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Fishing report for southeastern Utah

There are some false rumors being spread that the fish limit has been doubled at Petes Hole, Potters Ponds and Duck Fork Reservoir. The daily bag and possession limits identified in the 2002 fishing proclamation remain in effect.

The daily bag and possession limits for trout have been doubled at Cleveland and Miller Flat reservoirs, Ken's Lake, Lloyd's Lake, Monticello Lake, and Recapture Reservoir. These regulations are in effect until November 1. Anglers are encouraged to harvest the trout they catch so that these fish are not wasted.

•Abajo Mountains. Foy Reservoir continues to provide good fishing with bait and lures. Fishing remains fair at Monticello Reservoir, where the limit has been raised to eight fish, until November 1. Bait fishing continues to be good at Blanding number three. At Recapture Reservoir, rainbow trout fishing remains fair for boat anglers trolling with spinners. Trolling with crankbaits may catch northern pike. The daily bag and possession limits have been doubled at Recapture Reservoir until November 1, due to probable draining. The daily bag and possession limits for all game fish have also been doubled at Lloyds Lake until November 1, due to low water conditions and expected loss of fish.

•Benches Pond. This pond is stocked every three weeks until fall. Try dry flies in the evening. Good baits include PowerBait, worms and marshmallows. Conservation officer Stacey Taggart describes fishing success as fair.

•Boulger Pond. This pond shares the same stocking schedule as Benchs Pond. Try PowerBait, or worms and marshmallows. In the evening, try dry flies. Fishing has been fair.

•Cleveland Reservoir. The daily bag and possession limits have been raised to eight fish until November 1. Anglers are encouraged to harvest the fish before the reservoir drains, which is expected by mid-August. Fishing has been fair for anglers using PowerBait or worms.

•Colorado River. The river continues to provide good fishing for catfish up to three pounds. Preferred baits include shrimp, worms and liver.

•Duck Fork Reservoir. Conservation officer Kip Draper urges fishermen not to believe a rumor being circulated about the limit being doubled and bait restriction removed. No such change has occurred yet. Fish may only be caught with artificial flies and lures. The trout limit remains at two. Tributaries will opened on Saturday, July 13. A damsel fly hatch has resulted in slower catch rates, but fishing is still excellent.

•Electric Lake. Fly fishermen using float tubes or pontoon boats have had success in the evenings with dry flies. Boats cannot be launched this year. The ramp is more thana half mile from flat water. Tributaries opened to fishing on Saturday, July 13. The trout limit is two. Flies and lures only.

•Ferron Reservoir. Conservation officer Kip Draper describes fishing as good with worms tipped with fish eggs. Last week a six pound, 27-inch trout was caught.. Anglers are encouraged to harvest the illegally introduced brook trout, which may eventually overpopulate the lake, resulting in small fish in poor condition. All tributaries opened on July 13.

•Gigliotti Pond. Report as of July 11. Multiple leaks have recently been discovered. The water level is very low. At this point, the trout limit is eight fish per licensed angler and four fish for youth under 14 years of age. Anglers may also keep bass and bluegill. The daily bag and possession limit for bass is six and the daily limit for bluegill is 50.

•Gooseberry Reservoir. Fishing has been slow due to elevated water temperatures and lowering water level.

•Huntington Creek. Fishing success has been spotty. Small dry flies are recommended. The limit is two trout in the fly only zone. Anglers on the left fork of the Huntington must use artificial flies and lures. Harvest of brown trout on the left fork is encouraged, where the limit is four fish.

•Huntington Game Farm Pond. A few trout remain in this pond, according to conservation officer Kip Draper. Anglers are encouraged to take some home. The limit is four trout, 10 bluegill, and four bass, but only one bass larger than 15 inches. Limits are the same for all licensed anglers and unlicensed anglers under 14 years of age.

•Huntington North Reservoir (near the city of Huntington). Except for the early morning, fishermen will be competing with other water recreationalists. On June 20, a six and a half pound rainbow trout was reportedly caught by an angler trolling with a silver and red U-String. Jigs have been working well for largemouth bass, where the limit is two. All bass over 12 inches must be immediately released.

•Huntington Reservoir (near the top of Huntington Canyon). Fishing success remains slow for 12 to 14 inch tiger trout. Release of tiger trout is encouraged so that fish can grow larger. Any brown trout caught should be harvested. The reservoir is closed to the possession of cutthroat trout and trout with cutthroat markings.

