AZGF puts out a great “Fishing News” newsletter. You can subscribe at AZGFD.com Here are some excerpts from the May issue:

Rory’s Tip
Both Woods Canyon and Bear Canyon lakes are closed to entry due to the Promotory Forest Fire just below the Mogollon Rim about thee miles north of the community of Christopher Creek and three miles south of Bear Canyon Lake.

Contact the following agencies for road closure information and restrictions:

The Tonto National Forest at www.fs.fed.us/r3/tonto or call (M-F): (602) 225-5200.
Gila County Sheriff’s Office, (928) 425-4449.
ADOT at http://www.az511.com/hcrsweb/hcrsweb.jsp.
For all other outdoor recreationists in the deserts or the high country, this is the dry time so be extra careful out there.

This is still a great time to go fishing.

The dark of the moon on May 16 means this is a superb time to fish at night using submersible or floating lights for crappie, largemouth bass and striped bass. In fact, this is the leading edge of the great nighttime fishing season for a lot of species. The crappie lights attract plankton, plankton attracts shad, and shad attracts predatory fish.

One of the nighttime hot spots right now is Lake Pleasant, where anglers have been racking up lots of striped bass, white bass and largemouth bass using frozen anchovies and/or live minnows as bait. Yes, it is okay to chum using small pieces of anchovies to attract and/or hold stripers.

The three nighttime crappie hot spots right now are: Roosevelt, Alamo and Bartlett.

Along the Colorado River lakes, such as Mead, Mohave and Havasu, fishing at night using lights is a great way to avoid a majority of the recreational boating traffic and for catching lots of striped bass using frozen anchovies.

Warm spring nights are also perfect for shore anglers to catch catfish and carp. Just look for any large flat, or any major point on a lake. Channel catfish abound in the state’s warmwater lakes and for the most part, aren’t fished very heavily. The low level of fishing pressure typically results in catfish anglers having pretty good catch rates for these bottom dwellers.

For catfish, think underwater aroma. Catfish are attracted by scent. Try hot dogs, corn, dough bait, stink bait, or chicken liver fished with a small split shot or slip sinker. Remember, it is legal to have two baits per line, and with a two-pole stamp, you can use two poles per person. It is also okay (legal) to chum. Simply take little pieces of the bait you are using and just throw a handful into the water where you are fishing.

Those looking to catch some bottom-dwelling behemoths might try fishing for flathead catfish at Roosevelt, Bartlett, Pleasant or along the Colorado River near Yuma. Those huge flatheads can sometimes tip the scales at 45 or more pounds. The state record flathead is 71 pounds.

For the high country, it’s time to go for the gold: last week we had the first stockings of golden-colored Apache trout in the East and West Forks of Black River, and in the Little Colorado River in Greer. Silver Creek near Show Low is also stocked with these feisty native trout.

Apache trout don’t always go for Power Bait, but typically love night crawlers and meal worms. A superb way to introduce a child to fishing is by helping the beginning angler to catch a native Apache trout. Besides being unique to Arizona, Apache trout are our State Fish. Go catch a golden memory with your child.

Good luck. Maybe I’ll see you out there.

And more:

Central Arizona
URBAN LAKES – Fishing for catfish is very good at most Urban Fishing Program waters. Best baits for the 16-19 inch catfish are worms, stink baits and shrimp. Because of problem algae blooms, Alvord and Desert West Lakes were not stocked with catfish on April 19-20.

TEMPE TOWN LAKE – Bass fishing is red hot. Anglers are reporting lots of fish between 1 and 4 pounds. Plastics and crankbaits worked around the ledges and docks is working especially early morning and right before dark. Channel catfish averaging 1 to 2 pounds will bite stink baits, hot dogs and shrimp. Carp fishing is excellent using corn and dough bait. Remember no gas motors are allowed (trolling motors are) and you must have a boating permit, which can be obtained, at the Town Lake operations center.

LAKE PLEASANT – Water level is at 1,691 feet (88-percent full). Bass fishing is great during the day and at night! Anglers at night are doing great catching striped bass, white bass and largemouth bass (sometimes crappies as well) using frozen anchovies cut into pieces and/or live minnows as bait.

Bruce Ivor, his 9-year-old son, and a buddy hit Pleasant and caught 50-plus stripers, adding that it was kind of slow at times and his son caught six stripers real quick then decided the bottom of the boat with a throw cushion looked good so he zonked out and slept until they left. “We moved around and got stripers everywhere we fished but were stuck in the 1- to 2-plus-pound range.”

Two other anglers reported catching 60-plus stripers fishing near the dam at night.

By the way, there was a report a few weeks ago of anglers catching crappies averaging a pound and a half in the back of Humbug and Coles at night under lights on minnows 15-18 feet down.

Look for topwater action in coves at first and last light. Typically, striped bass and white bass will start chasing shad right before and after sunrise (using anything white, such as curly tails), then the action will gradually shift to largemouth bass.

During the daytime. The most productive way to catch largemouth bass is using drop shots in 10-20 feet of water in the mouths of coves and off points.

The annual bald eagle closure is in effect on the Agua Fria. For those interested no Quagga mussels were found in the lake during recent SCUBA surveys near and around the marina, marina tires and the towers.

ROOSEVELT LAKE – The lake is 63-percent full at elevation 2,119 feet. The Salt River was flowing at 242 cfs Monday morning and Tonto Creek was at 29 cfs. With a dark of the moon on May 16, nighttime fishing should be great this week. Largemouth bass fishing and crappie fishing is fantastic. Water temperatures are in the low 70ss. Many fish are being caught on crankbaits as well as drop shots. Crappie fishing is very good at night under lights. Bluegills are becoming active in the shallows and can be caught under a bobber with night crawlers. Catfishing is also picking up, use shrimp or hot dogs in the mouths of coves. Catfish will bite during the day at this time of year. We have also had reports of nice smallmouth being caught off points in 15 feet of water using night crawlers. Remember the slot is in place for smallmouth as well. Flathead catfish will take water dogs, small carp, and bluegill and should be stacking up in the Salt end of the lake. Try fishing in 20-40 feet of water and gear up! Common carp are biting corn and dough baits along any shoreline and in coves right now (at night or during the day).

Note: anglers are reminded of the slot bass size limit that remains in effect at Roosevelt. Bass between 13 to 16 inches must be released immediately. Also those bass below 13 inches and above 16 inches that are kept can only be gutted with the head and tail attached so the legal length can be determined. All other fish such as crappie, catfish and bluegill harvested from the lake must have a piece of skin attached to the fillets so species can be determined. ADEQ discovered and captured three gizzard shad in the lake in January, which was the first positive confirmation of this species in the lake.

APACHE – Lake is 90-percent full. We have received recent reports that bluegill, crappie and largemouth bass are being caught on and around the newly placed habitat areas (some are marked with buoys). Others are also doing well around Dinosaur Island for yellow bass using KastMasters in 40 feet of water. Catfish and carp fishing should be picking up. In a recent survey yellow bass were abundant and world-class size. Carp and catfish are also doing well. Walleye in the 12-15 inch range are also plentiful. We electro-shocked last week to get a feel for the bass population. During the survey, we were pleasantly surprised to find lots of young-of the-year largemouth as well as a good mix of one- and two-year-old bass. Bottom line is the largemouth population is starting to recover nicely. Smallmouth bass were not found during the survey. There is a certified scale at the marina boathouse.

