Doug Busey: Eastern Sierra Fishing Report

Photo Credit: Visit Bishop

by Doug Busey

Hello fellow anglers. This weekend will be spring like and everyone will be getting outside to fish and recreate. We have had some tragedies in the local area. I hoped I would never have to report on it.  People were walking and ice skating on Stampede Reservoir last week and fell through the ice, One did not survive. On another occasion, a person fell through the ice at Boca Reservoir. This person was luckily saved by professionals. I cannot stress the importance of ice safety on our ponds, lakes and streams, especially with the weather we have been having.  I have a personal rule of 8 inches or great thickness of ice before I venture out to ice fish. But this does not mean that the lake is safe. Every night a lake freezes and then thaws a little with afternoon sun. Even with our cold  overnight  and daytime temperatures, this time of year and our spring like temperatures the ice is unpredictable. With the melting snow each day, lake levels fluctuate. This causes instability along the edges of the lake and causes the lake to have a wave action beneath the surface of the ice. Which in turn causes fractures and weakens the stability of the ice.  I have always carried a long rope when I venture out on the ice. Mainly to pull my sled, but also in case it is needed to pull someone off the ice. Which luckily I never had to do.  Even now at our higher lakes across Carson pass highway 88 area. The night time temperatures are in the teens, but afternoon temps are in the high 40's. The cycle of freeze thaw is happening on a daily  basis. I ask all anglers to use extreme caution when venturing out to ice fish. Down here in the valleys, from Gardnerville to the Reno area. Stay off all ponds, lakes and streams. Any ice that has formed overnight, is unsafe to venture out on. I had the privilege to take a few young anglers out to Red lake a few weeks ago. Before we started fishing, we talked about ice safety. It's the same as boat safety. When I take anyone new on my boat, the first thing I do before we get on the water is show them where the life jackets are, how to use a throw bag if needed, fire extinguisher, horn, and the throwable life cushion. Let us all be safe and live to fish and enjoy another day.

CAPLES LAKE:  The lake had 2  to 3 feet of ice and anglers were out. With our recent weather pattern, use caution when venturing out. Elevation 7800 ft.

RED LAKE:  The lake had 2 feet of ice on it. Many angler have been out fishing. The catch rate has been slow. Anglers have been using nightcrawlers and mealworms just under the ice. Elevation 7600 ft.

STAMPEDE RESERVOIR: Stay off the ice, extremely unsafe. Elevation 5900 ft.

BOCA RESERVOIR:  Stay off the ice, extremely unsafe. Elevation 5600 ft.

INDIAN CREEK RESERVOIR: The lake has iced off and a few anglers have been doing fair with salmon peach or rainbow Powerbait. The paved road still had some snow by the airport. The dirt road was muddy in places but passable. The campground will be closed for the 2022 season for repairs due to the Tamarack fire.

EAST FORK CARSON RIVER CALIFORNIA SIDE: Fishing has been good for angler using small spinners  or red copper jon flies. Catch and release with artificial lures or flies and barbless hooks  until April 30th. For more information stop by the Creekside Lodge.

WEST CARSON RIVER CALIFORNIA SIDE: No fishing reports. For this week.

TOPAZ LAKE:  The lake level has come up a little over the last week. Trollers have been top lining with Rapalas or Roostertail spinners in a black pattern. Flashers and a worm have also been productive. With more day time sun, the fish are a little more active. Shore fishing has been spotty. Best action has been on the east shore in the park or over past the bug station. The Douglas County Ramp is open with some work being done in the ramp area. The Topaz Marina is open for boat launching and mooring.

Good luck on your next fishing adventure. I hope to see you on the waters soon. If you get a picture of your catch, send it to [email protected]. Good fishin' and tight lines.

Good luck on your next fishing adventure. If you have a question. a report in our local fishing area or have a photo of your catch, send it to [email protected]. Hope to see you on the waters. Good fishin' and tight lines.