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Brett Prettyman
Brett Prettyman writes about the outdoors, recreation and fishing for The Salt Lake Tribune

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Lake Powell Fishing Report - Action slows as surface water reaches hottest point

Sorry for the delay on this post. I was out of the office and away from any wifi or cell reception on assignment last week.

Lake Powell Fish Report – July 11, 2012

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Lake Elevation: 3632

Water Temperature 80-83 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson of Wayne's Words

Water temperature has now reached the high point for the year. Early morning temp is 80 and by afternoon it reaches 83 or higher. From now on the temperature will remain the same but the band of warm water will deepen. These warm temperatures are higher than any of the fish in Lake Powell prefer. It makes sense then that fishing has slowed down all over Lake Powell.

Striped bass can still be caught but it takes a bit more patience or some late night work. Stripers are most active at dusk and dawn. There will be an occasional boil in the northern lake. In the south there is scattered surface action from yearling stripers feeding in groups of 2-5 fish. They hit the surface from dawn to 7 AM (MST) but splashes are widely spaced. If close enough to cast to a rising fish the chances of catching it are high. It is much more efficient to troll the general area where striper splashes are seen. Use a shallow running pointer, LV 100 or X-rap to steadily catch stripers while trolling near surface feeding stripers.

We tried trolling deeper under the surface action without success. We are still clueless as to the general location of adult stripers in the southern lake. It is now too warm for them to feed on the surface for extended periods. We don’t see many adult striper schools when graphing deeper water. Conditions seem ideal for bait fishing now but the only successful bait fishing reports come after dark. This is a great time to break out the green fishing lights and use bait in areas that have produced well in the past. Some fish are taken under the lights near the marinas or off houseboats in the buoy fields. Adult fish are deep and should be hungry. Down rigger trolling is another good option to take bigger fish.

Smallmouth bass are by far the best choice for targeting catchable fish. The brush zone from shore to 25 feet deep is where the action is. Large and smallmouth bass, walleye, stripers and sunfish are in brush along with shad and small sunfish. Cast plastic grubs to rocky drop-offs in the brush zone to catch multiple bass. Surface lures work very well morning and evening. Casting crankbaits in the spaces between the trees also works well. Use your favorite fishing technique to catch bass early and late.

Catfishing success peaks in warm water of summer. It’s time to use some smelly old bait along the shoreline at dusk and into the night to catch some dandy whiskered fish. Chicken liver, shrimp, night crawlers, hot dog rounds and anchovies are excellent catfish bait.

My hopes are high that after this fishing lull that the anticipated summer boil season will break loose. Usually all that is needed is for me to write one dismal fishing report and stripers start to boil everywhere. This is that dismal report. Now we are impatiently waiting for the bigger stripers to find shad and start boiling.

Photo Caption: Cindy Schroeder Durango CO, caught some nice fish in boils near Halls Crossing Marina. Large stripers are being caught in the northern lake while yearling stripers are being caught in southern Lake Powell. Smallmouth bass are being caught most often at both ends of the lake.



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