Walker River, West Fork

The headwaters of the West Walker River originate in the Sierra Nevada (California) at greater than 11,000 feet. Lahontan cutthroat trout and mountain whitefish were the native salmonids, but currently rainbow and brown trout and, in places, mountain whitefish are the dominant sport fishes in the Nevada portion of the river. Topaz Lake, created in the early 1900s, is offset from the river and stores water from the West Walker River for irrigation use downstream. The West Walker River terminates in Mason Valley (south of Yerington) when it joins with the east fork.

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Type of water

Stocking Updates

Stocked Species Inches Date Stocked Year to Date
1006Rainbow Trout9.503-16-20221006
1250Rainbow Trout9.704-07-20222256
1632Rainbow Trout9.704-27-20223888
2000Brown Trout9.205-10-20222000
3726Rainbow Trout8.505-31-20227614
597Rainbow Trout906-04-20228211
1500Rainbow Trout10.609-23-20229711
1885Rainbow Trout9.5 10-13-202211596
2261Rainbow Trout9.110-26-202213857

Pertinent Information

Much of the West Walker River flows through private lands. The river is non-navigable; meaning the river adjacent to private property is also private. Public access occurs in two primary places, first, Hoye Canyon, which has about one mile of public fishing upstream from the town of Wellington. Expect to catch rainbow trout, brown trout, and possibly largemouth and smallmouth bass in this area. The other publicly accessible site is the Wilson Canyon/BLM Rest Area. Rainbow and brown trout are stocked here as well. Good baits to use are nightcrawlers, Power Bait, and gold-colored spinners in some of the larger pools. Fly-fishing is also popular. The river is generally wadeable from November through early April. Flows are high during mid- to late spring and summer resulting from spring runoff and irrigation demands. Primitive camping is allowed at the BLM Wilson Canyon Recreation Area and a restroom is available.