Arizona Fall Fishing

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Despite the government shutdown of national parks, wildlife refuges, and other areas, plenty of fishing action is available in Arizona, according to Arizona Game and Fish Department (AGFD).

On Lake Pleasant, northwest of Phoenix, striper fishing is good. Lake Pleasant Regional Park is under the jurisdiction of Maricopa County.

In western Arizona, 19,000-acre Lake Havasu contains stripers, largemouth bass and smallmouth bass. For more information, visit

Alamo Lake, a 3,500-acre impoundment northwest of Wickenburg, is known for largemouth bass, crappie, and catfish.

Urban Fishing Program waters in Phoenix, Tucson, and Payson offer fishing opportunties. Fall catfish stockings have resumed at the Phoenix and Tucson Urban Fishing Program lakes, and those lakes are being re-stocked with channel catfish during late September and early October.

Other good areas for fishing include community ponds in Yuma, West Wetlands Park Pond, Fortuna Pond, Redondo Pond, and the Council Park Pond in Somerton.

Near Tucson, Cluff Ranch, Roper Lake, Dankworth Pond, and Patagonia Lake remain open and are viable fishing options.

Around Cottonwood, anglers can fish the lagoons at Dead Horse Ranch State Park, as well as to the Verde River.

For anglers seeking good striped bass fishing, one option is the Colorado River below Davis Dam, in the Big Bend area.

In the Prescott Area, Fain Lake, Goldwater Lake, Watson Lake and Willow Creek Reservoir are options.

Although Forest Service boat ramps are reportedly closed at Roosevelt, Apache, Canyon, Saguaro and Bartlett lakes, walk-in access is reportedly open at those lakes and on the Lower Salt River. Also, privately operated marinas and their launch facilities on those lakes are currently open, but some may involve fees. Call ahead to confirm.

Boat ramp access to most lakes on Forest Service lands on the Mogollon Rim and in the White Mountains reportedly remains open at this time, but in the event this changes, walk-in access should still be available.

Mogollon Rim creeks such as Tonto Creek are open, and fishing for trout in the fall can be excellent.

Arizona state parks, such as Lyman Lake State Park near St. Johns, Fool Hollow Lake in Show Low, and Patagonia Lake near Nogales are open for camping and fishing.

source: Arizona Game and Fish Department