CANYON – Lake is 95-percent full at 1,659 feet. No reports lately. Carp and catfish fishing should be picking up.

SAGUARO – Lake level is 1,522 feet (92-percent full). No reports lately. Bass fishing has been very slow. There is a certified scale at the marina to get an official weight and still release your catch. Two witnesses are needed for the weight to be official.

BARTLETT – Lake level is at 1,750 feet (39 -percent full) With a new moon May 16, night fishing should be great this week for crappie and bass using submersible lights. Good news here. All warmwater sport-fish species are doing well. During a recent survey, crappies representing five different year classes were found.

Big crappies are almost 3 pounds! Crappies are being caught in about 15-20 feet on minnows over structure. Many are also being caught at night near the Yellow Cliffs. Some anglers are picking up crappies in the 2-pound range upriver using and near submerged fish city. Kalin 1/16-ounce black/blue/chartreuse jigs, but overall, crappie fishing is good on the east side coves. An angler reported a 70-fish day last week.

Bass fishing is fantastic. We had some of the highest catch rates many of us biologists have ever seen electro-fishing recently. We caught and netted over 60 largemouth bass in 250 meters of shoreline at one site. Bass averaged 1- 2/12 pounds. We found largemouth bass of this size all over the lake.

Crawdad imitations and worming rigs (drop shots and Texas-rigs) are producing. Catfishing is picking up. We found quite a few flathead catfish in the 10- to 20-pound range up lake where the Verde River comes in. They will take live sunfish, carp or water dogs. Remember the live bait most come from the lake itself (excluding minnows, water dogs or worms) not transported from another body of water!

Don’t forget that the lake level is low, the launch ramp is out of the water, but people are having little difficulty launching from the dirt near the main launch ramp.

HORSESHOE – Lake is 9 percent. Road is now open. No reports on fishing. Catfish Point below the dam should be good for flatheads as well as channel catfish at this time. If you can cross the Verde at the low water crossing and get above Horseshoe Lake, a mixture of channel cats, smallmouth and largemouth bass should be found in the river itself. This is a great area to fish if accessible. I have had no reports from the area yet this spring.

VERDE RIVER –The stretch of river below the dam to the Needle Rock area holds some nice bass and catfish. Use inline spinners and Power Bait. Remember that no baitfish can be transported into this part of the river (above Horseshoe). For further information concerning regulations, call the Arizona Game and Fish Department at (480) 324-3544. This morning flow was 290 cfs at Tangle Creek station above Horseshoe Lake.

LOWER SALT RIVER (below Saguaro Lake) – The Lower Salt River is flowing at 875 cfs Monday morning. The Verde is flowing at 100 cfs coming in at Phon D Sutton. Trout were stocked last week at Water Users and Blue Point Bridge. Power Bait, inline spinners and corn will work. For fly fishermen courtesy of Curtis Gill: I would try dead drifting a beadhead prince, hairs ear or, pheasant tail nymph, especially early in the morning. Beadhead prince and hairs ear nymphs are probably my two favorite for rainbows (typically size 12). Also, I often like to drop the nymph off of a wooly bugger (size 6 to 8 streamer hook). This is often a really good combo for rainbows. I usually take about 18 to 24 inches of tippet and tie it to the shank of the wooly bugger hook and then tie the nymph to the end of that. I often catch about as many fish on the wooly bugger as I do the nymph. Place your strike indicator about 1.5x the depth of the water that you are fishing. This will ensure that the flies are bouncing off of the bottom. Throw the flies directly upstream into pools or deep runs and let them drift downstream (without any drag if possible). At the end of the drift flip the setup back upstream. However, let the flies swing at the end of the drift before throwing them back upstream, as fish often will strike as the flies begin swing. If you see fish rising I would have some parachute Adams in size 12 to 18 or even smaller. Even if a the fly doesn’t match what they are rising for fish will often take an Adams. I would also carry some elk hair caddis in a variety of sizes and colors as caddis flies make of the a large part of the macro-invertebrate community. Another dry fly that also seems to work really well for rainbows is a royal wulff. I often catch fish on this fly even when they aren’t rising. Humpies in yellow or red are another good stimulator pattern that works well. In shallower runs and riffles you can tie a small nymph to your dry fly (again off of the shank of the hook). The dry fly will double as your strike indicator. Largemouth bass fishing can be good using crankbaits in back eddies and near brush.

CREEKS – Canyon Creek has been stocked recently and is a good bet for rainbows and browns. Christopher, Tonto, Haigler, East Verde and Workman creeks also have been recently stocked with rainbow trout. Use in-line spinners such as Rooster Tails, Panther Martins or live bait such as hoppers, meal worms, crawlers or baits like Power Bait or salmon eggs.

Colorado River Northwest
LAKE POWELL – By Wayne Gustaveson. Lake elevation: 3,602. Water temp: 60-70 F. Warm days this week will finally put cold weather in the rear view mirror. Weekend storms have increased river flows, jacked up runoff and that will continue until the snow is gone with warmer days ahead. The lake is now rising 2-6 inches a day. It should come up four more feet in the next few weeks.
Bass have been struggling with cold fronts. Bass spawning has been sporadic but there will be another spawning surge over the next 10 days where multiple spawning smallmouth bass will bring off one more nest of black fry. Rising lake levels will move the shoreline away from the existing nests. Sight-fishing for spawning fish is not as good in May but catching spawning fish will be great. Just fish deeper and further away from shore where the nests were made in April at lower lake levels. This week nests will be at least 2-feet deeper than when first constructed.

Warming water temperatures activate fish. Walleye have finished spawning (walleye) and get very hungry when their cold-blooded body finally warms up. They respond by eating early and often. The next three weeks will be the best time to catch hungry walleye. Fish in low light periods – early and late. Take advantage of boat wakes and windy afternoons to find murky water where walleye shade up to feed. Mud lines along rocky points, muddy coves, and mud covered brush are prime walleye spots during May.

Stripers are literally everywhere. They are in the backs of canyons, in mid channel and in deep water. Warming will make them seem even more abundant as the younger plankton-eaters will be caught more often. Troll, cast, or graph and bait fish – your preference. Keep all stripers. The smaller fish are better table fare and the bigger fish are fun to catch. Both sizes are equally caught on bait or lures. Stripers in the back of the canyons and coves are not boiling but they are “looking up” so they will hit a topwater lure early and late. It is possible to create your own boil from dawn to 8 a.m.

Known striper schools in the southern lake are found at the dam, buoy 1, Antelope Canyon (mouth and mid canyon), Navajo Canyon (double islands and back of canyon), Padre Bay canyons (back of canyons), main channel at the mouth of Friendship Cove, Rock Creek (directly across channel [east] from the floating restroom, and Oak Canyon.

At Bullfrog/Halls, stripers are being caught at Moki Wall, mouth of Moki, mouth of Hansen Creek (north side – mouth), buoy 90, mouth and inside Lake Canyon and in Bullfrog Marina at night under the lights.

Up lake the runoff is increasing and visibility is dropping. Stripers were caught handily trolling from buoy 118-119. All of the side canyons produce good fishing for all species and have clearer water than the main channel.

If you haven’t guessed it yet, fishing is darn good right now.

LEES FERRY – Report by Lees Ferry Anglers, by Tedd Welling. Fly fishing: With the low water, fishing was a lot more productive. Fish are hanging in close so, you don’t have to cast half way across the river. Glass bead wd-40s small midges of all sorts were working today. Dries with a dropper also did the trick. The weather is sunny for the next week or so I’m betting the fishing will remain good here for the duration.

