Make sure to thank a veteran this weekend for his or her service to our great nation. All the freedoms we enjoy are due to the sacrifices of millions of men and women throughout the 236 years we have been a country. To all of you, thank you.
The inclement weather will probably put a damper on fishing this weekend, but the temperatures are expected to rise back into the 50s by early next week and for the most part should be good fishing weather, though a slight chance for rain exists for Tuesday and Wednesday.
The lakes are still fishing well in Elko County and anglers report limits of nice sized fish at both Wild Horse and South Fork. Shore anglers appear to be catching just as many, if not more fish, than boaters.
Browns and brookies are in full spawn now and they are brightly colored and aggressive. Now is the time to get out and take advantage of fishing in open water while it is still around. It won’t be long now before old man winter comes around and covers everything with a thick layer of ice.
On Tuesday, November 13, NDOW will start the intro to fly tying series every Tuesday throughout the winter (except on holiday weeks). This is a progressive class starting with simple flies moving on to more difficult flies as the winter progresses. It ends in April with a couple of fly casting/fishing instructional sessions and a day of fly fishing on the water. For more information and to register for the class, give me a call at 775-777-2305.
The lake has stabilized at about 30 percent of normal and with water temperatures in the mid 40s and dropping. Fishing for trout continues to be good especially from shore with shore anglers reporting limits of two to five pound fish. No reports of any smallmouths being caught. Most of the algae is gone and the water is fairly clear, though the wind action of the past few days will cloud it up some. The cooler conditions have the trout moving into shallower water so shore fishing in the vicinity of the state park has been good with many shore anglers reporting limits using either PowerBait or nightcrawlers. Fly fishermen are still reporting good fishing in three to five feet of water using gold ribbed hare’s ears, chironomids, and wooly buggers, catching fish averaging around 20 inches. The state park boat ramp is still usable, though the dock is no longer in the water. However, the small ramp in the Hendricks Arm is not useable. Wiper fishing is fair to good with anglers catching a few fish around the island off of the state park boat ramp and a few along the rock face south of the boat ramp. Robert Pyron of Spring Creek, caught a new water record wiper that came in at 10 lbs. 11 oz. Seems October and November have been generous to wiper anglers. Minnow imitations, such as crankbaits or rapalas that are black over silver or white, and trout or perch imitators seem to be the best. No word on any perch being caught. The outflow of the dam has slowed to around 10 cfs making for fair fishing conditions in the tailwater below Wild Horse Dam.
SOUTH FORK RESERVOIR
The high winds of the past few days hopefully broke up and pushed many of the weed mats to shore. The water temperature here this week was around 50 degrees and with the cold front that moved through has probably dropped into the high 40s. The lake is approximately 70-75 percent of capacity, which still leaves a lot of lake for fishing. Trout fishing is good with trout being caught in the coves on the east side of the lake, south of the buoy line at the south end of the lake, and along Jet Ski Beach. However, anglers should be willing to move if they aren’t catching fish as different parts of the lake are producing fish on different days. Anglers are still finding soft mud along the backs of the coves, so launch float tubes from the rocky points and then kick back into the coves. The main boat ramp cove is fair to good for trout. No recent report of black bass being caught. While fishing for black bass is generally slow this time of year, when anglers do catch them, they are generally good sized. Deep diving crankbaits, drop shot rigs and blade baits should all work for black bass. Fishing for wipers is still good, but they are on the move and so anglers need to be on the move for them also. Fly rodders should hit the shallows at first light for quality trout using leach patterns sized #6 to #12 in black, rusty brown, and olive with some flash in them. Work in two to three feet of water with a slow retrieve. They appear to be moving into the four to ten feet of water as the sun starts to climb in the sky about mid-morning and anglers should switch to a sink tip or sinking line to reach them. As they go deeper, anglers can also switch to hare’s ears, chironomids and other popular nymphs fished under an indicator.
