AZ: Autumn is Just Around the Corner – It's Topwater Time

AZ: Autumn is Just Around the Corner – It's Topwater Time
AZ: Autumn is Just Around the Corner – It's Topwater Time
AZ: Autumn is Just Around the Corner – It's Topwater Time

Summer is rapidly waning as the days get shorter and the nights get longer, prompting a cyclic seasonal opportunity in the large desert reservoirs – it’s topwater time.

“Forage fish such as threadfin shad are often feeding actively on plankton near the water’s surface, and predatory fish such as bass are aggressively feeding on the shad, sometimes with dramatic food-chain results – large surface boils,” said Rory Aikens, the fishing report editor for the Arizona Game and Fish Department.

Aikens said the topwater bite is definitely underway right now and will continue getting better and better as the season progresses.

“Predatory fish such as largemouth bass and striped bass will continue getting more aggressive as we transition into autumn conditions. The fish are compelled to incessantly feed when possible to improve their body conditioning before winter arrives,” Aikens explained.


This is the time of year when anglers can catch lots of bass – sometimes in a hurry.


“It can be an absolute hoot at times. When bass are in a feeding frenzy, you might have multiple fish pummeling your lure and knocking it about like pinball gone berserk. You can even get to laughing so much it’s tough to set the hook,” Aikens advised.

Here are some of the waters to consider for your topwater adventure:

Lake Pleasant, which has largemouth bass and striped bass. You might even hook into a smallmouth bass, although they are not very common here.

Lake Havasu for both striped bass and largemouth bass. This lake also has a robust population of feisty smallmouth bass.


Lake Powell for striped bass, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass and even delectable walleye. With around 1,700 miles of shoreline to choose from, you can find vast stretches of water that haven’t been fished recently.

Lake Roosevelt, which is Arizona’s largest inland reservoir, is still going through what biologists refer to as the “new lake syndrome.” This is not only one of Arizona’s most productive bass and catfish fisheries, on any given day you might just land your biggest bass ever. You definitely don’t want to miss the topwater season at “Rosy.”

Canyon Lake, which many consider to be the land of the lunkers. Although it only has 1,500 surface acres, this long narrow lake is bounded by steep canyon cliffs, providing huge bass deep hiding cover where they lurk and ambush prey. On any given day, it’s possible for a new state record bass to be caught here.


Apache Lake is well along the comeback trail from golden algae blooms much earlier this decade. This scenic lake along the famed Apache Trail is once again putting smiles on angler’s faces, and not just from the spectacular scenery.

Lake Mead, which is the largest man-made reservoir in North America. You can catch striped bass and largemouth bass along miles of secluded shoreline, especially in the basins located in Arizona. This is a great place to experience desert solitaire in a unique landscape where millions of years of Earth’s geologic history are exposed to the elements. In fact, this rugged landscape provided the almost surreal backdrop for the movie, “Planet of the Apes.”

“This is definitely the time of year when you can experience terrific fishing adventures and catch lots of great memories,” Aikens said. “With any luck, maybe I’ll see you out there.”

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Lowrance Enters Trolling-Motor Market with Ghost

Lowrance Enters Trolling-Motor Market with Ghost

Lowrance's Lucas Steward shows OSG's Lynn Burkhead what all of the fuss is about in the brand new Ghost trolling motor being brought to market by the Tulsa, Okla.-based fishing equipment manufacturer.

Mustad Skatter Shad Bladed Jig

Mustad Skatter Shad Bladed Jig

As Mustad continues to expand into an all-around tackle company, Reid McKinstry shows off some innovative features that make the Mustad Skatter Shad bladed jig a winner in big bass waters.

Simms

Simms' Solarflex Ultra Cool Armor Hoody

John Frazier of Simms Fishing Products helps OSG's Lynn Burkhead understand the new features of the new Simms' Solarflex Ultra Cool Armor sun protection hoody.

Lure Lock Options Includes LED Light Boxes & More

Lure Lock Options Includes LED Light Boxes & More

Pro angler Jonathan VanDam showcases new offerings at ICAST 2019, including the ultra-thin, big bait boxes, LED-lighted boxes and backpack-able gear lockers. With Game & Fish Editorial Director Adam Heggenstaller at ICAST 2019 in Orlando.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Who needs live bait when the big 'gills are so eager to strike these lures? Other Freshwater

5 Great Lures For Bluegills

Stephen D. Carpenteri - March 10, 2011

Who needs live bait when the big 'gills are so eager to strike these lures?

The best jig fisherman are those that are always aware of what their jig is doing. Bass

4 Tips When Jig Fishing For Bass

Chris Schneider - August 25, 2015

The best jig fisherman are those that are always aware of what their jig is doing.

The colder waters of early spring are prime times to use bait rigs for stripers. Striper & Hybrid

3 Deadly Bait Rigs For Stripers

J.B. Kasper

The colder waters of early spring are prime times to use bait rigs for stripers.

Unlike many game fish, catfish can be harder to catch during the spawn. Here are some strategies. Catfish

Understanding Catfish Spawning

Keith Sutton - June 06, 2006

Unlike many game fish, catfish can be harder to catch during the spawn. Here are some...

See More Trending Articles

More Stories

Where and how some of the state's best archery bucks were killed last season. Whitetail

Oklahoma's Big Archery Bucks of 2018

Kelly Bostian

Where and how some of the state's best archery bucks were killed last season.

Various companies show appreciation to frontline defense – healthcare professionals – against the pandemic with special giveaway. News

Outdoors Industry Honoring Healthcare Heroes: COVID-19

April 27, 2020

Various companies show appreciation to frontline defense – healthcare professionals – against...

How a humble Virginia hunter bagged the biggest non-typical whitetail a bowhunter has ever seen. Whitetail

The Story Behind Brewster's World-Record Buck

Lynn Burkhead - October 17, 2019

How a humble Virginia hunter bagged the biggest non-typical whitetail a bowhunter has ever...

The The eastern Georgia lake may be best known for its bass, but anglers will find more trophies in these waters than just largemouths. Georgia lake may be best known for its bass, but anglers will find more trophies in these waters than just largemouths. Fishing

Chase a Mixed-Bag Bite at Lake Oconee

Larry Larsen - April 28, 2020

The The eastern Georgia lake may be best known for its bass, but anglers will find more...

See More Stories

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get Digital Access.

All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now