Walk In: For the past couple of months, this section has been fishing very consistently. The two guys I talked to today who were down there did really well. Again, as the sun came over the cliffs and hit the water, midges came off in great numbers. This is the time of day to be there. They used all kinds of midges and the ever popular bead-head zebra. In mid-afternoon the fishing slowed down until just before dark.

Fishing Synopsis and Forecast by Terry Gunn: Midge fishing at Lees Ferry continues to be the ticket for most areas of the river. The midge hatches are getting heavier each day and the fish are starting to move into the riffles and shallow water to feed on the sub surface emergers. If you are not using 7X, you are not going to catch fish.

The water flows that began March 1 appear to be the best flows of the spring…the water is starting low and s-l-o-w-l-y rising throughout the morning, with the peak arriving at or near noon.
The trout are still spawning and we are seeing the best spawn that the river has experienced in years…fish are spawning throughout the river. Most spawning is occurring in deep water, which bodes well for fry survival and future recruitment of juvenile trout. The spawn began in December and has been building in strength the past few weeks. I have been expecting the spawn to peak but it just keeps on going.

Word has it that the “walk-in’ is fishing very well. There are times in the spring that this area actually fishes better than upriver. Look for this area to continue fishing well until the summer high water arrives.

A couple weeks back, I saw a 27 to 30-in rainbow in the river. I got a good look at this fish and it was the largest trout that I have see at the Ferry in many years. Hopefully I’ll be able to post a picture of this fish in the hands of a smiling angler in the near future.

Spin Fishing: Egg patterns are still producing down deep when drifting. Make sure that you have the proper weight on so that the flies are bouncing the bottom and not dragging bottom. Consider a scud dropped below the glo bug about a foot and a half. KastMasters and Rapalas are also productive while back trolling.

LAKE MEAD – Important notice: With the recent discovery of invasive quagga mussels in Mead, Mohave and Havasu, proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders. Please drain and dry your livewell and bilge on land. Drain all the water you can from your engine. Also, inspect your vessel and trailer, removing any visible mussels, but also feel for any rough or gritty spots on the hull. These may be young mussels that can be hard to see.

For more information, go to the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s web pages at azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

Fishing has been fair to good. This is a good time to find largemouth bass and bluegill in the backs of coves, especially at first light. The striper bite is getting good also. Try slow-trolling a small crankbait during the day. While the night fishing has been good under crappie lights, look for it to really heat with the new moon this week. The ramp is open at South Cove, but it is a gravel ramp. The lake elevation is now 1,119, and continues to drop at nearly one foot per week.

LAKE MOHAVE – Important notice: With the recent discovery of invasive quagga mussels in Mead, Mohave and Havasu, proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders. Please drain and dry your livewell and bilge on land. Drain all the water you can from your engine. Also, inspect your vessel and trailer, removing any visible mussels, but also feel for any rough or gritty spots on the hull. These may be young mussels that can be hard to see.

For more information, go to the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s web pages at azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

Fishing for largemouth has picked up; some are in shallow. The striper bite has been slow. Anchovies are the most popular bait for stripers, but if you want to try something different, use shrimp or squid. Davis Dam has plenty of shoreline for numerous anglers to enjoy the fishing. Cabinsite and Telephone Cove also provide plenty of shoreline fishing access.
Arizona Game and Fish Biologists surveyed Lake Mohave last week and observed the largemouth bass to average about 2.5 pounds. Channel catfish and striped bass were also plentiful. Also, there is a wheelchair accessible fishing pier just south of the main launch ramp at Katherine’s Landing.

WILLOW BEACH Important notice: With the recent discovery of invasive quagga mussels in Mead, Mohave and Havasu, proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders. Please drain and dry your livewell and bilge on land. Drain all the water you can from your engine. Also, inspect your vessel and trailer, removing any visible mussels, but also feel for any rough or gritty spots on the hull. These may be young mussels that can be hard to see.

For more information, go to the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s web pages at azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

Trout are stocked every Friday. The fishing for trout has good from shore immediately following the stocking. The striper bite has picked up and some big fish are being caught.

TOPOCK MARSH – Important notice: With the recent discovery of invasive quagga mussels in Mead, Mohave and Havasu, proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders. Please drain and dry your livewell and bilge on land. Drain all the water you can from your engine. Also, inspect your vessel and trailer, removing any visible mussels, but also feel for any rough or gritty spots on the hull. These may be young mussels that can be hard to see.

For more information, go to the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s web pages at azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

Catfish and bass continue to bite well. Game and fish biologist sampled lots of largemouth bass the middle of January throughout the marsh. The bass numbers were great and the crappie and catfish populations looked really good as well. You can access the marsh by boat at North Dike, Catfish Paradise, and Five-Mile Landing. All three also provide plenty of area for shoreline fishing too. For more information on the marsh, contact the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge at (760) 326-3853 or go to http://www.fws.gov/southwest/refuges/arizona/havasu/index.html.

COLORADO RIVER BELOW DAVIS DAM – Important notice: With the recent discovery of invasive quagga mussels in Mead, Mohave and Havasu, proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders. Please drain and dry your livewell and bilge on land. Drain all the water you can from your engine. Also, inspect your vessel and trailer, removing any visible mussels, but also feel for any rough or gritty spots on the hull. These may be young mussels that can be hard to see.

For more information, go to the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s web pages at azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

Fishing for striped bass has been fair around the needles area. Rainbow trout were last stocked by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on March 28 and 29. Stocking will resume in the fall. The fish are stocked in two locations; Davis Camp and near The Riverside. Trout fishing at the stocking sites is great immediately following the stockings, then the fish move out and you need to find them. Anglers recently reported catching trout on the Arizona side across from the Riverside. Water levels on the river fluctuate, so be careful. You can check the Bureau of Reclamation Web site for flow predictions http://www.usbr.gov/lc/riverops.html/ before you go.

Southwestern Arizona
LAKE HAVASU – It’s striper time. Striped bass are biting on both live and artificial baits. Multiple limits are being caught with anchovies and squid in the middle of the day, while the early pre-dawn hours are producing the topwater bite. The topwater bites are caught occurring on Storm Chuggers in chrome and blue with a white feather trailer.

The smallmouth bass bite is excellent and producing quantity and quality size fish. The bait of choice is a 4- to 5-inch straight or curly tailed plastic worm. The hot colors being with Robo fatty worms in bold bluegill and War Mouth. Also try 4.5-inch Power Worms in purple and or pumpkin/chartreuse.

The topwater bite is also good for both largemouth and smallmouth bass during sunrise and sunset. Fish along the shorelines with brush over lays where these fish have recently spawned. Use the R2S Bubble Pops 65 in chartreuse shad or Rico poppers in Albino White with the red eye and lime ice (both have a white feather trailer).

Sandpoint report, by Lisa Lepree: Everyone seemed to have a lot of fun this week trying their luck with a pole. Some had luck and some didn’t but the weather was beautiful, some wind not withstanding, and the temperatures were nice.

Ernie Blanchard from Witter, Calif. and Andy Hendon of Fall City, Wash. each caught 10 stripers on May 2. The stripers all weighed up to 1 pound, 8 ounces, and were caught using anchovies while they were fishing between Sandpoint and the Pumping Station.

