The Reel Deal

Hello, anglers,

The hot spot for winter trout right now is Lees Ferry. Trout spawn from November through mid-March at this tail-water fishery below Lake Powell, but there are plenty of feeding fish as well.

If you haven’t fished the Ferry before, consider getting a guide. Also, see our video on fly-fishing this scenic river.

Wendy Gunn, owner of Lees Ferry Anglers, said flows are too high to fish the walk-in section (that’s expected to change in February when flows are lower), but some healthy trout averaging 14-16 inches are plentiful upriver. Fishing has been somewhat slow in the mornings and improving as the day goes on. The weather has been perfect – temperatures of 25-30 degrees in the morning and 50-60 during the day.

“For Lees Ferry in the winter time, this is crazy,” Gunn said.

Here’s more trout news: all of our Community Fishing Program lakes this year received 1-3-pound trout with a few 5-6 pound lunkers.

And get ready for the opening of Riverview Park in Mesa on Saturday, Jan. 25. After two years of renovations, the City of Mesa will celebrate the park’s grand opening from 2-6 p.m., and we’ll have stocked trout in the lake. Stop by our pop-up tents to borrow a fishing pole and bait, or just chat with us if you have questions about the lake or program. See all the information on the event.

Beginning Jan. 27, trout will be stocked for one week into the Verde River from Clarkdale to Camp Verde, the Lower Salt River, Somerton (Council Park) Pond and Yuma West Wetlands.

Fishing also has been good at Silver Creek for large rainbow trout and Apache trout on flies. Try white bead-headed wooly buggers, brown or olive simi seal leeches, bead-headed prince nymphs, or a shammy worm. The catch-and-release fishing only season runs until March 30. See more information on the unique regulations.

Also, see the full details on the winter trout stockings.

Read the full report for more ideas, and don’t forget to send your fish stories and reports to

Need a license? Just click here and you’re on your way.

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