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Pyramid Lake Cutts tantalize Derby anglers

By Frank Galusha
01/25/13 -- Fishing for Pyramid Lake's enormous cutthroat trout was quiet last weekend from both boat and the shore, according the Valarie Taylor at the Crosby Lodge, but it picked up enough on Tuesday to make upcoming derby anglers salivate.

Robert Black, Pyramid Lake 18 lb. 8 oz. Cutthroat, black fly, North Nets, Crosby Lodge, MyOutdoorBuddy.com
Robert Black nailed this 18 lb. 8 oz. beauty on Tuesday, while using a black fly near the North Nets -- total length was 32.75 inches!! Photos courtesy of Crosby Lodge

If fish like the one above aren't enough to shake you out of your winter doldrums, nothing will. But if you are like me, a photo like this gets me moving, which happens to be a good thing since the 26th Annual Crosby Lodge President’s Day Fishing Derby is just two weekends away. If things work out right I may get the chance to go, and it will be a first, so I went looking for tips from anyone who was willing to share.

Taylor says several hundred anglers fish this derby each year, which actually spans two weekends, this year that falls on February 9 and 10 and February 16 and 17. The registration fee is $80 and you can register now by email at the Crosby Lodge website, crosbylodge.net or by calling 775-476-0400.

Dinner will be provided Saturday February 16th from 4-7 p.m. for all registered entrants. There is a $12 donation expected for non-registrants. A Free Derby Hat comes with each registration as well. The deadline for registering is Saturday February 9 at noon and Saturday, February 16 at noon. Final weigh-in is 4 p.m. on Sunday February 17.

The event is sponsored by Sierra Sport & Marine, the Winkel Family Automotive and Marine and Crosby Lodge.

Matt Lyons, 14 lb, 10 oz. Cutthroat, Warrior Point, Pyramid Lake, camo fly, Crosby Lodge, MyOutdoorBuddy.com.
Matt Lyons got this 14 lb, 10 oz. Cutthroat at Warrior Point with a camo fly. This fish measured 32.25 inches but check out that girth!

So how do you fish Pyramid? Well, hundreds of anglers fish it from shore from ladders but a great many also fish it from a boat. That will be my choice as sitting on top of a ladder doesn't appeal to me.

Chris Grellman, former guide at the lake with Hog Charters, gave me a few valuable fishing tips for those who expect to fish from a boat. Of course, much depends on weather conditions, which can change in a heartbeat on Pyramid but right now, Grellman says the bigger fish are being caught off ledges, down about 15 feet in water 20 to 30 feet deep. He says it's not unusual for boaters to catch 10-12 fish in the 22 to 23 1/2 inch range. "And these are tough, hard-fighting fish. They can give a good fight and swim off just as though taking on a hook, line, sinker and everything else we can throw at them is no big deal."

Grellman fished the lake today but only caught six, so he didn't think it was nearly as good as he'd done on other days but those he caught were still very respectable, in the above range and out of the "slot." The slot sizes are a bit unusual so you better have a tape measure handy or one of those fish measuring decals stuck on the boat somewhere. Keepers can be 17 to 20 inches or over 24 inches. All other sizes must be returned to the water. You may keep two of the smaller sizes or one small and one large. I forgot to ask whether or not these cutts are great eating but I imagine they are good if you like trout.

So what else did Grellman recommend if you were planning to fish from a boat this week? He favors medium sized Apex trolled up to 2.2 mph or U20 Flatfish trolled as slow as possible, maybe around 0.5 mph. Most guys use downriggers but Deep Sixes are also popular and so are good old fashioned two-ounce banana weights. Grellman uses a #2 treble hook on his Apex but just remember you have to pinch the barbs down -- in Pyramid they give the fish a fighting chance whether they need it or not. As for line, Grellman prefers 20 lb. Berkeley Fireline with fairly short green or black Maxima leader. Even with 20#, the bigger fish are often lost. That should tell you a lot about their stubbornness and willingness to head toward the bottom. Grellman described it as though the cutts try to glue themselves to the mud.

