and Overview Pyramid
Lake is located in northwestern Nevada, about 40 miles from
Reno. Home to native Lahontan cutthroat trout, the lake sits
on land belonging to the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe. When much
of the water from the Truckee River was diverted to agricultural
uses in 1938, the Lahontan fishery suffered considerably due
to a lack of water flowing into the lake. The Paiute tribe
helped negotiate an agreement in the 1970's which restored
enough of the Truckee's water to Pyramid Lake to sustain a
new Lahontan fishery, and as a result the lake is once again
home to some outstanding cutthroat fishing. The tribe also
maintains the Numana Fish Hatchery, which raises Lahontans
for stocking in the lake.
get to Pyramid Lake, take NV State Highway 445 north from
the Reno/Sparks area, or go north on NV 447 from Fernley (check
out the map).
Fishermen rate Pyramid Lake:
1925, John Skimmerhorn took a 41-pound cutthroat trout in
Pyramid Lake - a world record which still stands today. The
lake remains a mecca for devoted trout fishermen. Trolling
with flashy lures like Fish Holograms or Tor-P-Dos is a good
producer of fish. Fairly large and heavy lures (7/8 ounce) are the order
of the day, since the fish tend to congregate in deeper water
beyond the drop-offs that ring the edge of lake.
fishermen generally report good results with similar flashy
spoons on 8- to 10-pound test. Fly fishermen do well with
#4-6 Woolly Buggers and Woolly Worms, and #6 Stanley Streamers
and other streamer patterns. Be prepared to cast a considerable
distance if you choose to fish from shore. Because the water
near the bank tends to be shallow, leading up to drop-offs
into deeper water, many shore fishermen take a step ladder
or milk crate with them to stand on while fishing in the shallows.
Since the fish tend to hold on or below the drop-offs, the
extra height this affords allows anglers to better place their
casts for maximum effect.
trout are by far the biggest draw here, Pyramid Lake is also
home to a thriving Sacramento Perch population. Try small
jigs around weeds or rocks if you want to catch some of these
good areas for bank fishing include Popcorn Beach, Sandhole
Beach, "The Nets," and the Warrior Point area on
the west side of the lake, and L.A. Rock and the Great Stone
Mother on the east shore. Keep in mind that the east shore
of Pyramid Lake is restricted to day use only (no camping),
and that most areas on that shore can be accessed only via
boat launch ramp is located on the west shore of the lake
Lodge. Supplies and tackle may be purchased at the lodge
or at the Pyramid
Lake Store. Guide services are available from a number
of different outfitters; for further information, ask at either
of the two stores.
anglers must have a Tribal Fishing Permit in their possession
while fishing. These are available at Crosby
Lodge in Sutcliffe, on the west shore of the lake, and
at the Pyramid
Lake Store located on Pyramid Lake Road (NV 445). Be sure
to obey the size and possession limits outlined below
while fishing at Pyramid. Trout season runs from October 1
to June 30 each year, while perch may be taken all year round.
Pyramid Lake Weather
With a surface elevation of 3800 feet, Pyramid Lake does not
sit at particularly high elevation. Still, due to its location
in northern Nevada,
winters tend to be cold and summers relatively hot. High temperatures
in July and August will typically climb into the 90's, with
wintertime highs in the 40's and 50's. Winter lows easily
drop down into the 20's at night. Keep in mind that Pyramid
Lake is in a desert, which means there is little or no natural
shade around the shore of the lake. Take appropriate precautions
during the summer months to avoid dehydration and sunburn.
should also check the latest weather forecast before launching
and be aware of any changes in conditions that may pose a
hazard while on the lake.
to see current weather conditions and forecasts for the town
and Camping Crosby Lodge
in Sutcliffe is the only lodging option located close to Pyramid
Lake. The lodge offers cabin and trailer rentals, and has
a store with groceries and supplies. Lodging is also available
both located about a 30-minute drive south on NV 445, and
located south of the lake via NV 447.
there are no areas designated as parks or campgrounds at Pyramid
Lake other than Warrior Point Park, camping is permitted along
the west shore of the lake except in areas signed otherwise.
A tribal camping permit is required. These may be purchased
at either of the stores located near the lake, and cost $5.00
per day or $35.00 for a ten-day permit. A 120-day permit is
available for $100.00, with the stipulation that it may be
used for only up to 10 continuous days at a time. No camping
is permitted on the east shore of the lake, which is designated
for day use only.
those who enter reservation land but are not fishing or camping,
a day use permit is required. These cost $5.00 per day, or
a seasonal day pass may be purchased for $32.00.
the complete Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe camping and day use
Pyramid Lake is open to fishing year round, with fishing allowed
from one hour before sunrise to one hour after sunset. Only
artificial flies and lures may be used. Trout season is open
from October 1 to June 30 each year. Anglers 12 years of age
or older must have a valid Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe fishing
permit in their possession while fishing. These are available
from the stores listed above, and cost $6.00 for a daily permit
or $32.00 for an annual permit. Non-fishermen must have a
day use pass as noted above.
waters are closed to fishing, including the entire length
of the Marble Bluff Fishway and that part of the lake within
600 feet of the mouth of the fishway, the Truckee River between
Numana Dam and Pyramid Lake, the fish pens located in the
Sutcliffe area, and that portion of the lake within a 1000-foot
radius of the fish attraction channel near the fish pens.
and possession limits are as follows:
Trout - Two trout or salmon in combination may be taken each
day, with a possession limit of four fish total. A slot limit
applies to trout. Legal size is from 16 to 19 inches, or 24
inches and longer. Only one fish 24 inches or longer may be
possessed. This is to protect spawning fish so that the fishery
may be sustained.
Perch - Five fish per day, not to exceed five fish in possession.
Pyramid Lake is home to the endangered Cui-Ui, a type of sucker.
These may not be taken or possessed except
under certain conditions by members of the Paiute Tribe.
other game fish not listed have no size, bag or possession
the complete Pyramid Lake fishing regulations, click