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Fishing Report, Feb. 24, 2017

Posted in: Fishing Report
Feb 24, 2017
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CENTRAL WATERS

(Updated Feb. 24, Editor Nick Walter, 623-236-7214)

ROOSEVELT LAKE -- (2,110 feet, 58-percent full)

Water temperatures on Thursday, Feb. 9 were 60 degrees on the Tonto end of the lake. Gary Senft, a Bass Pro at the Mesa Bass ProShop, said largemouth bass fishing has been difficult at Roosevelt. He said the Tonto end of the lake has stained water and from the dam to the Salt River, it’s muddy. Best bets this weekend is using spinnerbaits, dropshots and Texas-rigged plastic worms.

Feb. 24 report from Jom Goughnor of Rim Country Custom Rods:

The water level continues to rise in Roosevelt Lake. Both the Salt River and Tonto Creek are flowing at hundreds of times the normal rate. The increased flows are raising the lake level 1 percent every two to three days.  The lake currently stands at 58 percent full. The last time the lake reached this level was 2012.

Fishing conditions continue to improve with most anglers reporting a good-to-excellent reaction bite. The water temperature is in the low to mid 50s but sun-warmed coves can heat up to the high 50s during the afternoon. The water condition in a large portion of the lake remains stained. Reaction baits such as shallow to mid-level running crank-baits and dark colored jigs were reported successful recently. Anglers reported more success fishing clear water areas just outside of the stained water.    

Crappie anglers are reporting a slow bite. Crappie anglers can be seen trolling along shorelines and submerged points however, the water conditions and series of storms has pushed the crappie into deeper water. The mid-lake area of the lake where the water is more stable reported better success. Trolling a 1/4 oz jig head and a grub tail, tipped with a minnow, is a typical winter technique for crappie anglers on Roosevelt and Apache Lakes.

Have a great week of fishing and I hope to see you on the water.  

LAKE PLEASANT – (Lake elevation 1,688 feet, 84 % full).

The new moon phase this weekend will be excellent for striper fishing. Try live shad and fishing 11 a.m. to sunset in the northern coves

Barry Worman, moderator of the Facebook page Arizona Striper Fishing, reported Pleasant has not peaked yet and would be considered a very slow bite. "I mean guys fishing really hard for 3-7 fish," he said.  The only way they are being caught at right now is with live shad and some artificials. Soaking bait has really produced minimal results for guys.

The Arizona Fishing Guides reported, "Lake Pleasant is fishing a little tougher than normal this time of year. The stripers are there along with the largemouth but seem to be in that transition period of coming out of the deep water and moving into the shallower water. These fish can be caught on long points and channel breaks."

Catfishing can be decent using dead shad fished on the bottom with hot dogs, chicken liver, or anchovies. Some anglers will chum a cove overnight with corn and return to fish the same cove with corn – this can be an effective tactic for catching carp and catfish.

BARTLETT LAKE - Lake elevation is 1,795 feet, feet, 95 % full.

With more rain expected for Saturday, and winter run-off keeping the lake temperatures from warming, the best bet remains fishing the main lake. The dropshot has been a productive rig using morning dawn-colored Roboworms, as well as jigs, Texas rigs and a new J rig. See a video of how to use a J rig at Bartlett during the winter.

Look for bass to be following shad, and so the bass have not been in the same location from one day to another. In the morning, fish dropshots, Texas rigs, jigs, spinnerbaits or crankbaits. Once the sun comes up, fish in 20-30 feet of water over points, humps, reefs, etc.

Be ready for a subtle bite – winter bass are lethargic and more likely than in the fall or spring to hit a bait as its falling. It’s also a particularly good time to try jigs or worms in watermelon or green pumpkin.

The Yellow Cliffs boat ramp has once again opened -- there was 30 feet of water depth at the ramp on Thursday. For one, this can be a good crappie area. Fish in deeper water off cliff walls during the winter, targeting underwater brush and ledges.

The Arizona Fishing Guides reported Feb. 19, "This lake is always good this time of year; however right now with the anticipation of storms over the next week they are letting out a lot of water from Horseshoe and Bartlett Lake and this has the water levels fluctuating. While this is happening it will be a little bit tougher to catch them, but look for boulders just under the surface that the sun will start to warm up on those bright sunny days. Throw reaction baits such as chatterbaits, spinnerbaits and small cranks. After that bite, slow down and throw shakeyhead and dropshot."

