Date Received: May 5, 2000 Dan De Kruyf, Twin Falls, Idaho
Just returned from a very enjoyable and successful fishing trip to Lake Powell. We fished the upper end of the San Juan arm from just below Zahn bay up to where the water became very muddy from April 30 through May 3, 2000. The water temperature varied from 62 to 68 degrees depending on the time of day. We primarily fished for smallmouth and largemouth bass, but also caught crappie, bluegill, rockbass, stripers, walleye and catfish.
Our favorite tackle is the Yamamoto 5" split tail hula grub, with Owner bullet head hooks. In past years, there always seemed to be one color that outperformed all others. This year the fish seemed attracted to most colors including Chartreuse (lime green), Watermelon, Root Beer with Christmas flake, Blue Pearl, White, and Smoke.
We tend to fish shoreline with big boulders by casting to shore and working the bait through the rocks. We also caught a few smaller bass fishing sheer rock walls. The fish seemed to bite at all times of day, with early morning and midafternoon through evening being the most productive times.
There seemed to be a large population of smaller bass in the 6 to 12 inch range. On most days, I would say each person in the boat caught 20 to 30 fish with maybe 2 to 3 keepers.
My Dad and Brother caught 23 Bluegill on worms and bobbers in 9 feet of water in no more than two hours time.
After having fished Last Chance for the past 3 or 4 years, am now convinced that the upper San Juan arm has more productive fishing in late April through early May. Can't wait to go back next year....
Date Received: May 8, 2000 Don, Denver
Four of us did a houseboat trip for 6 days out of Bullfrog last week. We spent 2 nights in Reflection and 3 nights in the middle San Juan. We caught a gillion smallmouth in the San Juan and some largemouth but nothing over a pound and a half. We took fish shallow, deep, mid-depth, off cliff walls, off broken rock (large and small), in the shade and in the sun. In short, the bass fishing was about as fast as can be hoped for, just would have liked a few bigger fish. Didn't hit any walleyes and only 3 crappie despite spending a considerable amount of time looking for both. We fished mostly tubes and grubs. Best colors were pearl with dark flecks, chartreuse flake and smoke sparkle. The biggest problem was the heat - 95 to 100 - and no shade in that part of the San Juan during midday !!!
Date Received: June 20, 2000 -Greg Stokes
Just returned from a week up the San Juan (6/12 - 6/18), we fished mostly between Piute Canyon and Neskahi Wash. Excellent fishing for SMB, and LMB, top water bite was on at dawn and dusk using POPR's and Chug bugs, fished single/double 4" Yamamoto grubs on 1/4oz jigs in the morning and evening, along with carolina rigged reapers(color did not seem to matter). Most SMB were around 1lb, but we did catch lots of 2 to 3lb SMB and LMB with an occasional Walleye or Striper. We stopped for a day at Jacks Arch and had the same success around submerged islands and points. We lost count of the fish but had to be 75 to 100 fish per boat per day, the kids loved it.
Date Received: June 20, 2000 Mike Milburn
I fished the San Juan arm of the lake over the recent weekend with my son, Alan and my wife, Kathy. We camped near Desha Canyon and fished the main channel mid day and picked up smallmouth and largemouth in nearly equal numbers. It was better sticking to the shaded canyon walls as much as we could. In the sun, I found the bass quite deep, down to about 15-20 feet. We fished single grubs in crayfish colors on 1/4 oz. heads. I also used a 1/4 oz. Gitzit with very good success. Early mornings, before 0800, the topwater action was very good in brushy areas. I caught several largemouth in the 3 pound class. A frog colored Tiny Torpedo worked very well for me. I saw a few very brief striper boils involving 5-10 fish in the 1 ½½ to 2 pound range. They tended to move very quickly and it was hard to stay with them with the electric motor.
I caught a few stripers on the surface and a few others while fishing for the bass. Channel catfishing was excellent in the evenings right at our camp. Most of the 'cats were around 2 pounds. We even caught one bullhead and one striper while fishing for the catfish.
Sunday morning was overcast with very light rain showers. I was able to catch fish on the surface until nearly 1000.
Date Received: July 5, 2000 Sunburn Gang, Mesa AZ.
