Flaming Gorge Reservoir
- Rating: Good
- Conditions: The Utah and Wyoming ramps are ice-free, so you can now launch boats. Reservoir levels have held up well over the winter, and water managers are even letting some of the water out in preparation for spring thaws in the upper Green River drainage.
Kokanee salmon: Kokanee fishing reopened on Nov. 30, but there haven't been any recent reports from anglers.
Rainbow trout: Anglers report good to excellent fishing in Utah and in Wyoming. Spoons, jigs and crankbaits (along with common trout baits, such as worms) are working from the shore and from boats. We've heard reports of small schools cruising the shoreline and good fishing off rocky points, inlets and in the backs of some of the bays. Anglers are also catching rainbows while fishing deep water for lake trout.
Lake trout: Anglers report good to excellent fishing from boats. Fish can be anywhere, although most are still being caught in deeper waters. If you find a group, try holding your position and drop a vertical presentation such as a jigging spoon (chartreuse) or a three-inch tube jig (white). Tip your lure with a small chunk of sucker meat and vary jigging activity until you learn the fish's behavior. Also try trolling through (or just above) the school, usually 45 to 75 feet deep. Try different crankbaits or brightly colored spoons. Slow, shallow trolls along sloping banks can be an excellent technique in the spring. It's one of the few times of year that you can just troll without specialized deep-water equipment. Deep trolling, right on the bottom, with small, white crankbaits or flatfish is also working well, especially if you're going after big fish. Keep your limit of small, tasty lake trout to reduce competition and help both the lake trout and kokanee fisheries.
Smallmouth bass: Fishing has been slow because the bass are still deep.
Burbot: Reports indicate that fishing is fair to good from boats, and a few burbot have been caught from the bank. Pick your spots in the late afternoon, so you can see the area and where you want to go when it gets dark. Be sure to take lights to find your way back. Boat anglers can start fishing before sunset in 50 to 75 feet of water. Move shallower after sunset and as the night progresses. Burbot will hit during the day, generally in deep waters (around 75 feet); however, they become more active during the twilight and evening hours when they move into shallow waters to forage. Some will follow channels or rocky flats and venture into water that's less than 10 feet deep. Try fishing along the rocky shores, points, cliffs and the old channels. Fish the bottom or just slightly above it. Use something that glows (spoons, tube jigs, curly-tailed jigs, minnows or jigging spoons) and tip your lure with bait. (Cut bait, like sucker meat or minnows, is recommended.) Worms with a marshmallow placed about three to six inches above the weight have worked recently. Place your lure or bait within inches of the bottom and recharge the glow frequently. It is common to catch a fish immediately after re-glowing and dropping a lure. You'll help the Flaming Gorge fishery by harvesting as many burbot as possible. There is no limit on burbot.
- Location: Daggett County
- Directions: Drive 45 miles north of Vernal on US-191
- Type: Blue Ribbon
- Size: 42,000 acres
- Elevation: 6,024 feet
- Hours: No restrictions
- Likely catch: Kokanee Salmon, Lake Trout, Rainbow Trout, Smallmouth Bass
- Possible catch: Brown Trout, Common Carp, Channel Catfish, Cutthroat Trout
- Regulations: To see what statewide or special regulations apply to this waterbody, please read the current Fishing Guidebook.
- Site amenities: A Forest Service campground in the National Recreation Area around the reservioir, and numerous boat ramps
- Handicap access: Access at the Forest Service campground and boat launching facilities
- Site description: The Wyoming end of the reservoir is quite open and can be extremely rough if the wind blows hard. The Utah portion of the reservoir is mostly in a canyon, so it is more protected from the wind.