Elephant Butte Lake Fishing Report

Thursday September 7, 2017

Crowds are gone.. fish are biting, well .. sorta.. 09/07

The summer rush is over..  the lake is calmer,  the next 2 months are great for fishermen..

The problem is that the fishing will get tougher.. but that will make you a better fisherman..

A week or so ago I reported that Kevin Gardner,  NM Game & Fish Biologist told me that the spawn was very successful this year… today I had the opportunity to observe some coves and shallow areas.. HOLY SAMAKI Batman!!  (look that one up!) He was not kiddin’  there are gazillions of small fish everywhere..  Our fishery should be exceptional in a few more years.. that is if we continue to manage it well and get lucky with the water levels..

One problem this year however is that the shad spawn was good also.. so much so that the shad are thick.  The fish are plenty, but they are having their fill of nature’s preferred meal.. so our bait is just not that appetizing.  But that too will payoff in the next few years with very healthy fish in big numbers..

The whites are very active all over the lake. Feeding on schools of shad. Watch for the water boiling as the the Whites chase the shad to the top.. Watch for the birds.. If you can throw a cast net, you can catch shad.  that is the preferred bait.  Followed by live shiners,  Kastmasters and slab spoons.  A few folks have said that they have had better luck on the feeding frenzies by throwing top water lures over the feeding zones..

The last few days I have had reports of good catches of whites around Rattlesnake Island (north side),  just North of Dam Site Marina in the coves between the dam and the open water..  then along the east side over the rocks just North of the Butte.

Early morning and late evening bites are still best.

Walleye still biting on rocky point’s 15 to 20 feet using kastmasters, slabs and deep diving crank baits.

Brian Lucero reported that Catfishing is good in the Rio Grande for Flatheads using live bait.   The Blues are still very active in the lake and starting to move to deeper water.  Cut Bait is good, but live Bluegills are best..

Crappie are starting to bite in shallow water, target big boulders and submerged brush .  We will be getting Fathead minnows in on Friday.  (Preferred bait of the elusive Pomoxis nigromaculatus)   Probably gonna have to look that one up also…

Night fishing is still the best.. Main lake points with lots of structure and/or boulders.. Rock Canyon Marina has been good. Dam Site has been best for night fishing with live shiners..

The City of Elephant Butte is having “Elephant Days” this weekend.. It is a pretty cool little festival.  There will be a carnival, a small midway and a dance on Saturday night.. Look it up on the intertube for more details.. You can fish in the morning, go to the festival mid day, take a nap, then go back fishin’ in the evening and through the night..  Sounds like a good plan..

Tell mama that there is a festival in Elephant Butte, load the kids up and come see us…


I personally lived through two major hurricanes when I lived on the Gulf Coast..  Say a prayer for those folks in Texas and Florida.. they’re gonna need it…

NICE Crappies on Frank Vilorio’s boat..


Brian Lucero found this cat in the river… NICE..