Pyramid Lake is a large alkaline lake 40 miles north of Reno, Nevada. The lake is known for trophy-size lahontan cutthroat trout but also holds carp, perch and several protected native fish. The lake sits on a Paiute reservation, and permits for any recreational activities must be purchased from the tribe. The alkaline waters of Pyramid were once connected to the Pacific Ocean, and the large trout are accustomed to feeding on bait fish and insects.
Spoons are effective for fishing at Pyramid Lake. Although the fish are not usually picky, silver and gold spoons imitate the native cui-ui bait fish. During the summer, fall and winter, use large, heavy spoons in deep water. Several beaches at Pyramid Lake have a visible shelf, and the trout will feed along the deeper end of the dramatic depth change. During the late winter and spring, the trout will begin feeding on the shallow end of the shelf, and a lighter spoon will be more effective. Many anglers wade out on the shelf and place a ladder in the sand. The fishermen stand on the ladder and cast to the transition zone until a school of trout passes the area.
Rapala lures and plugs work well when the trout are chasing bait fish at Pyramid Lake. The lures can be fished from boat or shore or by wading in the flats. On dark, overcast days, use dark-colored rapalas, and on bright days use bright orange and chartreuse rapalas. If the fishing is slow, vary your retrieve until the trout begin to strike. Slow retrieves along the sandy bottom are effective in cold weather, and a moderately fast retrieve is effective in the spring when the trout begin the false spawn.
Often referred to as lures, flies are effective for catching trout during the late winter and spring at Pyramid Lake. Ladder fisherman can find a position to cast at large trout chasing bait fish in the shallow flats. A shooting head line and 7- or 8-weight rod with a black and purple woolly bugger trailed by a white and chartreuse beetle is a deadly rig. Floating lines are also popular with a woolly bugger and copper john or double copper john set up.
Article Written By Zach Lazzari
Zach Lazzari is an outdoor writing specialist. He has experience in website writing as well as standard newspaper writing. He wrote an outdoor column for the Silver World in Lake City, Colo., and articles for Colorado-mountain-adventure.com. Lazzari is currently completing his bachelor's degree online through Arizona State University and lives in southwest Montana.