RUBY LAKE NWR
Bass fishing is done for the year here and it’s time to target trout in the collection ditch as well as in the ponds. Fishing for trout has been fair to good as anglers report catching trout in the Fingers area of the collection ditch as well as around Bressman Cabin. Remember the collection ditch is artificial lures only and wading is not allowed.
The water level is low, still turbid and weeds really aren’t a problem here any more as they are high and dry above the water line. The boat ramp is no longer usable. Fishing for bass is slow, but trout fishing is fair to good. Gold ribbed hare’s ears continue to be catch fish along with chironomids. Larger presentations have been also been productive so try natural baits (worms/PowerBait), spinners and large natural colored flies like wooly buggers and leech patterns can also be effective this time of year.
WILLOW CREEK RESERVOIR
The water level has stabilized at about 10 percent full and should start rising. Fishing is slow for the warm water species here, and with few trout in this lake, there will be no new reports on this water until spring.
This water level is very low and weedy. Anglers with float tubes or small boats have a definite advantage. Bass fishing is slow and almost done for the year, while trout fishing is steadily improving though difficult due to the water conditions shore anglers will find fishing difficult. Due to the low water, this small reservoir was not stocked and so trout fishing will probably only be fair. For trout, anglers should try spinners, the usual natural baits, PowerBaits and streamers. Fly rodders should try hare’s ears, wooly buggers, and chironomids.
The lake level is great and surface water temperatures are cooling. This lake is good for 8 to 10 inch fish using small spinners, natural baits or PowerBait. Small wooly buggers, crystal buggers and Cave Lake specials seem to work here anytime. Browns and brookies are cruising the shorelines looking for spawning habitat and food. Best fishing for browns is in low light conditions and on cloudy unsettled days.
The water level is starting to rise and fishing is picking up, especially at the inlet end. The usual natural baits, PowerBait, spinners and natural colored nymphs should all work. Hare’s ears, PT’s, damselfly nymphs and prince nymphs are good choices for this lake. Fish black or olive wooly buggers on a full sink or sink tip line in three to ten feet of water and where the stream enters the lake. Brown trout are in spawning mode and fishing should be good for them.
It won’t be long before this lake ices over and this is being written before the front moved through so can’t give a road update. If you can get there the usual worms, PowerBait and small spinners all are effective here though flies generally do best. Good flies include small bead head olive crystal buggers, wooly buggers, zug bugs, prince nymphs, olive soft hackle nymphs, snow cones and just about any fly that has peacock herl in it. Nymphs that have peacock herl or olive bodies seem to be fishing the best using short quick strips.
Stream flows are still well below average for this time of year in most eastern Nevada streams, though they are improving. In Lamoille canyon, stream flows are low, especially in the upper half, though fishing has been fair to good as it is still running around 25 percent of normal for this time of year. In the upper half of the canyon they are concentrated in the beaver dams and pools. The fish are very skittish and stealth is required as you approach the small pools. Brookies are in spawn and they are brightly colored and very aggressive. Small buggers and nymphs with peacock herl, gold ribbed hares ears, and caddis nymphs should all be effective in the pools and runs. For bait anglers, dead drifting a worm is your best bet. Small spinners can also be effective. The east fork of the Owyhee River below Wild Horse Reservoir continues to fish fair to good using nymphs as well as small buggers. Flows are currently between 8 and 13 cfs and fishing conditions are fair to good here. Small crystal buggers, nymphs, and emergers should work. Most northern Elko County streams are flowing between 25 percent and 50 percent , though fishing in the pools has been effective. Nymphing is the way to go now in these streams, though small streamers and buggers in the pools may catch a couple.
HIGH ALPINE LAKES
It is quite cold at the higher elevations, there is snow on the ground and ice is forming on the lakes. While fishing has been good, travel to many of the high mountain lakes is difficult. If you can get to the lake you want, the brookies are biting as they are patrolling the shallows spawning and are very aggressive. With the colder weather that was due this week, this may be it for fishing the high mountain lakes. It won’t be long before these lakes are iced over.