Eastern Nevada Fishing Report
May is going down as one of the
wettest May’s for Elko. All of the
precipitation we received should make for some great fishing throughout the
summer in both our reservoirs and streams.
It also means that
any reservoirs that were low are now at capacity. This includes Willow Creek Reservoir, owned
by Barrick who spent a lot of money and did a dam overhaul after outflow tube
failures caused the lake to drain dry.
On Friday, May 31,
Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW) and Barrick stocked the lake with catfish
to start the process of rebuilding this popular fishery. While NDOW stocked
5,000 five to six inch channel catfish, Barrick donated money for 5000 15 inch
catchable catfish so anglers would be able to utilize the reservoir this
In addition, NDOW
will transplant white crappie from Chimney Creek Reservoir to Willow Creek
sometime in June and largemouth bass from South Fork Reservoir in July and
NDOW advises anglers
that it will take three to five years before the crappie and bass fisheries are
viable and asking anglers to release crappie and bass that they catch back into
the reservoir to help the fishery along.
Next Saturday, June
8 is Free Fishing Day. This is the one
day of the year that anglers may fish without a license, though all regulations
and limits apply. NDOW will be hosting a
non-competitive kids fishing derby on that day at the Chinese Gardens Nature
Study Area in Carlin. The event is open
to children 15 or younger, though the whole family is encouraged to fish. Fishing
and activities starts at 8:30 and ends at 11:30, though you can continue to
fish after the event is over. Contestants
must be accompanied by an adult.
There will be
volunteers to help participants fish if needed, a t-shirt decorating booth and
the Ruby Mountain Fly Fishers will be there to show kids how to tie flies. All of this is free. In addition, every child who participates
will receive a free fishing rod and reel, while supplies last.
Cave Lake is ice free and fishing
for nine to 12 inch fish has been fair to good. Surface water temperatures are in the mid to
high 50’s and will move into the 60’s soon if they haven’t already done so by
the time you are reading this. The lake has
been stocked with approximately 8000
fish between 10 and 11 inches being stocked over the past few weeks. Most
anglers are having luck with small worms, though PowerBait is also catching
fish. Fly rodders should be using small
olive or black bead head crystal buggers, small olive wooly worms, hares ears
and prince nymphs. On warmer afternoons
if a hatch is seen, small Adams, black ants, Griffith’s gnats, and red or yellow
humpies should all work.
Fishing here is fair to good for 10
to 12 inch trout and fair for bass. The lake was recently stocked with 2,000
rainbow trout averaging 11 inches. The usual worms, PowerBait, small spinners and
flies should all work. Expect muddy
road conditions to get here.
Comins Lake continues to fish well with
surface water temperatures start climbing into the low 60’s. Anglers are catching trout averaging16 to 20
inches on a variety of tackle. Panther
Martins, spoons, PowerBait, salmon eggs, and night crawlers should all do well
for the majority of bait fisherman. Fly
fisherman should use wooly buggers, leech patterns, and nymphs patterns
(midges, beaded pheasant tails…etc.). Comins
was recently stocked with approximately 5,000 rainbow trout averaging just over
The reservoir is full and fishing
has been good, though the water is stained due to all the runoff from recent
rain and snow. The usual spring time
flies of wooly buggers, prince nymphs, hares ears and chironomid patterns
should all work. Small spinners,
PowerBait and worms should be effective as well. Since the lake is turbid
fishermen may want to use flashy lures. The
roads around the reservoir are soft and muddy due to the wet winter and recent snow,
so any anglers attempting to access the reservoir should be mindful of these
conditions and stay on the gravel. Illipah was stocked with 7500 trout a couple
of weeks ago.
Very little change here as fishing continues
to be fair to good. Trout fishing is
fair to good, bass fishing is slow to fair, and fishing for catfish has been
fair. Some catfish in the one to three
pound class (great eating size) have shown up in the creel. The preferred bait for them here appears to
be shrimp. The usual PowerBait and worms
as well as small spinners are working for trout. Fly rodders should be using chironomids,
hares ears, PT nymphs, copper Johns, and black or olive wooly buggers.
Jiggs was stocked three weeks ago
with approximately 2300 trout, 300 of which are surplus brood stock averaging
around 12 inches. The same presentations
as at South Fork should work well here. Trout
fishing has been fair to good. Bait
anglers are doing best with worms under a bobber.
