Last week we talked about winterizing your boat. This week let’s talk about winterizing your fly fishing gear.

Waders first. Thoroughly clean and dry them before storage. Many breathable waders may be cleaned by hand washing or on the delicate cycle of a washing machine with cool water. Do NOT dry them in a clothes dryer. If you have Goretex waders, add a water repellent treatment to them to help rejuvenate the water resistant finish and then dry using a hair drier to set the repellent.

For non-Gortex waders, hang them inside out to dry and then right side out. To store them for the winter, hang them by the suspenders in a cool, dry place out of the sun. If you don’t have a place to hang them, don’t fold them. Roll them up to avoid creases. This will help prevent weak spots developing on the crease which will lead to leaky waders.

For wading boots and sandals, remove any laces, wash and dry thoroughly and store them in next to your waders. Add new laces if the old ones are worn. If you have felt bottoms that are becoming detached, use a waterproof glue to re-attach the old ones or add new ones.

Take the reel off of your rod, take the line off of your reel and clean both the reel and line. For the reel, set the drag to its lowest setting, take the spool off and remove any dry material with a brush or compressed air. Wash with a mild detergent, dry and reapply lube to the manufacturer’s specifications. Wipe excess lube off and store the reel in a neoprene reel case in a cool dry place.

Hand stretch the line to remove memory, and soak it in a mild detergent that doesn’t contain any grease cutting compounds. Rinse it off and dry it by pulling through a towel. For floating lines, apply a light application of fly line dressing. Coil loosely and store in a cool, dry place.

Take your rod apart and put a light coating of paraffin on the ferrules. Carefully wash the rod with a mild detergent, dry thoroughly and apply furniture polish to the rod for protection. Check the ferrules for sharp edges and have them replaced if found. Use a liquid household cleanser to clean the cork handle, rinse and dry thoroughly before storage. To help keep the handle clean in the future, apply cork sealer.

Open all of your fly boxes and make sure that none of the flies have rusted. Sharpen hooks and lightly lubricate any metal hinges. Make sure everything is dry and store in a cool, dry place.

This is also a great time to completely empty your fishing vest or pack and remove all the extra junk that you may have put in it during the fishing season. You would be surprised at what people forget they put deep in a pocket. Re-organize the gear into appropriate pockets and make a list of what you may need to replace. It is recommended that all tippet and leaders be replaced annually.

Once spring comes all you have to do is put your line back on your reel, your reel back on your rod and you are ready to go fishing.

WILDHORSE

Very little change here with good water quality, levels and fishing. Surface water temperatures were in the low to mid 40s earlier this week and the water is 4 feet from maximum pool. Fishing has been good with shore anglers reporting limits of chunky trout in the Hendrick’s Arm on both sides of the highway, all the way to the canyon that leads to the dam and at the state park. Fish are averaging 14 to 18 inches with the occasional fish between 20 and 24 inches. Penrod arm is also fishing well.

SOUTH FORK RESERVOIR

Expecting the work on the dam to wrap up any day now. Earlier this week surface water temperatures ranged from the low to mid 40s, depending upon where on the lake you are and time of day. Don’t expect too much of a drop this week with the warm daytime temperatures. The wind last weekend should have broken up most of the remaining weed beds. Anglers report catching some fish on the southeast side of the lake in eight to 10 feet of water from float tubes using olive or peacock bead head crystal buggers. The trout being caught are averaging between 14 and 18 inches with an occasional 20-incher. 

JIGGS/ZUNINO RESERVOIR

Fishing from shore continues to improve and anglers are catching 12 to 14 inch fish with a few 19 to 20 inch fish thrown in for good measure. 

WILSON RESERVOIR

The water is clear with the lake about 50 percent of capacity (average for this time of year) and trout are moving into shallower water near the boat ramp or along the north shore near the cabin. 

RUBY LAKE NWR

Bass fishing is done for the year. Fishing in the ditch has been good for trout, though most of the ditch has low clear water. 

JAKES CREEK/BOIES RESERVOIR

The wind should have helped clear out the remaining weeds the week making shore fishing much more accessible. Trout fishing has been good while bass fishing is done for the year. 

COLD CREEK RESERVOIR

Anglers should do well on night crawlers, Mepps, Panther Martins and Kast Masters for trout. Consider bass fishing done here for the year. 

CAVE LAKE

Anglers are catching summer carryover trout and fall stocked trout. Most fish being caught are 10 inches to 12 inches with the occasional 14+ inch rainbow.

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COMINS LAKE

Fishing has been very good for trout and like most area reservoirs consider bass fishing done for the year. 

ILLIPAH

Surface water temps were in the low 40s but with this week’s weather don’t expect it to change much. Fishing has been fair to good as anglers have been catching mostly rainbow trout. 

WILLOW CREEK RESERVOIR

Due to a damaged outflow structure, the lake has completely drained.

ANGEL LAKE

The lake is ice covered and the road to Angel Lake is closed. There will be no more fishing reports until late next spring or early summer depending upon winter conditions.

ALPINE LAKES

Most of the lakes are iced up and travel is not recommended. There will be no further fishing reports on the high mountain lakes until next spring or early summer depending upon the winter.

STREAMS

Most northeast Nevada area streams are at or above normal for this time of year, though down from last week. Streams should have cleared up after last weekend’s precipitation muddied them up. 

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