Don’t forget the Bartlett Lake Marina is now open. See www.bartlettlake.com or contact 480-221-0503 for more information.

COMMUNITY FISHING WATERS —  The “core” waters were stocked Saturday of last week expect: Rio Vista (still low water levels for maintenance, stockings deferred to Pioneer); Veterans Oasis (fish to Desert Breeze, which has been a hot spot), and Mesa Riverview (due to golden algae, high pH – fish went to Chaparral).

SAGUARO LAKE – The lake is 1,524 feet (92-percent full). The Arizona Fishing Guides reported, ". ... The fish are farther along in the spawning mode than any other lake in in the Phoenix area. They are still not quite spawning yet but are on the move from those 50 and 60 foot depths. A great way to catch these fish is to follow the bait fish and target the active feeders that are feeding up before the spawn."

Saguaro was stocked with trout 2 weeks ago.

Although it is a little deeper than Alamo Lake and not quite the solar bowl, Saguaro can heat up as well -- in more ways than one. Trout and yellow bass are options if the largemouth bass are finicky. It’s also the early bird for channel catfish that like to feed on shad. Plus, Saguaro is just downright gorgeous.

For now, it's typical winter fishing. Anglers are reporting hit-and-miss action on bass, with many daily bags of less than two bass a day. Yellow bass fishing can be good -- try using a silver and blue Kastmaster or similar.

CANYON LAKE –
Lake level is 1,657 feet (96-percent full.)  The final rainbow trout stockings of the winter season took place 2 weeks ago week.

Angler Brian S. reported that water temps are warming up and in a few areas the bass are moving up, however most are still caught deep. This beauty was caught in 35 feet with a hinged spinnerbait with a zoom fluke trailer.

He recommends utilizing sonar electronics is critical for deep water fishing. Find them, mark a way point and slowly work your baits into the strike zone. Pay attention to your sonar through the entire process because once you entice one to bite, have your angling buddy be ready with a flutter spoon or Kastmaster as you may find you just ignited a school of them.

A new fishing pier is under construction in the Boulder Creek Recreation Area. This pier serves as excellent structure for sunfish.

Some anglers have had success throwing dropshot Roboworms in morning dawn near cattails in 10-20 feet of water.

APACHE LAKE -
Lake elevation is 1,912 feet (97-percent full).  Try reaction baits in the morning and during afternoons, jigs or dropshots. Not a bad time to drift along and throw crankbaits or spiinnerbaits. Apache Lake’s final schedule trout stocking of the winter season was 3 weeks ago.

Various jigs also can be effective – try crawdad imitations. Points, islands and rocky structures tend to hold the majority of largemouth bass – keep moving.

Walleye fishing could be decent at first and last light using nightcrawler rigs, or jigs tipped with a worm. Apache is also full of some really nice yellow bass. Try gold KastMasters or yellow/gold Rooster Tails.

HORSESHOE LAKE –
Lake elevation is 2,025 feet (98-percent full).

Water is being let out of Horseshoe Lake as of Thursday (down 1,448 acre feet during the past 24 hours). When the lake is full, there are a lot of spawning fish.

LOWER SALT RIVER – On Tuesday morning the river was flowing at 6.4 cfs out of Stewart Mountain. Scheduled to be stocked with trout this week.

Angler Justin M. fly fished Friday, Nov. 17 from about 9 a.m. til 3 p.m. He reported catching quiet a few bluegill on the surface and some bass. Another gentleman that day was having good action on carp.

Previously, Justin reported, “Most of the time I’m fishing at Water Users and have had success every outing. All I do is fly fish anymore and have caught quite a few bass and lots of bluegill.

For the bass, my most productive flies have been AZ simi seal leeches in canadian black, halloween, blood red and olive. Another productive fly pattern has been cheechs low fat minnow. Its a bluegill imitation.

For the bluegill, on warmer days I’ve done fairly well getting them on the surface with a beetle imitation. Other productive flies i’ve had great success with is a hares ear soft hackle pattern I tied up. The only time I tried for trout was a couple of weeks ago when it was raining and cooler.