With all the precipitation, and the
heavy mountain snowpack melting, stream flows have increased dramatically in
eastern Nevada. Expect well above normal
flows for much of the early summer until the snow finally comes off the
mountains. The water is turbid and
difficult to fish. Shorelines are soft due
to this week’s rain so please travel with caution. Expect fishing to be slow in the streams
though the E. Fork of the Owyhee below Wildhorse Reservoir has been fishing
well for reservoir sized fish that have gone over the spillway. To get to the Bruneau or the Jarbidge, you still
need to drive into Idaho first. The USFS has opened the road into Lamoille
Canyon to the public. As of May 31, the
Bruneau River was at flood stage and flowing at 1,070 cubic feet/second (cfs),
the Jarbidge at 270 cfs, Salmon Falls Creek at 936 cfs, Lamoille Creek at 165 cfs,
the South Fork of the Humboldt at between 1,000 and 1,100 cfs, Cleve Creek at 40
cfs and Steptoe Creek at 21 cfs. Steptoe
Creek was stocked with 1000 rainbow trout this week.
HIGH ALPINE LAKES
High mountain lakes are still inaccessible
due to snow and ice. With the wet winter
and spring some of the higher elevation lakes may not be accessible until July.
Not much has changed here as fishing
continues to be good at the collection ditch for 13 to 18 inch trout with the
occasional large trout being taken. Fishing seems to improve on rainy or windy
days. Small brightly colored spinners were
doing well. Wet flies have been
performing better than the dries right now. These include the usual small nymphs such as
PT’s, hares ears, olive soft hackles, BWO emergers, red or blue copper Johns
and prince nymphs as well as egg patterns in orange or pink. Wooly and crystal buggers in black, purple or
olive are also working. In the crystal
clear water of the collection ditch, if you can see the fish, they can see
you. Go low, slow and wear drab
clothing. The South Marsh was recently stocked and fishing at the boat ramp has
been good for stockers with an occasional larger fish as well as a few bass.
Unit 21 is also producing some bass using olive soft plastic grubs or olive
wooly buggers. The water temperature
here is in the mid to high-50’s. While boats aren’t allowed on the South Marsh
until June 15, float tubes are. Fishing
should be good from a float tube as you head down the main channel.
Fishing is starting to pick up a
bit, though it is still just fair for trout.
Surface water temperatures are starting to move into the low 60’s which
will also help the bass bite. Over the past few weeks SF has been stocked
with approximately 44,000 rainbow trout. Fly fishermen fishing chironomids
(midge larvae) are having the best luck.
Most of the trout being caught from shore have been in the backs of
coves, along Jet Ski Beach and Coyote Cove and by the dam, especially on the
spillway side. Fishing small PT’s, hares
ears or chironomid emergers just under the surface has worked. Blood midges fished just off the bottom are
also worth a try. Red copper Johns have
been working near the dam for fish averaging 18 to 20 inches over the past
week. Boaters were finding fish on the
graph on the west side of the lake between the dam, Jet Ski Beach and
Fisherman’s Point. Catfish have become
active and anglers may want to try raw shrimp fished in low light conditions or
at night. Fishing below the dam in the
river has been good. No black bass may
be kept until July 1.
Very little change here as the lake
is still spilling and the water is slightly stained from runoff due to all the
recent rain. Surface water temperatures
are in the high 50’s to low 60’s. Depending
upon the day and the weather, fishing ranges from good to excellent. The usual PowerBait and worms for bait
anglers have been working. For fly
fishermen midge larva and emerger patterns as well as hares ears, and PT nymphs
are good patterns to use. Black or olive
wooly buggers were taking fish as well, though black is better as trout are
eating black leeches. Anglers should be aware that many of the shorelines are still
soft and vehicles should stay away from the shoreline. The water is clearing and most anglers are
fishing Penrod and Hendricks Arms as well as the beach in front of the State
Park. Many fish are being caught from
shore so be careful not to cast too far out and go past the fish. With the lake
spilling, fishing below the dam has been good for reservoir sized fish. The lake was stocked with approximately 6,000
tiger trout averaging just over eight inches in length last week. No black bass may be kept until July 1. The
campground is open and is on a first come first served basis.
The reservoir is full! NDOW and Barrick planted the reservoir with 5,000
five to six-inch catfish and 5,000 15-inch catfish on Friday, May 31.
The lake is spilling hard and the
water temperature is in the low 60’s and turbid. Hopefully the water will start to clear
soon. Expect it to continue to spill for
a while. Fishing is good for 12 to 15-inch fish that
are in good shape. The same presentations, flies, baits and lures as used at
South Fork, should also work well here.
Fishing below the spillway has been good. This lake will be stocked once it stops
spilling. The road is rutted due to the
wet weather but should be drying out this week.