Bighorn Lake Fishing Report Guide

Bighorn Lake Fishing Report Guide

Welcome to the ultimate guide for fishing at Bighorn Lake, Wyoming! If you’re a fishing enthusiast or just looking for a great outdoor adventure, this guide will provide you with everything you need to know. We’ll cover all the important details about the lake, the types of fish you can catch, the best baits and lures, top fishing spots, and more. So, grab your fishing gear and let’s dive into the details of Bighorn Lake!

About Bighorn Lake Fishing Guide

Bighorn Lake is a hidden gem nestled in the breathtaking scenery of Wyoming. This lake is part of the Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area, which spans across Wyoming and Montana. The lake was created by the construction of the Yellowtail Dam on the Bighorn River. With its stunning cliffs, clear waters, and abundant wildlife, Bighorn Lake offers a serene and picturesque setting for fishing and outdoor activities.

Bighorn Lake Fishing Guide Details

Here are some essential details about Bighorn Lake:

  • Water Surface: Approximately 17,300 acres
  • Shoreline: 55 miles
  • Average Depth: 70 feet
  • Max Depth: 200 feet
  • Surface Elevation: 3,640 feet above sea level
  • Location: Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area, Wyoming
  • Coordinates: 45.0826° N, 108.2617° W
  • Accessibility: Accessible by boat ramps and several points along the shoreline
  • Type of Lake: Reservoir
  • Lake Amenities:
    • Boat ramps
    • Picnic areas
    • Restrooms
    • Camping sites
    • Hiking trails

Types of Fish in Bighorn Lake

Bighorn Lake is a fisherman’s paradise with a variety of fish species to catch. Here are some of the most common types of fish you’ll find in the lake:

  • Rainbow Trout: These fish are often found in the cooler, deeper waters of the lake. They prefer areas with plenty of cover, such as submerged rocks and fallen trees.
  • Brown Trout: Brown trout can be found in both shallow and deep areas. They are known to hang out near the mouths of tributaries and around rocky structures.
  • Walleye: Walleye are usually found in deeper waters during the day and move to shallower areas during the evening and night. They are often located near underwater structures and drop-offs.
  • Smallmouth Bass: These fish prefer rocky areas and are commonly found near the lake’s shoreline. They are known for their aggressive behavior and can be a lot of fun to catch.
  • Channel Catfish: Channel catfish are often found in the deeper, slower-moving parts of the lake. They like areas with plenty of cover, such as submerged logs and vegetation.
  • Northern Pike: Northern pike are usually found in the weedy, shallower areas of the lake. They are ambush predators and are often seen lurking near the shoreline.

Best Fishing Baits, Lures, and Tackle Recommendations for Bighorn Lake Fishing Guide

To maximize your chances of catching fish at Bighorn Lake, here are some recommended baits, lures, and tackle:

  • Rainbow Trout:
    • Baits: Worms, power bait, salmon eggs
    • Lures: Spinners, spoons, small crankbaits
    • Tackle: Light to medium action rod with a 4-8 lb test line
  • Brown Trout:
    • Baits: Minnows, nightcrawlers, power bait
    • Lures: Jigs, crankbaits, spinners
    • Tackle: Medium action rod with a 6-10 lb test line
  • Walleye:
    • Baits: Nightcrawlers, leeches, minnows
    • Lures: Jigs, crankbaits, spinnerbaits
    • Tackle: Medium action rod with an 8-12 lb test line
  • Smallmouth Bass:
    • Baits: Crayfish, minnows, worms
    • Lures: Jigs, crankbaits, spinnerbaits
    • Tackle: Medium action rod with a 6-10 lb test line
  • Channel Catfish:
    • Baits: Chicken liver, stink baits, cut bait
    • Lures: Not commonly used; prefer natural baits
    • Tackle: Heavy action rod with a 10-20 lb test line
  • Northern Pike:
    • Baits: Live fish, large minnows
    • Lures: Spoons, spinnerbaits, large crankbaits
    • Tackle: Heavy action rod with a 15-30 lb test line

Best Fishing Spot Locations at Bighorn Lake Fishing Guide

Here are some of the best fishing spots around Bighorn Lake:

