Ruby Lake

Ruby Lake is a natural, spring fed, high elevation marsh, located entirely in the Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge (NWR). The refuge is divided into the North Dike units and the South Lake.

View Map- Click Here


Type of water
Lake or Reservoir
Fishing Report

A lot of bass are being caught but not a lot of keepers, though anglers can expect a  two-to-three-pound bass occasionally.  Many anglers report catching as many as 50 bass but only six to eight keepers, so it seems to be averaging around 10 bass per keeper bass.  Bass less than 10 inches must be released. Soft plastic grubs in blue, black or purple seemed to work the best.  The bass aren’t hitting until later in the morning when the sun is higher in the sky and warming the surface. Best fishing is in the afternoon.  Nice sized trout are also being caught in the ski ponds.  Not much has changed as far as fishing conditions in the collection ditch have been fair to good for 13 to 18-inch fish depending upon the day and location. Anglers report catching small bass in unit 21, along the dikes and at the main boat ramp.  The wind is also playing a part in the fishing.  Best days seem to be when there are light to moderate winds to break the surface up, but not so strong as to interfere with casting. Good luck finding a day like that as the wind has been quite strong lately.  Chironomid patterns such as zebra midges, Yankee buzzers, chromies and ice cream cones should work. Other flies such as leech patterns, balanced leeches, crystal buggers, #14-16 hare’s ears, and #16-18 PT nymphs fished under an indicator are recommended. Stripping damselfly nymphs should also be effective. Dry flies have also been effective on warmer afternoons.  Size 12 to 18 elk hair caddis, blue winged olives (size 14 to 18), ants (size 12 to 16) and Griffith’s gnats (size 14 to 18) should all be effective.  Spin anglers should be using small spinners in black or olive with contrasting yellow or red colors.


Stocking Updates

Stocked Species Inches Date Stocked Year to Date

Pertinent Information

Ruby Lake lies at an elevation of 6,000 feet in a closed basin and the refuge contains over 9,000 acres of lakes, ponds, and waterways intermixed with islands and bulrush stands to the south and manmade dike units to the north. Depths vary from several inches to 12 feet deep and game fish are comprised of largemouth bass, rainbow trout, tiger trout, brown trout, and brook trout. The average size for largemouth bass is around 11 inches and trout typically surpassed 15 inches. The normal bass fishing lures include crankbaits, topwater, rubber worms, and spinner baits as well as bass flies. Most forms of bait such as salmon eggs, nightcrawlers, and Power Bait work for trout as well as small spinners, spoons, and flies. Spring through early summer or fall is the best time to fish for trout, while bass fishing is usually good in spring through fall. A Forest Service campground is situated adjacent to Ruby Lake and there are several primitive camping sites scattered in the foothills along the west side. There are two boat ramps for South Lake, the Main Boat Landing and Narciss Boat landing.