Arizona Fishing Report: The Reel Deal

Rob with his 4-pound, 12-ounce rainbow trout caught this week at Watson Lake in the Prescott area. Rob’s technique is “low and slow” with his favorite lure (chrome Super Duper) about 4-5 feet down.

Believe it or not, this is great weather for trout fishing. At least it is in mid-elevation and lower elevation waters where we do our trout stockings. This 4-pound, 12-ounce beauty was taken this week from Watson Lake near Prescott. Nice catch, Rob.

Like around Tucson. Patagonia Lake will be receiving extra trout due to poor water quality conditions at Pena Blanca Lake. (Trout stockings are being suspended at Pena Blanca. )

In the Phoenix area, we have a free Family Fishing Day from 8 a.m. to noon at Avondale’s Friendship Park (12325 W. McDowell Rd.), one of the latest additions to the Community Fishing Program. See Upcoming Fishing Clinics below for more information.

Otherwise, anglers can try the one-two punch of the Lower Salt River and Saguaro Lake because they are close to one another, and are being stocked. The Lower Salt is being stocked this week and Saguaro is scheduled to be stocked the week of Dec. 14.


Lower Salt RIver
Lower Salt River

Anglers can try fly fishing in all trout-stocked waters such as the Lower Salt, which is getting bonus stockings. Copper johns, prince nymphs, and egg patterns can work well for sub-surface flies, and dry fly anglers can try stimulators and elk hair caddis. If you are spin fishing, try small Rooster Tails with a gold blade in the slower moving water.

Saguaro has lots of fishing piers, especially in the Key Hole area just up from the marina. PowerBait is effective, but anglers may also want to try nightcrawlers that entice largemouth bass, yellow bass, bluegill and catfish. If you’ve learned how to tie a dropshot rig, try one with a nightcrawler or even mealworm.

Also sounds like Roosevelt Lake is getting some of the best crappie fishing opportunities in years.

Don’t forget the Community Fishing Program lakes are stocked with trout in the winter. There may be times when the community waters are offering some of the best trout fishing in the state.

And before fishing this weekend, see our Fish&Boat AZ map for exact locations.

Finally, by purchasing your license online annually, you also are conserving wildlife for the future and leading wildlife conservation efforts. Thanks for your passion for wildlife.

Upcoming free fishing clinics

Family Fishing Day
When: Saturday , Dec. 12, 8 a.m. to noon
Where: Friendship Park, 12325 W. McDowell Rd, Avondale, 85323
Comments: The Arizona Game and Fish Department is planning some fishing fun for you and your family. Join our staff and volunteers for a morning of free fishing. This event is open to anglers of all experience levels. We will have loaner rods available for use, or feel free to bring your own! Bait will be provided, and fishing license fees will be waived during event hours. The entire event, including the use of loaner equipment, is free of charge!

There are other upcoming clinics in Phoenix, as well as one in Parker. See the rest of the fishing clinics schedule.

(Send your fishing reports and picture to

Lake Pleasant
Jim N.: Went fishing at Lake Pleasant on Sunday (Nov. 6). With overcast skies, the whites and stripers were easy catches with Berkeley Power Minnows, and Roadrunner spinners.

The largemouth bite was great on finesse baits. Fifteen-year-old Tyler D. and I used lures only in Humbug Cove with some top-water success walking the dog at night. A 17-pound flathead showed up at midnight.



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