Bear Lake Fishing Report

Bear Lake is once again open water but there is still a significant amount of ice floating around on the lake.  Depending on wind direction, the ice could push up along the east shoreline and make launching/retrieving your boat difficult.  As of today, there is access at both the First Point and Rainbow Cove ramps and courtesy docks are in place at both locations.  The state park marina is free of ice.  If you do go out, be careful of floating chunks of ice that may be as thick as 6” and can damage your boat if you hit them going fast.

Fishing for cutthroat trout, lake trout and whitefish has been very good to excellent for anglers who have ventured out.  Jigging has been working the best, but anglers are picking up fish trolling as well.  If you are jigging, use tube jigs or swim baits in ½ to 1 ounce sizes and 3-6” long for trout.  Tip them with a piece of cisco, sucker meat or Gulp minnows and fish the jigs right on the bottom.  Reliable colors are white, green and chartreuse.   If you are fishing for whitefish, use a 1/8-1/4 ounce jig or a vertical jigging spoon such as Swedish Pimples or Kastmasters.  Try tipping them with a salmon egg, maggot nightcrawler.  Hot spots have been on the “rockpile” in 45-65’ of water, so move around until you find active fish. Also try off the weeds beds south of Gus Rich Point, at the pump house and between 1st and 2nd Points.  Start in about 25’ of water and keep moving out until you catch fish.

If you are trolling try using rapalas in F9-F13 sizes and also with a dodger/squid combination along Cisco Beach in 30’ and deeper depths. We received several reports from anglers who did very well the past few days.

Some anglers have been casting from shore or long lining off Cisco Beach and have been catching a few cutthroat trout.  The fishing should remain good in these locations for the remainder of the winter.  Cast large (#5-#6) spinners (such as Mepps or Blue Fox) or spoons and let the lure sink and try to retrieve it where it is running close to the bottom.  Large articulated flies in white rabbit fur or a sculpin pattern will also work for those anglers using fly fishing equipment.

Remember the trout limit is two fish and the whitefish limit is 10.  Cutthroat trout with a healed fin clip may be kept; cutthroat trout with all fins intact must be immediately released.  Large lake trout take a long time to reach large sizes, and while they are legal to keep, many anglers are encouraging other anglers to release them.


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