Nevada Sand Hill Lakes  Rainbow Trout  Day #19  State #22 July 1, 2009 06/13/09 Pennsylvania
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Nevada Fishing Service
Host: Doug Ouellette

90 Saddle Lane
Reno, NV 89506
Phone: 775-969-3237
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Let me first say – We now LOVE Nevada!  As we left the Grand Canyon in Arizona the day before we were looking at a 753 mile drive to our destination in Nevada.  We had always planned that we would not try to drive this all on one day.  But, after talking to Shaun Gilbert of Nevada Fishing Service we decided we really needed to beat the heat and get to Reno in one day so that we could be on the water the next morning at 7AM.  This change of plans meant we didn’t have an RV campground reserved so we thought we would just park in a Wal-Mart parking lot.  After all, we would only be there 5 hours or so.  But, when we arrived in Reno at 11:30PM we found out that RV parking in any lot in Reno was prohibited.  Our host the next morning was to be Doug Ouellette, an expert fly fishing instructor, who lived nearby.  So, we used the proverbial internet to locate the neighborhood where he lived – and figured we could park on his street and have a good alibi if the police came knocking.  Five hours later we were up and rolling toward our destination – a small series of lakes in the foothills north of Reno fed by cold springs that keep a population of rainbow trout quite happy.

Could we really catch a trophy fish in one of these small lakes?  After the first twenty minutes of casting from the shoreline with little activity Doug Ouellette suggested we jump in his personal float tubes and give that a try.  This was our first experience using these nifty little craft so we were eager to give it a try – flippers and all.

After the first hour we managed one nice 16” rainbow – and then the fun began.  You know the pictures of people catching huge rainbow trout in places like New Zealand or Alaska – well, we found them in the Sand Hill Lakes of Nevada – and at the end of our fly rods.

Over our four hour stay Taylor and I landed 18 rainbows, 2 brook trout, and 3 smallmouth bass.  Five of the rainbows were MONSTERS.  Taylor caught four that weighed 9-12 pounds each and ranged in length from 25-28”.  I know it is hard to believe but check out the pictures.  It was an unbelievable morning of fishing.  I even caught one myself that weighed 11 pounds – 8 pounds bigger than my largest trout before today.  The fight this fish put up was the most amazing experience though.  When the fish hit my fly sitting 15 yards away it immediately took off – stayed high in the water with his dorsal fin showing and literally kept my line tight as he swam a 270 degree arc around me.  He nearly clothes lined Taylor in the process.  It reminded me of a scene in the movie “Jaws” when they first hooked the Great White it took off with the rope singing across the ocean surface.  The three of us commented that we had never seen anything like that in our collective 100 years of fishing.

This was a day to remember and if you ever find yourself in Reno, Nevada or nearby stay an extra day and call these guys – you’ll have the experience of a lifetime.

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Fish    Last Updated July 1, 2009  - Copyright 2009