Bartlett Lake Fish Report

Bartlett Lake - Carefree, AZ (Maricopa County)


by Arizona Game & Fish Department
12-5-2014
Website



Lake elevation is 1,770 feet, 63 % full.

The water level has been dropping considerably, and bass fishing is hot.

Gary Senft, a Bass Pro at the Mesa Bass Pro Shops, said largemouth bass fishing remains excellent, perhaps the best in the state, from the dam to the yellow cliffs area.

The main body has had a surface water temperature of 64-65 degrees, dropping to 47 degrees farther up the lake and into the river, where water is being released from Horseshoe Dam. This is a reason why the fishing is considerably poorer up river.

He recommends beginning fishing the early morning, beginning with crankbaits (a square bill or one that dive 4-5 feet in a shad pattern or crawdad colors). Also in the morning, try spinnerbaits.

Senft and other anglers have noticed that as long as the wind is blowing, the reaction bite keeps going. Once the wind stops, the bite stops.

Once the sun comes up, anglers should consider switching to dropshot-rigged worms (most colors have been effective) fishing points, reefs and islands.

Also effective has been jigs, shakyhead rigged worms in green pumpkin, and 3-inch Rapala Shad Raps.

Finally, anglers are likely catching some huge flatheads at Bartlett right now using small bluegills (3 to 4 inchers) as bait.

These voracious monsters that can tips the scales well above 50 pounds are actively roaming the lake right now looking for meals, so this is a great time to catch them. Stout poles and heavy line (20 pounds or better) are the order of the day.



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