. was around 55. The fish up the Dirty Devil were in 40-50 feet of water. The ones that we caught up North Wash were in about 60 feet. We graphed nothing around the islands East of Trachyte. We pulled off the lake at about 3:30 pm to start the long trek home.
We had a wonderful time but were hoping for more action. We talked to another group that had fished all day Friday and only caught 3 stripers in the morning and nothing the rest of the day. I am sure that the fact that we are new to this is one of the reasons that we did not catch more, but we did not see another boat pull a fish on board all day. So I have the feeling it was a little slow.
If anyone has any input on the anchovy scent idea or why we did not see more fish please post it on the board. We are interested in the water temperature as well, wondering if 51 degree water put them in a different pattern than the 55-57 degree water that Dave Wallace was fishing in a few weeks ago.
It is hard to drive away from Lake Powell at the end of the season. It is like leaving a good friend for awhile. Well I will have to put gas in the auger and punch a few holes in the ice up North and dream of Springtime at Lake Powell.
Thanks again for the help we received from the board. Special thanks to Wayne, Dan Spitzer and Dave Wallace. It made our trip much more interesting and I am sure it contributed to our success.