This is not the best time for Arizona fishing, your best bet is in the high country

Arizona Fish Report

by Arizona Game & Fish Department

In these August "dog days" of summer, there are many ways anglers can overcome the inconsistent weather that tends to mess with a fish's metabolism and slow an angler's bite to a crawl.

In general, anglers can use smaller baits. At a desert lake, that may mean switching to a 4-inch worm. Also, slow down your presentations. Lethargic fish, more often than not, will not be willing to chase down baits. So either "dead stick" a bait such as a worm by letting it sit, with only a couple twitches here and there, or reel just fast enough to keep your jig jigging or lure working.

Here's the scoop in the high country. Woods Canyon and Willow Springs Lakes have produced a hot trout bite. Corn and cheese reportedly have been successful baits. Fisheries that will have been stocked through Friday are: Bear Canyon Lake (225 rainbow trout); Willow Springs Lake (1,200 rainbow trout); Woods Canyon Lake (2,926 rainbow trout); East Fork Black River (1,567 Apache trout); West Fork black River (50 Apache trout); Little Colorado River in Greer (605 Apache trout); and Sheeps Crossing (517 Apache trout).

In desert lakes, Texas rigs and dropshots seem to be producing the best bites. Night catfishing remains an excellent option. Summer nights are ideal for relaxing and waiting for a monster cat to come by.

As the summer wanes, top-water action should slowly pick up. The best top-water bites in August traditionally are from Pleasant, Alamo, and Havasu.

It's still a month away from crappie time. Daytime monsoons and heat also have messed up the crappie bite. The best time to crappie fish is the first couple hours after sun up. Try drawing a reaction bite from the crappie using small worms, in-line spinners and Crappie Beavers, and don't forget standbys such as minnows, Slab Daddys and Kalin Grubs.

At Lake Powell, anglers are having success with stripers on anchovy bait and smallmouth bass on plastic baits -- yet another can't-miss fishing option for those who can get to this scenic, northwest Arizona fishery.

Before heading to the high country, check out the summer trout stocking schedule, and our Fish & Boat Arizona map.

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More Reports

Arizona Game & Fish Department Reports
for Wednesday, August 7th, 2013
: Arizona Urban Fishing Bulletin
: Big Boquillas Ranch access will include fee