Utah Walleye Fishing Reports
Links give descriptions of the lake and facilities available. Check proclamtion for details on fishing restrictions as these may not be complete.
WHIRLING DISEASE -- For waters indicated, please prevent the spread of WHIRLING DISEASE by cleaning mud from waders and equipment. DO NOT TRANSPORT any parts of fish caught here to other waters. Click here for DWR information.
FISH CONSUMPTION ADVISORY -- For more information on individual lakes and fish species: Click here for DWR information.
Brook Trout, Brown Trout, Bullhead Catfish, Channel Catfish, Crappie, Cutthroat Trout, Green Sunfish, Largemouth Bass, Rainbow Trout, Walleye, Whitefish, Yellow Perch
No recent reports.
Deer Creek Reservoir
Brown Trout, Cutthroat Trout, Largemouth Bass, Rainbow Trout, Smallmouth Bass, Walleye, Yellow Perch
(Oct 12) Anglers report fair fishing from the shore or by trolling with popgear or other minnow-imitating lures. Most shoreline anglers are using PowerBait. 60,000 10-inch rainbow trout were recently stocked. The water level is low, so use caution when launching boats.
(Sep 21) Fishing has been slow, and reports have been intermittent. Anglers are catching 16- to 18-inch walleyes, 16-inch rainbow trout, and largemouth bass. For walleye, try trolling a Northland Pro Walleye Crawler Harness or jigging a VMC Neon Moon Eye jig with a chartreuse shad, smelt, or watermelon pearl 3 inch Berkley Gulp! Minnow. For trout, traditional fishing methods work well, but you can also try using Panther Martin Holographic spinners or Pixee spoons. Wasatch County Health Department has posted warning signs at Island Resort and Rainbow Bay indicating the detection of harmful algae. There have been no reports of illness, but please be cautious and avoid areas where you see a layer of green scum in the water.
Holmes Creek Reservoir
Bluegill, Crappie, Largemouth Bass, Walleye
(Oct 9) Anglers reported slow fishing, but the fish were active. Trout fishing will improve now that temperatures are cooling and water levels are rising. Try using the fly-and-bubble technique. A stimulator pattern may be more effective on warmer afternoons and evenings.
Brown Trout, Channel Catfish, Largemouth Bass, Rainbow Trout, Sunfish, Walleye, White Bass
No recent reports.
Bluegill, Brown Trout, Channel Catfish, Crappie, Largemouth Bass, Northern Pike, Smallmouth Bass, Striped Bass, Rainbow Trout, Walleye
STOP QUAGGAG MUSCLE
FISH CONSUMPTION ADVISORY
(Oct 12) by Wayne Gustaveson
Lake elevation: 3,591 feet
Water temperatures: 70–74°F
Sporadic rain continues to fall at Lake Powell. The welcome moisture has maintained the lake level at essentially the same as it was last week. Today inflow from the Colorado River is greater than outflow from Glen Canyon Dam. Two more rainy days are forecast in the next 10 days with average air temperature in the mid 60s and evenings in the mid 40s.
There is one downside to the recent stormy weather. The drop in barometric pressure has caused a drop in fishing success. Anglers who were catching fish every cast a week ago are now struggling to find and catch fish. The good news is that the storms are clearing, pressure is rising and fishing success will perk up again.
The secret to finding fish now — particularly striped bass — is to go out early in the morning. In the southern lake, stripers are being caught quickly on spoons from first light to 8 a.m. After the sun gets higher and boat traffic picks up stripers are hard to find. Midday, they can be found with anchovy bait used in the commonly reported spots reported here. If one favorite spot does not produce, then move to another to see where the schools are now. It should only take moving to 3 or 4 good bait fishing spots to locate an active school.
