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The 91-mile-long Flaming Gorge Reservoir is the crown jewel for fishing in Sweetwater County. In addition to world record German Browns in the 1970s and 80s, these waters were home to the state’s record-breaking 51 lb. 8 oz. lake trout. To this day, the state’s largest fish are still found in the reservoir.
What the reservoir provides in size, it also matches in variety, offering burbot, brown trout, channel catfish, kokanee salmon, lake trout, rainbow trout, and smallmouth bass. With ample water surface and depth, many fishing techniques are plausible options: trolling, vertical jigging, fly-fishing on the near by Green River and more. With boat ramps and camping spots, the Flaming Gorge Reservoir has everything you need for your fishing vacation.
Download a map of Lake Flaming Gorge here.
Rainbows are found throughout the reservoir and usually become active in April. When fishing top water down to 50 feet, rainbows, browns, and 20” – 26” lake trout are plentiful. By May or early June, Kokanee salmon action picks up. They will stay shallow—typically between 25 to 30 feet deep—in the winter and spring and go deeper in the summer months. During the summer months, lake trout can be found at 70- to 120-foot depths, where they gorge and grow to enormous sizes. During the summer, even smallmouth bass can be found along the rocky shoreline habitat throughout the Gorge.
Discover some of the best cold-water fishing in Sweetwater County.
The large lake trout that anglers find during the summer months at 40- to 80-foot depths can often be caught through the ice. Sweetwater County is home to several ice fishing contests in the winter as well, including the annual Burbot Bash. This contest aims to get rid of as many of the invasive burbot as possible from the reservoir every year.
For more information on ice fishing, check out our guide to ice fishing.
To help anglers navigate the huge reservoir, we’ve put together a few hot spots, from north to south, to help fishermen who are new to the area get started on the perfect Flaming Gorge fishing trip.
This unique area in Flaming Gorge is toward the northern side of the lake. Since Firehole Canyon’s fishing waters are located under towering North and South Chimney Rocks, fishermen won’t be at a loss for spectacular views between catches. And since an average angler can expect to put in many hours between fish, these views will not go unappreciated. Take advantage of the boat ramp, picnic area, camping sites and public restrooms to extend your fishing trip before heading further south.
Currant Creek, across from Buckboard Marina, is a great place to stop to catch some fish. Stock up on bait and pick up some new lures at the Marina on the west side of the reservoir, and head over to the east side to drop a line for a busy day of fishing. Depending on the time of year, you might want to plan on joining one of the marina’s fishing events such as the Buckboard Classic Fishing Derby.
If you visit the area late in the season, Holmes Crossing and Anvil Draw are alive with action and worth a stop. Float between the two areas, and find yourself coming home with large, Wyoming fish.
Travel a little further south and stop to catch some more Flaming Gorge fish. Linwood Bay, located on the Utah side of the Lake Flaming Gorge near Lucerne Marina, is always a hot spot to catch the big ones. The area is famous for trophy fishing, unparalleled scenic canyon views and abundant wildlife—including fish! Linwood Bay is one of the best places to fish for kokanee in Lake Flaming Gorge. Check out the Lucerne Marina schedule of events to see if you’re passing through during one of their unbeatable events like the Flaming Gorge Fishing Derby.
Although the Wyoming side of the Flaming Gorge Reservoir is known for its huge fish, the Utah side has at least one stop you can’t miss. Finish your trip floating on the Green River, just below the Flaming Gorge Dam, and experience one of the most renowned trout fisheries in the world. The clear waters of this area support a huge population of trout, with rainbows more abundant just below the dam and browns more common downstream.
Download a map of the Flaming Gorge to find these fishing hot spots!
For more information on fishing, rules and regulations, visit the Wyoming Game & Fish Department.