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
(Jun 4) Anglers have been consistently catching rainbows, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass and walleye. For smallmouth, try using darker colored Kalin's curly tail grubs, Gary Yamamoto Senkos, Berkley PowerBait Finesse Worms or YUM Christie Craws on a 1/8– to 1/4-ounce jighead. For largemouth, try using Gary Yamamoto Senkos, Booyah Pond Magic spinnerbaits, Luck E Strike Square-Bill crankbaits or dark-colored Pepper jigs.
(May 26) Angling pressure has been steady, and anglers have been catching 14- to 18-inch rainbows, 18- to 21-inch browns, walleye and smallmouth bass. There have been reports of smallmouth bass showing spawning behavior, but you can expect the spawn to begin in early June. For smallmouth bass, try fishing near Rainbow Bay and around the island. Look for shallow flats that extend out towards deeper waters. When fishing plastics for smallmouth bass, try using curly tail grubs, stick worms, crawfish pattern, and tube jigs with a 1/8- to 1/4-ounce jighead. You can also try using minnow-imitating lures, crankbaits and spinnerbaits for smallmouth bass. Anglers have had success trolling for rainbows and browns using popgear with a Mack's Wedding Ring Spinner tipped with a nightcrawler or while jigging a Live Yellow Perch Rapala.
Holmes Creek Reservoir
Bluegill, Crappie, Largemouth Bass, Walleye
(Jun 4) One angler reports that fishing for bass was decent this week.
(May 26) One angler reports that fishing was good for bass at Holmes using plastics.
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
(Jun 16) by Wayne Gustaveson:
Lake elevation: 3,626.58 feet
Water temperatures: 69–78°F
In the last report, I mentioned that stripers would soon feed on the surface. We now have confirmation! Stripers are slurping lakewide. The recent windy days kept stripers down as the waves crashed against the shore and messed up surface visibility where young shad swim. June 14, the water was finally calm and stripers were on top early eating baby shad by the millions. The twenty stripers I caught this morning averaged about 50 shad per stomach. The shad averaged .75 inches in length. That equates to 1,000 shad. It's time to go save some shad and catch stripers in the process.
Here is the plan: Stripers hit the surface shortly after dawn and continue to feed randomly throughout the day. I saw slurps the morning of June 14 in Warm Creek, Gunsight mouth, Labyrinth Bay, Padre Bay east wall, Gregory Butte bay, West Canyon mouth and Dove Canyon mouth. There was still a breeze blowing in Rock Creek, so I didn't see any striper slurps there. I am sure the same events played out uplake. If it was calm, then there were stripers slurping.
Surface feeding stripers stayed up longer and were more likely to hit my lures better today than last week. I could cast Lucky Craft (ghost) Pointers beyond the surface feeding school and work the lure through the closely feeding fish. With a good cast, and if the stripers continued to feed in the same direction, I connected with a fish about half the time. The four-inch lure is a lot bigger than the forage, so each striper has to give up small shad to feed on something really big like my lure. Later in the day, I though that these fish might be bold enough to hit topwater. I tried an Ima Skimmer (white) and found that they were just as likely to hit the surface lure as the crankbait. I used topwater the rest of the day.
Schools varied in size from 10 to about 50 fish. They fed in a semi-circular pattern like adults cornering full grown shad. Lures that landed inside the group caused a few to splash but caused others to hit the lure. The school moved fast enough that only one cast could reach the group. You'll need a trolling motor in high gear or a big motor at fast idle to keep up with the rapidly moving school.
Most of the schools were in the main channel over deep water. Spoons did not work as well over deep water as they did when the escaping school heads to the bottom and stops at 30 to 40 feet. I didn't catch any fish on spoons. Stripers continued to slurp until 11 a.m. when wake boat traffic increased. They will blow up any time they find food and calm seas. Expect to see slurps randomly throughout the day, but more commonly early morning and late evening.
