Outdoor Nevada | Ladder Fly-Fishing at Pyramid Lake

Outdoor Nevada | Ladder Fly-Fishing at Pyramid Lake

♪♪♪Some people fish
from the shore.
Some fish from a boat.But around here,
fishermen drag ladders
into a sacred lake
also known as Pyramid Lake.
Fly fishing in Nevada
is a common phenomenon, but out here
at Pyramid Lake, there’s something
very strange that goes on. They go fly fishing
using ladders, and there’s one guy
who knows more about this than anybody else,
Rob Anderson. Rob, how are you
doing, man? -Hey, John.
-Nice seeing you. -How are you, man?
-I’m great. Rob owns Reno
Fly Fishing Outfitters,
and he’s the man that’s
going to show me the ropes,
or in this case,
the lines.
What’s the skinny
with the ladders? (Rob Anderson)
So over thousands of years,
Pyramid has receded about 80 or 90 feet,
and the whole west shore is sand just like
the beach here. Once you walk out into
about waist-deep water, there’s a little ledge
that drops into maybe 7 or 8 feet of water. We carry these ladders out
and set them in the sand, and you can see
on a day like today where the wind’s coming in,
we actually stand up on the ladders to get out
of the cold water and the waves so we can fish
in that deeper water. I’m ready to get started,
so what do we do? -Let’s wader up
and get out there. -All right.
Let’s do it. Pyramid Lake is 40 miles
northeast of Reno
and covers 125,000 acres.It’s one of the largest
natural lakes in the state.
The water
is about 60 degrees,
so we get geared up
before we wade out there.
This is obviously different
than fishing in a stream. Are those flies going under
or staying on top? -No, they’re sinking flies. The goal is to get them
right on the bottom. Because there’s no
structures in the lake, it’s all sand, the fish
feed along the bottom.Looks like we’re ready
to head out to the shore.
Rob’s going to show me
how to cast my line
in this cold, choppy water.Okay, now transfer it
into your other hand. See, you let go here. If you don’t let go,
you hold it, hold it, don’t let go,
boom. Do it again.
-Hold it, don’t let go. -This is going to get
40 times harder out there, so we gotta quickly
get this under control.Clearly this is more
complicated than I thought.
I’ll see if I can get this
right in deeper water.
What kind of fish are
we fishing for, anyway? -Lahontan cutthroat trout. -They get kind of
big, right? -Yeah. The average size
fish in the lake is about 20 to 22 inches. I’m hoping to catch
one of these
Lahontan cutthroat trout,
but catfish, bass
and a local fish called
cui-ui are all common here.
This lake is on Paiute
Reservation land,
so most fish
must be released.
And the idea is you’re
just trying to get to that shelf
that drops off, right? -Right. You see the
green water out there where it gets deeper? That’s where we’re
trying to get to.I’m out here on a ladder
in the middle of a lake.
This feels a little weird,but I’m ready
to catch some fish.
I’ve fished before,
but this is a first. It’s great, though. -Yup, there you go.
Do that again. Do it again. Stop right there.
Rod tip down. That’s far enough. Don’t let out
all that line! Now you have to pull it
all back to you, all that hard work you did.Looks like I keep
trying to use
my old fishing techniques.But Rob gives me
a few more pointers,
and now I think I’m ready.-There you go!
Fish on. -Got it!
Oh, he got off. -Okay. So when you pull up,
keep the pressure going. -Oh, shucks! I thought
I had that one.Maybe I’ll have better
luck this time around.
♪♪♪ Come on, guy. This is where you got
to talk to them, right? Just get tired
and come on in. There we go! ♪♪♪That’s a good time!Oh, gosh, so beautiful!I just caught a Lahontan
cutthroat trout.
Rob points out that her
belly is swollen with eggs,
so we set her back out
into the water.
It really wasn’t
that hard to do once you get
the casting down. Setting the hook in
really wasn’t that bad, and they’re right here
on this shelf that goes down like that. So this is a perfect way
to spend an afternoon.The water changes
from shades of blue
to gray depending
on the color of the sky.
On the horizon lie these
limestone tufa formations.
Their shape gave
the name to Pyramid Lake.
Before I leave, I try
to reel in one more fish.
♪♪♪Yes! Rob and I caught
another one!
All right. I can
go home a happy man.
I tell you, I’ve had
the time of my life. I’ve never done
this sort of thing. Thank you so much.
That was awesome. -That was awesome.
It’s people like you that keep me
from getting a real job. -It’s people like you
that help me catch fish. If you want to do
some fly fishing, you gotta get on a ladder and get yourself
to Pyramid Lake.

local_offerevent_note September 29, 2019

account_box Gilbert Heid


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