Wild Horse Reservoir was constructed in 1937 and reconstructed in 1970. It’s primary purpose id for irrigation storage and, therefore, has large seasonal drawdowns. Most of the surrounding land is administered by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, but is leased to the Duck Valley Indian Reservation. Additionally, Wild Horse State Recreation Area and some private property surround the reservoir
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Due to continued high run off from above average snowpack, water clarity remains poor throughout most of the lake. Boaters are finding clearer areas mid-lake. Fishing for trout will be poor to fair in these reservoir conditions, and will remain so until the reservoir clarity improves with reduced spring runoff. Clearer water can be found towards the middle of the lake for boat anglers. Anglers wishing to target trout in these conditions should focus on bright or larger attractive lures such as rooster-tails, spoons, or Rapalas. Anglers fishing from a boat could do well trolling flashers, spoons, and Rapalas, in shallower depths. Anglers that are fly fishing may have success stripping Wooly Bugger or Leech patterns or fishing larger balance leeches under an indicator.
Perch fishing will remain slow due to the die off last year. Some anglers encountered limited numbers of Yellow Perch during the 2022-2023 ice fishing season. Anglers wishing to target perch will have limited success jigging small lures and bait near the bottom in 20-25 feet of water.
Bass fishing will remain slow until water temperatures begin to warm. Some fish may be caught fishing soft plastics and crankbaits around natural structures. One lucky angler reeled in a 9.5 pound wiper near the dam on an orange spoon. Black bass are catch and release only March 1 – June 30.
Wildhorse Reservoir Angler Guide Information05-24-2023
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At maximum capacity, the reservoir covers 2,830 acres, has a maximum depth of 70 feet, and an average depth of 40 feet. It has a coldwater, put-grow-take trout fishery and a self-sustaining warmwater fishery. Coldwater game species include rainbow, brown, bowcutt (rainbow x cutthroat hybrid), and tiger trout (brown x brook trout hybrid). Warmwater game species consists of smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, channel catfish, wipers (white bass x striper hybrid), and yellow perch. Harvest lengths of larger than 16 inches usually occur for rainbow trout and 19 inches for bowcutt trout. Wipers generally range from 14 to 25 inches, channel catfish from 14 to 28 inches, and black bass from 8 to 17 inches. Lures are best for trout from May through June and mid-September through October, and nightcrawlers, salmon eggs, corn, and Power Bait during December through February while ice fishing. Fly-fishing is popular in early spring and late fall. Shore and still fishing from a boat are successful; however, trolling is more productive in summer. Spring and early summer are best for bass using crankbaits and rubber worms, and for catfish using stink baits and liver. Use small jigs and worms for yellow perch. Wild Horse State Recreation Area has day use, camping, and a boat ramp and BLM has a day use and campground area near the north end of the reservoir. Wild Horse Resort has a motel, RV hookup, restaurant, bar, and a convenience store. Duck Valley Indian Reservation provides campsites and a boat launch.