The deep snow drifts across back-country mountain roads have melted and now Arizona's picturesque trout lakes are not only accessible, most have filled and spilled as well, creating premium fishing conditions not seen in more than a decade.
"This is shaping up to be one of our best trout fishing seasons since the El Niño winter of '96," said Kirk Young, the Arizona Game and Fish Department's fisheries chief. "Take advantage of this fishing bonanza while it is available. Who knows when we'll see water like this again."
The lakes in the Flagstaff and Williams areas have been open for some time and have been stocked.
The Mogollon Rim lakes and streams are now open and accessible. All the lakes and streams on the national forests in the White Mountains are open and accessible.
Along the Mogollon Rim, anglers at Woods Canyon, Willow Springs and Bear Canyon have reported catching lots of larger holdover rainbows. Anglers at Big Lake in the White Mountains have been routinely catching larger rainbows and some big cutthroat as well.