Fished below the bridge using the hares ear soft hackle and caught and released 14 trout in a matter of a couple of hours. I have talked to other anglers on my outings and have been told that they were having luck with nightcrawlers, small spinners, and one fella was doing well for bass on dropshot with a green Roboworm.”

Creeks below the Mogollon Rim

Jim Goughnour of Rim Country Custom Rods reported that most trout stream anglers are waiting for better weather and those who did fish reported poor conditions.



COLORADO RIVER


New Reports:

  • Angler report from Watson Lake: Incredible Hard Fighting, Tail-Walking Rainbow Trout Caught At Watson Lake!  In 1 hour I caught and released 10 beautiful rainbow trout, ranging from 14 to16 inches.  Fish caught at Northshore of lake, at a depth of 1 to 2 feet, on 1.5 inch crappie tubes.  Weather Conditions: Windy, Cool & Partly Cloudy. Water Conditions: Stained. 
  • Lake Mohave is picking up for big striper fishing.
TOPOCK MARSH – Topock Marsh on the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge will be closed Feb. 20 thru March 6 due to U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service management action.

After March 6, try chicken livers or worms for catfish. You can access the marsh by boat at the North Dike, Catfish Paradise, and Five-Mile Landing.  The cold weather has slowed the bite and access to the marsh is difficult due to low water levels. For more information on the marsh, contact the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge at (760) 326-3853 or go to http://www.fws.gov/southwest/refuges/arizona/havasu/index.html.


(Updated Feb. 8; Editor Gregg Cummins, 928-263-8868)

Important notice: With the discovery of invasive quagga mussels in Mead, Mohave and Havasu,  proper cleaning of all watercraft is critical to help prevent the spread of these invaders.  Please drain and dry your live well and bilge on land. Drain all the water you can from your engine. Also, inspect your vessel and trailer, removing any visible mussels, but also feel for any rough or gritty spots on the hull. These may be young mussels that can be hard to see.

For more information, go to the Arizona Game and Fish Department's web pages at azgfd.gov or visit http://100thmeridian.org/.

LAKE MEAD – The current elevation is 1087 feet above msl. The National Park Service has been working to improve conditions at South Cove launch ramp, and latest report is that 4x4 is not needed to launch/retrieve boats. Be sure to check out launch ramp area prior to launching.  Be careful boating because of low water level, many new islands and near surface rocks have appeared. The largemouth bass bite is slowing with the cold weather. Night crawlers were the bait for the channel catfish. The striper bite is steady on Lake Mead. Fishing the boils with top water baits is probably your best type of lure.  Cut anchovies are still the bait of choice for stripers when anchored at night.  Check the moon phases before you go –the last new moon was Jan. 27.

The next new moon will be Feb. 26.  Dark nights work best when fishing under light.  Fishing for stripers in 40 plus feet of water will normally find the larger fish.  If they are not taking the anchovies try lures and see if you can get them to bite.  If you can locate the shad, the stripers are not far behind.  Trolling usually works best in areas where shad are found and best done in the early mornings and evenings.     
 
LAKE MOHAVE – The lake level is currently 643 feet above msl.  The fishing dock at Katherine's Landing can produced some nice fish.  The striper bite has returned according to reports. Down deep by the dam and above the power lines are reported as the hottest spots. Lures that mimic trout are working for stripers as well as the old tried and true anchovies. Submersible lights fished during the new moon are an effective way to catch stripers. Check the moon phases before you go – the last new moon was Jan. 27.  The next new moon will be Feb. 26.  Cut anchovies usually work the best for stripers at night.

Biologists from both Arizona Game and Fish Department and Nevada Division of Wildlife with the help of volunteers, National Park Service, and Bureau of Reclamation personnel have continued to install fish habitat in Carp Cove, Box Cove, Shoshone, Princess and Arrowhead.  Prospect Cove (1st cove south of Princess Launch Ramp) is the latest addition on the Arizona side of the lake to get habitat deployed. Fish habitat consists of PVC structures, tamarisk bundles and a new type of habitat we call poly shrubs.   The largemouth, smallmouth, bluegill and catfish are really utilizing the new structures.  Additional habitat will be added at several locations over the next two years.  These structures are fish magnets.

