Mason Valley WMA
Map of Mason Valley WMA
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Mason Valley Wildlife Management Area (MVWMA) was purchased by the state in 1955 to develop wetlands for waterfowl. As the wetlands expanded, ponds and sloughs were created, which became ideal for warmwater fish such as largemouth bass and catfish. With the completion of the Mason Valley Hatchery in 1990, a constant supply of water was ensured and led to the expansion of the Fish Series ponds. .
The Fish Series Ponds include Hinkson Slough, Bass Pond, Crappie Pond, and North Pond and are the primary ponds that anglers fish. The ponds range from 15 to 200 acres and depths are generally less than five to eight feet deep, although North Pond is 13 feet deep. Management emphasis is generally toward quality largemouth bass angling, however, trout are stocked in North Pond and Hinkson Slough. Trout include bowcutt (rainbow trout x cutthroat trout hybrid) and rainbow trout with Hinkson Slough producing trophy-sizes. Channel catfish and bluegill are also present, with bluegill reaching over one pound. North Pond has an improved boat ramp, and paved parking, and Bass Pond and Hinson Slough have a padded and gravel boat ramp, respectively. Restrooms are placed throughout the management area and at North Pond and Hinkson Slough. Camping is only allowed at Sandridge Campground on the management area.
Vessels must be operated at a speed that leaves a flat wake, but in no case may a vessel be operated at a speed in excess of 5 nautical miles per hour. However, all vessels are prohibited from February 15 through August 15 of each year; except on Hinkson Slough; Bass Pond; Crappie Pond; Beaver Slough; the Walker River; and North Pond. See the ‘Boating Restrictions in Wildlife Management Areas’ section of the ‘Nevada Fishing Seasons and Regulations’ for more information.
Biologist Prediction for 2013
Fishing for trout in Hinkson Slough should be good from late February through June. Fishing at Bass and Crappie Pond will be slow for largemouth bass since in 2011 the ponds were drained, deepened, shoreline vegetation removed, and refilled. Brood stock bass and bluegill were planted; however, it will be a few years before populations increase. Triploid grass carp were planted in North Pond last year to help control some of the vegetation. Kuenzli Pond and Hatchery Outponds 1, 2, and 3 are fishable only on May 4, 2013 and should provide for good angling for largemouth bass and trout.
MVWMA is located 75 miles southeast of Reno and 60 miles south of Carson City off U.S. 95A. The main entrance is located on Miller Lane, 2.5 miles east of U.S. 95A. Follow signs to the pond entrance.