Tony Porche from Witter, Calif. caught a 4-pound 3-ounce smallmouth bass using spinnerbait on the California side across from Standard Wash on May 3.

Joe Egan from San Diego, Calif. used anchovies to catch three Stripers on May 3 while trolling south of Sandpoint. Joe’s catch ranged from 1 pound to 1½ pounds. Joe also went out on May 4 trolling, floating and anchored all over the lake and caught quite a few stripers but kept five that weighed a half to 1 ¼ pounds using anchovies.

Chris Binns from Williams caught three flathead catfish using both carp and bluegill for bait. Chris was fishing at the springs in the No Wake Area on both May 4 and 5. One flathead weighed over 30 pounds, another 10 pounds 6 ounces and the third weighed 8 pounds 7 ounces.

Mike Coats, Sandpoint, caught a 7-pound 2-ounce flathead catfish using frozen shad while fishing from Karen’s Point on May 6.

Joe Egan, San Diego Calif. finished the week by releasing 6 stripers weighing between ¾ pound and 1¼ pounds using anchovies while anchoring or trolling near Sandpoint on May 7.

David Bandy from Mesa, Ariz., is featured on our Website on the newsletter page with his recent catch can be seen as well as a narrative written by Bob Tucker. Please visit www.sandpointresort.com and click on the “Newsletter” section.

PARKER STRIP — Water levels are up and should be staying up for the near future. Bass are reportedly hitting on most everything right now, especially soft baits. Which means the monster redears should start biting soon too. Redears typically will hit on small grubs or night crawlers. Catfish are beginning to pick up too. Cut anchovies will work for channel cats or stripers if you are up river in the swifter currents.

ALAMO – This is a fishing hot spot for bass, crappie and catfish. Report courtesy Mark Knapp, Alamo Lake State Park. Well folks, after spending the last five days in La Crosse, Wisconsin for opening day of trout season, I’m here to tell yah there’s no place like home, and nothing beats bass fishing. Don’t get me wrong here. Catching some nice sized browns and brookies was great. Getting tangled up in someone’s line from Chicago, who in turn threatens you with bodily harm, was interesting. Even the newly-born calf that thought I was it’s mom was entertaining. Unfortunately the mom saw no humor in this whatsoever. I had no idea that a cow could go from zero to 40 in a matter of seconds. On the other hand, I didn’t know I could do zero to 60 in the same amount of time. Even with all that excitement nothing beats the thrill of a bass attacking your topwater lure and trying to take your pole from yah.

With that in mind, anglers have reported a decent topwater bite going in the mornings. Try throwing a Zara Puppy or a chugger right up in the brush and working it back to the boat. Throw the bait into the intended target zone and let it sit there until the ripples of water go away. This gives the fish a good chance to look at it. Then work it slowly, stop it, and repeat this process. Try to stay as close to stickups and cover as possible. Once a bass hits your bait, let your rod tip down for a second then set the hook. I know it sounds crazy but it is possible to miss a fish even with two sets of treble hooks hanging from a lure. One angler reported that he did well tossing training wheels ( spinnerbaits) all day today. A double-bladed exterminator with a blue/white skirt in shallow water was the hot ticket for him. He did go on to say that as the day warmed up he just worked the spinnerbait in deeper water, and continued catching bass. He hit one fish going over 4 pounds.

Once again, it’s hard to go wrong working plastics in 20 foot of water. Motor oil and watermelon colors work great on this lake. Bigger bass are being caught in the upper end of the lake using Senkos.

The night time crappie bite is well on the way. Although the cliffs by the dam is a good area, the coves between Cholla and the main ramp are producing more fish right now. Minnows and crappie lights are the way to go.

Shore fishing is good. Anglers are reporting catching some nice cats around the ramp areas. Speaking of catfishing, it’s really good right now. Stink baits and shrimp are very good baits. Cats are being caught all over the lake. Some nice sized bluegill are being caught using night crawlers as bait. The lake level is at 1,114 with releases of 40 cfs. Both ramp work good. The biting flies and unknowns are out in force early this year and seems to have an appetite towards human flesh so remember to bring bug spray. We hit 108 out here this week so sun block and fluids are a must. Hope to see yah out there.

Spring Outlook:
Regional Hot Spots:

Alamo Lake will be the hot spot for largemouth bass, crappie and channel catfish.

Next choice would be Lake Havasu for striped bass. Also try Lake Havasu and the Parker Strip for smallmouth bass or the Colorado River below Walter’s Camp for flathead catfish.

If you need any additional information, don’t hesitate to contact the Yuma Regional office at (928) 341-4051.

Lake Havasu & Topock Gorge:

Largemouth bass, as well as smallmouth bass are expected to be good to excellent this spring. The size will range from 13 inches and up with an occasional fish greater than 5 pounds. Striped bass will continue to be excellent for small fish (12-18 inches) with occasional fish over 8 pounds. The lake is also full of smaller striper that will make it challenging to catch the larger fish. Channel catfish as well as bluegill and redear sunfish will be good to excellent. Flathead catfish fishing should be fair at the lower end of the lake (Bill Williams River Arm) through the spring. Sizes of flathead catfish can reach as high as 40 pounds. When fishing for them select the interior points in the coves and the areas where artificial structure has been placed.

The warmer weather causes the bite to increase making crankbaits and topwater lures a good choice. Also, spinnerbaits, jigs, cut fish, and live shad should work depending on the species you are looking for.

Take precautions to make sure your boat and equipment is clean before leaving the water to make sure you don’t spread quagga mussels to other water by accident.

Colorado River (Parker Strip Area):

It is expected to be good to excellent for smallmouth bass with fish over two pounds this spring. In addition, redear sunfish should also be good to excellent in the pound-plus sizes. Channel and flathead catfish are always fair to good in this section of the Colorado River.

Take precautions to make sure your boat and equipment is clean before leaving the water to make sure you don’t spread quagga mussels to other water by accident.

Colorado River (between Palo Verde Diversion Dam and Walter’s Camp):

This area should be fair for both smallmouth bass (in the channel) up river from the I-10 Bridge and largemouth bass (in the backwaters) throughout the entire area. Channel and flathead catfish are always fair to good in this section of the Colorado River. Most flathead catfish will be in the 2- to 5-pound range with an occasional fish over 40 pounds. The time for fishing for both species of catfish will be late spring throughout the summer. When fishing for catfish, the hotter the weather the better the fishing.

This section of the Colorado River all the way down to Yuma is where the invasive species known as giant salvinia are located and possibly quagga mussels. If using a boat, make sure the boat, live wells, engines, and trailer is clean before leaving the area. The last thing that we want to have happen is the movement of invasive species to other waters.

Colorado River (between Walter’s Camp and Picacho State Park):

This section of the Colorado River is relatively remote and can only be accessed by boat from either end. Fishing is expected to be good to excellent for flathead catfish with sizes over 40 pounds. The best time will be late spring and on into the summer (the hotter the better). The various backwaters will be good for largemouth bass and other sunfish (bluegill and redear). Other species available in the main river are smallmouth bass, channel catfish, and striped bass.

This section of the Colorado River all the way down to Yuma is where the invasive species known as giant salvinia are located and possibly quagga mussels. If using a boat make sure the boat, live wells, engines, and trailer is clean before leaving the area. The last thing that we want to have happen is the movement of invasive species to other waters.

