Nevada fishing hooks resident anglers

by Sara Angelopoulos, Outpost staff

In this package

Fishing map

Fishing Links

Water skiing at Topaz Lake. Kyaking down the Truckee. Boating in Pyramid Lake. Parasailing at Lake Tahoe.

Sure these are fine aquatic activities. But the real action, say Nevada's avid anglers, is under the water.

While fishing is a common recreational activity throughout the state, the fishing options in Northern Nevada are virtually endless. Despite the idea that Nevada is one big desert, places to fish abound. Nevada is made up of many different lakes, rivers and creeks. Every single county has a popular place to fish.

Before anyone can fish, anglers must obtain a new fishing license that begins March 1 and ends the last day in February of the following year. Everyone must have a license except for Nevada anglers under 12. To be valid, the license should have a trout stamp that should be validated by the angler's signature in ink across the face of the stamp.

Some places, such as Lake Tahoe and Topaz Lake, anglers under age 16 are not required to have fishing license. Those 16 or older must have a California or Nevada license and a trout stamp.

An annual Nevada fishing license for anglers 16 or older is $21. Annual junior fishing licenses for people 12 through 15 and senior licenses for those 65 or older cost $5.

John Cassinelli shows his catch after a day of fishing at Martin Creek
Photo by Sara Angelopoulos
Fishing licenses can also be bought as a combination of fishing and hunting. For people older than 16, the combination license costs $39. Short-term permits are available also for $7 for one day and $2 for each additional day. Special rates are available for servicemen, disabled veterans, disabled persons and resident Indians.

Each lake, river or creek has a limit on how many fish one can catch. According to state fishing regulations, "the 'limit' includes fish caught in Nevada that have been processed or preserved and are stored at any locations. Fish that are caught and immediately released back to the water alive are not considered to be reduced to possession or part of the limit."

So once you've taken care of the legalities, where are the best places to fish? That's easy, ask Nevada's fishermen.

"I like to fish at Pyramid Lake," university student Bill Cassinelli said. "Pyramid is not a good place to float tube, so we just wade out in the lake."

Pyramid Lake is located 36 miles north of Reno on Route 445.

Another spot Cassinelli enjoys is Big Springs in Humboldt County. At Big Springs, he fly-fishes from a float tube.

Fly-fishing has become a popular way to fish. It can be done in lakes and rivers whether by float tube or just by wading. But the devoted offer a lesser known technque.

"We bring step ladders with us to Pyramid Lake, and then wade out in the middle of the lake with the ladder," said Cassinelli's cousin John.

John Cassinelli enjoys fishing throughout Nevada and is hooked on fly-fishing.

"My favorite places to fish are Mason Valley (in Lyon County), Martin Creek, Blue Lakes and Big Springs (in Humboldt County)," he said. "I love to fly-fish because it is more of a challenge than regular fishing, and you can catch a lot of fish that way."

Fly-fishing requires talent and practice. It has become an art. Some people enjoy tying their own flies. Many fly shops sell all the utensils and supplies needed to make flies.

Although fly-fishing has become a popular way to fish, getting the trophy fish is what most anglers still go for.

Fly-fishing is a popular type fishing in Nevada's lakes and rivers
Photo by Sara Angelopoulos
"I like to fish Big Springs because there are a lot of trophy fish there," avid fisherman Brad Bauman said. "It has bigger fish there."

Bauman, who is also a University of Nevada, Reno student, enjoys fishing at Pyramid Lake or the Truckee River.

"They're close to Reno and easily accessible," he said.

He also works for the Department of Wildlife during the summer, mixing his passion and vocation.

"I survey small streams around Nevada and check the population of fish to see how they are doing."

Fishing is a popular sport in Nevada. There are many places to go, whether you want to fish in a lake, river or creek. Nevada may be considered a desert state but from the looks of it, it is a fisherman's paradise.

Posted Dec. 13, 1998
Copyright 1998 Nevada Outpost