Adult stripers are still locked below 20 feet by the warm surface water. Bait can work, but crayfish are coming out of hiding and adult stripers are searching the flats along the shore for a good meal. You can catch adult stripers by trolling in the 10 to 30 foot strata. Storm Deep Thundersticks are working quite well.
Bass fishing has not kept pace with stripers. The rapidly rising water levels may be hindering the bass catch rate. Bass are staying in their preferred, previously found holding structure and have not moved up even though the water level rose another five feet this week. The water temperature also plummeted from 76°F last week to 69°F the morning of June 14. Bass are not biting as well as they did last week, but I think they will recover as the water temperature warms up this week. Look in the same rocky habitat or flooded brush points to find willing smallmouth. Largemouth bass are tucked in tightly in shallow, weedy water. Expect bluegill and largemouth to be close by and sharing the same habitat.
Now is the time to try fishing for catfish because these bottom dwellers are in spawning mode and are super active.
Anglers caught two more tagged walleye this week. Both fish came from the Cedar to Knowles canyon area of the main channel, and both were tagged in Good Hope Bay but moved downstream. We will continue to analyze walleye movement and will report when we have conclusive information.
My next move is to post this report and then go fishing for slurping stripers!
(Jun 9) by Wayne Gustaveson
Lake elevation: 3,622 feet
Water temperatures: 73–78°F
Stripers are in transition. The lake is still filling rapidly, but the bigger news is that stripers are feeding on the surface. The ultimate goal of many freshwater anglers is to fish a striper boil. We are not quite there, but the big event is only a few weeks away. Right now we have the next best surface feeding event which I have named slurps or slurping.
Shad are being hatched lakewide. We are not able to tell the difference between threadfin and gizzard shad larvae until the tiny fish grow a bit. Right now, baby shad are only 5 to 10 mm long. Healthy stripers have been subsisting by eating plankton. Now they are very happy to let shad eat plankton while they eat shad. Striper's often eat between 50 and 100 microscopic shad per day. It would be better for stripers to wait until shad were at least an inch long, so they could get more nutrition from less fish, but they have no patience. As anglers, it's our job as anglers to watch for slurps and then attack the marauding stripers to catch as many as possible and let the surviving shad run away. Your reward will be some of the smaller healthy stripers, which are great table fare.
I must remind you, though, that the slurping striper school is feeding shoulder-to-shoulder while moving through a shad school. When some stripers run out of shad, they leave the feeding line and search for the next shad group. Cast towards those lookers with a small surface lure, shallow running crankbait or a small Kastmaster spoon. If the lure lands in the middle of the feeding line, the whole group splashes away and yo won't catch any. If that happens, don't be discouraged and just wait for them to surface again a short distance away and make a better cast.
We have seen slurps for two weeks between the San Juan and the Escalante. Last week, Bullfrog erupted with many small slurps. Wahweap is still waiting for topwater action. Slurps have also been recently seen in Warm Creek near double islands, Labyrinth Canyon mouth, West Canyon and the mouth of Rock Creek. Expect each day to provide more surface action as shad get bigger and more numerous, and more stripers discover them on the surface.
Bait fishing is not over. Warming water tends to move larger stripers into deeper water. Shad are on the surface, so adult stripers are still searching for bait. Expect to find them in the same locations that have been reported for the past month.
Smallmouth bass are the next most likely fish to catch. Look for deep structure, like a long point that does not change much as the water comes up five feet. Bass will move up the brushy point to their preferred feeding depth.
Anglers are still catching walleye like crazy from Bullfrog to Good Hope. 20 of the tagged walleye have been caught from Bullfrog to Good Hope, but two have come from Padre Bay on the south end of the lake. We are starting to see quite a bit of movement from Good Hope Bay fish as they move downstream. One reason for the walleye contest was to determine migration patterns by comparing tagging location to the capture point. There will be another bunch of tagged fish caught during June. With the water warming and rising, expect to see walleye move from rocky flats into the submerged trees. Their favorite feeding technique is to park in a submerged tree top and wait for food to swim by. Trolling a shallow running lure right over the tree tops is the best way to catch walleye. That technique will be working within the next two weeks, if not sooner.