Colorado River (between Picacho State Park and Imperial Dam):

This area is expected to be good to excellent for largemouth bass, channel catfish, and flathead catfish. Bass and channel catfish in excess of 5 pounds are present along with flathead catfish as large as 40 pounds. Bluegills are also present in the various backwaters and an occasional striped bass will be caught in the main river channel.

This section of the Colorado River all the way down to Yuma is where the invasive species known as giant salvinia are located and possibly quagga mussels. If using a boat make sure the boat, live wells, engines, and trailer is clean before leaving the area. The last thing that we want to have happen is the movement of invasive species to other waters.

Colorado River (between Laguna and Morelos dams):

This area will be good for largemouth bass and flathead catfish. Bass in excess of 5 pounds are common and flathead catfish over 20 pounds are a good bet. In this area, river access depends on water releases. Shallow draft boats work best. The lower end has had some dredging work done so larger boats are okay there.

This section of the Colorado River all the way down to Yuma is where the invasive species known as giant salvinia are located and possibly quagga mussels. If using a boat, make sure the boat, live wells, engines, and trailer is clean before leaving the area. The last thing that we want to have happen is the movement of invasive species to other waters.

With the increase in border issues and illegal activity on the lower end of this area, it is a good idea to the area from Pilot Knob to Morelos Dam.

North Central Region
Note: Northern Pike have been illegally stocked in Francis Short. If you catch a Northern Pike at Francis Short Pond please remove it from the pond. Channel catfish were stocked into Stone Dam, Santa Fe, City and Kaibab Lakes last week. The limit is four catfish per day on Stone Dam, Santa Fe and City Lakes.
.
WILLIAMS LAKES:
KAIBAB LAKE — Campground area is open. Main parking lot and boat launch open. Lake level is 80 percent and as of last week, the water temperature was 54 degrees. Fishing is good on Yellow or white Power Bait or lures. Scheduled to be stocked this week.

CATARACT LAKE — Campground is open. Lake is 65-percent full and the water temperature last week was 61 degrees. Fishing is good on yellow or white Power Bait or lures. Scheduled to be stocked this week.

CITY RESERVOIR — Open. Fishing is good on yellow or white Power Bait or lures. Stocked with catfish Stocked last week.

DOGTOWN LAKE — Lake level is down Campground area is open. Fishing is good on yellow or white Power Bait or lures. Stocked last week

JD DAM — Anglers are catching brown trout fly-fishing. Lake is 60-percent full. Water temperature last week was 62 degrees.

RUSSEL TANK – Stocked.

SANTA FE — Lake is full. Fishing is good on yellow or white Power Bait or lures. Stocked with catfish. Stocked last week.

WHITEHORSE LAKE — No report from anglers. Campground is open. Because of low water levels the lake will probably not be stocked anymore this year.

FLAGSTAFF LAKES:

LOWER LAKE MARY —The Lake is extremely low. No fish, the lake suffered a winter kill due to low lake levels. At current conditions, lake will not be stocked this year.

UPPER LAKE MARY — The lake is 17-percent full. Anglers are targeting spring walleye.

ASHURST LAKE — Lake is open; some nice holdover rainbow trout are being caught. Scheduled to be stocked this week.

FRANCIS SHORT POND – Open, Lots of trout were being caught over the weekend on flies, spinners, small spoons and bait. Stocked last week

KINNIKINICK LAKE — Lake is open.

MARSHALL LAKE — Small trout are being caught on flies. A few larger hold-over fish are being caught. Scheduled to be stocked this week.

OAK CREEK — Fishing is slow. A few small rainbow trout are being caught on flies.

LONG LAKE — Lake is open. Holdover trout were being caught during last week.

SOLDIERS & SOLDIERS ANNEX — Lake is open. No report.

BEAVER CREEK — No report. Stocked last week

WEST CLEAR CREEK — No report. Stocked last week

STONEMAN LAKE — NO FISH.

MINGUS LAKE – Mingus Lake was stocked last week (April 30). As a result of the very low water levels trout stocking will be suspended following this stocking. The Forest Service gate is open. The water levels are down very low and the water is turbid. Try bright-colored Power Bait, salmon eggs, or various spinners.

DEAD HORSE STATE PARK – No new reports. Trout were stocked for the last time on Feb 26 and won’t be stocked again until the fall. However, Game and Fish plans to stock catfish soon (the date has not been set, hopefully in May). Watch the fishing report to find out when. Several largemouth bass, up to two pounds, have been caught on in-line spinners, plastic grubs, and small crankbaits. The bluegill fishing has been good using a salmon egg or small worm on a small bait hook below a bobber. The bluegill are plentiful in both the middle and lower lagoons, so between trout and catfish stockings try your luck with the bluegill. Dead Horse State Park employees and Game and Fish biologists placed 40-plus Christmas trees in the lower lagoon as fish habitat on Jan. 16. Fish should begin to congregate near these trees within days.

VERDE RIVER (throughout Verde Valley) –Trout were last stocked at all five sites (March 19). That was the last trout stocking for the season and the river won’t be stocked again until this coming fall. This is a good time of year. The largemouth bass spawn should be on, so plastic grubs and small spinner baits should do well this time of the year. Catfishing should pick up in about a month.

LYNX LAKE — The next trout stocking is scheduled for this week (May 14). Fishing immediately following the stocking is usually good, but drops off quickly. As the water warms hopefully the bite will pick up a little. There were 200 pounds of bluegill stocked on March 29. These fish were hand-sized and should be easily caught. Try using worms or mealworms on a bobber. Small spinners may work as well. Game and Fish plans to stock catfish in May. Game and Fish biologists surveyed Lynx last week and found that the brook trout stocked last year are still present.

FAIN LAKE — Rainbow trout are scheduled to be stocked this week (May 14). The fishing has been good following stockings. One angler recently reported catching 14 fish in a few hours (all were released) the largest was 19 inches. Fish were biting floating night crawlers and Mepps spinners. Power Bait and most spinners should do well also. There were 150 pounds of bluegill were stocked on March 29. These fish were hand-sized and should be easily caught. Try using worms or mealworms on a bobber. Small spinners may work as well. Game and Fish plans to stock catfish sometime in May.

GOLDWATER LAKE—Trout were stocked last week, the week of May 7. The fishing following the stocking was good. Try using spinners, jigs, worms and rainbow Power Bait. If you don’t have success in an hour or two, move to another spot. You may try starting at the fishing pier. If you don’t have a fish in an hour or so try a new spot. Game and Fish Biologists surveyed Goldwater last week and found the trout and sunfish to be very plentiful. While the number of catfish and bass was low, the quality was exceptional. One 16-pound catfish was sampled and released. The bass averaged about 3.5 pounds. On March 29, 400 pounds of bluegill were stocked. These fish were hand-sized and should be easily caught. Try using worms or mealworms on a bobber. Small spinners may work as well. If you fish Goldwater and are having luck, please e-mail me at [email protected] so I can share your successes with others.

Mogollon Rim
Note: Woods Canyon and Bear Canyon lakes are both closed to entry due to a forest fire.

CHEVELON CANYON LAKE — Forest roads 300 and 169 to the lake are closed due to the Promontory Fire. The best access routes are from Winslow or Heber. Fishing is good. The lake is nearly full but is not spilling anymore. Recent surveys showed rainbow trout ranging from 13-15 inches, a few browns at 20 inches, and lots of small rainbow and brown trout. Chevelon Lake is open to artificial lure and fly only, with a 6 trout bag and possession limit. Trout between 10 and 14 inches may not be possessed and any trout kept outside this slot must be killed immediately and retained as part of the bag limit. Try lures such as spinners, Z-rays, spoons, and Rapalas, and flies such as wooly worms or buggers, semi-seal leeches, Peacock ladies, Prince nymphs, and Zug bugs. Chevelon Lake is a remote hike in lake with difficult access. The lake is open to 10 hp gas motors.

