Category Archives: Fishing Eastern Idaho

Rainbows Of Late November

I had planned on the day being cool. I had insured that my gear bag had all the warm goodies for this time of year. Warm hat, gloves, socks, fleece hoodies, and waterproof boots were loaded for a day in the November elements. What I didn’t expect was the fresh snow as I looked out my window. That is fresh snow and snowing currently. Oh well, we had planned for this day so some snow wasn’t going to keep us from our destination.

Carefully I steered my ol’ jeep over and picked up my son at his house, and, met my son-in-law and grandson in their truck there also. We were offer to challenge the Rainbow Trout of Chesterfield Reservoir one last time before the lake began to ice up. The interstate highway wasn’t to bad and eventually we made our destination.

Chesterfield Reservoir is a fine trout fishery located out of Bancroft, Idaho. It’s history provides many stories of some fast growing Rainbow Trout and even a decent Brown Trout on occasion. When Chesterfield has a good water year and not effected by draw down the fishing can be very good. When we don’t have a good water year and the reservoir is effected by severe drawn down by the farmers, then the fishing can be more difficult. Chesterfield has also had a history of the need to be eradicated when the chub and other unwanted fish population becomes a problem. When it is right and Chesterfield is “on”, this lake may be one of the very best trout fisheries in all of Idaho.

Most of my fishing experience on Chesterfield has been from a boat. Today, however, because of the expected cooler weather we had chosen not to bring the boat. Actually, the hunter’s in my group had left a camp trailer at deer camp and we needed to bring the trailer home with us. So we had planned for a day of bank fishing thinking some good trout could be found near shore.

We started off fishing off the face of the dam. Cold wind blew in our face making comfort a problem, but, remember we had all prepared for the cold elements. Nothing was happening near the dam as a lot of debris was being blown directly into the face of the dam making retrieving lures or bait troublesome. We decided to move over to the bays on one side of the reservoir hoping to get out of the wind, or, at least as much wind as we had near the dam. We found a nice protected area along the shore that had a high brush line that protected us from the wind.

I spent some time casting Rapala lures and jigs, but, to no avail. I finally decided I might as well try something else and set up my rod with a Salmon Egg power bait, slip sinker, and some shot. Today wasn’t to be my day, but, I sure enjoyed being outdoors and on the water again before ice fishing season starts.

My grandson, Kaleb, and my son, Matt, were the lucky anglers for the day. Two big wonderful Rainbow Trout had visited their baited lines. Unfortunately, one of the big ‘bows came off just as we were reaching for the net. Sorry no pictures for that one, but, it was a splendid Rainbow. Not long after this beautiful Rainbow Trout was hooked and this time netted with pleasure. This is my grandson, Kaleb, with the prize of the day.


Posted by on November 28, 2009 in Fishing Eastern Idaho, Rainbow Trout


Catching A Trout That Is Older Than You Are!

Ok, what are the chances when your out on the water that you end up catching a fish that is older than you are? Probably, very improbable. However, as Brett Prettyman writes in the Salt Lake Tribune, it can be done! I would like to thank Brett for sharing this story with us here at Idaho Fishin’ Talk. Take a look at this!

Anglers usually describe the fish they catch by length, weight or numbers, but Jacob Brewer of Layton found a new way after landing a lake trout at Bear Lake last week: age.

Brewer caught the trout, which was 33 inches long and about 9 or 10 pounds, during a fishing trip to northern Utah on Nov. 7. When he got the fish to the boat he noticed an orange tag with the number 0275 stuck in the dorsal fin.

Brewer recorded the number and color of the tag, took a photo with the fish and then put it back in the lake. Returning home, Brewer contacted Scott Tolentino, the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources’ Bear Lake Project leader.

Upon hearing that the fish sported an orange tag, Tolentino immediately knew it was an older fish, but when he saw the picture he knew it was truly an old-timer.

“Lake trout are similar to humans in that the cartilage continues to grow throughout their lives,” he said. “People get larger ears and noses as they get older. With the old lake trout you see exceptionally large fins in proportion to the body length. I could tell by looking at its fins it was old.”

Tolentino checked records and discovered the fish received the tag, by Tolentino himself, after being caught in a gill net in September 1993. So the fish was at least 16 years old. But that old lake trout was about to get even older.

Brewer’s fish had also been marked by biologists when it was released into the lake by having its left pelvic fin

and adipose fin clipped off. Wildlife officials only used those exact clippings on one age class of fish, which was hatched in 1972 and placed into the lake in 1973.

The fish Brewer caught was more than 37 years old, Tolentino said, 11 years older than the angler who caught it.

Tolentino said it is common for lake trout in Bear Lake to reach ages over 25 due to the cold water and low food supply. The lake trout, cutthroat trout and whitefish in Bear Lake grow slowly as a result.

