Best Time to Fish at Scofield Reservoir is During Ice-Off

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Utah Division of Wildlife Resources Press Release

Some of the best trout fishing anglers will find all year is about to begin at Scofield Reservoir.

“As the ice recedes, fishing heats up,” says Utah Division of Wildlife Resources Regional Outreach Manager Brent Stettler. “This is one of the best chances you will have all year to catch big trout from the shore.”

And those big trout could include a record tiger trout. The state tiger trout record has been broken at Scofield two times in the past three years.

Scofield also has a good population of cutthroat trout. A few rainbows are found in the reservoir too.

On April 14, DWR Regional Aquatic Biologist Calvin Black said the reservoir had a ring of open water around the shoreline. He also saw large areas of open water on the northern and southern ends of the reservoir.

When the ice sheet is within casting distance, anglers do well casting bait onto the ice and letting it drop into the water. Trout will usually take the bait as it falls. If the ice is beyond casting distance, cast and retrieve jigs or tube jigs tipped with bait.

Drew Cushing, warm water sports fishery coordinator for the DWR, says tigers and cutthroats prey on Utah chubs in Scofield. “That makes chub meat one of the best baits to use during ice off,” he advised.

To catch a chub for bait, put a bobber on the line about two or three feet above the hook, crimp a split shot about one foot above the hook, then use place a small piece of nightcrawler as bait. Cast it out, and wait for a chub to bite.

After catching a chub, cut the meat into small pieces. Then, to catch a trout, cast the chub meat and let it dangle beneath the bobber. If targeting a trophy tiger, throw out a whole chub, and let it drift or settle.

Other baits can also produce success in the spring. For rainbow trout, start with chartreuse or rainbow PowerBait with glitter. Anglers can also try worms, dead minnows or chunks of sucker meat.

Anglers who like to throw spinners, should bring along a few gold and silver Jake’s Spin-a-Lures and Kastmasters. Crankbaits can also be good lures to try. Watermelon and chartreuse are good colors for both crankbaits and jigs.

Frequent fishing updates are available on many online fishing forums and the DWR’s free fishing reports. To subscribe to the reports, visit wildlife.utah.gov/e-lists.

Call Scofield State Park at (435) 448-9449 or the DWR’s Southeastern Region office at (435) 613-3700 with any questions regarding fishing at Scofield Reservoir.

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