There is a wheelchair accessible fishing pier just south of the main launch ramp at Katherine's Landing. If you fish Mohave and are having luck, please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.

WILLOW BEACH – Try spinner baits along with cut anchovies for stripers. Trout are scheduled to be stocked the first week of February.  If you fish Willow beach and are having luck, please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.

COLORADO RIVER BELOW DAVIS DAM - Trout stocking has begun and the latest stocking was the week of Feb. 2. The next stocking is tentatively scheduled for the week of Feb. 9.  The stocking locations are at Davis Camp and Community Park. The best bait is reported to be yellow and orange power bait and of course nightcrawlers.  Try small spinner baits if the power baits are not working. Try swim baits for stripers, especially ones that look like trout. You can check the Bureau of Reclamation Web site for flow predictions http://www.usbr.gov/lc/riverops.html before you go. If you fish the river below Davis Dam and are having luck, please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.  Many thanks to Rusty from the Riviera Marina for his fishing reports.

Billy G. wanted to remind everyone to check the expiration dates on their license before they go fishing.

TOPOCK GORGE - Use swim baits and pencil poppers if anchovies aren’t working.  Stripers are being taken and are ranging between 1-4 pounds. 

VERDE VALLEY

DEAD HORSE RANCH STATE PARK –
Trout were stocked the week of January 30th and are tentatively scheduled for this week, the week of February 6th.  Bring a variety of baits just in case the fish aren’t biting.  Try small spinners or spoons, Powerbait, night crawlers or any other bait.  Bass bite has slowed.  If you fish Dead Horse please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.
 

VERDE RIVER (throughout Verde Valley) –
Trout were last stocked the week of January 23rd and are tentatively scheduled for this week, the week of February 6th. The smallmouth bass and catfish bite has dropped to poor but the bass that are caught are on the small side and you can keep all you catch.  Bring a variety of bait so you can change if the bite is absent.

PRESCOTT AREA

FAIN LAKE —
Park is open and fish were stocked January 10th.  Reports are that the fish are biting but bring a variety of bait.

GOLDWATER LAKE — Goldwater was stocked the week of December 12th.  The next stocking is tentatively scheduled for this week, the week of February 6th. Try several colors of power bait and power eggs and if you don’t get bites try night crawlers or small spinners. They are a great option if you are not getting bites with other baits. Jonathan reports that he has success using orange and yellow power bait eggs on about a 12 to 18 inch leader.  Small spinners work very well also.  Michael reports that 1½ inch Crappie Tubes & Acme Kastmasters lures work very well on the trout.  This is the second time he has reported method in the last couple weeks.
      
If you fish Goldwater and are having luck, please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.

GRANITE BASIN LAKE – Bite has been slow to nonexistent with the cold water and air.  If you fish Granite Basin Lake and are having luck, please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.

LYNX LAKE – The latest rainbow trout stocking was January 30th. Catchable Brown Trout were stocked September 6th and catfish were stocked the week of September 22nd. Change baits if you are not having any luck and move down the shore a few hundred feet. Rob reports that the morning bite is best and limits can be caught in the 20 degree air temps. Later in the morning the trout move to the 14-35 feet in depth. Try yellow colored power bait or power eggs for trout if the spinners don’t work. The gold colored Super Duper is a distant second. Night crawlers are always good bait that can work on most fish. 

Lynx also can be an exciting place to fish for carp.  Common carp are very strong fighters and will provide excellent table fair.  A quick search on the internet will produce tasty recipes for these robust fish.  Corn and an assortment of other baits will attract these fish.  Lynx can be difficult to fish, if you are not catching anything try moving to a new spot.

MINGUS LAKE – Trout were last stocked the week of October 17th. The best bait is white or pink Powerbait, fished under a bobber or a spinner with a silver blade are doing well. The gate will be locked soon, with an anticipated mid-December locking.  The lake is iced over according to reports so be careful if you fish there.

Someone illegally stocked yellow bullhead into Mingus several years ago. These fish compete directly with the trout and keep growth rates very low. If you witness anyone, anywhere, moving fish like bass, bluegill, catfish and stocking them, please report it to our Operation Game Thief Hotline at 1-800-352-0700.  Illegal stockings cost YOU money!