Tagged fish are common in Bear Lake. Tolentino said biologists from Utah and Idaho — the lake lies in both states –use the tags to track survival and movement of the fish.

Had Brewer kept the tag from his fish, Idaho Fish and Game would have owed him $5. Fisheries officials from that state initiated a program in the mid-1990s that rewarded anglers for turning in tags in hopes of gaining more information. The program was eventually shelved.

“It is encouraging to see lake trout being around for that many years,” Tolentino said. “It is something where we knew the potential was there. This just gives up documentation on how long they can live in Bear Lake.”


Posted by on November 19, 2009 in Fishing Eastern Idaho, Lake Trout Or Mackinaw


Fishing The Teton River Plus A Comment

I had planned on writing a new post about fishing a beautiful small mountain lake for some hungry trout, but, I am a U.S. Army Veteran and the incident at Ft. Hood just took me out for a few days. Somethings are just not understandable!

However, I thought I would share this new video from Trout Unlimited. Hope you enjoy and I will post the fishing trip in a few days.


Posted by on November 7, 2009 in Fishing Eastern Idaho, Quick Casts


Fall Fishing Favorites

My arms and legs tingled with anticipation as I walked the short trail down the river. It was a beautiful fall morning and the river section I had selected only had a couple of anglers in sight. The two anglers were poached on a couple of boulders on the far side of the river just below the dam. They were throwing heavily weighted sinkers with a bait of some sort into the heavy water from the spillway. My plan was to fish a run in the river downstream from them. The first few casts into the river were more exploratory than anything else. I was just working out the kinks from the last time I had fished. After a several casts and moving down stream a bit, I came across a section with an undercut bank that just looked really enticing to me. I was fishing with a floating jointed Rapala in the Rainbow Trout color. I cast the lure out into the stream and let it swim down the run. Nothing out in the deeper part of the run, but, my plan was too swim it up near the undercut bank on the retrieve. I watched closely as my lure rode along just sub-surface and reeled slowly as to keep the lure near the undercut bank as long as I possibly could. Suddenly, I felt the hit of a good trout. My plan had worked! After a tussle with the trout on the end of my line, I brought near shore at my feet where I could see it. It was a beautiful fall Brown Trout!

I brought it ashore and quickly as I could took my camera out and shot a quick picture of this Brown and then quickly released him to swim back to his undercut bank for another day and another time.

The fall fishing season is my favorite time of year. I love fishing for Brown Trout in the fall, and, as we know some big Brown Trout can be caught in the fall of the year as they prepare for the colder winter months to come. They are spawning and can be aggressive to protect their area. I do not fish directly over spawning beds, so let me make that clear. I do look for big Brown Trout, though!

In addition, the fall season is Elk hunting season. Nothing is more beautiful than to be outdoors in the fall of the year in the crisp air enjoying the beautiful color changes in our landscape and listening to a bugling elk off in the distance somewhere. I am not a hunter, as most of you know by know, however a bugling elk is one of the most beautiful sounds of the outdoors. Thought I would share a photo from my archives of a little ol’ Elk who came to visit one day while fishing.

Now that is what I call a double dip for the fall season.

Idaho Has ‘Eyes!

Yes, indeed, Idaho has Walleye fishing. Now one doesn’t normally think of Idaho and excellent Walleye fishing in the same thought. Idaho is a cold water mecca, right? Lots of Trout water, Steelhead runs, and Salmon migrations, right? Yes, all of the above statements are true. But, hold on there all you would be adventure seekers in Idaho and beyond. Idaho has some very good warm water fishing also. Bass are becoming more and more popular targets in waters throughout parts of Idaho. There are lifetime trout anglers who are finding great fun and success chasing Smallmouth Bass and Largemouth Bass around in their lakes and streams. We all know what a kick in the pants it is to be on a pond or lake catching a bucket full of Bluegill and Perch. Ahh….. those are the times!

Another fish gaining popularity in Idaho waters, in a few selected places, is the Walleye. The folks who fish Walleye successfully (by the way, that is not me yet!) are an avid group of intense anglers who cherish finding and fishing for Walleye with their favorite jig or other lure or bait. That brings me to what this whole post is leading too.

Let me introduce you to Mike Chupa and his new Idaho State Record Walleye taken just a couple of days ago from a Southern Idaho Reservoir.

That is (17) pounds and (12) more ounces of Walleye. What a great fish. I have to ask you, Mike, is that really your fish or did she catch it and your just getting all the camera time? Just funnin’ with ya’. Just to show you that Mike knows what he is doing look at this photo of the Idaho State Record Walleye and another great Walleye that he caught on the same trip. Now them are some ‘Eyes.

Yes, my blogging friends, Idaho has ‘Eyes!