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August 8, 2018 - Smallmouth Fishing is Best

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wayne gustaveson

Staff member
Lake Powell Fish Report – August 8, 2018

Lake Elevation: 3602

Water temperature: 79 - 86 F

By: Wayne Gustaveson http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net

Fishing success on the southern end of the lake is all about smallmouth bass. Basically smallmouth bass are found on rock structure that is 12-30 feet deep. Look for rocky outcroppings, drop-offs, rocky points, shelves, rock slides, big rocks, little rocks, rocky coves and virtually anything else rock related. While traveling up or down lake just scan the shoreline and look at the beauty and majesty of the giant rock walls. Occasionally you will see rock features that could hold smallmouth bass. Try those spots that look the most “fishy.”

Smallmouth bass can be caught while trolling a rattletrap or medium diving crankbait parallel to rocky structure. The best method now is to use crayfish colored (green) or shad colored (white with black flake) plastic baits on a 1/8th to 1/4 ounce jig head bounced along the bottom structure. The most exciting technique is casting topwater lures toward shore before the sun hits the water. In summary, if you have a favorite smallmouth technique, give it a try. You will catch some fish.

It is very busy with campers and boaters in the southern lake. It gets quieter as you go further uplake. Right now the best lakewide bass fishing spot is from Oak Canyon to the Escalante. Bass catching near the mouth of the San Juan in the main channel is nonstop.

Striper fishing in Good Hope Bay dropped off a bit today. Instead of catching 50 -100 fish, the reported catch today was only 20 stripers caught in boils. There were also a few stripers caught in Bullfrog Bay on topwater lures while traveling uplake to Good Hope. Stripers could come to the top again tomorrow or it could take a few more days. My guess is that the shad schools are moving and stripers were left behind for while. Broaden the search zone to find moving fish. I predict the next north lake boils will be closer to Ticaboo, Red Canyon or Blue Notch.

Stripers are more difficult to locate in the southern lake. The common pattern is to troll and graph in 25 feet of water towards the backs of canyons. That is not always easy to do with lots of ski boats and camps in the backs of the canyons. It is better to look for stripers further uplake.

Over the length of the lake, the best time to find boiling fish is morning and evening twilight but they can pop up anytime during the day. When large schools of shad are seen on the graph or swimming in clear water near shore, hungry stripers will be close by. Shad do not have many brushy places to hide so they swim in very tight schools hoping stripers will eat those shad on the outer edge of the school first. It is a difficult time to be a shad. This is the time when anglers can actually help the forage fish by catching lots of stripers in boils and allowing shad to swim free for another day.

It is time to put on your S.H.A.D. Badge = (Shad Helpers and Defenders) Go catch some stripers!


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