Pyramid Lake Nevada Lahontan Cutthroat Recovery

Thought all of you might enjoy a link to New York Times writer Nate Shweber’s recent article on fishing Lahontan cutthroat trout at Pyramid Lake, Nevada. This fishery once produced a 41 pound monster trout, but they don’t run that large anymore. Still, the fish are big, ranging to 10 or 20 pounds and the whole scene offers some kind of weirdness—anglers stand on step-ladders to cast at fish. I haven’t fished Pyramid Lake, but I have fished for Lahontans in Washington’s Lake Lenore and Blue Lake and I know that Washington’s Omak Lake is an excellent Lahontan fishery, too. A few Lahontans can be found in Idaho, too. And they are worth pursuing—they run larger on average than rainbows and browns and they are eager to take a fly, especially this time of the year as they move into shallows to start searching out areas to spawn. Here’s the read. Enjoy.

20 Pounds? Not Too Bad, for an Extinct Fish PYRAMID LAKE, Nev. — For most fishermen a 20-pound trout is a trophy, but for Paiute tribe members and fish biologists here the one Matt Ceccarelli caught was a victory.

That Lahontan cutthroat trout he caught last year, a remnant of a strain that is possibly the largest native trout in North America, is the first confirmed catch of a fish that was once believed to have gone extinct. The fish has been the focus of an intense and improbable federal and tribal effort to restore it to its home waters.

“I was in awe,” said Mr. Ceccarelli, 32, an engineer from Sparks, Nev., of the speckled trout with hues of olive and rose.

Early settlers told stories of Pyramid Lake Lahontan cutthroats that weighed more than 60 pounds, though the official world record was a 41-pounder caught by a Paiute man in 1925. The explorer who discovered this electric-blue oasis in 1844, John Fremont, called them “salmon trout.” Mark Twain raved about their flavor. Clark Gable, the actor, chased them. President Bill Clinton and tribe members called for their restoration.

“When I heard about them I was like, man, I want READ MORE

 

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