Arizona fishing report: The Reel Deal

Santiago and his dad caught this 18-inch rainbow trout at Lower Lake Mary the morning of Sept. 3 fly fishing prince nymphs. They said a limit was caught in 2 hours
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Arizona Game & Fish

by Arizona Game & Fish Department

Fall fishing’s coming. The transition to fall conditions is about a week away. Most weather forecasts in desert regions are calling for highs in the 90s and lows in the 70s, beginning Monday. With bass fishing pretty much at a summertime lull, this should help drop water temperatures a couple degrees and get bass chewing more often. In general, water temperatures at desert impoundments have been in the high-80s.

Those fishing in desert regions should pay particular attention to water temperatures. Once they fall to the low-80s, activity of bass chasing schools of shad and reaction baits (crankbaits, jerkbaits, spinner baits, and so on) should increase. Fish early in the morning.

Some hot spots the past couple weeks have included Lower Lake Mary (water levels are dropping, fish are congregating, and some big trout to 18 inches have been caught); and Ashurst Lake for both rainbows and browns. See the stocking schedule below for more ideas for trout action. Trout stockings are slowing down a bit — at our Rim creeks, the final stockings are scheduled for the week of Sept. 23.

An “alright” night bite

Sounds like night fishing for bass has been fair to good at Saguaro and Canyon lakes where the pump-back system has provided some increased oxygen levels. Also, there are reports that night fishing for striped bass has finally picked up at Lake Pleasant. Otherwise, it sounds like the night bite (after 7 p.m. to the early morning hours) has been below average for this time of the year (some, such as Bass Pro Gary Senft, attribute that to the possibility that a severe lack of summer moisture has kept water stagnant and below-average in oxygen levels).

With the early Sept. 1-15 dove season (and even the start of football season, if pigskin action’s your thing) this is always an exciting time for sports and outdoors enthusiasts.

Channel catfish return to Community Fishing Program water the week of Sept. 16.

Time to break the gear out from summer hiding.

More Reports

Arizona Game & Fish Department Reports
for Friday, August 30th, 2019

Tempe Town Lake: 37 Inch Flathead Catfish at Tempe Town Lake
Roosevelt Lake: Angler Report: Roosevelt Lake
Black Canyon Lake: Angler Report-Black Canyon Lake

For nighttime anglers, a waning, third-quarter moon means submersible lights will be increasingly effective at drawing the plankton/bait fish/sport-fish chain....... Read More