This is the way I started my morning….love it. Hit Big Lake this morning around 6. Raining off and on but launched anyway. Eventually it died down and I ended up in the back end of Railroad Cove. Had to go to the bobber after only three fish in the first three hours. Water temps are 62 and the lake is fairly clear, some algae but not bad. Cutt’s and rainbows ate smallish deep leeches like they were candy. The cutt’s all were between 14 and 16″s…not huge but good hard fighters. I had one good fish on that just ripped me so don’t know what it was…probably a rainbow. Talked with Rick on the way out and he said they have weighed in several rainbows over five pounds the past couple weeks. When the temp’s get down some the lake should be another great one to hit this Fall.
Sorry no pic’s…just didn’t take the time
Hit Sunrise this am with Ron. Lake was dead calm and we had the lake to ourselves for the first couple hours. Trouble was it seemed like the fish weren’t there either. We fished for four hours and landed 3 fish between us. The biggest went a solid 4 and fought like a beast. I have been hitting it about every other day for about a week now and I have landed at least one good fish every trip. I’ve never fished more than four hours so maybe it would get better later but I have never done that well on Sunrise in the afternoons. The good news is the big fish made it through the Summer. If they made it at Sunrise, they most likely survived in Crescent as well so this could be a Big Fish Fall like we haven’t seen for awhile now.
This fish went 4 as well. Sorry for the poor pic….selfies suck. This guy had a pretty good hook jaw on him…too bad you can’t see it. Water temps have been around 60. When I got on the water this am it was 37 degrees out and the bulls were bugling everywhere. The cooler nights will help a lot. Once the water temps get down into the low 50′s the lake should turn on….just not sure how many of the big boys are still in there. I think the lake got hit pretty hard this Summer by the “C&K”crowd. Gonna be an interesting Fall.
The lake has been hit or miss. One day you’ll get three fish and the next you”ll catch ten. I gave up the bobber and have been doing better stripping simi’s in dark colors….Black/Purple, Can Black, Black/Red and Blood Leech.
See ya on the water…..gonna hit Big Lake Friday…..hearing reports of BIG cutt’s being caught….yeehaw!!
Hit Sunrise this am for the first time in about a month. Lake level is still low but water temps’ were 60-61 and the algae is dissipating. Some areas were algae free. I fished four hours and landed 2 fish….still Dog Days for sure. I fished assorted flies all under a bobber. As much as I dislike it I didn’t think the fish would be actively chasing anything yet so the bobber was the choice of the morning. Fished a dozen different c’mids, Dogbones, SJ worms and leeches. The only action came on simi’s. Usually I don’t bother to report a slow day like today but catching the one good fish made the Fall season look brighter for me. I am hoping this means the bigger rainbows made it through the Summer because he fought very hard and as you can see he is in great shape. The Fall has always been the best time to catch BIG fish. This fish was 19″s and probably only 16″s this Spring when we were catching the 20-21 inch fish. Think how big those fish could be by now. Let’s hope they made it as well. Could be one of the best Fall’s we have seen around here in a long time. All the lakes hold good fish….if they made it through the Summer.
See ya on the water.
Hit Sunrise this am…first one on the water…glass. Headed for my area looking for rises. I wanted to see if I could get them to eat my hopper. Not a ripple on the water so any top water motion would have been detected….nada. Fished for 4.5 hours and saw one rise. I think it’s because the algae has gotten so thick the fish can’t see anything on the surface anymore. Temp’s were good …62 the whole time I was there. Fishing is getting tougher every time I go. Managed to bag two nice 21″ ‘bows. They fought like Hell again and swam off …no problem. Fish are in great shape but the algae is making it hard …..and it’s probably going to get worse. Might be time for a road trip.
Hit Becker this am looking for the ant bite. Ants never showed but the fish ate the hopper like it was candy. I fished from 6 to about 11 until the wind came up and put the bite down. I was using a #10 tan foam JR hopper and landed 15….missed at least two dozen more. It always takes me some time to get adjusted to the top water bite. I’ve been stripping so much that I just react and take the fly right out of the fish’s mouth. Seems like the bigger the fish the longer you have to wait…..and I didn’t on a LOT of them. The fish weren’t the hardest fighting fish I’ve caught but the top water grab more than makes up for it. Several went 21-22″s and some of the 18-19″ fish were fat as butterballs.
I’m gonna hit Sunrise tomorrow and see if the fish I’m catching there will eat the hopper too. Many of the fish I catch there are risers that I cast to so I think they may just eat that hopper….I’m gonna find out!
Been hitting Sunrise mostly. Tried Big but didn’t get much time on the water before the thunder/lightning hit. I boogeyed and Joe and Gentry stayed ’til dark. They got into some nice cutt’s….even a few on dries at dusk. Next day they hit the East Fork and found some 10″-12″ browns in the upper section above Diamond Rock. Rains chased them all the way back to my place.
The monsoons have been pretty steady and sometimes very heavy. Sunrise has risen about 3″-4″s and the water temp’s have dropped 4 degrees as of Sunday. Algae is getting worse but as long as it stays growing it won’t be a problem. It’s when it dies that things start going downhill.. Lake didn’t fish well but I think it had more to do with the Super Moon the night before than anything else. I’ll hit it again probably tomorrow and report back. Becker has had an ant hatch but otherwise is fishing pretty slow.
Let’s hope the Monsoons keep coming and it continues into a great Winter. We definitely need the water.
Sorry…no pics…mostly by myself.