Striper schools are suspending and feeding on shad schools half way back in major canyons. They are not easy to see on the graph since they are high in the water column while the graph is focused on the bottom in 50-100 feet of water. The most consistent way to locate suspended stripers is to start near the back of a major canyon and troll out towards the mouth of the canyon. It is best to use a deep diving lure, such as a Norman Little N or Deep Little N in Lavender shad color. Troll until a striper is caught, then fish with spoons and cast crankbaits to catch more fish following the hooked school mate. This technique should work lakewide.
Smallmouth bass fishing remains steady. There has been a recent decline in total numbers caught with the same reaction to falling barometric pressure, but smallmouth are caught throughout the day. Smallmouth are holding in relative deeper water, not in the backs of canyons. Look for visible open water reefs surrounded by deep water. They were also found on deep cliff walls, in the shade at 15 to 30 feet. They are feeding on crayfish so use green colored grubs senkos and dropshot lures.
Walleye are caught periodically while trolling for stripers or dragging a bass bait along the bottom. Walleye are not schooling fish, but they do tend to aggregate in the same location. It is wise to turn around and try to retrace the path where the first fish was caught to see if another walleye can be caught at the same spot using the same technique.
Finally, the water temperature will soon drop into the 60s which is the prime temperature for fish activity in Lake Powell. Catching should improve and peak during the next few weeks of October.
(Oct 4) by Wayne Gustaveson
Lake elevation: 3,592 feet
Water temperatures: 73–76°F
The weather is cooling, rain is finally falling and fishing is picking up. Hopefully, the rainy period will slow down the decline in water level for a short time and allow the Castle Rock Cut to stay open for a few more weeks. The water depth is 12 feet in the Cut, which means it should be passable through October.
Fishing is improving as the water temperature has declined to the low 70s. Smallmouth bass have been the constant, most dependable target species to pursue. They are gorging on crayfish and are very cooperative for anglers. The best techniques now are very similar to those for spring bass fishing. Fish with weightless shad-shaped worms and senkos are in five to 15 feet of water. Bass are moving shallower as the lake continues to decline. They are very active early in the morning and late in the evening. During the day, it may be better to dropshot fish in slightly deeper water.
Habitat preference is very different this year. Usually, there are brushy spots with tumbleweeds and brush. This year the rapid drop in water level has left the brush high and dry. This past week, the best bass habitat was long shallow gravel points that were shaded by mud lines. Bass are much more likely to be on the outside of primary points instead of in the backs of shallow coves. Look for deeper water in shallow bays to find bass.
Stripers have been harder to find in the southern lake. There is a short period at dawn where you can locate striper schools on the graph and then catch them using deep-diving spoons. This flurry of activity is short lived and drops off as the sun gets higher in the sky. During a normal fishing day, the very best technique is to use bait with lots of chumming. The spring time spots — like the dam, Buoy 3 and Navajo Canyon points — are working again. Add in some of these uplake spots that have produced good catches this week: Warm Creek Wall, Labyrinth Wall, the back of the main Rock Creek and Middle Rock Creek. The best technique is to graph the bottom structure while you're trolling. When you see a school, mark the spot. Return to the school, chum the spot with cut bait and then drop a one-inch piece of anchovy down to the school to catch lots of stripers.
In the northern lake — from Bullfrog to Good Hope — there are many more shad schools. Normal fall fishing techniques are working well. Again, troll and graph until you see a striper school. Then, drop spoons into the school in order to catch a lot of fish in a hurry. The best spots this week include mouth of Stanton Creek, Bullfrog Bay haystacks and the mouth of Knowles. The best lures are slab spoons, including Fle Fly Slabs, or any spoons that resemble them.
Bait fishing has also worked at Bullfrog this past week. Anglers have caught a lot of stripers on bait at the mouth of Lake Canyon.
Other fish that are responding well are walleye, catfish and bluegill. Tip your jig, small spoon or just a small jighead with a piece of nightcrawler to catch a wide variety of fish in a short time. Fishing is improving and will peak as the lake temperature drops into the 60s.
