PYRAMID LAKE

Reno, Nevada

About the Program

Pyramid Lake is home to the world’s largest Cutthroat Trout. Fishing for these giants is a true “Bucket List” experience. Lahontan Cutthroat Trout, reaching over 20 pounds, roam the waters here. Our premiere guide service gives you the best chance to catch a fish of a lifetime.

You are standing on a ladder in the middle of a high desert lake with small waves crashing around you as you play tug of war with a trout as long as a yardstick.  Imagine your guide scooping this enormous fish into a huge net and shouting out 20 pounds, 20 pounds. These stories happen almost daily at Pyramid Lake. 

Pyramid lake is located 40 minutes outside of Reno Nevada. It’s shores are totally within the boundaries of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Indian Reservation. Anglers come from all over the world for a chance to catch one of the enormous Lahontan Cutthroat Trout that lives in its waters. Our guide service, Pyramid Lake Fly Fishing, is the oldest and largest fishing outfitter at the lake.

Lahontan is the subspecies of Cutthroat trout that live in the lake. Named for lake Lahontan which existed up until the end of the ice age and eventually turned into numerous smaller lakes in Nevada, California, Oregon and Utah, many which have now completely dried up. Pyramid Lake became the new home to this giant lake trout. 

Fishing

Fly fishing is done in several ways at the lake. Boats, Float Tubes, kayaks and Pontoon Boats are all viable options but Pyramid Lake is world famous for the place that anglers fish from some type of a Ladder. 

Pyramid Lake is a huge high desert lake with hardly any shoreline structure or weed beds. Anglers wade out into the frigid alkaline water and place a ladder in the sand, climb on and cast out into deeper water and over drop offs. The huge trout in the lake frequently cruise the shallows searching for food which comes in the form of minnows, smaller trout and the abundant bug life in the lake. This puts the “Ladder fisherman” in a prime location to be able to cast to these amazing fish. 

7-9 weight rods paired with a fast sinking shooting head and all kinds of batifish patterns are commonly used to imitate the Tui chub minnow that lives in the lake. The amazing thing is these monster fish love to eat large chironomids. We frequently catch fish between 15-20 pounds on a size 12-14 midge pattern fished under an indicator. 

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Our expertise at the lake putting anglers on the right beach at the right time, fishing the right flies at the right depth is why our guide service is 2nd to none with an astounding repeat client rate. Throw in an amazing shore lunch where we barbeque right on the beach makes for a really fun day on the water. 

Our Pyramid Lake Guide service has been taking anglers fishing for over 18 years. Our programs include day trips for one or two anglers, group outings like bachelor parties and family gatherings, one and two day fishing clinics, fly fishing club outings and just about any other reason to go on a fishing trip. 

We have a dedicated website for Pyramid Lake with even more information on this fantastic fishery and everything you need to know to come to Reno and chase down our world class trout. www.pyramidlakeflyfishing.com is the source if you would like more information on fishing with us. Or contact us directly via phone or email to get on our calendar in the future.

Trip Description

This portion of the trip varies from trip to trip. We highly recommend our guests are in Reno sometime the day before the first day of fishing because we usually start really early.

We suggest our guests have their own transportation to and from the lake. We commonly stay at the lake during the fishing season to cut down on our commute and to be ready at the crack of dawn for a day of fishing. We can with plenty of notice pick up smaller parties of one or two anglers at a hotel in Reno. This needs to be arranged at the time of booking the trip. 

The days usually start early at Pyramid lake. The first 45 minutes before the sun hits the water can be a magical time to fish. Sunrise times will determine the actual starting time of the day. Anglers will meet their guide at a predetermined location at a predetermined time. Your guide will quickly help you geet rigged up and ready for the day so as to not miss the low light fishing time. Our fishing days are 8-9 hours on the water and include morning coffee and a hot shore lunch prepared by one of our amazing guides. Starting and ending times of the day can be altered by your schedule as well. During the day it may be necessary to move a time or two based on fishing conditions and the weather. Be ready to move. You will be close to your vehicle at almost all of our fishing locations at the lake. At the end of the day a next day plan with a meeting time and place will be discussed before you head back to your hotel for the evening. We highly recommend at least a three day trip with us to have a really good chance to fish in the best conditions and catch one of these monster Lahontan Cutthroat Trout. 

Day”  (click here)

First light anglers are in the water

8:00-8:30 am – Hot Coffee and a break

12:00 pm ish Hot Lunch on the Water

12:30 pm – After lunch, fishing until Mid Afternoon

3:00 pm – Back to the Hotel

Included each day

  • Full Day guided fishing trip
  • flies, leaders are included in standard guided days
  • rods and reels upon request when booking for standard guided days
  • Coffee, water, gatorade and a hot lunch at the lake.