Pyramid has had a lot of fog lately, which means you better have good electronics in the boat including a GPS and a marine radio. When the wind comes up it comes up fast and the rollers can be just several feet apart. A good check of all equipment including a trial run with the boat on some other water would be a good idea especially if your rig has been stored for a while as mine has. There are some more rules to be obeyed, too...see the Paiute Tribal website and boat permits costing $9 per day per person are required plus a $1 administrative fee. Lodging costs from $60 to $195 per night depending on availability plus tax. Lunch runs around $8 to $12 per person and dinners are in the $13 to $19 range. There is a Verizon tower nearby so if internet access is important, you should be able to communicate, just don't rely on your cell phone while on the lake. That's why they recommend a marine radio. If you want more details, call the above number and ask for Valarie. She seems to be on top of the action and is very helpful.


Fishing Reports

Rain forecast may open North Coast rivers
Kenny Priest author badge for myoutdoorbuddy.com
10/22/14 -- Rain is falling, and it sounds like plenty more is on the way. And if the amounts predicted come to fruition, we could see all of the North Coast rivers that are subject to low flow closures opened up to fishing as early as...Full Story
Val Aubrey: Eagle Lake trout not finicky
Joe Reiter, Eagle Lake Trout , Val Aubrey, EagleLakeFishing.net
Article and photos by Val Aubrey
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Shane Peirson holding winning fish caught on Sacramento River for the Future Pro Tour Capitol City Showdown, Vince Harris
By Vince Harris
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Eagle Lake: As good as it gets!
Eagle Lake, Bryan Roccucci, Big Daddy's Guide Service
By Bryan Roccucci
10/21/14 -- The last several weeks have seen some outstanding fishing at Eagle Lake. Most mornings have us releasing quite a few fish and keeping the cream of the crop for the limits. Twenty to 25 fish mornings have been... Full Story
Swimming in a radioactive sea
Photo courtesy of FISHBIO, radiated seas, Erin Laury
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO
10/21/14 -- More than three and a half years have passed since a tsunami severely damaged Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactors in March 2011, but some concern and confusion still persist... Full Story
Scoring kings in Oregon's lower tidewaters
 Jarod Perdue from Salem (left) and his brother Jacob from Medford caught these salmon at Social Security Bar on the Chetco River while fishing with guide David Castellanos.
On the Water by Larry Ellis
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Denise Arnold with one of her largest caught today. By Scott Caldwell
By Scott Caldwell
10/20/14 -- Team Burkus put on a Salmon show yesterday hooking up so many times we lost count. Rods bent all day -- a double hook up for Margi and Miles and Joe still counting his salmon as the biggest ever... Full Story
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Lake Berryessa 5+ poumd bass, Sid Silberberg
By Sid Silberberg
10/20/14 -- Friday, I went out with Bob, and boy what a great time we had! At first we were catching small bass but it was a lot of fun. Almost every cast brought a fish in. We were using P & K lures and they were great...Full Story
Sacramento River still king for kings
Guide Dave Jacobs and angler Howard Bowles of Brentwood with this week's top salmon, a massive 35 pound Sacramento River king salmon caught below the Red Bluff Diversion Dam.
In-River Fishing News by Dave Jacobs
10/19/14 -- The Sacramento river continues to be one of Northern California's premiere fishing destinations for king salmon, wild bows and the occasional steelhead. With the river loading up with king salmon for the past 90...Full Story
Lower temps improve trout catch at Collins
Article and photos by Kathy Hess, Lake Reporter
10/19/14 -- Our lake has finally hit ideal temperatures for trout catching. Summer didn’t want to end, as last weekend's Fish Sniffer Tournament of Champions entrants would agree, as it was still up in the 90s.! With... Full Story
Pyramid Lake producing large cutthroats
tim zahniser holding Lahontan Cutthroat, Photo courtesy of Crosby Lodge
By Mike Mogler 
10/19/14 -- Crosby Lodge located in Sutcliffe NV. reports great fishing for large Lahontan Cutts. Since the opener on October 1, 2014, anglers targeting these large cutthroat trout that inhabit Pyramid Lake have had great success...Full Story
