Arizona is known for desert scenery, cactus, and scorching summers, and pleasant winter weather. Even though it is in the middle of the desert, there are quite a few options for the bass angler to catch fish. Arizona has great bass fishing and surprising diversity with smallmouth and largemouth options and a variety of different fisheries.
`1) Lake Mohave
Sharing the lake with Nevada, Lake Mohave is likely the best fishery that either state has to offer. It has experienced a resurgence in recent years due to the explosion of the smallmouth bass population that has become both plentiful and huge. There is still a population of largemouth, but smallmouth rule here.
The desert lake has plenty of water as it stretches nearly seventy miles and offers various desert rocks, cliffs, and other structure that smallmouth love. It is exceptionally clear and provides great opportunities for sight fishing in the spring. Finesse tactics dominate, but topwaters, jerkbaits, swimbaits, and crankbaits all tempt bass on Mohave throughout the year.
2) Lake Havasu
One of the best things about Lake Havasu is the diversity, as anglers can flip and frog grass and tules for largemouth of finesse fish in deep water for smallmouth. The lake has it all and anglers fish around breathtaking scenery in the main lake and the Bill Williams and Colorado Rivers.
The lake is a popular destination for snowbirds, spring breakers, and anglers and is a very busy lake for boating but still kicks out bass year-round.
3) Lake Roosevelt
This Arizona fishery is on a major upswing now. After years of low water, it became full and received what is known as the “new lake effect,” as years of shoreline trees, and bushes suddenly became underwater. It has receded some, but the years of excellent spawning habitat and added nutrients have paid dividends and there are plenty of fish willing to bite.
It is an excellent lake for largemouth with a chance for a big one and holds some smallmouth up to five pounds. It is a great all-around fishery with spinnerbaits, topwaters, and soft plastics working well around shallow wood and drop-shot rigs, football jigs, and Carolina-Rigs, and crankbaits producing on deeper structure.
4) Saguaro Lake
This riverine lake is formed by the Salt River and is small at less than 1,300 acres, but it makes up for the lack of physical size with giant bass. It holds Florida-strain largemouth with plenty of fish over ten pounds swimming in its waters. The fish grow big thanks to winter trout stockings, making it one of the best swimbait lakes in the state.
They use the river to generate power to and current is everything and provides great topwater fishing in the moving water during the warmer months. It is also a great structure lake with Texas-rigs, drop-shots, and football heads producing fish on deeper structure.
5) The Lower Colorado River, aka Lake Martinez
Near the Mexican border in Yuma, Arizona, is the lower Colorado River, also referred to as Lake Martinez. It is a unique fishery with nearly unlimited backwaters to explore. The fishing is more challenging in the winter months, but spring and summer can provide nonstop action with frogs and flipping and pitching.
Updated November 11th, 2021 at 3:25 AM CT