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Flaming Gorge Fishing Reports

Be in the know before you go!

 

January 13th, 2020

Flaming Gorge

Good

All Utah launch ramps are open and accessible, but may have snow/ice on them. The Wyoming ramps are iced in. Ice has formed down to the Pipeline, but between there and Buckboard is only about 1.5 inches in the main channel. Some of the bays and coves in this reach are thicker. Ice is about 6-inches at Buckboard, 8-inches at the Confluence, 10-inches at Sage Creek and 10+ inches at Firehole.

Lake trout: Recent fishing reports indicate that lake trout fishing has been fair to good depending on the day. Through the ice up lake, anglers have been successful catching lake trout along main channel depths in 60-70 feet of water. Good lures to try are jigging spoons like Northland Buckshots and 3.5 inch tube jigs in 1/4-3/8 oz weight and tipped with sucker or chub meat. Watch your sonar as many of the more active fish are actually suspended in the water column. There have been reports of anglers catching large numbers of small lake trout near the dam and in Linwood Bay. Trolling minnow lures near the surface is working better as lake trout have been observed in shallow water. Watch for concentrations and individual fish on your fish finder and if located, vertically jig a 1/4-3/8 ounce 3.5-inch white or glow-n-the-dark tube jig (Dry Creek Outfitters, Yamamoto, Gitzit) tipped with sucker/chub meat. Crayfish colored jigs will also work for small fish. You can also slow troll heavy jigs or use small spoons and crankbaits trolled on downriggers. Small lake trout less than 25-inches have become overabundant, causing competition for food and a decrease in growth rates. If this trend continues, it will impact the trophy lake trout component (less food to grow big fish). Please help the resource by harvesting your limit of lake trout less than 25-inches. This size class of fish also makes exceptional table fare. Fishing for small lake trout during the winter can be exceptional, so take advantage of the 12 fish limit and 2 day possession and fill up the freezer with some smoked lake trout. They make great gifts for your fish loving friends.

Kokanee salmon: No recent reports, but kokanee season reopened on December 1st. Try trolling spoons or dodger/squid combinations close to the surface (10-20 ft). If you see schools of fish on your graph try vertical jigging with small spoons.

Rainbow and cutthroat trout: Anglers report fishing has been good to very good. Ice anglers are catching them in 10-15 ft of water, near shore or immediately below the ice in main channel areas. Small spoons and jigs work great, tipped with meal worm, night crawler, or even Gulp. Boat anglers have been catching fish while casting jigs to shoreline points in shallow water. Try marabou jigs in brown, black, white and/or pink. Also try long lining or using planer boards with small crankbaits trolled close to shore. Shore anglers have had success casting lures (jigs and spoons) and fishing bait (worms and Powerbait) under a bobber.

Smallmouth bass: No recent reports but fish typically are tough to catch when water temps drop below 50 degrees.

Burbot: Good fishing on the north end of the reservoir, near Firehole and Buckboard. Target burbot on rocky points and shorelines in 10-40 feet of water at night using glow-in-the-dark lures like Yamamoto grubs, Radical Glow tubes, Maniac Cutterbugs, and Northland Buckshot spoons. Tip the lure with sucker/chub meat, recharge glow frequently, and jig or deadstick the presentation a couple inches from the bottom. This is the time of year that burbot are most active.

 

 

Green River below Flaming Gorge Dam

 

Good

 

Flows: Flows vary between 1250 and 2700.   Be careful if you are wade fishing.

 

Dry Flies- Midges 20-24, BWO's #20-24

 

Nymph Fishing-  Glow Bugs, WD40's in Gray and Red 18-24, Red Midges,  your favorite attractor.

Midge Larva 18-22

Streamer Fishing has been good in low light.  When the hatches disipate, the fish start to eat each other.  Use streamers that mimic small brown trout, white fish, or sculpin.   Try lighter colors first and work your way towards black. 

Spin Fishing: Zig Jigs in Black or Olive/Orange colors.   4" Tube jigs in white. 

 

High Country  - All Lakes are currently frozen

 

Browne Lake

Good

Browne is a good location to fish during the upcoming hunts. Anglers have been catching rainbows, cutthroat and brook trout on traditional lures. Brook Trout are getting their spawning color. The water level is full. Spinners, spoons, fly and bubble and worms have all been working to catch fish. Fishing below the dam can be good also.

 

Calder Reservoir

 

Fair

A blue-green algae bloom is happening at the reservoir but toxin levels are below warning levels. It will dissipate as water temperatures are cooling off now. To be safe, wash your hands after any contact with lake water. Anglers report fair to good fishing while catching smaller rainbows and a few up to 18 inches. About 1400 catchable rainbows (10-21 inches) were stocked this spring. Smaller rainbows (3 in), cutthroat (5 in), brown (2.5 in), and tiger trout (2.5 in) have also been stocked. The reservoir has special catch-and-release regulations. You must use flies and lures only — bait is not allowed. See the Utah Fishing Guidebook for details.

 

Long Park Reservoir

Good

The reservoir is mostly full which makes for easy shore fishing and boat launching. Fishing remains good for rainbows and brook trout using traditional trout lures and baits. Good catch rates both trolling in a boat and angling from shore. Spoons, spinners, small minnow plugs, flies and bait have all been working. The reservoir is a good place to catch colorful brook trout in the fall months. Typical food consumed by fish in the reservoir include midge larvae, sow bugs, zooplankton and scuds. Flows into the reservoir are still high so be aware around the canal entering the reservoir. A good water to fish during the day between morning and afternoon hunts.

 

Moose Pond

Good

Anglers report good fishing for small rainbow trout. Good access around the entire pond. Most rainbows in the pond will be smaller than 14 inches but it's a good location to do a family fishing outing. Typical trout fishing gear such as a worm and bobber, spinners, worm and marshmellow, powerbait, and different flies have all been working to catch fish. Good place to take the kids.

 

Matt Warner

Slow

Closed due to Algea outbreak

 

Sheep Creek Reservoir

Good

Anglers report fair catch rates. Remember, no bait, a couple anglers were recently cited for using bait at this water. Typically fishing is better in the mornings and evenings. This is a brood stock reservoir for cutthroat trout, so special regulations are in place to protect those fish. The trout limit is 2, and only 1 may be a cutthroat over 22 inches. All cutthroat trout 22 inches or smaller must be immediately released. Artificial flies and lures only. Fishing tackle that should work includes whatever may be currently hatching, streamers, spinners, spoons, minnow hardbaits, jigs and small swimbaits. Pinch your hook barbs down for a quick release. When catch and release fishing on brood lakes, try and fight the fish as quickly as possible, keep them in a net under water while unhooking and take a picture as quick as possible or skip it to help the fish recover better.

 

 

Spirit Lake

Good

Anglers report good catch rates. The lake was stocked with 4000 ten inch tiger trout this year. Anglers are catching numerous tiger trout and a few cutthroat trout. Flies, spinners, spoons, and bait are all working to catch fish. Water temps are cooling quickly and water clarity is good. Fishing should only get better into the fall until ice up and the road closes.