Early fishing at Lake Powell is a great catch
April 1 is here, but this is no joke: Fishing success makes it seem like the end of April and early May.
Bass and stripers took little notice of the jokesters holiday as they have been swimming in warming water for the past two weeks.
We usually have to wait until mid-April for the magic 60-degree water temperatures that start bass and crappie spawning, but those temperatures are already here.
Here is the summary of current conditions.
Largemouth and smallmouth bass have been active in the murky water in the backs of canyons and now are found on points and in coves in water-color-transition zones and even clear water.
The best habitat is rocky structure close to piles of submerged tumbleweeds. Bass are very active and quick to bite plastic jigs and tubes, worked methodically along the bottom.
Afternoon fishing in warming water is very productive, but the morning bite is improving dramatically.
Recent bass tournaments have had winning weights exceeding 20 pounds for five bass. Both largemouth and smallmouth bass are rotund, coming out of winter in great shape.
Bass fishing is great over the length of the lake.
Crappie are found in the backs of canyons near brush and weeds where water is stained.
Crappie fishing is better in the northern lake than the south, with the San Juan and Escalante canyons being the best spots right now.
Walleye fishing has taken off in the northern lake with Good Hope Bay being the prime location. Walleye are being caught lake-wide, but the numbers are smaller in the southern lake compared with the north.
Striped bass are active but well hidden, with adult stripers busy searching for shad hiding in very shallow water, hoping stripers will not cross long shallow flats in the back of a canyon or cove.
Stripers hold in the 25-foot zone and periodically make the trek into two feet of water to get a shad snack.
A good sign of fish activity is looking for grebe congregations. Grebes often rest in large groups in the middle of the bay over deep water.
There is a lot of fishing opportunity at Lake Powell now, and it should continue throughout the month of April.