Catfish are nearing spawning now that the water temperature is in the 70s. They are very active and easy to catch as prespawn fish. Just put a worm on the bottom in the back of a cove or bay. Fish 10 to 20 feet deep and let the meandering catfish find your bait for fast action.
The detailed information above was June 6. I went fishing on June 7 to test out my theories. Here is what I found: Young stripers were slurping on the Warm Creek side of the Castle Rock Cut. They were flighty and not interested in my rattletrap, so I went on. Saw another slurp at the mouth of Labyrinth. No takers. so I switched to a small silverspoon.
I then trolled a deep Thunderstick along the east wall in Padre Bay. Caught one healthy three-pound striper, but no more. My next spot was just upstream from Buoy 25. I trolled for stripers without success, so I tried for bass with a five-inch senko. I cut it in half and placed it on a leadhead jig, which smallmouth bass just loved. There are rock reefs near shore that drop off to 15 to 20 feet. At each drop off, the senko was consumed shortly after hitting bottom by eager 1.5-pound smallmouth bass. That was quick fishing, but I moved on because I had more lake to cover.
I saw a fishing boat catching fish like crazy near Gregory Butte. When asked, they showed me the bait they were using. Surprisingly, it was a five-inch senko cut in half and fished on a leadhead jig. Great minds think alike! That stubby, square-plastic bait worked extremely well the rest of the trip.
I went around Gregory Butte to the mouth of West Canyon. On the second long point, I tried trolling with no luck and then tossed the senko toward the edge of a reef. The smallmouth bass went crazy as the bait hit the bottom. On the east side of the mouth of West Canyon, the lake is covering the long points and brush. I tried the senko with similar great success and caught a number of bass. I then caught two walleye in 10 feet of water near brushy cover.
Around the corner in the mouth of Dove Canyon, another fishing boat was using bait and catching some really nice stripers near shore in 45 feet of water. I dropped my small spoon and caught one of their fish. Then I started working back to Wahweap.
In the middle of the West Canyon bay, I saw another slurping striper school at mid-day. This time I caught a small striper on my small one-inch spoon, cast just beyond the slurping school. In the Gregory Butte Bay (west side), I crossed another reef and tried the senko with similar success. Near the reef in 30 feet of water, I graphed a school of fish which I assumed would be small stripers. The small spoon was deployed and I caught two fish: both of them bluegill. These adult sunfish were working in open water eating plankton. I saw another small fish school on the bottom and dropped my spoon down to catch a sunfish and caught a walleye.
It was time to head in, so I ignored all the great looking habitat and just went home. Fishing at Lake Powell is amazing!
(Jun 4) Information compiled by Wayne Gustaveson
Lake elevation: 3,618 feet
Water temperatures: 68–73°F
Lake Powell has risen four feet in the last week. Expect the same for this week. Inflow is over 80,000 acre feet with only 21,000 acre feet being released. Re-tie your boat anchor lines each morning and then enjoy the day. Rapidly rising water is flooding vegetation that has not been wet for a while. This new habitat attracts largemouth bass, bluegill and crappie like a magnet.
Water temperature is in the high 60s in the morning and mid-70s in the afternoon. The warmer water means that it's spawning time for bluegill, carp, channel catfish and threadfin shad. Bluegill and catfish are very active during the spawn and easy to catch. You can see bluegill guarding nests. They'll respond to a chunk of worm on a very small hook. Try attaching a bobber about six feet above the bait so you can see the subtle bite as the bobber wiggles. The size of bluegill is very impressive for a panfish and the fight is like a roller coaster ride. Give it a try.
Water clarity is decreasing lakewide as algae numbers increase. This is turning the water a lovely blue/green color in the southern lake. Sloughing banks make many mud lines that just float on the surface while giving walleye a pleasant place to hide as they wait for the next meal to swim by. Walleye are ambush feeders that lie in wait for a tasty morsel to swim in view. If that happens to be your nightcrawler towed behind a bottom bouncer, or a plastic jig with a chunk of worm attached, the chances are good that the hungry walleye will bite the bait.
