LAKE PLEASANT: (1,689 feet, 85-percent full): As is usual this time of year, the water level is constantly rising as water from the Central Arizona Project is pumped into the lake for later irrigation and domestic use.
Avid angler Barry W. reported that striper action has been great. He reported: Maybe with the temps warming up this has caused the fish to be a little more aggressive. A friend and I fished from 2 p.m. to sunset.
To be honest it took a few hours to locate the fish and was slow. Many northern coves we tried did not have many striper on the fish finder. Around 4:30 p.m. we located a huge school of striper (200-plus fish) at the depth of around 20-28 feet. The striper were working a reef nearshore that dropped from 4-20 feet and having a feeding frenzy on shad.
We used a drop shot rig with anchovies and caught 37 striper in less than an hour. The exciting thing about this fishing trip is my friend and I both had five double headers in that hour. Normally the striper action is much slower this time of year compared to the summer action at Lake Pleasant.
The key is to find the schools of striper. If you dont have a fishfinder I would recommend dropping bait and chumming. If you dont get any bites or action after 20 minutes bring the lines up and try a different location (keep searching). Striper travel in schools and are constantly on the move from what literature says and what I have witnessed. Once you find the school be sure to chum and keep that school interested below your boat.
We did not catch any fish bigger than 1.5 pounds, but the action was constant. We did see some anglers catching fish near us that were in the 5-6 pound range. Its a great time to get out on the water and fish for striper, but it just requires a little more work to find them.
Also for you crappie fishermen, we found lots of crappie suspended at 10-15 feet near underwater brush/ trees in the far back coves. I would highly recommend using a live minnow at around 8-10 feet or very small jigs. We talked to one kayaker who caught a few that same day using very small live minnows with a small circle hook. I have included a video that is two minutes long showing the constant fun action we had but most important it recorded our back-to-back double headers.