WATSON – Trout were stocked January 9th and again on January 30th. Bring night crawlers if your other baits are not working.  

If you fish Watson and are having luck, please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.

WILLOW CREEK RESERVOIR –  No recent reports. If you fish Willow and are having luck, please e-mail me at gcummins@azgfd.gov so I can share your successes with others.


CENTRAL WATERS

New report:

(Editor Chuck Benedict 928-214-1244)


A recent influx of snow and subsequent run-off is giving many Flagstaff area lakes a refill.

During the past two years, water levels at Kaibab Lake near Williams had been far too low to stock fish. Thanks to recent heavy rains, the lake is full and spilling.

All lakes in the Flagstaff region are ice free.

We will not be stocking all lakes, and the ones that will be stocked will not get fish until after March 1.
Some other updates from this region:

•    Dogtown Lake, near Kaibab on the south side of I-40, should be full. Anglers who can get into Dogtown might catch some of the holdover rainbows and browns since spring fishing can be pretty good. The lake has probably picked up 10 to 11 feet of depth since December and so the fishing might be a little slow, but the trout should be feeding.
•    Ashurst Lake is full.  The road to Ashurst Lake remains closed and  is very muddy and there are some heavy snow drifts.
•    Upper Lake Mary is about 3 inches foot from spilling (as of Thursday) and Lower Lake Mary is about 1/3 to 1/2 full. 
•    Frances Short Pond will be stocked with the normal weekly stockings starting in March. Anglers should be able to catch fish at Frances Short right now since they were catching them before it iced over (and since it was full at that time, the fish-to-water ratio is the same.)  For all of the other lakes, until we can stock the fishing will probably be somewhat poor.


SOUTHERN WATERS

(Updated Feb. 13; Editor Don Mitchell, 520-388-4451)

ARIVACA LAKE –
Current lake level is 2.97 below the spillway.  Launching conditions are good.  No recent reports of success. Gasoline engines are restricted to 10 hp or less and boaters using gas motors are asked to be courteous and not create wake problems for others boaters. 

CLUFF RANCH —
The pond is 1.14 feet below the spillway with no reports of launching issues.  Trout stocking is ongoing.  The schedule can be found here. Anglers continue to report the fishing to be fair.  Visitors are reminded that it is illegal to obstruct the use of the boat ramp by anglers trying to launch the boats.  No parking, standing, sitting, swimming or fishing is allowed on the boat ramp.  For lake information call (928) 485-9430.

PATAGONIA — The lake is full and no reported launching problems. Trout stockings are ongoing.  Find the schedule here.  No recent reports of success.

PARKER CANYON — See a recent Angler Report. The lake is at 2.82 feet below the spillway and there are no problems with launching.  Trout stocking is ongoing.  For future stockings check the schedule here.  The bag limit on white amurs is one fish over 30 inches in length.  Anglers are asked to immediately release any smaller amurs that they may catch unharmed.  Anglers can also contact the Store at the lake for updates on fishing at (520) 455-5847.   Gasoline engines are restricted to 10 hp or less and boaters using gas motors are asked to be courteous and not create wake problems for others boaters.

PENA BLANCA –
The lake is full and water quality problems have improved and trout stocking is underway finally.  The winter trout schedule can be found here. As the weather warms anglers are reminded of the recent change in the largemouth bass regulations at this lake.  For details of those changes please see the current fishing regulations here: 2017 Fishing Regulations. Additionally all mercury advisories against the eating of warmwater fish caught at Pena Blanca Lake remains in effect.  Future testing will determine if and when these advisories will be lifted. Gasoline engines are restricted to 10 hp or less and boaters using gas motors are asked to be courteous and not create wake problems for others boaters.

RIGGS FLAT LAKE – This lake is closed for the winter. 

ROPER LAKE — The lake is full.  No recent reports have been received from this location.  Find the winter trout stocking schedule here.  For lake information contact Roper Lake State Park at (928) 428-6760.  Sunfish live or dead is not legal bait at this lake.

ROSE CANYON LAKE – The lake is closed to vehicle access for the winter.  Anglers can still access the lake by foot.


