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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 - Variety of methods working for stripers

Lake Powell Fish Report – August 14, 2013

Lake Elevation: 3592

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Water Temperature 77-82 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson of Wayne's Words

We ran to Gunsight to check out a recent fishing report of slurping stripers that stayed up for 4 hours. Of course, when we arrived the breeze was keeping the fish down in Gunsight Bay close to the main channel. The lake surface near Gunsight Butte was flat calm at 6:30 AM. We trolled there without success until 7 AM when the first slurpers hit the top in the back of the canyon.

Proudly we were able to catch the 9-12 inch stripers because we had tied on small Clouser flies behind a trout casting bubble. When the slurpers were up long enough to put a cast right in the middle of the 10 fish action zone, 2 small stripers were caught. At 7:30 we had 10 stripers and they had enough of us and quit. That was my first surface action on the southern end during August. The fish were small, healthy and easy to fillet. I really enjoyed seeing stripers on top again. The shad they were chasing were tiny resulting from a recent spawn in Gunsight Canyon. Slurps can happen anywhere now as gizzard shad are still spawning in random canyons. These small shad are attacked as soon as they are big enough for small stripers to see.

Bigger stripers are trapped in deeper water by the blanket of warm water on the surface and therefore separated from any shallow foraging opportunities. But adult stripers are still numerous, hungry and ready to eat bait at 30 feet along the shade line of most canyon walls. Try the dam, Power Plant intake, points in Navajo, Buoy 25, and the Last Chance and Rock Creek shade lines. At mid lake bait fishing is just as good at the mouth of Lake Canyon, and Halls Creek.

Other mid lake options include trolling deep with down riggers. Stripers were caught recently in Halls Creek with Shad Raps trolled at 40 feet over a 60 foot bottom. Spoons worked well on striper schools graphed directly across from the Bullfrog Bay launch ramp. Lipless vibrator (LV) lures were allowed to sink and then yo-yoed in deep striper schools graphed near Tapestry Wall. More stripers were caught deep on LVs than on spoons from these schools. Bait fishing results in more fish caught, but trolling, casting and spooning targets healthier fish.

The northern lake has sporadic boils of all size stripers because more shad are present. Here stripers can brave the warm surface layer where they grab a couple of shad and quickly dive back to the cooler depths. There are no consistent boils happening now but random boils can be encountered anytime.

Largemouth bass are found in shallow water where aquatic weeds have grown up now that sunlight can penetrate to the bottom and stimulate weed growth in sandy habitat. Any submerged tumbleweed may house bass, bluegill and crappie. A combination of aquatic weeds and tumbleweeds is the best bass habitat now available.

Channel catfish are still feeding well lakewide. A 9-pound cat was recently caught and released near Bullfrog off the back of the houseboat. It is still swimming out here for someone else to catch.

Summer temperatures are fading as nights are cooler making camping on Lake Powell heavenly. Water temperature is still warm for water sports and fishing is very successful with many different techniques. There is still time for one more trip to Lake Powell.

Photo Caption: Austin Bensen and Hunter Allan are proud to show the stripers they caught trolling with down riggers in Halls Creek Bay near Bullfrog. Striper fishing is good on bait but many fish are being caught trolling, spooning, and casting lures as well. There is even a little surface action going on as Lake Powell has something for every angler.



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