CHEVELON CANYON LAKE — The lake is nearly full but is not spilling anymore. Recent surveys showed rainbow trout ranging from 13-15 inches, a few browns at 20 inches, and lots of small rainbow and brown trout. Chevelon Lake is open to artificial lure and fly only, with a six-trout bag and possession limit. Trout between 10 and 14 inches may not be possessed and any trout kept outside this slot must be killed immediately and retained as part of the bag limit. Try lures such as spinners, Z-rays, spoons, and Rapalas, and flies such as wooly worms or buggers, semi-seal leeches, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, and zug bugs. This is a remote hike in lake with difficult access. The lake is open to 10 hp gas motors.

BEAR CANYON LAKE — Closed due to the forest fire. Check with the U. S. Forest Service at www.fs.fed.us/r3/tonto for the latest information.

BLACK CANYON LAKE — The boat ramp is low so use caution when launching a boat. Fishing is good. Black Canyon will be stocked with catchable size rainbow trout this week. Recent surveys on April 20 found fair numbers of carryover rainbow trout ranging from 12 –15 inches; fair numbers of largemouth bass ranging from 8-15 inches, and a few small sunfish. Try worms, salmon eggs, Power Bait, lures such as spinners and spoons like Z-rays, and flies such as Peacock ladies, wooly worms or wooly buggers, prince nymphs and zug bugs. The lake is open to electric motors only.

BLUE RIDGE RESERVOIR — This deep canyon lake does not have a lot of easy-to-access shoreline and is best fished from a boat, canoe or inflatable. Try worms, salmon eggs, Power Bait, lures such as spinners, Z-rays, Rapalas, and flies such as peacock ladies, wooly worms or wooly buggers, prince nymphs, and zug bugs.

KNOLL LAKE — Fishing was slow this past weekend. The few fish being caught were nice and were caught on sherbet Power Bait about 24 inches off the bottom. Scheduled to be stocked this week. Try worms, salmon eggs, Power Bait, lures such as spinners, Z-rays, Rapalas, and flies such as peacock ladies, wooly worms or wooly buggers, prince nymphs, and zug bugs.

WILLOW SPRINGS LAKE — Forest Road 149 is open to the lake. The lake is nearly full and the boat ramp is accessible. The lake was stocked with catchable size rainbow trout last week and will be stocked every week through September. Fishing is good. Try worms, salmon eggs, Power Bait, lures such as spinners, and flies such as peacock ladies, wooly worms or wooly buggers, prince nymphs and zug bugs. Some anglers have been catching some nice sized smallmouth bass here recently. The lake also has largemouth bass and crappie. The lake is open to 10 hp gas motors

WOODS CANYON LAKE — Closed due to the forest fire.

White Mountains
Note: State Highway 273 on the Apache Sitgreaves National Forest is undergoing reconstruction and realignment and the following closures are in effect. State Highway 273 from the Forest and Fort Apache Indian Reservation boundary to the junction of Forest Road 554 (Winn Campground Road) is closed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and will remain closed until the project is complete. The southern closure of State Highway 273 from Forest Road 554 junction to Crescent Lake will go into effect mid-May. This section of road will be closed each week beginning Mondays at 6 a.m. through Thursdays at 6 p.m. Access to Lee Valley Reservoir, Gabaldon Campground, East Baldy Trailhead, and Winn Campground will only be open on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.

BECKER LAKE — The lake is nearly full and the boat ramp is accessible. Netting surveys in March showed carryover rainbow trout averaging 16 inches. Fishing is good. Will be stocked this week with catchable size rainbow trout. Try lures such as spinners and Z-rays, flies such as wooly worms and wooly buggers, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, zug bugs, dragonfly imitations, midge imitations, and brown Montana stone nymphs. The lake is open to artificial lure and fly with barbless hooks only, with a two-trout bag and possession limit. No bait fishing is allowed. The lake is open to 10 hp. motors.

BIG LAKE — State Highway 261 is open from Eager. State Highway 273 will be closed throughout the year for road construction. State Highway 273 from Crescent Lake to Winn Campground is open seven days a week until mid-May.

The lake is 5.8 feet below spill, the water temperature was 50 F last week. The boat ramps are a little low, but still usable. The Railroad Cove boat ramp is the lowest and launching boats there may be difficult. Fishing is good. Try worms, meal worms, Power Bait, salmon eggs, lures such as spinners, Z-rays, Rapalas, and flies such as wooly worms or wooly buggers, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, zug bugs, and brown Montana stone nymphs. The lake is open to 10 hp motors.

CARNERO LAKE — Forest Roads 117, 117A, 118 to the lake are open and clear. The lake experienced a winter kill but was stocked with catchable size rainbow trout. The weeds along the shoreline are starting to come up, but there is a narrow channel out to open water available. Try small spinners, jigs and spoons, and flies such as wooly worms, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, zug bugs, and small brown, black or green nymphs. Carnero is open to artificial lure and fly only with barbless hooks and a two-trout limit. No bait fishing is allowed. The lake is open to electric motors only.

CLEAR CREEK RESERVOIR — The lake is full. Fishing is good for trout. The lake will be stocked with catchable size rainbow trout this week. Try worms, salmon eggs, Power Bait, lures (spinners and Z-rays), and flies (wooly worms or wooly buggers, zug bugs, prince nymphs, and peacock ladies). The northeast boat ramps are usable but the middle boat ramp is steep and has soft sand. There is also an old concrete dam structure across from the middle boat ramp, so use caution when motoring on the lake. There are no motor restrictions on the lake when using larger watercraft.

CONCHO LAKE — The lake is down about 4-5 feet, the water temperature was 57 F last week, and there is a slight alga bloom. The lake is weedy. The boat ramp is accessible. Fishing is good. A recent netting survey found some carry-over rainbow trout up to 14 inches. The surveys also found green sunfish, carp and black bullhead. The lake has been stocked with catchable size rainbow trout. Try worms, mealworms, Power Bait, salmon eggs, and lures such as spinners, spoons, Z-rays, and flies such as wooly worms and wooly buggers, prince nymphs, zug bugs, and hares ear nymphs. The lake is open to 10 hp. motors.

CRESCENT LAKE — The lake is scheduled to be stocked with catchable size rainbow and brook trout this week if the pH shows improvement. Fishing is good. Netting surveys on April 6 revealed that rainbow and brook trout survived through the winter very well. Fair numbers of rainbow trout averaged less than 13 inches, but ranged up to 23 inches (4.8 pounds). A few brook trout were caught; up to 15 inches and 1.6 pounds. The lake is approximately 4 feet low. The boat ramps are accessible except the north boat ramp, which is very low and muddy. Try lures such as spinners and Z-rays, flies such as wooly worms and wooly buggers, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, zug bugs, dragonfly imitations, midge imitations, and brown Montana stone nymphs. The lake is open to electric motors only. The store is closed.