LAKE POWELL AND LEES FERRY

LAKE POWELL --


“You won't believe this”

February has been an excellent month for great fishing results in the southern lake. We have found great spooning results in early February with a fish count of 75 stripers.  Then later in the month we caught 38 stripers while trolling and casting. Spoons did not work on that trip.  When we headed uplake to see how conditions had changed this week we were prepared to give the stripers any presentation they wanted.  The fish did not disappoint us, in fact, we were amazed at what happened.

See the full Feb. 23 report from Wayne Gustaveson (www.wayneswords.com).


LEES FERRY – See the full Dec. 14 fishing report from Lees Ferry Anglers.



SOUTHWESTERN WATERS

ALAMO LAKE –
Feb. 15 report from Mark Knapp at Alamo Lake State Park:

Well folks, here's what I know while being at two places in one time (literally) :  The lake level  is about 1100ish.  Cholla ramp is the only ramp open at this time.  The lake still looks like a milkshake but is slowly clearing up.  I have heard bass fishing is tough, but doable.  Try flipping in the new growth around the lake.  No reports on crappie fishing yet.  Catfishing is OK.  Try all the baits I have mentioned over the years at this time of year.

Yes, it's true the CORE has upped their releases to 40 cfs and going up to 50 cfs. in May.  Here's the way I see it: watch the weather.  If we do not get any more storms fishing in general will pick up in the next few weeks.
By mid-March it will be on.  If we do get hit with storms, add 2 weeks to what I'm saying now.  I would be very careful going into the upper end of the lake.  The lake is up to the tree area (lower browns crossing) but is very shallow in most areas.  That covers fishing in a nut shell.

Make sure you have a current fishing/hunting license, OHV tag, life jackets, you get the drift.  Not only will this put a big smile on my face, BUT it's for your own safety.  Besides, I don't want to cite you for any of these violations either.  We can do this.  Well, that's all I have time for.  It has been pointed out by several of you, and a big surprise to me, that my name has been changed to George Knapp in several papers and internet articles.  So, from us to you, remember to make a reservation, and come see us. -- Mark


(Editor Russ Engel, 928-341-4042)

Please send in your reports to BFishing@AZGFD.gov.


LAKE HAVASU – Lake level 91.5 percent full, 69+ degrees.

See the latest report from www.havasufishing.com.

PARKER STRIP – No report.

YUMA AREA PONDS –
Trout have returned to the Community lakes Fortuna, Redondo, West Wetlands Pond and Council Ave. Pond in Somerton.

COLORADO RIVER (between Picacho State Park and Imperial Dam, including backwaters and Martinez Lake) – No report.

MARTINEZ LAKE -- No report. This tends to be one of the top early-bird bass lakes.



WHITE MOUNTAINS
 

(Updated Jan. 30; Editor Sally Petre, 928-532-2307)
 

Recommended Waters to Fish
Fishing is good at Patterson Ponds and Silver Creek.  Silver Creek is in the catch and release season, which had a parasite outbreak in October, but fishing is now good.  Patterson Ponds in St. Johns were stocked Jan. 25 with catchable rainbow trout!  All other lakes have unsafe ice and/or are inaccessible.  Use extreme caution.

MOGOLLON RIM LAKES
*Skim ice may be present, use caution.  Ice coverage is unpredictable with warm days and cold nights. Forest Road 300 (Rim Road) to Woods Canyon Lake and Bear Canyon Lake is closed for the winter.

BEAR CANYON LAKE – Inaccessible.  Forest Road 300 (the Rim Road) is closed for the winter as of 1/5/2017.

BLACK CANYON LAKE – Inaccessible.   Lake is covered with thin, unsafe ice. 

CHEVELON LAKE – Inaccessible.  Forest Road 300 (the Rim Road) is closed for the winter as of 1/5/2017.  Road in from the north is snow packed due to 48 inches of snow.  Ice is thin and unsafe.  Some open water.

WILLOW SPRINGS LAKE – Fishing is fair for stocked rainbow trout and tiger trout.  No/little ice and the road is open, however, use caution.  Temperature are freezing.  Ice is thin and unsafe.  Road is snow packed.

WOODS CANYON LAKE –
Inaccessible.  Forest Road 300 (the Rim Road) is closed for the winter as of 1/5/2017.  Ice is thin and unsafe.  There is some open water. 