Not Included

  • travel expenses and hotels
  • Most flies and terminal tackle in group or outing rates
  • Tips and Gratuities to staff and guides
  • Fishing or camping permits
  • Anything not mentioned in inclusions

 

$450 for one full day one or two anglers 

$300 for half day one or two anglers

$100 for each additional angler up to 5 anglers total

Group Rates for 6 or more anglers

Go to our Pyramid Lake website for much more detailed information on anything pertaining to your trip.

www.pyramidlakeflyfishing.com

 

Travel Information

Flying into town for this trip basically means ending up at the Reno-Tahoe International airport in Reno Nevada. There are many hotels nearby the airport in town. A lot of guests also drive to Reno for this trip. San Francisco is only 4 hours away. Los Angeles and Las Vegas and Salt Lake City are about 8 hours. 

Our Travel Partner, Martin Travel has been booking flights with us for over 15 years. They have vast experience booking these flights and have our itineraries. We highly recommend booking your flights with Martin Travel. They can access frequent flyer miles, deal with the occasional schedule change with the airlines and in many cases get preferred seating. 

Phone – 954-748-6881

Email –  kmartin@martintravelservices.com

www.martintravelservices.com

Most of our guests like to stay in Reno at one of the Resort Properties. These Hotel Casinos offer guests easy parking access, many on-site restaurants and a place to relax and get a shower and a good night’s rest between fishing days. We are partnered with the Nugget Resort for special room rates and other extras for our guests. The Nugget is the closest hotel to the lake as well located at the end of Pyramid Lake highway 32 miles away. There are also some camping options at the lake for those with an RV or a Trailer. Our guides commonly camp out at the lake during the busy fishing season.

Reno, “The biggest Little City in the World”  is only 40 minutes from Pyramid Lake. It has changed a lot over the past 10 years to go from mostly a casino town to a business center for many large companies and an unbelievable place to live. There are tons of outdoor activities including hiking, biking, skiing, river rafting and fishing nearby. A bunch of really nice restaurants and a business area downtown near casinos and hotels.

The fishing season at Pyramid lake is from October 1st until June 30th with three closed months in the summer due to warm water conditions. the weather can range from below freezing temperatures in the winter to really mild and enjoyable daytime highs in the 70’s and 80’s. It is important before coming on a trip to Reno and Pyramid lake to check the weather and dress accordingly. 

Equipment

The equipment you choose to take with you on any trip can change your experience. Having the right flies, fly lines and leaders can really make a difference. Rods and reels are also a key part of this trip. In some cases, you may already have many things that you need to take with you but in most cases, anglers will make some important decisions on new gear to add to their arsenal for this trip.

7-9 Weight 9-9.5 ft rods

5-7 weight 11 ft switch rods

Lightweight reel with good drag to handle large taper fly line

Long casts at Pyramid Lake can make a difference in the amount of fish you catch. The size of the rods recommended are as much about the cast is they are about the size of the fish. A stiffer rod will also make a difference in distance, especially in windy conditions. Many anglers have gone to switch rods for Pyramid to help with distance casting. 

It is important to have a reel that is saltwater worthy at Pyramid. The lake is very alkaline and this can cause havoc on your drag system if it is not sealed.

More info on our Pyramid Lake Website

Long Taper Floating line Like Rio Salmon and Steelhead. 

Fast Sinking shooting heads 24 ft to 30 ft in length and can sink at least 6 inches per second. 

A floating line is needed for Indicator Nymphing 

A fast sinking line like a type 6 is needed to fish any of the streamers.

More info on our Pyramid Lake Website

Flies and Leaders

The flies we use at Pyramid Lake are very specific. If you are unfamiliar with these flies you can see them on our online store at pyramidlakeflyfishing.com

Unweighted Wooly Worms in size 2-4

Foam Beetles and Tadpoles in size 6-8

Maholo nymphs and midges in size 10-14

Balanced Leeches and Minnows in size 4-8

12lb -15lb fluorocarbon Tippet for Streamer fishing

8lb – 12lb fluorocarbon Tippet for Nymphs and Midges

Tapered leaders are not required. Straight Tippet leaders will work fine

Layering is the key to being comfortable. Plan on it being cold. A beanie and a water-wind proof jacket are a must. Plenty of layers under your waders and a thick pair of socks. The weather can be really nice also, so if you have layers you should be all set. Don’t forget to bring your waders. 

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