Just returned from our annual trip to Powell. We fished June 26-29 in the San Juan ( Piute Wash to Spencer Camp ). Fishing was outstanding with lots of Smallmouth, Largemouth, and a few Walleyes caught. Our best pattern for bass was 25-40 feet deep on outside structure for lots of Smallmouth. Mostly smaller fish but a few up to 2lbs . 5" Yamamoto Grubs in colors # 169 and #208 were our best baits fished on 1/4 to 1/2oz jigheads with a vertical presentation. Most of the time we added the skirt of matching color. Cut the skirts in half to save $$ and reduce the size of the bait. The color of the grub was not nearly as important as the presentation or depth. 5 nice Walleyes also fell to this combo. The fish were very healthy and busting with crayfish. Largemouth were much shallower and fewer in number than the Smallmouth. There was a decent topwater bite before the sun hit the water for Largemouth but we had to cover lots of water to get 5 or 6 bites. PopR's and the new Super Spook Jr both worked well. No surface action to report on Stripers during our stay other than a few boils from small fish. I am forwarding some photos of our kids with some of the fish they caught. If there is a better lake on which to introduce kids to fishing I don't know where it could be. It seems there is always something biting. Catfish from the back of the houseboat, the ever present Stripers, and the sheer number of Smallmouth make for a great opportunity to teach the proper techniques and a love of the outdoors to our children. Also, kudos to Mike and the folks at Pinpoint Electronics. After we found ourselves on the lake with a malfunctioning trolling motor they actually overnighted a new one to Dangling Rope Marina. See ya next year, remember to FILLET THOSE STRIPERS!
Date Received: September 26, 2000 Chuck Fulton
We took our annual late Sept houseboat trip to the upper San Juan. Parked between Piute Creek and Neskahi for four days. Enroute we found stripers in the back of main Rock Creek and the back right side of Dry Rock Creek. In the San Juan there were fish...lots... in both Piute Creek and Neskahi. Lots of shad in the back of both bays. Some of the lesser bays in between also had stripers. The Piute fish would boil for 5 minutes every morning between daylight and 6:30 then rest out in 50-70 foot water. Very catchable jigging on graphed returns. Went to Copper Canyon and beyond one morning very early. Spencer's had no serious activity...looked like lone fish at 50'...could have caught them on a down rigger..Yawn. Zahn had a good small mouth boil going but mostly little fish. Got a short 2 minute striper boil in front of Copper but that was all. Graphed lots of shad between there and Mike's but no striper schools. For now the action seems to be in Piute Creek and Neskahi. We've got lots of new striper filets for the fall table.
Date Received: October 5, 2000 Bassfichrman
My friend and I fished the San Juan River Sept 21-24. We started at Mikes and worked our way south, breaking camp and moving around noon each day. We caught tons of fished daily even the 2 days the wind blew. #135 smoke Yamamoto 5" grub, chartreuse spinnerbaits, and small top water baits, worked the best for the smallies. The stripers would come in the backs of coves in the first thing in the mornings and bust shad. However there never stayed long. We did manage to catch a few nice ones and several smaller ones. It was a great trip, the sunsets were amazing, and the fishing was everything we hoped for. I have sent some pics. that I downloaded from my video camera.
Date Received: October 6, Bassfichrman
While fishing in the San Juan Sept. 21st-25th the wind blew hard for better part of the trip. I tried a technique for small mouths and we caught several and a few stripers. I used a 3/4 oz. football jig head and a smoke sparkle spider jig. Dropped it down 40 to 60 feet and as it hit the bottom I would rip back up 5-6 feet and then let it fall back to the bottom, same as you do with your striper spoons. Most of the hits came on the fall (but certainly not all). This was a very productive technique for me on the two windy days that we fished and at times was the only way we could fish.
Date Received: October 24, 2000 ZEE
I just returned to Pa. from our Fishing trip to Lake Powell. We started out Sun 10/15 & headed for the San Juan. We camped at the mouth of the San Juan on Sun late aft. and fished the North shore of Jacks Arch. using a skirted 3" Pumpkin & Chartreuse grub on a 1/4 ounce leadhead. The first fish was a 3 lb walleye and the next 4 were 2 - 3 LB smallies. On the east shore across the river they were catching 2 LB. stripers and we were only fishing for 30 - 45 minutes.
The next morning we proceeded to Piute Canyon where we normally camp and fish from. The weather was great all week and fish were caught every day. We grubbed during the day catching 1 1/2 LB. to 3 LB smallies using the same setup as the night before but as the sun rose during the day we went to 2" grubs and 1/16 -1/8 ounce lead heads but the only colors that worked were pumpkin and chartreuse or a combination of both working the deep boulders off the points away from the sun.
The islands off Neskahi Wash were a good area for Smallies, Largemouth Big Blue Gill, & Catfish all at least 20 feet down. As the sun started to set we trolled the points around Piute and hit some good size smallies and walleye with blue chrome deep divers.
To top the evening off the stripers were holding the shad at the back of Piute. No boils, but they just kept the shad in the cove with no way to escape so all we had to do was troll with anything Blue Chrome. Deep Shad raps and Rattle Traps work extremely well so we had our limit of 3 to 5 LB. Stripers every evening if we so desired. All the fish we caught were in great shape.
A trip to Cha Canyon along the south shore proved fruitful for smallies and largemouth We had a great time and left the area in good condition returning Sat. 10/21
Take care and thanks for your help.