•Joes Valley Reservoir. Very little fishing pressure. Anglers are mostly catching Utah chubs. Anglers are encouraged to release all larger splake for control of the abundant Utah chub population. The splake limit is two fish. All splake between 15 to 20 inches must be immediately released.

•LaSal Mountains. Fishing remains good at Ken's Lake in the mornings with worms and spinners. The daily bag and possession limit for Ken's Lake has been doubled for all game fish until November 1 due to low water conditions and expected loss of fish. Good fishing continues at Dark Canyon for anglers using PowerBait. Hidden Lake remains an excellent spot. Fish eggs, PowerBait and worms are recommended. Dons Lake has been fair to good for tiger trout and splake. Meyers recommends flies or an orange flat fish lure. Medicine Lake has been stocked and has been good with baits and lures. Blue Lake has been very good for rainbows and brook trout with yellow Roostertail spinners and flies.

•Lower Fish Creek. Flows from Scofield Reservoir have been favorable for fly fishermen. The road to the DWR property is open.

•Miller Flat Reservoir. The water level is holding. Fishing has been fair to good with Rooster tails or a fly and bubble. The daily bag and possession limits have been raised to eight trout to help anglers harvest the trout before the reservoir drains.

•Petes Hole. Trout have been feasting on a damsel fly hatch, which has dampened fishing success. Try a fly and bubble or Jake's Spin-a-Lure. The daily bag and possession limit is four trout.

•Potter's Ponds. Fishing success remains fair to good. A recent damsel fly hatch has reduced the catch rate.

•Scofield Reservoir. Conservation officer Stacey Taggart reports good fishing from boats. Due to moss and shallow water, shore fishing is difficult. Most boaters are still-fishing with PowerBait or using Jake's Spin-a-Lures. Taggart suggests that boaters seek the deepest water for best success. Shoreline angling has been slow. All tributaries opened to fishing on July 13. Please keep vehicles off the shoreline and fish only in designated areas.

•Snow Lake. Fishing success has been spotty. A three and a half pound trout was reportedly caught a week ago.

•Wrigley Springs Reservoir. Fishing has been very good with a fly and bubble or Jake's Spin-a-Lure.

•Lake Powell. We have found the heat of summer and its hovering over Lake Powell. Surface temperature is at its peak. Bass don't really care. They still move up and down to feed and hide. They are as deep as 40 feet and as shallow as they can get depending on their mood and time of day. There is much more activity at night. It is pleasant for anglers to be about their business in the cooler evening hours and fish seem to respond to the quieter times when most recreationists have called it a day.

Fishing early and late is certainly best. I recommend avoiding mid day fishing. The direct sun is brutal even with ample layers of sun screen, a big hat, and lots of liquid. But morning is delightful and a quiet time to fish.

Bass fishing has slowed in the lower and mid portions of Lake Powell. Last week we caught three fish per spot. This week it was only one. But come to think of it, one fish per spot is really okay. Try to place the soft plastic bait directly in the very best looking shade pocket. Let it rest for a minute, then gingerly pick it up and start a swimming retrieve. Often a slight pressure indicates a hitch hiking fish that has chomped onto the tail but is not hooked. Jerking this fish just dislodges the bait. Try dropping the rod tip, taking up the slack and then setting the hook when these short biters are encountered. A swimming bait that suddenly dives often convinces the swimming fish to grab a little more lure. The repositioning of the bait in the fishes mouth is often enough to allow the hook to do its job.

Bass fishing is still excellent near Hite and in the upper San Juan. The afternoon breeze draws smallmouth out of the deep shade pockets to the top of the reef. When the wind blows at 20 mph or less head for submerged reefs to get some of the best fishing of the day. Swim grubs, spinnerbaits or crank baits across the reefs for fast action.

The big news is striper boils, but they too are better at Hite than Bullfrog or Wahweap. The main channel between Four Mile Canyon and Hite is the hot spot. Boils are better early and late but they have happened at many times during the day. Expect boils to continue for the next six weeks in the upper lake and to get progressively better in the lower and mid lake each week. This week look in the backs of canyons, morning and evening where shad may be found feeding.

Where shad are scarce anchovies are still working. Target terminal ends of prominent points in the main channel. At Wahweap stripers have shown up at the fishing dock and at the gravel pile which is on the north side of the boat rental marina. Shore fishing at Wahweap with easy access is possible once more and large numbers of stripers can be caught from boat or shore in daylight or evening hours on the man-made gravel point. The natural points in Wahweap Bay and Navajo Canyon are steadily producing about three stripers per hour of fishing to those patiently fishing anchovies at 20 to 40 feet.

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