The northern lake — from the San Juan to White Canyon — is the walleye hotspot. There have been over 20 tagged walleye captured in the last two weeks. Chris Crosby was the winner when he caught two tagged fish in one day in Good Hope Bay. He reported that the water clarity was only a few inches upstream from Red Canyon, two to three feet in Ticaboo and was over six feet in Blue Notch. Good Hope Bay is fishable despite the high runoff.
Smallmouth bass fishing is amazing with active fish in rock structure lakewide. I took a break from striper fishing over the weekend and pulled into an isolated main channel rock slide in Last Chance Canyon. My goal was to see how many bass I could catch in 10 casts using a four-inch Senko lazily attached to a jighead. I cast the bait to the rocks and then let it six to 10 feet. When the lure hit bottom, I tested it gingerly to see if there was extra weight on the uplift. If so, the hook was set and I could reel in a fish. I caught seven bass on 10 casts. That was better than expected but disappointing because fish number eight got away. Oh well, next time!
Striper fishing is still as hot as the weather from Wahweap to Bullfrog. Stripers were kind enough to delight most of the anglers who went to down to the dam over the Holiday weekend. Anchovy bait was used effectively at the dam, Buoy 3, Antelope Canyon mouth and first point, Navajo Canyon first two points beyond the double islands, and Warm Creek Wall (intersection of Warm Creek and the main channel at Buoy 12). Further uplake, anglers were catching stripers on bait in Last Chance, Rock Creek and the steep walls near Dangling Rope. You can still catch stripers on bait at Bullfrog, Moki Wall and mouth of Moki Canyon. It will be possible to catch stripers on bait in most canyons on the lake for the next two weeks. However the end is in sight.
Stripers are waiting for shad to become available, so they can revert back to what they do best: chasing shad relentlessly. Shad have spawned and tiny fish are growing. Striper slurps have been reported in the channel from the mouth of the San Juan to the Escalante. Shad may be hidden by the cloudy water in the northern lake. If you're looking for surface action this week head downstream from Bullfrog or upstream from Rainbow Bridge. Shad like to spawn in the backs of canyons, so you'll likely see the young shad and hungry stripers in the backs of major canyons lake wide.
Lake Powell has a robust fishery which means that some fish will be available to catch using the right techniques at any time of the year. Right now, there's a wide variety to choose from.
The scenery is incredible and the fish are amazing. I love this place!
(May 26) Lake elevation: 3,614 feet
Water temperatures: 63–66°F
Lake Powell is rising rapidly. If you're visiting over Memorial Day weekend, make sure to readjust your tie lines at least once a day for boats tied to shore. Don't leave your car parked on low, flat spots near the lake shore at Lone Rock or other camping areas. The lake could rise rapidly and cover the car while you are camping uplake. Once your equipment is safe, then you are free to enjoy the beauty and grandeur of Lake Powell.
Fishing will be great because the water temperature is still in the magical 64°F zone. However, it will take a bit of investigation to find fish. Bass and other shoreline dwellers will not move on shore as quickly as the lake comes up. Newly covered brush in shallow water may not be occupied because it takes fish a while to move into the new habitat. Instead, look for old habitat that is 10 or more feet deep to find fish congregations. One technique that works well in rising water is to find a recently submerged island or long point. Cast to the shallow part of the structure and then work the bait deeper to find the holding depth. Once you discover the depth, the next cast should go to the same spot without taking time to work from shallow to deep water. I predict that you will be more successful in catching larger fish by targeting depths of 10 to 25 feet of water instead of casting in water that is less than 10 feet near shore.
Walleye may be the most likely fish to catch in these conditions, particularly in the northern lake. They prefer a flat bench near shore or a shallow ridge in open water. In either habitat, walleye will be near the edge of the drop off. Use a bottom bouncer with a worm harness trolled slowly along the ridge at 1 mph. Make sure the bouncer weight hits the bottom often and that you can feel when it hits. Trolling 'banana lures' — like Wally Divers — is very effective in the warming water conditions. Troll across points where you make bottom contact and you can catch fish as soon as the lure breaks free from bottom structure.