Highway 261 is open from Eager. Highway 273 will be closed for the year for road construction. State Highway 273 from Crescent Lake to Winn Campground is open seven days a week until mid-May. Starting in mid-May, State Highway 273 from Crescent Lake to Winn Campground will be closed from 6 a.m. Mondays through 6 p.m. Thursdays, but will be open on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.

FOOL HOLLOW LAKE — The lake is nearly full, down only about 2 feet. All boat ramps are accessible. Fishing has been fair to good. The lake was stocked with catchable size rainbow trout last week. Anglers have been catching a few trout, bass, walleyes, and channel catfish. Try worms, mealworms, salmon eggs, Power Bait, lures such as spinners, Mister Twister worms (chartreuse green, brown or gray with silver specks) on ¼-ounce lead head jigs, crankbaits, and Rapalas, and flies such as wooly worms and wooly buggers and semi-seal leeches. Fish near structure such as rocks, trees, weed beds, and fishing piers. Recent netting surveys on April 6 caught some large pike (up to 14.4 pounds), good sized channel catfish, walleyes, and fair numbers of crappie. Fool Hollow State Park has excellent camping facilities. Anglers wishing to fish the lake for free must use the southwest side boat ramp and parking area. A fee is charged for use of the other facilities including the east side boat ramp. The lake is open to 10 hp. Motors.

GREER LAKES — All reservoirs full and water temperatures this week we all 52 F. Bunch, Tunnel, and River reservoirs will be stocked this week with catchable size rainbow trout and fishing is good. Try worms, meal worms, salmon eggs, Power Bait, lures such as spinners and spoons, and flies such as wooly worms and buggers, peacock ladies, and small nymphs.

Recent netting surveys on April 2 revealed that some large brown trout still exist in River Reservoir. Brown trout of 18, 22 and 25 inches (up to 6 pounds) were caught in the survey. Bunch and Tunnel Reservoirs are open to electric trolling motors only. River Reservoir is open to 10 hp. Motors.

HULSEY LAKE — The lake is full and spilling. Water temperature was 55 F last week and there is a slight alga bloom. Fish were seen rising around the lake. The lake will be stocked with catchable size rainbow trout this week. Fishing is good. Try worms, salmon eggs, Power Bait, lures such as small spinners and spoons, and flies such as wooly worms, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, and zug bugs.

LEE VALLEY RESERVOIR — Lake is low and it is difficult to launch trailered boats. Water is fairly clear. Lee Valley Lake is low, so use caution when launching a boat. Recent surveys on April 19 found some large Apache trout in the lake, averaging 18 inches and ranging up to 22 inches and 4.3 pounds. There are not many of these bruisers, but they are congregating near the stream inlet. They were eating large leeches, so dark semi-seal leech fishing in the upper end should work well. Anglers this week appeared to be doing well. The lake was stocked recently with catchable size Apache trout.

State Highway 273 from Sunrise Lake to Winn Campground is closed for the year for road construction. State Highway 273 from Crescent Lake to Winn Campground is open 7 days a week until mid May. Starting in mid May, State Highway 273 from Crescent Lake to Winn Campground will be closed from 6 a.m. Mondays through 6 p.m. Thursdays, but will be open on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. This section of the road is in poor condition (many parts of the road have potholes and are like a washboard) and is experiencing use by heavy equipment. Please drive with caution.

A few small grayling still remain in the lake, but it doesn’t look like they grew much from last year. The lake is open to artificial lure and fly only, with a minimum size limit of 12 inches, and a limit of two trout. Try lures such as small spinners and spoons, and flies such as wooly worms, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, zug bugs, hares ear nymphs, pheasant tail nymphs and other small black, brown or green colored nymphs. The lake is open to electric motors only.

LUNA LAKE — The lake is full. The lake is full; only down about two inches from spilling. The water is clear with only a slight trace of algae. Fishing is fair to good. Recent netting surveys on April 4 revealed good carryover of rainbow trout up to 17 inches. Try lures such as spinners and Z-rays, flies such as wooly worms and wooly buggers, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, zug bugs, dragonfly imitations, midge imitations, and brown Montana stone nymphs. The lake is open to 10 hp motors.

LYMAN LAKE — The water level is 19.9 feet down, the water is turbid. The left boat ramp is accessible. Fishing is fair to good. Some anglers have been catching channel catfish on worms and prepared baits. Try worms, meal worms, and catfish prepared baits. The Lyman Lake recreation area is managed by Lyman Lake State Park and camping is available. There are also some new cabins for rent. There is a fish consumption advisory here. Consult the fishing regulations or contact the Arizona Game and Fish Regional office in Pinetop for more information. This lake has no motor-size restrictions.

NELSON RESERVOIR — Statewide angling regulations started on April 1 and the daily bag and possession limit is six trout. The lake is about 2.5 feet low, with a slight sign of an alga bloom. The boat ramp at the dam is recommended, as the ramp at the upper end is still too shallow. The lake was stocked recently with catchable size rainbow trout and fishing is good. There is also a few larger trout in the 1.5- to 2-pound range that carried over through the winter. Try lures such as spinners and Z-rays, flies such as wooly worms and wooly buggers, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, zug bugs, dragonfly imitations, midge imitations, and brown Montana stone nymphs. The lake is open to 10 hp motors.

RAINBOW LAKE — The lake is full. Fishing is good. The lake will be stocked with catchable size rainbow trout this week. Fishing is fair. Try worms, mealworms, salmon eggs, Power Bait, lures such as spinners, Z-rays, crankbaits, spinnerbaits, and Rapalas, and flies such as wooly worms or wooly buggers, semi-seal leeches, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, zug bugs and brown Montana stone nymphs. Northern pike are being caught on spinners and Rapalas.

Anglers have been catching northern pike and largemouth bass on Rapalas and crankbaits. Game and Fish biologists are encouraging anglers to keep all northern pike that are caught. Northern pike are not desirable in Rainbow Lake because they eat stocked rainbow trout and small bass and we want them removed. Recent netting surveys in March showed that almost no trout remained in the lake from last year (prior to being stocked last week). The netting surveys did show high numbers of bullheads and a fair number of northern pike. The lake is open to 10 hp. motors.

SCOTT’S RESERVOIR — The lake is full. Fishing is good. The lake will be stocked this week with catchable size rainbow trout. Annual netting surveys on April 10 showed good numbers of carryover rainbow trout, averaging 12.5 inches with some trout in the 15 inch range, a fair number of channel catfish averaging 6.3 pounds with the largest at 13.2 pounds, and a fair number of largemouth bass ranging from 1-2 pounds. One illegally introduced northern pike was captured. Please report anybody that is moving fish from one location to another. It is illegal to stock any fish in public or private waters without a proper stocking permit. This illegal activity spoils angling opportunities for most other anglers. Try worms, meal worms, salmon eggs, Power Bait, lures such as spinners, Z-rays, crankbaits, spinnerbaits, and Rapalas, and flies such as wooly worms or wooly buggers, brown Montana stone nymphs, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, and zug bugs. The lake is open to electric motors only.

SHOW LOW LAKE — The lake is nearly full, down only 2.2 feet. Fishing is good. The lake will be stocked with catchable size rainbow trout this week. Netting surveys on April 3 revealed good numbers of carryover trout averaging 14 inches and good numbers of walleye averaging 24 inches and 5.7 pounds. Six walleye in the 8-10 pound range were caught. Try worms, salmon eggs, mealworms, Power Bait, lures such as spinners, Z-rays, ¼-ounce lead head jigs (chartreuse green, and brown, or gray with silver specks), and flies such as wooly worms and wooly buggers, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, and semi seal leeches for trout. Anglers have been catching trout trolling cowbells and worms and with Rapalas. Shore anglers are catching 11-16 inch rainbow trout on green Power Bait and night crawlers. The lake is open to 10 hp. motors.

