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October 17, 2018 - Temp drops - Fishing improves

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wayne gustaveson

Staff member
Lake Powell Fish Report – October 17, 2018
Lake Elevation: 3591.64
Water temperature: 66-69 F
By: Wayne Gustaveson http://www.wayneswords.com or Wayneswords.net

For one more week the lake level remains at 3591 MSL. It is a couple inches lower today but that is so much better than losing a foot or two each week. Lake level has only declined 6 inches during October thanks to the welcome rain.

Smallmouth bass provide the best fishing with lots of action along the rocky shoreline from the dam all the way to the inflowing rivers. Rocks are the prime habitat used by bass as they search for crayfish in cracks and crevices. Sometimes bass will be holding on the tops of shelves from 5-15 feet or off the sides of shelves at 17-22 feet. If you want larger bass, then fish deeper structure. Smaller fish are really dependable to catch in shallower water and that is a good place for new anglers or small kids to start fishing.

Try weightless wacky-rigged senkos early in the day and then switch to drop-shot rigs with shad shaped worms in deeper water midday to keep the catch going all day long. Double and single tailed plastic grubs work dependably as well.

Striped bass in the southern lake have moved toward the backs of the canyons. Schools that were holding along the main channel walls are now closer to the backs of major canyons where they spend the winter. It seems stripers are following shad that are also moving toward the backs of canyons as the water temperature declines.

The most recent angler reports suggest that striper schools have been found recently in 80-100 feet of water in major canyons: Last Chance, Rock Creek, Navajo and Oak. Graph towards the back of the canyon looking for large schools holding on the bottom. Stop over the school and drop spoons to the bottom. Some of the stripers will react to spoons, but the lack of shad in the southern lake makes spooning slower than normal. The way to fill the fish cooler is to chum the school and then drop bait to the bottom. The school will respond aggressively to bait and they will follow hooked fish toward the surface. The school that was seen at 80 feet will soon be right under the boat as more fish are caught and brought to the surface.

The northern lake has more shad and striper schools react differently. Striper schools will likely be shallower as they search for shad. The holding depth is usually 20-40 feet. Some schools will still be holding along the main channel walls where trolling deep divers and casting will work after a striper is caught trolling. Other schools will be moving toward the backs of canyons where shallow trolling and casting will be the best method for finding active stripers. It is possible to find an active striper boil in the early morning or late evening from Bullfrog to Good Hope.

Walleye, bluegill, green sunfish and catfish are still active in the 60 F water. They all really like night crawlers and can be caught by tipping a bass grub, jigging spoon, or your favorite lure with a piece of worm. Sometimes that little piece of worm makes all the difference in catching fish on a day when fishing is slow.


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