This year’s early archery-only deer hunting season starts on Friday and the Arizona Game and Fish Department is reminding archery hunters they must contact a Game and Fish office in person or by telephone at (866) 903-3337 within 10 days of harvesting a deer.
It’s very important for archery hunters to comply. The data is crucial in helping the Department assess the archery deer harvest. Hunters who fail to comply with this rule could be cited by the Department.
This year’s early archery-only deer season runs Friday through Sept. 21 in most areas of the state and Sept. 15-28 in some areas on the North Kaibab Plateau. A later archery-only deer season runs in many areas of the state from mid-December through January.
Archery-only deer hunters must have a valid Arizona hunting license and purchase an archery deer hunt nonpermit tag from any hunting license dealer. Those hunting in Game Management Unit 12A on the North Kaibab must also have a North Kaibab Habitat Management Stamp.
General deer hunts take place later this fall. Permits for those hunts were allocated by a lottery-style drawing process conducted earlier this summer.
For more information on seasons, dates, open areas and fees, check the 2006-2007 Arizona Hunting and Trapping Regulations available at license dealers or online at www.azgfd.gov.
Salt River Project has started the gradual drawdown of Apache Lake in what will be the first phase of construction projects for two of the dams on the Salt River. The Safety of Dams maintenance work at Horse Mesa Dam (Apache) and Mormon Flat Dam (Canyon) will result in lower levels at Apache Lake for fall 2006 and for Canyon Lake for fall 2007.
Apache Lake will be lowered to 1,905 feet elevation starting Friday, approximately 50 feet below the normal lake levels. The slow rate of the lowering of the lake — about one-half foot per day — should not affect boaters and marina operators during Labor Day weekend.
During the drawdown, boating and fishing enthusiasts can check lake levels and boat ramp depths at the SRP home page at www.srpnet.com.
CHARITY BOAT RAFFLE
The Arizona Bass Federation is holding its annual charity boat raffle. Tickets are $100 each with a maximum of 500 to be sold. A Ranger 185 VS with a Yamaha 150 will be on display at Fisherman’s Choice Pro Shop, 13615 N. 35th Ave., Phoenix, on Saturday. For more information call Dave Hagan at (480) 839-1644 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
FISHING HOT SPOT
Lake Powell: Fishing continues to be hot. A quick tabulation from a creel survey last week shows 354 three-pound striped bass caught in 51 hours of fishing at Wahweap. That catch rate for striped bass is 6.9 fish per hour. When black bass and other species are added, that catch rate goes up. Fishing at Powell is seven times better than just good fishing. It has been that way all year long and is expected to continue until winter. Striped bass are holding in cool water at 30-50 feet waiting for food. The intersection of each canyon with the main channel is the best place to start fishing.