SILVER CREEK — The stream will be stocked with catchable size Apache trout this week and fishing is good. Silver Creek on the Arizona Game and Fish Department property is open to Statewide angling regulations, including bait fishing and 6 trout bag and possession limit (from April 1 through September 30). Try small lures such as Mepps, Rooster Tails, and Panther Martin spinners. Fish upstream or downstream. Fly-fishing anglers may want to try peacock ladies, beadhead black or green wooly buggers, prince nymphs, zug bugs, bead head nymphs, mayfly and caddis fly nymph imitations, and shrimp patterns. Fish your flies upstream and dead drift them downstream or cast your fly downstream and retrieve the fly slowly upstream. Try small dry flies such as Adams, parachute Adams, midge imitations, and caddis fly patterns in sizes #16 or #18 or # 20. Night crawlers, Power Bait, and mealworms work well for bait.

WOODLAND LAKE — The lake is full. The lake will be stocked with catchable size rainbow trout this week and fishing is fair to good. Try worms, salmon eggs, meal worms, Power Bait, lures such as spinners, Z-rays, small spoons, and Rapalas, and flies such as wooly worms and wooly buggers, prince nymphs, zug bugs, and other small nymphs. This is a city park with picnic tables, verandas, restrooms, volleyball and softball courts, hiking trails, boat ramp, and a fishing pier. The lake is open to electric motors only.

WHITE MOUNTAIN STREAMS:

WEST FORK OF BLACK RIVER – Access roads are open and clear. The stream was stocked with catchable size Apache trout last week. Try worms, meal worms and salmon eggs, lures such as small spinners and spoons, and flies such as wooly worms, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, zug bugs, and small black, brown or green nymphs. Stream flows are good.

EAST FORK OF BLACK RIVER – Access roads are open and clear. The stream was stocked with catchable size apache trout for the first time last week and will be stocked every week through September. Anglers have been catching brown trout on Rapalas. Try worms, meal worms, and salmon eggs, lures such as spinners and spoons, and flies such as wooly worms, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, zug bugs, and small black, brown or green nymphs.

SHEEPS CROSSING – Not accessible. Highway 273 is closed for the year due to road construction.

LITTLE COLORADO RIVER – GREER – Access roads are open and clear. The stream was stocked with catchable size Apache trout for the first time last week and will be stocked every week through September. Try lures such as spinners and Z-rays, flies such as wooly worms and wooly buggers, peacock ladies, prince nymphs, zug bugs, dragonfly imitations, midge imitations, and brown Montana stone nymphs.

Southeastern Arizona
URBAN LAKES – Fishing for catfish is very good at most Urban Fishing Program waters in the. Best baits for the 16-19 inch catfish are worms, stink baits and shrimp. Tucson anglers are having good success catching big cats on chicken liver. Because of problem algae blooms, the Silverbell was not stocked with catfish on April 19-20.

RIGGS FLAT —The road to the lake is now open. The lake has received its first load of trout and conditions should be great.

CLUFF RANCH — Fishing for warmwater species continues to pick up with a few reports of largemouth bass being caught. For lake information call (928) 485-9430.

ROPER LAKE — Fishing for all warmwater species remains slow. For lake information call (928) 428-6760.

DANKWORTH POND — No reports on success. For lake information call (928) 428-6760.

FRYE MESA RESERVIOR – The fishing remains good at this small reservoir. Angler reports have slowed recently but anglers are still catching fish. Reports of brook trout have been coming in also. Apparently, these fish survived poor water conditions following the fires and are producing good angling action. The road to Frye Mesa is in fair condition and is currently passable with a two-wheel drive vehicle. Use caution because the road is steep and narrow in places.

KEARNY LAKES — These lakes remains fishless due to golden algae.

ARIVACA — The water levels are starting to drop. Nonetheless, you should be able to launch most boats. The department was unable to launch its weed-cutting boat due to the lower water levels. The fishing has been good to excellent. There are reports of 5-., 7-, and 8-pound fish being caught. The redear sunfish will be spawning soon and if the recent surveys are any indication, fishing for this species should be excellent. There is an algae bloom going on at the lake, however water quality parameters show that conditions are still good. The department will continue to monitor the situation.

Reports of bass fry in large numbers are being seen by anglers and the sunfish are now spawning in shallow water in the backs of the coves. The fishing remains inconsistent, with the weather being the most likely cause. Anglers are reporting success in 3 to 7 feet of water near rocky structure.

Remember, powerboats on Arivaca Lake are restricted to the use of a single electric motor only, and all bass must be immediately released back to the water. The mercury advisory for all fish is still in effect. Also, be aware of the boating regulations, specifically those pertaining to personal flotation devices.

PENA BLANCA – The water levels are starting to drop. There is a sediment build-up around the boat ramp that makes access difficult. Anglers should be advised that there is a large drop-off opposite the cattails on the boat ramp. Anglers should be very cautious and not let their trailers get off this side of the ramp. Use caution when launching your boat.

The department was unable to launch its weed-cutting boat due to the low water levels. Despite this the bass fishing has been fairly good. Recent surveys show good numbers of bass with several 6- and 7-pound bass. There are still bass that haven’t spawned yet. The bass fishing in Pena Blanca Lake is challenging due to the clarity of the water. The black crappies have made a comeback at this lake. This is the first time since the fish kill of several years ago that crappie are being caught in significant numbers.

Remember, powerboats on Pena Blanca Lake are restricted to the use of a single electric motor only. The mercury advisory for all warm water fish is in effect. Bass less than 13 inches long must be immediately released. The daily bag limit for bass is four. Also, be advised that Pena Blanca is not an urban lake; therefore an urban fishing license is invalid to fish at this lake. Users of power boats must also remember the requirement to have personal flotation devices in good condition for all occupants of the boat.

PATAGONIA — Fishing for largemouth has picked up some in recent weeks with warmer weather however it is inconsistent due to fluctuations in the weather. Anglers continue to have success using reaction baits with bass being caught by flipping in the cattails. No reports of spawning activity at this lake. Several large flathead catfish were taken in the last couple of weeks. The lake remains in good condition with no problems launching boats at either ramp. Trout stocking has ended for the season; time to switch your gear over for warmwater fishing!

PARKER CANYON — The water level is at near capacity, with signs of great fishing ahead. The green tinge found in the water is an algae bloom that invaded the lake in November. Trout fishing continues to be good with limits of trout being reported. Some nice trout are being caught on chartreuse Power Baits and worms.

With water temperatures in the mid 60s, the largemouth bass are starting to spawn, so hitting the shallow waters found in the many coves and along the shoreline should provide anglers with ideal opportunities.

There is no better time than April and May to fish this lake, with the expectation of catching a creel of trout and various warm-water species, including largemouth bass, bluegill, and sunfish.

Note: Due to changes in hours of operation, anglers in the Sierra Vista area should contact Fort Huachuca regarding access across the Fort.

PICACHO RESERVOIR — No Report.

ROSE CANYON LAKE — Rose Canyon is now open for the summer and anglers are reporting limits of fish. Black Panther Martins seem to be the spinner of choice with anglers also having luck with Power Bait.