Doug Busey Eastern Sierra Fishing Report

Caught and released on Lower Twin Lake by Keith Cleary on a custom painted KC lure
Photo Credit: Keith Cleary

by Doug Busey

Hello fellow anglers. Memorial day weekend is approaching. Before we get to our local fishing report, I have some information on the Lampe Park kids fishing day.

I was honored to be invited to one of the KFD committee meetings a few weeks ago. I now see and understand in a bigger light what it takes to put on this major event each year. The event takes a year of a lot of people working in union with each other to bring this together. This includes buying the fish, donations for prizes as well as monetary, park permits, food, volunteers for so many positions. So that when young anglers and their families show up the day of the event, it looks and is flawless. And over the years, I must say, they have done it with perfection.

I have been a part of the event for 25 years as a volunteer, but have never seen what goes on to put the event together. I have been the advertiser, river help, the net person, and for the last many years, I had the honor to MC the event on Sundays. This year the committee wants to keep the tradition and the image of the KFD, to perfection.

As sad as it is to say, the Lampe Park Kids Fishing Derby will be postponed until June of 2024. For more information, you can go to their Facebook page at DouglasCountyNVFishingDerby. Or you can email them at [email protected] to see how you can help be part of this great event for next year.

Now that Memorial Day is only a week away, many are planning where to go to finally get outside and enjoy the beautiful weather we are having. I recommend calling ahead of time to your destinations. Some campgrounds in the Sierra's have not opened up yet, and many of the higher lakes still have ice covering them due to our over eventful winter we just experienced. Also, take note that the rivers and streams are still running fast, ice cold, and muddy due to the high temps and rapid snow melt.

SILVER LAKE ON HIGHWAY 88. The lake has dropped currently at 42%. Little more water exposed, however very shallow. Still too much snow on top of the ice.

CAPLES LAKE: Currently at 46%. Still a ton of snow on top of the ice. I did see signs of someone that attempted to get out on the ice for fishing. Definitely do not recommend it. The Caples Lake Resort is trying to get open by the end of May. The EID day use area and boat ramp is scheduled to open in early to mid-June.

RED LAKE: While coming down the grade it didn't look like anybody attempted to get out on the ice. The last couple of times I drove through Cal-trans had the parking lot closed; they were using it as a staging area for avalanche control.

WOODS LAKE: Closed due to snow.

BURNSIDE LAKE: Closed due to snow.


INDIAN CREEK RESERVOIR: The paved road is open as well as the dirt road from Diamond Valley. The lake level is up, and the fishing has been spotty. One day the bite is on and the next is slow. The campground area is closed for the season due to the Tamarack Fire. The CDFG is scheduled to plant catchable trout next week. For more information, stop by the Creekside Lodge.

WEST FORK CARSON RIVER ALPINE COUNTY: The river is running high and clear in Hope Valley, but as soon as it descends into Woodfords Canyon, the water becomes muddy and fast. No fish plants are scheduled until mid-June.

EAST FORK CARSON RIVER ALPINE COUNTY: The river is running high and muddy. Use caution as they do have construction on the bridge in Markleeville and just past Hangman's Bridge. The road is open up and over Monitor Pass. Cal/Trans is working to get Highway 4 open from Monitor Pass to the Wolf Creek area. The Carson River Resort is open for RV, Tent Campers, and cabin rentals. The general store is packed and ready for all the things you forgot to bring. On a very sad note, my favorite place to eat in Markleeville, "The Mad Dog Cafe," may be closing soon for reasons the owner could not disclose to me. I hope whatever it is, it can be worked out. No fish plants are scheduled until mid-June. For more information, stop by the Carson River Resort.

MARKLEEVILLE CREEK: The river is running high and a little muddy. There are no fish plants scheduled until mid-June.

TOPAZ LAKE: The lake level has started to rise over the last week but is about 12 feet lower than last year at this time. The Douglas County Park is open for RV and tent campers in the improved camp area. As the lake rises, the real estate on the east shore is getting a little smaller each day for shore camping on the far end, but the main cove has plenty of room. The fishing has been fair for early morning anglers trolling Needlefish, Rapalas, or flashers and a crawler. Shore anglers have been doing better on the California side of the lake with Green Powerbait or inflated nightcrawlers. I would recommend not fishing the canal for a while as the outflow fluctuates on a daily basis.

CARSON RIVER DOUGLAS COUNTY: The river is running very fast, and it is recommended to stay away from the river.

BRIDGEPORT RESERVOIR: We started getting a few decent reports from the Reservoir this week, mostly fishing from the shore with bait like inflated crawlers, mice tails, and power bait. Most of the successful anglers are reporting 1 or 2 fish, but we talked to at least one angler who was able to catch a limit with a 6-pounder, a 3-pounder, and a few in the 1.5lb range. There have also been several fish in the 5 to 6-pound range both with BFEF tags and without. We’ve also heard a rumor that if the weather cooperates, they will start filling the reservoir back up by the end of the month. For more information, stop by Ken's Sporting Goods or the Bridgeport Marina.

TWIN LAKES: The Twins have been the hotspot lately, as well as some good fishing on Robinson. We’ve had quite Creek a few good lakes with anglers reports from both getting into some good fish trolling, casting lures and bait from the shore. And though it’s been a little hit and miss, some anglers have had some good action stripping streamers with their fly rods. There was a 13.5lb brown caught this past week and another 13 pounder we’re hoping to get a photo of soon. In addition to the large browns, there have been lots of 3 to 6-pound rainbows being caught up there. Baits to try include power bait, pinched crawlers, and mice tails. Kastmasters have been a good lure as well as Rapalas and Thomas Bouyants. For more information, stop by Ken's Sporting Goods.

EAST WALKER RIVER CALIFORNIA: The East is running at about 722 cfs today. Even with the high water, we have talked to a few anglers who have had some success down on the river. We’ve talked to a couple anglers who have been fishing streamers like perch fry and horn bergs, and a couple anglers who have been fishing nymphs like psycho princes, soft hackles, and hare’s ears. It’s very difficult fishing down there right now, but it is possible to hook and land some nice fish. For more information, stop by Ken's Sporting Goods.

ROADS CONDITIONS IN THE BRIDGEPORT AREA: Highway 338 in Nevada is still closed to vehicles, so the Nevada side of the East Walker is still not accessible. We’ve heard they have started working on fixing the road, so hopefully, it will be completed soon and re-open. The Virginia Lakes road, Buckeye Road, and Green Creek Road are still mostly covered with snow. It has been getting warmer, so that snow should start melting pretty fast, and we’ll keep you updated on those road conditions as they improve.

NDOW RECENT FISH PLANTS: Bailey Pond, Wilson Common Pond, Mountain View Pond 2, Mountain View Park Pond, Mitch Pond, Liberty Pond, Martin Slough.

Good luck on your next fishing adventure. If you get a picture of your catch, send it to [email protected]. A note to put on your calendar is the free fishing days this year. Nevada is June 12th, and California will be on July 1st and September 2nd. Hope to see you on the waters soon. 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.

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