What’s Biting And Where?

By Arizona Game And Fish Department


As we transition to fall the next few weeks, those fishing in desert regions should pay particular attention to water temperatures. Once they fall to the low-80s (currently around the high-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.

Most weather forecasts for desert regions are calling for highs in the 90s and lows in the 70s, beginning Monday.

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!

Trout hot spots

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 oxygenated 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).

What’s been stocked this week
(Water temp in parenthesis if available)
Rainbow trout:
City Reservoir (68), Canyon Creek, Willow Springs Lake (73), Show Low Creek, Woods Canyon Lake (74), Dogtown Reservoir (75), Fain Lake (78), Mingus Lake (75), Show Low Creek.