Arizona lakes, more specifically warm water desert lakes
are the focus of this page.
Central Arizona's lakes were created by placing one or
more dams along three
- Salt River
- Verde River
- Agua Fria River
Arizona lakes on the Salt River in central Arizona
are convenient to most anglers in the Phoenix - Mesa area. These lakes are
in the Tonto National Forest, east of Phoenix.
The lakes are:
Roosevelt is the largest and most popular fishing lake
on the Salt River. This lake yields large crappie, bass, and catfish.
can be accessed from three directions:
- By way of
the Beeline Highway (State Route 87, north of Mesa, Arizona) and then south
on State Route 188 to the Tonto Creek arm of the lake.
- State Route
east of Mesa, then northwest on State Route 188 near Miami, Arizona, to the
Salt River arm of the lake.
- State Route
(Apache Trail northeast from Apache Junction) to the dam. This route
takes you past Canyon and Apache Lakes. This road is gravel and is
steep, narrow and winding once you get several miles beyond Canyon Lake.
Apache Lake sits below Roosevelt Lake and above
This lake gets the least fishing pressure.
To reach Apache Lake you must go
past Canyon or Roosevelt Lake.
People towing larger boats often reach Apache Lake by
going past Roosevelt Lake and turning southwest onto State Route 88 at the dam.
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and have Google start putting money in your bank account!
Apache Lake is popular with small mouth bass anglers and
Desert Bighorn Sheep..
Canyon Lake sits between Apache and Saguaro
Lakes. Canyon Lake is accessed by way of the Apache Trail. The lake yields
large and small mouth bass, catfish, and a few trout.
Saguaro Lake is accessed from two directions.
- From the
Beeline (State Route 87 north from Mesa), then south on the Bush Highway.
- By way of
the Bush Highway, north of Mesa, along the Salt River.
The Salt River above Roosevelt Lake
The Salt River below Saguaro Lake can be a good trout
water during the winter months. During hot weather "tubers" float
this stretch of river.
Among the Arizona Lakes near Phoenix, Lake Pleasant
is probably the most popular fishing... and boating, lake in the
area. Lake Pleasant is on the Agua Fria River,
northwest of Phoenix, It can be a pretty good bass and crappie lake.
Lake Pleasant is reached by going:
- North from Phoenix on I-17 (Black Canyon Highway),
and then west on Carefree Highway (State Route 74).
- For those in the Peoria / Sun City area, take 99th
Avenue north to the Carefree Highway.
Bartlett and Horseshoe Lakes are on the
Verde River northeast of Carefree, Arizona. Bartlett can offer good bass and
The Verde River above Horseshoe Lake and below
Bartlett Lake produces small mouth bass and catfish.
another lake I should mention. San Carlos Lake is on the San Carlos Apache
Indian reservation east of Globe. When this lake has enough water it can
produce hot bass fishing.
the desert lakes in summer is usually done at night and first
light. If you enjoy night fishing, here's an interesting article on glow
in the dark fishing
lakes also include some cool high country trout lakes South of Flagstaff.
Come on up.
lakes on the Colorado River are outside the scope of this page. Try a Google
search using the keyword phrase Lake Havasu fishing, Lake Mohave fishing, Lake Mead fishing, or Lake Powell fishing.
to the Arizona Fishing Page from this Arizona Lakes Pagee
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