Southeastern Utah fishing report for late December
Recent warm temperatures have weakened ice packs everywhere. Anglers will find slush on the ice in the afternoon, so wear waterproof boots. We urge anglers to leave their ATVs or snow machines at home until cold temperatures return. Please continue to observe ice fishing safety precautions, such as fishing with a buddy, wearing wool clothing, carrying a pair of ice picks, and bringing along a rope and floatation device.
Abajo Mountains. Conservation Officer Joe Nicholson reports that water at Recapture Reservoir remains open. Fishing has been slow, but persistent anglers have been catching pike up to 30 inches. Boaters have enjoyed the best success.
Benches Reservoir. Fishing has been fair for rainbow trout in the 10-12 inch size class. A 1/8 ounce chartreuse jig head tipped with a nightcrawler has worked best. The ice is 10-12 inches thick with slush by afternoon.
Boulger Reservoir. Access by snow machine only. Fishing has been good in 8-10 feet of water. White tube jigs, tipped with a salmon egg or mealworm have been effective.
Cleveland Resrvoir. Cleveland-Huntington Irrigation Company will be taking water from the reservoir all winter long, making ice conditions unstable and very hazardous. The DWR urges all winter recreationalists to stay off the reservoir until the spring melt!
Electric Lake. Deep snow makes access challenging. The best access is by foot near the dam. There is a 3-5 inch layer of slush over the ice. Fishing has been fair to good. Try Uncle Mike's teeny nite glow jigs, tipped with meal worms. Cutthroat trout range from 10-15 inches.
Huntington Reservoir (on the Wasatch Plateau, Sanpete County) Fishing success has been generally slow. Best fishing occurs in the early morning. Bring a shovel to remove the deep snow blanket over the ice. Fish have been moving around the lake in schools, so patience is required. Try chartreuse paddle bugs, tipped with a piece of nightcrawler with Smelly Jelly smeared on the jig. For best results, fish 1-3 cranks off the bottom.
Joes Valley Reservoir. Joes Valley Reservoir reopened to fishing on December 11. Emery Water Conservancy District prohibits the use of snow machines or ATVs on the ice. No report on fishing success.
Lasal Mountains. Sergeant Edward Meyers reports that Ken's lake has a thin ice cover with little or no fishing pressure. All LaSal Mountain lakes are inaccessible.
Lower Fish Creek. Outflow from Scofield Reservoir has increased. The creek is icy, but fishable.
Scofield Reservoir. Aquatics biologists Justin Hart and Craig Walker fished the reservoir last Sunday. They reported that bites were very light. They missed a number of fish, until switching to a single gold ice fly about 18 inches under a Kastmaster attractant. They tipped the ice fly with a piece of chub meat about the size of a pencil eraser and started "pounding" fish. In an hour and a half, they caught a dozen rainbows in the 12-13 inch size range. One rainbow weighed 3 pounds. Justin described fishing as excellent once you figure out how to hook them. Fisheries technician, Mike Ault, will be conducting creel surveys at the reservoir all winter long. Todd Munford reports that the best fishing has been off the east shore in 10-15 feet of water. He recommends white tube jigs or chartreuse paddle bugs, tipped with a piece of nightcrawler. Todd forecasts that egg sacs will be the best fish-getter in weeks to come. Fish appear to move around in schools. Patience is required between bursts of biting rainbows.