Here is a word of caution for when you're using this shallow trolling technique in areas with quagga mussels. Transitioning from shallow to deep water allows the trolling line to hit bottom slightly before the lure. Mussel shells are sharp and can cut the line before the lure hits the rocks. If you use a floating lure in this circumstance, it is possible to return to the spot where the lure grounded out and find it floating on the surface. I used one floating lure last week and recovered it twice after the line was cut by mussels, before losing it for good on the third try.
Bass are still in rocky structure, and bigger is better when looking for rocky structure. Drop a plastic grub on the shady side of a rock for a consistent catch. Brown, green and chartreuse grubs in single or double tail are all working. Finding fish holding habitat is more important than choosing the right color grub. In locations with many small bass, it is wise to keep 20 of the smallmouth to allow the remaining bass in that cove to get bigger.
Largemouth will now be in shallow water in the thickest bush they can find. Nice green bass may also be hiding under the shade of the flotsam in coves that have thick floating debris.
Striped bass are near spawning. That means you can catch the big healthy fish at night. The rest of the population is moving toward the backs of canyons looking for shad. However, shad are small in number and size. Stripers are still eating plankton and crayfish. They can be targeted by trolling shallow running lures along shore at a depth of 15 to 25 feet. Each time you catch a striper, make sure to cast lures to the same spot to find followers.
Bait fishing for stripers is picking up dramatically in the Bullfrog area. Most of the canyons above and below Bullfrog Bay will have schools of stripers holding right at the intersection of the canyon and the main channel. Chum with anchovies to get the school started and then enjoy the action for the next hour.
In the southern lake, bait fishing is still working but the daily catch has declined from incredible to 15-to-20 fish per trip. The standard spots near the dam and Navajo Canyon are still producing, but the tall walled canyons in Last Chance, Rock Creek and Wetherill are holding a lot of fish. If you can find one of those hungry schools, your catch rate will soar.
Bluegill are near spawning and anglers are catching surprisingly large fish. Channel catfish are two weeks away from spawning and will provide great fishing in June.
Overall, fishing should be great over the Holiday weekend. The water is clear from Wahweap to Bullfrog, but muddy upstream from Cedar Canyon in the main channel and above Neskahi Canyon in the San Juan.
Brook Trout, Brown Trout, Cutthroat Trout, Rainbow Trout, Walleye
(Jun 4) Lower: The Provo River is running high, so please continue to use extreme caution. Fish are feeding heavily and are aggressive. Reports indicate plenty of stonefly and caddis activity. Try using caddis larvae and pupa patterns, stonefly nymphs, sow bugs, shrimp and mayfly nymphs.
Middle: The Provo River is running high, so please continue to use extreme caution. Fortunately, the high flows have isolated fish near the edges of the shore. Fish are active and hungry, so try using caddis larvae and pupa, sow bugs and mayfly nymphs.
(May 26) The Provo River is running high, so please use extreme caution, especially when wading past your knees. Fish are very active and aggressive right now. The high flows have isolated fish within 10 to 15 feet of the river's edge. Anglers are observing mayfly, midge and stonefly hatches as well as plenty of scuds. Try using worms, egg patterns, mayflys (emergers, nymphs and pupas), stonefly nymphs, blue-winged olive (BWO) emergers/adults and midge emergers/adults.
Brown Trout, Crayfish, Smouthmouth Bass, Walleye
FISH CONSUMPTION ADVISORY
(Jun 16) Cheryl Bunnell says: Starvation Reservoir skunked almost everyone today. 4 fish caught all morning at the bridge and dam. One was mine. The wind was terrible.
