Times Spent Outdoors: Priceless!

Lake Powell Report

The Fishing Season Starts Off Right

Ron Colby started the Lake Powell fishing season off right by catching his personal best striper which weighed 13.33 pounds.

It had been a while since Colby and friends had fished at Lake Powell so they were excited to finally get back out on the smooth clear water reflecting images of tall red rocks. They started fishing in Navajo Canyon where striper fishing reports were good from the week before but his group had no success there.

After a fishless morning, they ran back to the starting point at Wahweap and then on to Lone Rock. As often happens, a slow fishing day in one spot equals a slow day over the entire lake. By mid-afternoon the spirits were down and reluctant anglers were starting to think about heading back without any fish.

But Colby was driving the boat and kept them out there for a few more minutes while he searched for any sign of fish. At 4 p.m. a lone school of stripers lit up the graph. Spoons dropped right into the school were immediately consumed and all the school fish were hungry.

In the next 30 minutes, 45 stripers were caught and placed in the live well. The school was found in 45 feet of water. It makes one wonder if the fish in Navajo Canyon began feeding at the same time.

On the very next day the re-energized Colby fishing group went farther uplake and immediately found a nice striper school in Gunsight Canyon. They started catching the little ones and worked on filling the live well when the school of small fish skeedaddled.

A few larger fish continued to hit the spoons and Colby was surprised when the 5-pounder he thought he was playing suddenly turned into a 13-pound monster when it saw the boat and headed for the bottom. After a few minutes of searching for a net that hadn't been used in a while, the big fish was landed, weighed and admired for about 30 seconds before the group went back to fishing for schooling stripers.

It must have been Colby's day because another monster hit his spoon. But this one came off before it could be netted. The school of big fish disappeared as they apparently followed the recently hooked fish to safety.

I surmise that the feeding action of the small schooling fish attracted the attention of the larger fish. The small fish ran away from danger as the large fish began eating the spoons that the little ones were enjoying a few minutes earlier. One large fish was landed and another hooked before coming unbuttoned and leading the rest of her schoolmates away from the danger zone.

Colby and group returned to Gunsight the next morning, but the results of the next day's trip back to the Big Honey Hole went unrewarded. No small fish or large fish were found or caught.

This story sums up winter fishing at Lake Powell quite well. There is always the possibility of catching a lot of fish, or a big one, and sometimes both. But, on days when they don't bite, boating on Lake Powell without anyone else putting a ripple through the tall red rock wall reflections makes the trip worthwhile.


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