LAKE PLEASANT – (Lake elevation 1,698 feet, 96 % full).

May 5 report from Barry Worman, moderator of the Arizona Striper Fishing Facebook page.

“Escaping the heat early and fill the cooler with striper”

Well I know this triple-digit weather can take the wind out of an anglers’ sails but there are still some great opportunities in this late spring season. The striper are in the process of spawning or post spawn — finally — which means they will be more intrigued and aggressive to eat.

With the air temperatures really heating up there is a small window of time to enjoy catching striper. Anglers want to be on the water 30 minutes before sunrise until about 9 a.m. or from 5 p.m. to 30 minutes after sunset. During these times of day the shad will be found in shallower water still and the gamefish will be out to gorge on them. There have been reports of some top water activity with some anglers catching striper using white color spooks.

Me and some friends had great success using paddletail ASF swimbaits in 18-35 feet of water in the back of the northern coves. Live shad are still producing great results for anglers, but they more difficult to find since they are beginning to move deeper. Try covering lots of water and be sure to watch that fish-finder. If you located a school, drop a live shad or anchovies on a dropshot rig and it should produce some fish.

The schools are constantly moving and searching for food so you need to cover water, and take advantage of the moment when you find them. Watch for blue herons, and other bird activity when it comes to feeding on bait fish. This will tell you if you’re in an area that as signs of possible baitfish.

Great colors for swimbaits right now are white, sexy shad, money shot, and Bone white. Chartreuse green tail with the red eye has been on fire! Night fishing has not taken off yet with anglers reporting below-average catches. Once the water temperature warms up and the fish adjust to the transition, the action should pick up in about 4-6 weeks. Once we get to June, the night fishing will be the ticket and the best method fill the boat with fish.

Note: The Arizona Catfish Conservation Association, a 501c3 non-profit club based in Arizona, is asking anyone who catches a tagged flathead or channel catfish at Lake Pleasant or Bartlett Lake to note the number of the tag, along with any other information such as weight, length or girth, GPS coordinates (if available) and then visit

Angler Report:

Dick K.: Took a long time friend, Jerry Corell to Lake Pleasant yesterday (May 12). Jerry had never fished for stipers before so we had high hopes the fish would co-operate which they did. We couldn’t find and schooling fish within the first couple hours so we started off trolling live threadfin shad below Off-Shore OR 12 planer boards. Jerry had me at about 8-3 when I passed over a huge school of stripers. Quickly we switched to dropshot rigs and for a couple hours we could hardly keep up! Had a great day with around 35 stripers. Great introduction to striper fishing, Jerry!   back...
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