One of the most popular fishing spots in the Payson area, Green Valley Lake, received its first fall stocking of catchable rainbow trout about two weeks ago. By sundown today, these waters will have the second batch of hungry rainbows ready for all of us local anglers to catch. This program will continue every other week throughout the winter and well into the spring season.
The size of the fish may vary with the greatest number being within the 8- to 12-inch range. Yet, the chances of catching a trophy-sized rainbow is always possible with the additional stocking of incentive, or bonus, fish in the 2-pound and over category. The overall number of rainbows in the lake increases with every new stocking and consequently the fishing forecast for Green Valley Lake by early winter will be in the excellent range.
As the waters cool during the fall, the algae disappears and the lake becomes a very “easy to fish” spot where anglers can make long casts with spinning gear or a fly rod. With a clear shoreline, a fly-fisherman can hone his casting skills with plenty of room for the back cast, which will add much-needed distance in placing that fly a long way from the shoreline.
The falling water temperatures will also trigger a more aggressive trout bite and that improves fishing for the angler using Powerbait, corn or worms, which are the most popular baits used by most fishermen. Just a reminder, make sure these containers are discarded so that the shoreline is litter free for the next group of hopeful anglers.
The Arizona Game and Fish Department has a special for the last two months of the calendar year with an Urban Fishing License only costing $9.25 which is a real deal for great trout fishing within the city limits of Payson. This license is required of every angler 14 or older and can be purchased in the sporting goods department of the local Walmart. The possession limit for a license holder is four trout while a non-licensed youth can catch a two-trout limit.
Green Valley Lake is also a destination for numerous species of waterfowl during the fall, and it can be entertaining as well as educational trying to identify all the different species of ducks that use this body of water as a resting place. It is the perfect weekend or after-school adventure for a family with school-age children where the outdoors and wildlife can be appreciated. The ducks are getting their winter plumage of striking color contrasts, which can make them easy to identify if you happen to have some kind of bird or waterfowl book.
As winter approaches, there is the increased chance of seeing a bald eagle diving for trout or perched in one of the nearby dead trees, which only adds to the scenic beauty of Green Valley Lake.
This week take the half-mile walk on pavement around the lake for a little exercise and maybe a chance to unwind after a stressful day on the job.
Take advantage of where you live and the jewel of Payson — Green Valley Park. Outdoor activities are healthy and the price is right for an afternoon stroll around the lake with a friend or family. This weekend, enjoy God’s creation, the Payson Rim Country.