Arizona fishing report: The Reel Deal

Sunset at Deadhorse lagoon No. 2 near Cottonwood.

This week we stocked both Dead Horse Ranch State Park lagoons near Cottonwood, and next week the Verde River between Cottonwood and Camp Verde (it was stocked last week).  These two fisheries make a great duo for a family adventure. Deadhorse is great for those with mobility issues with mini-fishing piers and can be just about driven to (they’re first-come, first-serve).

Planning ahead for the weekend of Jan. 29, Watson Lake near Prescott will have just been stocked with trout.  This picturesque lake near the Granite Dells on the northern edge of Prescott is a special fee area for the city of Prescott. And it is receiving some extra trout from nearby Fain Lake.

Dredge work on Fain Lake began Jan. 20 and the lake will be closed until the work is completed and the lake fills.  Approximate reopening will be March 18.  Fish that were scheduled for stocking in Fain were diverted to … Watson Lake.  

At Bartlett Lake, the Jojoba and Yellow Cliffs boat ramps had been closed due to low water levels, but the Jojoba (main) ramp is open once again.

Apache and Canyon lakes are being stocked with trout this week, so taking your shots at some monster largemouth bass with trout-imitation swimbaits is one of the best options as bass fishing in desert lakes has slowed considerably during winter doldrums.

In the Yuma area, Somerton (Council Park) Pond and Yuma West Wetlands are being stocked with trout.

See all our stocking schedules.

Oh, be on the look out for an update about an early walleye bite at Lake Powell …

Need more locations of the state’s primary waters? Our Fish & Boat AZ map has you covered.

For the latest road closures, check the Arizona Department of Transportation website.

Your fishing license

Although this is the time many anglers renew their licenses, our licenses are valid for 365 days from the date of purchase. Buy your license online and fish our great state for a year (and help conserve all species of wildlife while doing so.)


Upcoming free fishing clinics

What: Youth and Family Fishing Day
When: Saturday, Jan. 16, 2016, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Where: Red Mountain Park , 7745 E. Brown Rd., Mesa, 85207
Comments: Arizona Game and Fish Department and City of Mesa Parks and Recreation invite you to a family fishing day at Red Mountain Park. Fishing license fees will be waived by registering with AZGFD during the hours of the event. Bait will be provided as well as loaner equipment will be available. There is no cost for this event!

See the rest of the fishing clinics schedule.

Angler reports

(Send your fishing reports and picture to

Lake Havasu
Jonathan T.: My buddy Chantz caught this nice flathead catfish near site 6. We were working as vendors for the balloon festival and we decided to bring our rods and pulled out this guy. It was caught using hot dog!


Desert Breeze Lake (Chandler)
Mark H.: This is my grandson Hayden — he just turned 4 this week. We fish the Community ponds and do pretty good most times. Last Sunday at Desert Breeze he caught his first trout then another. I had none that day.

Headed out in the morning to try and get some of those big fish. Many years ago I caught a big albino rainbow trout from Tempe Town lake and sent you guys a picture that ended up in the newspaper and an Arizona fishing and hunting magazine. It is mounted and lives in my house now.

Thanks for the fishing memories and keep up the stockings, and I will keep the kids fishing.

Dave White Pond (Casa Grande)
Ramon G.: Here are some pictures of my son with trout caught at Dave White Park in Casa Grande. Thank you for including Casa Grande in the Community Fishing Program.

We love to hunt and fish, but sometimes the fishing is hard to do in our busy schedule due to distance of lakes.
Ramon had a blast we caught these trout in about an hour’s time with PowerBait.


2 thoughts on “Arizona fishing report: The Reel Deal”

  1. With all that AZGFD does is the fishing report all you have to offer? What about the success stories of the non-game branch?

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