The Silver State is not the first place you think of when it comes to doubled-over rods and screaming reels, but if giant cutthroat trout and largemouth bass are on your agenda this spring, then you might consider what these two high desert jewels have to offer.
March & April
Named for the triangular rock formation jetting up off its eastern banks, Pyramid Lake is easily touted as Nevada’s top trout reservoir. Replenished yearly by fresh snow melt from the Sierra Nevada range, Pyramid’s water boasts some of the largest cutthroat trout in the entire west. In fact, the current state record was caught in February of 2005, and it tipped the scales a whopping 24 pounds 12 ounces.
Pyramid is only open from the beginning of October to the end of June; and although just about any time can be good, it’s hard to beat what the month of March and April has to offer if a Lahontan Cutthroat trout is on your to-do list. This is when the waters warm and the resident hogs begin cruising the shallows looking for a place to spawn. Not only will you have the opportunity to catch good numbers of fish, but you do stand a chance of hooking one weighing double-digit proportions.
The most popular areas for wade anglers are located on the west and southern sides of the lake, with the more notable areas being Indian Heads, Wine Beach, Block House, Sand Hole, Pelican and Warrior point, Dago and Howards. Fly fishing anglers should use sinking tip line and have a good supply of #2 to #10 Leeches and Woolly Buggers in both bright and dark colors. Don’t forget your sinking fly line either. Rod and reel aficionados should have a good supply of spoons and spinners in both half and 7/8 ounce.
April & May
Located in Nevada’s northeast region, South Fork offers anglers nearly 1,800 surface acres in which to play. Although it sets in the shadow of other Nevada large and smallmouth bass notables, South Fork’s catch rates are solid and production is excellent. This bass factory spits out 16 to 18 inchers with ease, and ones tipping the scales in the 4 to 6 pound range are common in the spring.
Largemouth are found in weed beds and flooded willows throughout the lake, with one of the best spots is the weed beds west of Jet Ski Beach. When fishing rocky points and shoreline cover, you can also expect to catch South Fork’s hard-fighting bronzebacks as well. Their numbers are abundant and their pull is strong.
Spring time means spawning bass, shallow water and cover. Soft jerk baits, spinnerbaits and lipless crankbaits will turn some heads, and if the water is clear sight fishing can be good. Don’t expect to keep any bass however, because all bass caught prior to July 1st must be released.
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