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Man holding fish, Upper Rogue , Jason Halep
By Jason Haley
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fishing the north coast by keeny priest, author badge for myoutdoorbuddy.com
My favorite time of the year is finally here. The season’s first storms are peppering the North Coast, and rivers like the Eel, Smith, and Checto are beginning to fill with much-needed water. The late... Full Story
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Trailhead Tales by Jim Broshears
10/14/14 -- For those of us who prefer to fish the rugged and remote streams and rivers for the elusive wild trout, rock climbing is a skill that is required to reach the special places where catching the big one is a “sure thing.” The skills...Full Story
Atlantic salmon can take the heat
Little fish in the ocean, Photo by Steenstra E. Peter, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
By Erin Laury, FISHBIO
10/12/14 -- As global temperatures continue to rise, and the Pacific Coast endures its third consecutive year of record drought, discussions of how warming temperatures and low water levels will affect fish are... Full Story
River2Sea Open comes to Delta Nov. 1/2
River2Sea tournament, poster, vince harris
By Vince Harris
10/09/14 -- The official countdown to one of the most fun events of the season continues as the last wave of anglers looking to qualify for the 2nd annual Coors Light Delta Open Teams Series Championship next spring... Full Story
Crunch time for halibut By Tom Marking, CA Sports Representative to the PFMC 
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China Rockfish, Wikipedia, Tom Marking, Poor-data modeling threatens rockfish seasons
By Tom Marking
09/24/14 -- The Pacific States have over 100+ species of fish, about 50+ of which have Commercial and Recreational interest. These include flatfish, roundfish , bottomfish, pelagics, migratory species and forage fish...Full Story
Wishin' you were fishin' & relaxin’?
Fennell, Slim (last name not provided) of Australia and Gary Gamble took these beautiful salmon while fishing with Guide Kirk Portocarrero of SacRiverGuide Service, Shasta Lake Properties
By Frank Galusha
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Aftermath: Eiler Fire
Aftermath, Eiler Fire, Thousand Lakes Wilderness, 2014, John Higley
Article and photos by John Higley
09/23/14 -- It had to happen someday. On my many visits to the Thousand Lakes Wilderness on the Lassen National Forest, I always thought of how much fuel there was should a fire ever start there. The trails were...Full Story
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baby salmon, FISHBIO
By Erin Loury, FISHBIO 
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salmon spawning in Battle Creek, Tributary to Sacramento River, Anderson California, Mike Mogler
By Mike Mogler
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3 species of fish displayed in containers, FISHBIO, groundfish
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german brown trout in Modoc creek. MyOutdoorBuddy.com
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Indian Paintbrush is a favorite wildflower that carpets wilderness landscapes. Phil Flip Akers, myoutdoorbuddy.com
Article and photos by Phil Akers
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Floating Island West used plastic bottle created bio friendly islands floating in small lake, myoutdoorbuddy.com, Frank Galusha
By Frank Galusha
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10 pound bull trout, photo by Phil Akers
Article and photos by Phil "Flip" Akers
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Ocean Nino Index - ONI
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Video: Why boaters don’t like ethanol
NOn Ethanol sold here for boats  sign posted along the street
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Woodley Island Marina, Humboldt Bay, Eureka, California
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First Light
Boats in the harbor alight at night with a soft wake from a departing boat
Article by Matt Goldsworthy
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Pulled into the pipes: Green Sturgeon
green sturgeon
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California Golden Trout, California Heritage Trout Challenge, Not Just Any Fish, Phil
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Lake Oroville; 'tis the season By Chuck Giles
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