Fish Lake is a natural lake where the water level can be regulated, to a small extent, by a control structure at the outlet. The lake covers approximately 2,500 acres, has an average depth of 55 feet, and has a maximum depth of 117 feet.
The lake is one of the most popular fisheries in the state, consistently providing 80,000 to 100,000 angler hours of recreation each year and supporting three marinas. The fishery has changed significantly over the years, originally containing only native cutthroat trout and sculpin.
Numerous introductions, both legal and illegal have taken place over the years. The sport fishery currently consists primarily of rainbow trout, splake, mackinaw or lake trout and yellow perch. A recent addition to the fishery is the tiger musky, the hybrid cross between northern pike and muskellunge. Tiger muskies made their way to Fish Lake via the intentional stocking by the Division of Wildlife into Johnson Reservoir which is located about seven miles downstream from Fish Lake.
Sport fishing opportunities and success varies seasonally at Fish Lake. The lake is very popular with ice-fishers and receives heavy ice-fishing pressure as soon as it freezes over and the ice is safe, usually around the 1st of January. Following ice-out, there is great fishing for splake, most commonly taken by jigging near the weedline. Fishing at night with a dead minnow in early spring can also be effective for splake. By the end of June, splake fishing gets more difficult, and fishing for rainbow trout picks up. Powerbait and worms will work for rainbow trout.
If you have a boat, trolling with popgear and a worm is effective. Best fishing is from a boat but some shore fishing is available in the Joe Bush area, near Lakeside Marina and at the mouth of Twin Creek. Twin Creeks (the stream) is closed to fishing. If nothing else is biting, cast a small piece of worms below a float to catch some small but tasty perch.
There are many other fishing and recreational opportunities in the area. Other fishing spots nearby include Mill Meadow and Forsyth reservoirs for a chance at some nice hybrid trout. Koosharem Reservoir has produced some outstanding rainbows and cutthroat the past two years. The area also offers an abundance of wildlife viewing opportunities. Osprey, deer, elk and moose are commonly seen in the Fish Lake basin.
Latest fishing report
Although the 2018 Fish Lake Perch Tournament was canceled, you still have a chance to win a prize. If you catch a tagged perch, take it to the Lakeside Marina Store and you will be entered into a drawing that will take place at the end of the summer. The ice is completely gone, and boats are launching. Spring is one of the best times of the year at Fish Lake. Rainbow trout are shallow and can be caught trolling outside the weedline. Perch fishing can be fast just outside the weeds in 15 to 25 feet of water. Use small jigs tipped with nightcrawler or perch meat. For splake, move out to 30- to 60-foot depths, use larger jigs and jigging spoons, and tip them with perch meat. You can also catch some lake trout while trolling lures that imitate rainbows and chubs in 30 to 80 feet of water. Before you visit the lake, call Fish Lake Resorts at 435-638-1000 for up-to-date reports and conditions. (Last update 05-17-18)
- Location: Sevier County, southeast of Richfield
- Directions: 40 miles southeast of Richfield via SR-24 and SR-25
- Type: Fishing
- Size: 2,500 acres
- Elevation: 8,845 feet
- Hours: No restrictions
- Likely catch: Yellow Perch, Rainbow Trout, Splake, Kokanee Salmon
- Possible catch: Brown Trout, Lake Trout, Tiger Muskellunge
- Regulations: To see what statewide or special regulations apply to this waterbody, please read the current Fishing Guidebook.
- Site amenities: Forest Service campgrounds, three marinas with stores, gas, lodging, boat rentals, launching ramps and fish cleaning stations
- Handicap access: A few points along the shoreline trail