Tim and I got out to fish the West Fork this morning, taking a break from the lakes. The daily monsoon rains have started to green everything up already and the scenery alone was worth the hike. We walked down about a mile to a mile and a half past the second barrier and fished our way up. We weren’t exactly there at the break of dawn but figured it didn’t matter much. I think we could have slept in even a little longer. Early on the fish would not eat on top and only took the dropper on a dry/dropper rig. We caught them on pt’s and caddis nymphs but probably any worthwhile bug would have worked….all wild browns.
We didn’t catch any wallhangers but the fish were healthy and aggressively took an elk hair caddis later in the morning. I’m not sure if it was time of day or possibly the location on the stream. The western side of the canyon was toast and I know that different areas of the stream were impacted more than others from the runoff after the Wallow Fire. It makes me think that we just didn’t find fish in certain areas because they ate aggressively if they saw the fly. We fished the upper section for the Apaches but came up with short fish there.
Beautiful little stream. Let’s hope it makes it back ok….soon.
Sorry for the lack of reports lately. I’ve been fishing/working. I have been hitting Sunrise about every other day and the fishing has been phenomenal. Early on the weather was a factor and I sometimes only got a few hours on the water before the wind chased me off. But the fishing has been worth the drive. These rainbows are some beasts to fight. That is if they don’t break you off on the take. If you make it….I highly recommend 2x. They are not leader shy at all. I have been out by myself quite a bit so didn’t get many pics but lately I have been with some fellow fishers.
This one gave Dave quite a ride in some shallow water. We are catching them on a blood leech simi’s fished on Intermediate lines or Int sink tips. Some of the bigger fish were caught in shallow water after coming up and leaving a telltale ring. What a hoot when they grab in shallow water. It’s “Katy bar the door” and they’re off and running/jumping.
The bigger fish are 18-21″s and go 3 lbs. Biggest so far was a little under 4. They’re healthy, wide and tall and fight very hard. Not sure how much longer it’s going to last unless we get some moisture soon. The temp’s when I started a couple weeks ago were 51, up to 54 when I got off. Yesterday it was 67 when I got off and the algae is starting to bloom more each day. We even had to go to the bobber to get them to eat because they just weren’t chasing as much as before. They ate the same leech just presented to them differently. NOAA is forecasting a 30% chance of moisture for the next week so let’s hope they get it right this time. Come on Monsoons.
NOAA called for the first decent wind day in a week so I bit the bullet again and hit Sunrise….good move. Looks like I’m buying my annual WMAT fishing permit after all.
I hit the water around 5:30…not quite as early as I would have liked but that extra cup of coffee was sure good this am. Lake was calm, already a few boaters on the water. I headed across the lake to hit the weed lines and it didn’t take long for my first strike. These fish have always been the hardest hitting, hardest fighting rainbows on the hill and these were no exception. Biggest two boga’d at over three lbs and went 20″s. I fished the edges of the weeds and occasionally threw up on top of the weeds in two feet of water. The big boys would come up to feed over the weeds and when they hit in that shallow water they either go straight airborne or they run like a bonefish. Either way…it is an exciting grab. Fishing wasn’t red hot but the quality made up for it. I caught fish on simi’s in black/red and blood leech until the bite died around 10. Talked with several of the boaters and they had some nice fish. Not sure how the lake will hold up as it is as low as I have ever seen and the “C&K” group are yanking them out of there pretty good. Let’s hope the Monsoons hit early and give us some help this year. The road looked like it had had some rain on it the night before as I saw a couple fresh tire tracks driving in.
Sorry for the bad pics. Tough doing selfies. BTW….there is an outhouse at the boat ramp parking lot now.
Ron had an old flying buddy, Pete Wiens from Tennessee come into town for a couple days so we took him out and showed him some of our waters.
We hit Becker before sunup Wednesday and walked the banks using hoppers. The morning was nice and calm and we all caught a few. The wind picked up a bit and we launched the kick boats, still throwing hoppers. Not sure how many Ron and Pete landed but I couldn’t hook ‘em up. The wind began to howl pretty good and with the lack of control of your fly line I just never got a good hook into one of them. We finally packed it in after only a few hours at the lake.
Next am we hit Crescent at about 4:30 am. Nice, calm water and we had the lake to ourselves. We launched the boats and began stripping simi’s of assorted colors. The rainbows were cooperative and we stayed pretty busy playing fish. Ron was using a fly he got from a buddy and was hooking them up on that as well.
Ron caught the only holdover. The majority were this Spring’s stockers but they were chunky fish of 11-12″s and fought well. The wind finally hit hard around 10 and got us off the lake. The lake is very low and the weeds are coming in pretty hard and fast. Not sure how this lake will hold up without a good Monsoon. The damsels were coming off strong when we left. Must have been a few hundred bugs crawling on the banks at the boat dock. I caught all my fish on a bronze peacock simi and the color matched up pretty good to the damsel nymphs.
On a good note…. the USFS has completed their archeological study at Crescent and found nothing to stop the WMLF/AZGF plan for aerators at the lake. This has been a loooong slow process working with the powers that be to get this done but so far we haven’t hit any road blocks that would stop it. Patience Grasshoppa. It would be nice to keep these fish alive and give them a chance to grow up to their potential…..Pray for Rain!!!!!
Just and FYI…..I bit the bullet and bought the daily fishing and kickboat permit for the Rez the other day. Hit Sunrise around 5, fairly windy already. I managed to get a couple hours on the lake with no hits before the wind hit big time. Barely got off…why does the wind always blow against you when you have to get back to the ramp???? The two hours of fishing cost me $14. I can not remember the last time I didn’t buy an annual WMAT fishing license… not this year. They don’t even have an outhouse at the ramp parking lot anymore