PINETOP/SHOW LOW/ST. JOHNS LAKES
*Skim ice may be present, use caution.  Ice coverage is unpredictable with warm days and cold nights.

FOOL HOLLOW LAKE –
Ice covered.  Ice is thin and unsafe.   The two fishing piers have been disconnected so that winter ice does not damage them, thus, they are not available for shore fishing.

RAINBOW LAKE – Ice covered.  Ice is thin and unsafe.  

SCOTT RESERVOIR – Ice covered.  Ice is thin and unsafe.  

SHOW LOW LAKE – Ice covered.  Ice is thin and unsafe.   The two fishing piers have been disconnected so that winter ice does not damage them, thus, they are not available for shore fishing.  The road over the dam is closed for the winter.

WOODLAND LAKE – Ice covered.  Ice is thin and unsafe.  

PATTERSON PONDS – This is a community fishing water in St. John’s.  A regular fishing license or a community fishing license is required to fish here.  Channel catfish and sunfish fishing is fair, but trout fishing is good.  Catfish were last stocked in October and rainbow trout were just stocked in January 25!  The pond daily bag limits in community fishing waters (2 trout; 2 catfish; 5 sunfish) apply.

WHITE MOUNTAIN LAKES
*Skim ice may be present or lakes may be frozen over.  The 261 and 273 roads are closed.  Forest roads are icy and snowpacked.


BECKER LAKE – Mostly frozen, but ice may come on and off.  Ice is unsafe.  Becker Lake is open to catch-and-release only for trout, artificial fly and lure only; single barbless hooks only. No bait.  No trout may be kept. 

BIG LAKE – Inaccessible and ice covered. Ice is still VERY thin and unsafe.  During the winter survey on January 25, accessed with snow mobiles, ice was easily broken through just standing on it. Highways 261 and 273 are closed for the winter. Forest roads from the south are not passable due to deep snow.

CARNERO LAKE – Ice covered with thin, unsafe ice.  Forest roads to the lake have deep snow in spots and are not accessible all the way to the lake by vehicle.

CLEAR CREEK RESERVOIR –
Fishing is poor for trout, but fair for sunfish, bullheads, and bass.  No ice.

CONCHO LAKE – Fishing is poor.  Skim ice present.  The lake is stocked with trout only in the spring, but catfish were stocked in early summer and could still be biting.  Try a night crawler on the bottom.
 
CRESCENT LAKE –
Inaccessible and ice covered. Ice is thin, slushy, and easily broken through.  Highways 261 and 273 are closed for the winter.

GREER LAKES (River; Tunnel; Bunch) – All 3 lakes are full or nearly full, and ice covered.  The ice is thin and not safe.

HULSEY LAKE – Ice covered but has thin, unsafe ice.  The road is snow packed and impassable.

LEE VALLEY LAKE – Inaccessible and ice covered. Ice is thin and unsafe.  There is a large layer of slushy snow on top, which is easily broken through.  Use caution.  Highways 261 and 273 are closed for the winter.

LUNA LAKE – Ice covered with thin, unsafe ice.

LYMAN LAKE –
Lyman Lake State Park is open. Fishing is fair for bass, walleye, carp and catfish. Use corn or night crawlers for carp and catfish.  No ice.

NELSON RESERVOIR – Mostly ice covered.  Fish may have sores from a parasite called Lernaea, however they are safe to eat. 

WHITE MOUNTAIN STREAMS

EAST FORK of the BLACK RIVER –
Inaccessible due to snow packed roads.

LITTLE COLORADO RIVER in GREER – Fishing is fair.  The stream was last stocked in September.  Wild brown trout are also present in the stream.  Partially ice covered.  Moderate flows.

SHOW LOW CREEK – Fishing is poor.  The road over the dam at Show Low Lake is closed for the winter.

SILVER CREEK – Fishing is good. Current regulations are catch and release with artificial flies and lures with single barbless hooks only. A protozoan infection called “Ich” hit rainbow trout in Silver Creek in October, causing significant stress, some mortalities of trout, and poor fishing, however, that bout of infection has passed.  Fishing is good! This stream is ice free all year round.
 
SHEEPS CROSSING/LCR – Inaccessible.  Highway 273 is closed for the winter.  Frozen over and snow covered.


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