Finally it looks like we might have a nice weekend for fishing with sunny skies and daytime highs approaching 50! Overnight lows are projected to be below freezing for the weekend, but above freezing starting on Tuesday. This may mean some sloppy ice and driving conditions, so go prepared.
Eastern Nevada basins are currently between 120 and 145 percent of normal for snow water equivalent and that is good news for area waters. Hopefully the spring melt won’t be too sudden causing flooding and poor fishing conditions, but chances are we will have some very high water to deal with this summer.
Currently most of northeastern and eastern Nevada’s streams are flowing near normal or below normal due to the cold weather and ice conditions. However next week will see warmer temperatures with many nights above freezing so expect stream flows to increase.
The water temperature in the streams will be in the low 30s which is well below ideal trout conditions so stream fishing will be slow. When fishing our smalls streams, you will need to put your presentation right in front of the fish to get any hits.
The Ruby Mountain Fly Fishers, Trout Unlimited and Kinross Gold are once again sponsoring the Fly Fishing Film Tour on April 5 at the Great Basin College Theatre. Doors open for happy hour at 5:30 and the movies will start at 6:30. Free appetizers while they last and lots of great prizes given away just for showing up.
There was a great turnout last year and everyone had a good time. Tickets are $15 and available from any RMFF club member, the Elko Fly Shop or online at https://flyfilmtour.myeventscenter.com/browse/. All proceeds will be used to bring the event back next year.
There is approximately a combined 24 inches of ice, slush and snow. With the warmer weather next week expect the slush to increase so go prepared with good boots. The ice is still safe, but getting around on an ATV may become difficult. Fishing for trout and perch has slowed a bit, so we are downgrading the report from good to fair. Trout can still be caught in fairly shallow water (eight to 12 feet deep) close to shore. Some trout have been caught off the rock face just south of the state park boat ramp as well as in Penrod and Hendricks Arms. Perch are found in deeper water so fish water that is 25 to 30 feet deep and put your presentation less than a foot off of the bottom. Most of the perch reported being caught were by the island off of the state park boat ramp.
SOUTH FORK RESERVOIR
South Fork is almost completely ice free and should be completely ice free by the end of next week with the warmer temperatures. Fishing has been slow to fair, though occasionally anglers report catching a half dozen fish in shallow (3 feet deep) water near shore. A few 20+ inch trout were taken in this area last week by fly rodders. Trout are still being seen rolling near the surface along Jet Ski Beach and Coyote Cove, so fishing small PT’s, hares ears or chironomid emergers just under the surface may work as well. Water temperatures are in the high 30s and fishing will probably be slow until it gets into the high 40s.
Jiggs has open water but it is extremely muddy here. No report of anyone fishing here.
The road is still 4WD, especially in the afternoons with the warmer weather turning the road very muddy. No recent report, but expect open water and unsafe ice.
RUBY LAKE NWR
First thing in the morning the road is frozen so not too bad for driving but once it warms up it becomes very muddy so slow down. The collection ditch has a lot of open water with the warmer temperatures and fishing continues to be fair to good at the collection ditch for 12 to 16 inch trout with the occasional large trout being taken. Small brightly colored spinners were doing well. Wet flies have been performing better than the dries right now. These include the usual small nymphs such as PT’s, hares ears, olive soft hackles, BWO emergers, red or blue copper Johns and prince nymphs as well as egg patterns in orange or pink. Wooly and crystal buggers in black, purple or olive are also working. In the crystal clear water of the collection ditch, if you can see the fish, they can see you. Go low, slow and wear drab clothing. Most of the dredging is completed, though there are a few wide spots that need to be done. There is no dredging expected to be done for the next week or two, so conditions should be good for fishing. Obviously Harrison Pass is closed so you need to go through Secret Pass to get there.
JAKES CREEK/BOIES RESERVOIR
No recent report, but there should still be some safe ice here for the weekend, but make sure to drill test holes before going onto the ice. However, with the runoff that is occurring, the water is rising and there is open water at the inlet end of the lake. No recent report on fishing conditions. Expect 4WD conditions to the reservoir once you left US 93 due to mud.
COLD CREEK RESERVOIR
The lake is mostly ice free and fishing has been slow to fair. Expect muddy/snowy road conditions to get here.
Cave Lake is covered with 10 to 12 inches of ice and fishing has been fair to good for nine to 13 inch trout. Expect some water or slush on top with the warmer conditions. Anglers should do well using bead head flies, worms, meal worms, PowerBait, and flashy jigs tipped with worms.
Ice depths are variable on Comins Lake, with portions of open water on the south and north areas of the lake. Care should be taken when getting on the ice. Yet portions of the lake were covered with 10 to 12 inches of ice. With warmer temperatures, it may not be safe for long. Anglers should be very cautious when navigating the ice on the lake, particularly in the north lake area. Ice anglers continue to catch quality trout in the 16 to 20 inch range. Anglers should do well fishing with power bait, night crawlers, meal worms, and flashy spoons. Expect muddy conditions around the lake
The ice at Illipah Reservoir is approximately six to eight inches on both sides of the old dam. Expect snowy and muddy conditions on the gravel road once you leave the highway, so 4WD only to the lake and stay on the gravel road please. Fishing has been fair for 10 to 15 inch trout. Anglers should try fishing with power bait, night crawlers, meal worms, and flashy jigs.
Expect to find very icy, snowy and muddy conditions along the shorelines so take care when walking the streams. Getting to many of our local streams will be difficult due to the muddy/snowy conditions so expect 4WD travel and take precautions. Due to the snow melt from warmer conditions anglers can expect turbid conditions especially on warmer afternoons. Fish will be moving very slow due to cold water temperatures so slow down the presentations. Expect fishing to be slow in the streams.