Spooner Lake

Map of Spooner Lake

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Spooner Lake is a small impoundment constructed in 1927 to store irrigation water.  In 1973, the Department of Wildlife developed the lake into a trout fishery, but regulations changed from general (allowing harvest) to a zero-harvest in 1982 and then back to allowing harvest in 2006.  Spooner Lake is located in Douglas County and situated within Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park at an elevation of 6,980 feet.  Spooner Lake drains into North Canyon Creek that empties into Lake Tahoe.

Pertinent Information

The reservoir covers about 78 surface acres and has a depth of nearly 20 feet at maximum capacity.  Currently, sport fish include rainbow trout and bowcutt trout (rainbow x cutthroat trout hybrid).  Lahontan tui chub, however, dominate the lake and compete for resources with trout.  Anglers generally catch trout that range between 10 and 14 inches, but some get as big as 16 inches.  Use small spinner or spoons as well as flies and wade the shoreline or fish from float-tubes.  Night crawlers and Power bait work equally as well.  Nevada Division of State Parks charges a fee to enter Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park at Spooner Lake and Backcountry.  Picnic tables, barbecues, restrooms, and water are available.  Vehicle parking is about 300 yards from the lake and there is a groomed trail with a moderately sloping downhill leading to the lake’s edge.  Most angling occurs during the ice-free period from May or June through October.  Other activities include mountain biking, hiking, and riding horseback on the many backcountry trails that begin at Spooner Lake.  


Stocking Updates


Nevada Fishing Regulations

Boating Regulations

Boats with electric motors are permitted. Float-tube and canoe fishing are popular.


Access to Spooner Lake is excellent for all types of vehicles. Restrictions, however, may occur during winter from heavy snowfall. From Carson City, travel 3 miles south on Highway 395 to Highway 50. Head west on Highway 50 approximately 10 miles to Spooner Summit, along the eastern edge of the Sierras. Turn north on Highway 28 for ½ mile to the Spooner Lake Park entrance.


  • Rainbow Trout
  • Rainbow Cutthroat Hybrid

  • Regions

  • Western Nevada

  • Counties

  • Washoe