Colorado River

Lake Havasu: Fishing a mixed bag

BY BLAKE WARREN/WON Staff WriterPublished: Nov 29, 2019

Anglers waiting eagerly for cold-water bite to kick into full gear

LAKE HAVASU CITY, Ariz. — Lake Havasu anglers have been waiting for a couple weeks now to see the usual late-fall bite fully engage with stripers, largemouth and smallies all flipping the switch and going on the feed prior to wintertime officially settling in, but it just hasn't quite happened as of yet. That said, there have been some quality fish showing, and in better numbers, and folks going with the bigger baits are starting to find some willing larger models here and there. Anchovy chummers and trollers are also connecting with a bit more frequency in the current striped bass bite.

DOWN FROM ALASKA, Shelby Smay was throwing a Deps 250 Slide Swimmer in Havasu's main basin when he connected with this trophy 28-pound jailbird.

“There are more fish being caught now but it still isn't going quite like it should be yet,” said Cliff Rubin at Bass Tackle Master. “That should all change any day now, but lately it's been hit and miss. Guys getting into the right areas at the right times are finding some good fish in isolated areas and it's definitely getting better, but I'd have to think things are going start clicking here as soon as later this week.” The weather forecast with night temps in the 40s or lower throughout the coming week and day temps no higher than 70 degrees ought to help spur on the cold-water bite at Havasu, though there is some rain expected as well by Wednesday or Thursday.

In spite of the somewhat inconsistent bite in recent weeks, some anglers are still getting out and reaping nice rewards for their time and effort. Local angler Jordan Panster was out targeting striped bass with a 9-inch Savage Gear Mag Shine Glide in a bone pattern when he tied into his new personal best smallmouth just 10 feet from the boat, a 5.02-pound bronzeback with a meaty belly. Meanwhile, Shelby Smay down all the way from Alaska was doing the same thing with a Deps 250 Slide Swimmer when he found his intended quarry in the form of a bulky 28-pound striper in the main basin.

The late-fall bite should be kicking into gear anytime now — and likely should have, or usually does at least, by this point — and Havasu anglers could likely (and should) be licking their chops as the calendar flips to December with the pre-winter predators full-out gorging on shad finally about to begin.

HOG HAVASU BRONZEBACK — Jordan Panster of Lake Havasu City, Ariz., was targeting stripers at his home lake when this chunky 5.02-pound smallmouth crushed his bone-colored Savage Gear Mag Shine Glide just 10 feet from the boat — the angler’s new personal best smallie and a darn nice fall fish.

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