(Sep 27) by Wayne Gustaveson
Lake elevation: 3,591 feet
Water temperatures: 75–78°F
Lake Powell's water level continues to drop. The lake elevation today is 3,591 feet, which still leaves 11 feet of water in the Castle Rock Cut. If the current rate of decline continues, the Cut will remain open for approximately five more weeks. That would mean that it will be open through most of October. The Cut and Antelope ramp will both close before the High Flow Experiment scheduled for November 5.
ishing in the southern lake has been slower than usual with the full moon and declining lake levels. Here are the bright spots:
Smallmouth bass have continued to cooperate with bass anglers who are using plastic baits and targeting open water reefs. With the lake falling, there are some long, narrow rocky points that extend from shore and gradually decline to 30 feet or more. Work green plastic grubs or shad-shaped worms along the bottom in 15 to 25 foot range to target the larger bass. Smaller bass will be mixed in but are more common at shallower depths. There are some bass in the backs of canyons and coves. They are usually on the breaking edge where the shallow water drops into a deeper channel. Water clarity over the length of the lake has declined considerably with dropping lake levels. This is allowing sand and sediment to mix in the water column with each wind event. Big patches of aquatic weeds are now showing in the backs of many coves. The weed mats are coming out of the water and drying as the lake drops.
You can find striped bass schools in deeper water: from 50 to 75 feet. These fish have been searching for shad, but not finding many in the southern lake. When you see a school, try spooning. If that does not work, then drop anchovy bait in order to quickly catch a lot of fish. When stripers school and shad numbers are low, many in the school do not get fed. Only the quickest fish will get enough shad to eat. Right now about 75% of the schooling stripers are healthy and 25% malnourished. I suggest keeping every striper you catch to reduce the total number of stripers and increase the opportunity for the remaining fish to find adequate nourishment.
Shad numbers are much higher from Bullfrog north than in the south. Graph and troll to find striper schools and then use spoons to catch a bunch. Try spoons that resemble shad and stripers. Fish really respond well to spoons in these conditions. The target depth is a bit shallower in the north, but you can graph striper schools from 30 to 70 feet. Striper schools may be harder to find now than is common for this time of year, but when you graph a school the fish respond very well.
We found out last week that the very best way to catch a large number and huge variety of fish is to use nightcrawlers. Tip a plastic grub, spoon or a plain bait hook with a one-inch piece of worm. Drop the bait down to the bottom in five to 25 feet of water and gently jig it up and down. The response is amazing. Expect to catch bluegill, green sunfish, smallmouth bass, walleye and channel catfish in big numbers. A really small hook is best. An ice jig or ice fly has a very small hook, but packs a lot of weight for its size. This is the technique to use if you want to catch a lot of fish.
(Sep 21) by Wayne Gustaveson
Lake elevation: 3,594 feet
Water temperatures: 75–79°F
This week we traveled to Good Hope Bay to begin a walleye migration study in the northern lake. It is possible that walleye may migrate up the Colorado River and then move back and forth between the river and Lake Powell. Our goal was to tag as many walleye as possible with sonic tags — which include an underwater transmitter — that can be detected by a hydrophone attached to the lake bottom in the main channel. The hydrophone detects fish movement and records the tag number of each fish that passes by. The data can then be checked and recorded by our scientists on a regular basis.
My job was easy. I was supposed to catch some walleye so the fish could be tagged and used in the experiment. The only hard part was that the recent warm weather has kept the water in the high 70s instead of the 60s, which is when walleye are more aggressive. Twelve really good anglers headed out to collect 40 walleye. We fished all day and then returned to camp with only one walleye in the live well. Fishing was tough!
We finally figured out that the walleye pattern was to troll over humps at depths of 10–15 feet and let bottom bouncers or deep-diving lures drag across the bottom. Walleye would hit as the lure cleared the hump and began to swim in open water. We were proud to finally tag and release 20 walleye, which are now part of the migration study. More will be added in the future. I suggest waiting until water temperatures cool before making a trip to catch walleye.
