Topaz Derby ends, Trout season opens
Special to the Tribune
Hello fellow anglers.
A few things have ended recently, but some things are just getting started. The Topaz Lake Fishing Derby came to an end on Sunday. Jeremy Ritter, of Gardnerville, wrapped up the final week by pulling in the largest fish of the year. With a fish weighing in at 5 pound, Ritter picked up first place for the week and bragging rights for the year. Second place went to Phil Oren, of Arizona, with a nice 4-pound rainbow.
In all, there were 41 trout caught and tagged this year, and 69 trout weighed in at 2 pounds or more. Even though the derby is finished, the fishing goes on and will only get better at Topaz Lake with our warming temperatures.
For the just-getting-started part, the California trout season opens on Saturday, April 27. This is when most streams and rivers in California will open for fishing, along with the lakes in Inyo and Mono counties.
The new California regulation books are available at your local sporting good store. Make sure to pick one up and know the new rules and regulations on the waters you are fishing.
You shold also note in this report that not all waters open on this date. California game warden Erick Elliott said he has come across many anglers who blatantly break the rules, and a few who just didn’t read the regulation book. For this, he will gladly issue a citation, which will make your adventure not so desirable. Just follow the regulations and we will all have a great day of fishing. If you see an angler not following the rules — snagging, taking over the limit or using bait where artificial lure or flies are only allowed — you have two options. Either call Cal-Tip at 888-334-2258 or in Alpine County you can call the Sheriff’s Office at 530-694-2231. Local law enforcement has teamed up with the California Department of Fish and Game to protect our local waters.
In this report you will not only get fishing info, but important info on which campgrounds and roads that will open in Alpine County.
SILVER LAKE: The lake is now partially thawed. There are now exposed parts of the shoreline, making it a great spot to spring fish with small spinners or night crawlers. The Kit Carson Lodge is located on the north end of the lake with many accommodations. For more info call 209-258-8500. The lake offers mackinaw, rainbow and brown trout.
CAPLES LAKE: Located one mile from Kirkwood Ski Resort, the lake has open waters. It will likely be completely thawed by mid May. There are some exposed waters along the shoreline. Use caution if shore fishing this time of year and do not ice fishing. For lodge info call the Caples Lake Resort at 209-258-8888. The lake offers mackinaw, brown, rainbow and brook trout.
WOODS LAKE: Road is still closed due to snow.
RED LAKE: The north end has 10 to 15 feet of open water along the shoreline. Springtime is the best time to fish this lake. As the weather warms up, the fishing will taper off to slow or nil. Again, no ice fishing until next year.
BLUE LAKES: The road is closed. Access to upper and lower Blue Lakes will be available mid to end of May depending on weather and road conditions. There are some primitive campgrounds off of the Blue Lakes’ entrance with access to the West Carson River.
WEST CARSON RIVER: The water flow is running well for the opener. Alpine County will be planting 2-to 4-pound rainbow trout. The CDFG will plant the river heavily with catchable sized rainbows trout 10 to 12 inches — perfect camp trout. Sorensen’s Resort, located in Hope Valley on Highway 88, is an all-year resort with cabins and accommodations for outdoor enthusiasts. For more info call 530-694-2203. Also down the road is a sister resort called Hope Valley Resort. They offer a general store, tent camping and RV camping and can be reached at 800-423-9949. If you are looking for not so rustic accommodations, the Woodfords Inn is located at the intersection of highways 88 and 89 in Woodfords, Calif. They can be contacted at 530-694-2111. The river offers cutthroat, rainbow, and brown trout.
BURNSIDE LAKE: The road to the lake is usually closed until mid June due to bad road conditions.
INDIAN CREEK RES: The campground is scheduled to open Friday, April 26, according to Forest Service officials. This lake is located three miles out of Woodfords, Calif., off Highway 89. They offer tent camping and RV camping. They have restrooms and showers for guests. The boat ramp is also scheduled to open April 26. Fishing is rated as fair during the last few weeks. Shore anglers are using powerbait or night crawlers. Fly anglers are doing well with woolly buggers. The lake offers rainbow, brown, cutthroat trout and large mouth bass.
SUMMIT LAKE: Located above Indian Creek Reservoir, which is accessible only by hiking from the campground area or Curtz Lake off Airport Road. Due to low water conditions, the CDFG decided not to stock the lake until the water level rises.
TAYLOR CREEK, UPPER TRUCKEE RIVER AND TROUT CREEK: All tributaries that lead into Lake Tahoe are closed to fishing until July 1.
WOLF CREEK: The county is trying to open the first campground off Highway 4 by opening day. The pass over Highway 4 will be closed until early May. Wolf Creek Road is not scheduled to open by April 27.
CARSON RIVER EAST FORK: The flow is running well. The CDFG planted the river last week with 1000 pounds of catchable rainbow trout. Alpine County Fish and Game will be planting some larger trophy trout a few days before the opener. The river is open from Hangman’s Bridge down stream to the Nevada state line all year to catch and release. Only artificial lures or flys with barbless hooks are allowed. Above the bridge you may use any legal method of fishing and you are allowed a five fish limit. Marleeville Campground is scheduled to open prior to the opener, which offers primitive camping facilities, a place to pitch your tent or park your camper next to Markleeville Creek, which will also be planted. Farther up the road, out of Marleeville, Calif., on Highway 89, is the Carson River Resort. The resort offers seven housekeeping cabins, RV camping with full hookups, and a general store. They also offer tent camping right on the river, and the best local fishing information next to the Naw Report. You can contact the Carson River Resort at 530-694-2229 or toll free at 877-694-2229.
CARSON RIVER NEVADA SIDE: The river is open from the Nevada state line all year for anglers. It is a great fishery from the broken dam all through Douglas County. Nevada Department of Wildlife has recently planted more than 1,300 rainbow trout. For more info stop in at the Anglers Edge located at their new address, 1598 Esmeralda Ave. in Minden, Nev. They are in the Lone Tree Fine Arts Gallery. A perfect place, as they teach the fine art of fly-fishing. Or you can call 775-781-7112.
I hope your opening day is an experience to remember. Alpine County can make that happen. Where else can you fish four rivers and five lakes in one day and still have time for a good barbeque with friends. If you get a picture of your catch, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have any questions or reports in our local fishing world call the Naw Line at 775-267-9722. See you one the waters.
Good fishin’ and tight lines.
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Strong wind has led to multiple power outages Tuesday morning and a pair of Lake Tahoe ski resorts will not open due to the strong gusts.