(Jun 16) Fishing is good for shore anglers. Boat anglers have caught plenty of recently stocked 12-inch kokanee salmon. Try using a dodger with a squid spinner. Fishing has been best in the early morning until about mid afternoon. Try using PowerBait or spinners from shore. Most fish are caught in water 8 to 18 feet deep. Warmer water temperatures have improved the smallmouth bass fishing, especially along the rocky shorelines near the bridge. Biologists moved more than 250 crappie from Pineview to Starvation to establish a new population of forage fish. If you catch crappie, we're asking that you voluntarily release them so they can establish this population. Water temperatures are averaging in the mid to high 50-degree range, and levels are staying steady at 86 percent.
(Jun 5) Tyson Fields of Grantsville fished in a group of 4 and caught 33 rainbows using Power Bait fishing from a boat. "Trolling was pretty slow because of the merky water from runoff but bait fishing is excellent catching over 30 fish all between 2 to 5 lbs."
(Jun 4) Shore fishing was good over the weekend. Fishing has been best in the early morning until about mid afternoon. Try using PowerBait or spinners from shore. Most fish that have been caught were in water from 8 to 18 feet deep. Warmer water temperatures have increased the smallmouth bass action, especially along the rocky shorelines near the bridge. More than 250 crappie were moved by DWR biologists from Pineview and stocked into Starvation to establish a new population of forage fish. If you catch crappie, we're asking that you voluntarily release them so they can establish this population. Water temperatures are averaging in the mid to high 50-degree range, and levels are staying steady at 86 percent.
Bluegill, Bullhead Catfish, Channel Catfish, Largemouth Bass, Smouthmouth Bass, Walleye, White Bass
FISH CONSUMPTION ADVISORY
(Jun 4) Fishing has been hot! Reports indicate that anglers are catching plenty of white bass, channel catfish, bullheads and crappie. If you haven't fished during the white bass spawn, it is not too late. Anglers are having great success fishing at American Fork Harbor and Utah Lake State Park using chartreuse or white curly tail grubs and/or silver spoons. Look for locations with rocky habitat, and you'll be sure to catch some white bass. For catfish, try fishing in areas with reeds and use white bass meat, chicken livers, shrimp or nightcrawlers. Within the past two weeks, anglers have reported catching catfish that weigh up to 24 pounds.
(May 26) Fishing has been good. Anglers have reported catching 18- to 22-inch walleye, 22- to 28-inch channel catfish, bullheads, crappie and white bass. The white bass spawn has begun, and anglers are having great success. For white bass, try using 1.5- to 2-inch chartreuse, pearl or white-colored curly tail grubs with a 1/8-ounce jig head tipped with a nightcrawler or mealworm. Utah Lake State Park, American Fork Harbor and Lindon Boat Harbor are all excellent locations to fish during the white bass spawn. The recent cold front slowed the fishing a bit, but as the weather warms up, you can expect to catch plenty of white bass.
Bullhead Catfish, Channel Catfish, Crappie, Largemouth Bass, Perch, Smallmouth Bass, Walleye, Wipers (hybrid), Yellow Perch
(Jun 9) Fishing at Willard is hit-or-miss for many species. Anglers appeared to have the most success when targeting catfish. One angler reported catching a large walleye. Other anglers reported less success overall, with some only able to hook a couple fish. Other reporting anglers couldn't get a single bite.
(Jun 4) Fishing for wipers and walleye is decent. Anglers report catching a few large wipers by trolling with a mussel.
(May 26) The crappie and walleye bites are picking up! Anglers report catching large numbers of crappie as well as some decent-sized walleye and catfish. However, the wiper bite is very slow.
Channel Catfish, Northern Pike, Rainbow Trout, Walleye, Yellow Perch
FISH CONSUMPTION ADVISORY
(Jun 4) Anglers are catching walleye. For walleye, try using Strike King Redeye Shad, Rapala Shad Rap, Gary Yamamoto 4-inch DT grub or UV Buck-Shot Spoon. For northern pike, try using minnow-imitating lures or crankbaits.
(May 26) Angling pressure has been steady. For walleye, try using Strike King Redeye Shad, Rapala Shad Rap, Gary Yamamoto 4-inch DT grub or UV Buck-Shot Spoon. For northern pike, try using minnow-imitating lures or crankbaits.