We did catch lots of smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, bluegill, green sunfish and catfish while trying for walleye. We tipped our plastic grubs, jigs, spoons and other lures with a one-inch piece of nightcrawler and caught tons of the non-target species. To catch all those fish, we just parked the boat in the shade during the morning and evening hours and dropped our lures to depths of 10–30 feet.
We also found large schools of stripers swimming in open water looking for shad schools. It was not as easy as usual to find a striper school because they were rarely boiling; but when we found some by trolling, we could stop over them and spoon up lots of stripers.
Brook Trout, Brown Trout, Cutthroat Trout, Rainbow Trout, Walleye
(Oct 12) Lower: The brown trout spawn will happen soon, so trout are aggressively taking spinners fly patterns, sow bugs and similar techniques. Try using smaller sizes, like 18 to 22, and copper-colored spinners.
Middle: There are still large crowds of anglers during the weekend.Mid-October to November is a great time to fish the Provo because of how aggressive brown trout are when spawning. Try using sow bug, caddis or small, dark nymph patterns. Egg patterns will start to work well in the next few weeks. Spinners work well in October and November.
(Sep 21) Lower: Anglers have reported some pre-spawn brown trout behavior. As we move closer to the spawn, you will begin to see males show signs of aggression and females will begin to gather near redds. Streamers will provide great results as the spawn unfolds. You can also try using terrestrials, midge larvae and pupae, mayfly nymphs, sow bugs, split-cased PMDs or San Juan worms.
Middle: Fishing is best from dawn until about noon, and from 5 p.m. till dusk. The water temperatures are warm for this time of year, so focus on locations that provide some refuge from the elements. PMDs and terrestrials (e.g. ants, beetles and grasshoppers) are still productive. You can also try using sow bugs, Griffith's gnats, hares ear nymphs, pheasant tails or miracle midges.
Brown Trout, Crayfish, Smouthmouth Bass, Walleye
FISH CONSUMPTION ADVISORY
(Oct 4) Remember, you may not possess kokanee salmon until Dec. 1. The ranger dock is closed to public use. The reservoir water level is at 59 percent and dropping, with water temperatures hovering around 60 degrees. Be aware of increased debris in the lake with weather coming in this week. Biologists are encouraging anglers to plan campouts and target smaller walleye at the reservoir. Anglers are encouraged to harvest smaller walleye to help balance the fishery. Fly anglers recommend using fast-sinking lines and size 6-10 bead head flies in multiple colors. We recommend using the same technique from a boat (jighead and worm) and fish in the evening, after the sun goes down. If you catch crappie, consider voluntarily releasing them so this population can establish.
Bluegill, Bullhead Catfish, Channel Catfish, Largemouth Bass, Smouthmouth Bass, Walleye, White Bass
FISH CONSUMPTION ADVISORY
(Oct 12) Fishing is slow because of the colder weather and fewer anglers are out fishing. One angler caught nearly a dozen white bass with a small action lure tipped with a piece of worm. Some anglers have also caught catfish.
(Sep 21) Anglers are catching two- to five-pound channel catfish, white bass and 18-22 inch walleye. For white bass, try using 1/8-ounce neon colored jighead with a pearl, chartreuse or amber Seps grub. For channel catfish, try using chicken livers encased in nylon, shrimp, nightcrawlers or PowerBait Catfish Bait Chunks.
Bullhead Catfish, Channel Catfish, Crappie, Largemouth Bass, Perch, Smallmouth Bass, Walleye, Wipers (hybrid), Yellow Perch
(Oct 9) Anglers report that wiper fishing has improved.
Channel Catfish, Northern Pike, Rainbow Trout, Walleye, Yellow Perch
FISH CONSUMPTION ADVISORY
(Oct 12) Fishing is slow. All of the boat ramps are closed for the season due to the low water level. There is a lot of mud around the shoreline, but you may be able to launch a canoe or small watercraft near Oasis Campground.
(Sep 21) The water levels are critically low. The Oasis boat ramp is the only ramp that is still open. Fishing has been slow for sportfish, but anglers are catching carp, wipers and channel catfish.