Three, all-time best, trout fishing trips, all in one week
During the one-week period of time from Oct. 23 through Oct. 30, Elaine and I had three great, trout fishing trips that will live forever in our memory banks.
During those three, memorable trips, we experienced the best fishing I have ever had at each of those locations.
On Oct. 23, we fished at a small, high-mountain lake, known as Frog Lake.
On Oct. 27, we were trolling deep water at North Lake Tahoe, Calif.
On Oct. 30, it was Pyramid Lake.
Three different dates, three different locations, three different types of fishing and many happy memories:
Here is what happened:
This small lake is about a one-mile, easy hike from the U.S.F.S. paved, parking lot at the top of Kit Carson Pass on California S.R. 88.
It is located along the hiking trail to Winnemucca Lake, a much larger and deeper lake, which is about one mile past Frog Lake. This little, high-mountain lake (elevation of about 9,000′) contains some very nice-sized rainbow trout.
It is often overlooked by trout fishermen who are on their way to Winnemucca Lake and who are, apparently, unaware of the size of the rainbow trout found in this body of water.
On Oct. 23, we hiked for about a half-hour and arrived at the lake about 10:30 a.m. on a beautiful day: No clouds, no wind and icy cold.
Most impressively, we never saw another fisherman the entire day! We had it all to ourselves. Yahoo!
We quickly took off our backpacks and rigged up our spincasting poles.
Elaine and I both started the day with a small, red/white, No. 1, TOR-P-DO lure, our personal favorite.
On her very first cast: BAM! Elaine hit the jackpot.
She caught a 17.5 inch rainbow, the largest trout that I have ever seen come out of that little lake.
Shortly afterwards: BAM!
Another jackpot! I had caught a 16.5 inch rainbow, the second largest that I have ever seen at Frog Lake.
For the day, we caught and released a total of 7 trout, which were all very nice sized.
Note: If you are interested in fishing at Frog Lake at this time of the year, you might want to try some other lake.
By now, Frog should be completely iced over due to the very cold weather that we have been experiencing.
North Lake Tahoe:
On Oct. 27, We fished with a good friend, sport fishing guide, Gene St. Denis, of South Lake Tahoe, Calif. (530-544-6552) of Tahoe Trophy Trout.
Gene had called us several days earlier, told us the Mackinaw (lake) trout fishing was really doing great at the north end of Lake Tahoe and wanted us to come up and fish with him.
It was too tempting to pass up, so we quickly accepted the invitation.
We left the dock at Cave Rock Landing at about 7:30 a.m. in Gene’s boat, “The PT-109” and headed for Dollar Point, way up on the northwest end of the lake.
Once there, Gene rigged both of us up with large, silver Herring Dodger flasher blades with live minnows.
Then, Elaine and I began to slowly troll at about 8:30 a.m., at a depth of about 150 feet.
In the blink of an eye, Elaine was tied into the first “Mack” of the day.
Between 8:30 and 11:30 a.m., we experienced the very best fishing I have ever had at Tahoe.
During that three-hour period of time, Elaine caught 7 Macks and lost another 4. I caught 5 and lost 2.
That’s a total of 18 Mackinaw trout in three hours! Unbelievable.
We kept the four largest and they measured 24, 24, 25 and 26 inches.
Not too shabby!
We gave two of the fish to Norm Budden of Carson City, who is home recovering from a knee operation.
We gave the other two to Denny and Joannie Yeskie, also of Carson City, in hopes that they will trade us some of their deer steaks from Wyoming for our fish. Hint! Hint!
On the morning of Oct. 30, we drove for about 1.5 hours from Carson City to the northwest side of Pyramid Lake, near Warrior Point.
When we got to the lake at about 10 a.m., the weather was partly cloudy, it was cold, windy and the lake was very white-capped.
Not very good fishing conditions.
After a short debate, we decided, “What the heck, we’ve come this far, let’s give it a try, regardless of the lousy weather, maybe it will get better.”
We bought our one-day, tribal permits ($7 per person) at the Sutcliffe Marina and headed out for a day of fishing in our chest waders.
Once we reached our fishing spot, we quickly put on our waders, rigged up our spincasting poles and waded out into the pounding surf.
I was standing in the water, up to my knees, and the waves were rolling in at about belt height.
Elaine started casting with a small, red/white, No. 2, TOR-P-DO Lure and I began with a larger, orange/black dot, No. 2, TOR-P-DO.
The water had quite a bit of grass in it and on almost every cast, there was a stringer of that green stuff along our lines and on our lures.
Then, on her second cast, guess what happened? Yep! As usual, Elaine caught the first fish of the day.
Before we quit fishing for the day at about 2:30 p.m., Elaine had caught and released a total of 6 cutthroat.
I caught and released 5 Cutts.
All of the trout were measured between 15 and 20 inches in length.
In addition, on 13 different occasions for Elaine and on 11 occasions for me, we watched cutthroat trout follow our lures right up to where we were standing in the water in our chest waders.
They would follow the lure to where you finally had to raise it up out of the water, just several feet from your legs.
It was a real kick watching them cruise right behind your lure.
Also, during that time, the wind slowly but surely began to subside and by the time we quit fishing in the afternoon, the lake looked like a giant mirror.
When we left to return back to Carson City, you could not have asked for better water conditions. The lake was completely still and beautiful.
So, there you have it:
Three different dates, three different locations, three different types of fishing and many happy memories.
Finally, if you have an interest in some quality trout fishing at this time of the year, I would highly recommend that you try Pyramid and/or Tahoe. The fishing is great.
On the flip side of the coin, you’ll probably have to wait until next year to fish at Frog Lake, unless you are a ice fisherman.
— Bet Your Favorite Pigeon
Bet your favorite pigeon that he can’t tell you what illegal activity we saw and reported, while fishing at Pyramid Lake.
We saw some dummy fishing off of a step-ladder in the water with two fishing poles at the same time. One was a spincasting pole and the other was a fly rod. He would slowly reel in one of the lines, cast it out and then repeat the process with the other rod. For his information, it is illegal to fish with two poles at Pyramid Lake.