FEBRUARY 22nd, 2018
The weather certainly has not been cooperating with the recent cold front. However, looking forward, spring temperatures will be hitting late next week . Looks like temperatures could easily move into the 70's with the overnight temps staying in the mid 50's. Giving the usual trend, a great spring fishing season is rapidly approaching
I have reached out to SRP, Game and Fish as well as Tonto National Forest trying to get some reasonable definition in the future water levels at Bartlett. As I write this, the lake is still dropping at a high rate. With the level at Horseshoe being low, the future for any level consistency at Bartlett looks dismal. TNF forecasts a minimum level drop of an additional 8-10 feet between now and June. The reason given, there is necessary repairs scheduled for the Dam again this year. The downside of this drainage is a lack of adequate spawning areas for all species during the spawn of March/April time frame. This has happened in the past and has reflected little on the Bass and Flat Head Catfish, so keep your poles on the ready.
This past week, the fishing activity has slowed considerably.
Bass--once again, in the winter mode. They have gone deep and are lethargic. Therefore, SLOW retrieve is key. Drop shot is still the method of choice for catching but patience is required.
Catfish are in the full winter mode and you need to use your favorite tricks to turn these fish into the attack mode. Live carp remains the key. Put the carp in duress by clipping their tail or scaling one side. It is very important to keep them alive. Flat Heads love live carp. By putting them in duress, they emanate a strong odor attacking fish from far away--once again==Patience !!!
Be safe out there. Water temps have dipped into the low 50's--wear your life vests !!
The Desert Fox