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Nine Mile Res. produces 9-pound tiger

MANTI — Many anglers drive by Nine Mile Reservoir without giving the water a second thought.

Nine-pound tiger trout
Perry Bunderson shows the nine-pound tiger trout he caught at Nine Mile Reservoir.

Photo by Pablo Corona

Not Perry Bunderson, though. The Moore resident has fished Nine Mile for years. And on March 25, fishing the reservoir paid off big time.

Bunderson caught a beautiful nine-pound tiger trout at the reservoir on a day he says was cold and windy. "I was fly fishing from my float tube, bobbing like a cork," he says.

He caught a couple of nice rainbow trout earlier in the day, and he was hoping for another rainbow before he stopped fishing that afternoon.

"Then the big one hit," Bunderson says. "He broke the surface and looked huge; a giant tiger trout!"

Bunderson thought the fish would get away. "I've lost several big ones at Nine Mile through the years," he says. "I was determined to get this one in."

Barbless hooks are the only hooks Bunderson uses when he fishes. And he was also using five-pound tippet line. "So I let him have his way, keeping just enough tension on the line to keep the hook set," he says. "Half an hour later — which seemed like two hours — he gave up and 'came to pappa'!"

After Bunderson caught the fish, he took it to the Sterling Post Office/Denton Store in Sterling to have it weighed.

"Nine pounds even. Twenty-eight-and-half inches long!," he says.

"I later learned the catch-and-release record was 25 inches, but oh well," he says. "Maybe next time."

Nine Mile Reservoir

Nine Mile Reservoir is a medium-sized reservoir just off U.S. Highway 89 between Manti and Gunnison, and just south of Sterling. Even though the reservoir is privately owned, the public has unlimited access to it through the Walk-In Access program administered by the Division of Wildlife Resources.

The DWR also stocks the reservoir with rainbow trout and tiger trout.

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