  • Horseshoe Bend: Located on the Wyoming side of the lake, Horseshoe Bend offers great fishing for rainbow trout and smallmouth bass. The area has boat ramps and picnic spots, making it a perfect place for a family outing.
  • Devil’s Canyon Overlook: This spot provides stunning views and excellent fishing opportunities. The deep waters around the canyon are ideal for catching brown trout and walleye.
  • Barry’s Landing: Located in Montana but easily accessible, Barry’s Landing is known for its northern pike and channel catfish. The area has a boat ramp and is a popular spot for anglers.
  • Black Canyon: This remote area is great for those looking to catch large rainbow trout and brown trout. The deep, clear waters and rocky structures make it an ideal fishing spot.
  • Afterbay Dam: Below the Yellowtail Dam, the Afterbay is a hotspot for catching walleye and smallmouth bass. The water flow from the dam creates an ideal habitat for these fish.

Fishing Tips and Recommendations for Bighorn Lake Fishing Guide

Here are some helpful tips and recommendations for fishing at Bighorn Lake:

  • Time of Day: Early morning and late evening are the best times to fish. During these times, fish are more active and more likely to bite.
  • Season: Spring and fall are the best seasons for fishing at Bighorn Lake. The water temperatures are ideal, and fish are more active during these times.
  • Weather: Check the weather before heading out. Fish are more likely to bite on overcast days or right before a storm.
  • Safety: Always wear a life jacket when boating and make sure to check the local fishing regulations and obtain the necessary permits.
  • Explore Different Depths: Fish can be found at various depths, so don’t be afraid to experiment with different depths until you find where they are biting.

Bighorn Lake Fishing Guide Reviews

Here are some positive reviews from anglers who have experienced fishing at Bighorn Lake:

  1. John D. from Montana: “Bighorn Lake is my go-to fishing spot. The variety of fish and the beautiful scenery make it a perfect getaway. I’ve caught some of my biggest trout here!”
  2. Sarah M. from Wyoming: “I love fishing at Bighorn Lake with my family. The amenities are great, and we always have a wonderful time. The kids love catching smallmouth bass near the shore.”
  3. Mike T. from Colorado: “I’ve been fishing at Bighorn Lake for years, and it never disappoints. The walleye fishing is excellent, especially near the Afterbay Dam.”
  4. Lisa P. from Utah: “The peaceful setting and clear waters of Bighorn Lake make it one of my favorite fishing destinations. I always have luck catching rainbow trout at Horseshoe Bend.”
  5. Tom H. from Wyoming: “Bighorn Lake offers some of the best fishing in the region. The northern pike are huge, and the scenery is unbeatable.”

Top-Rated RV Parks, RV Resorts, and Campgrounds Near Bighorn Lake

If you’re planning to stay near Bighorn Lake, here are five top-rated RV parks, resorts, and campgrounds:

  1. Horseshoe Bend Campground:
    • Features: Spacious sites, picnic areas, restrooms, boat ramps
    • Amenities: Water, electric hookups, fire pits, hiking trails
    • Distance to Lake: On the shores of Bighorn Lake
  2. Barry’s Landing Campground:
    • Features: Scenic views, boat ramp, picnic areas
    • Amenities: Basic campsites, restrooms, fishing docks
    • Distance to Lake: On the shores of Bighorn Lake (Montana side)
  3. Afterbay Campground:
    • Features: Proximity to Afterbay Dam, picnic areas, restrooms
    • Amenities: Water, electric hookups, fire pits, hiking trails
    • Distance to Lake: Near Afterbay Dam
  4. Black Canyon Campground:
    • Features: Remote and peaceful, beautiful views, boat access
    • Amenities: Basic campsites, restrooms, picnic areas
    • Distance to Lake: Located in a more remote area of Bighorn Lake
  5. Lovell Campground and RV Park:
    • Features: Full-service RV park, nearby amenities, easy access
    • Amenities: Full hookups, Wi-Fi, laundry facilities, showers
    • Distance to Lake: Approximately 20 miles from Bighorn Lake

Bighorn Lake Fishing Guide Summary

Bighorn Lake is truly a fishing paradise with its diverse fish species, beautiful scenery, and excellent amenities. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or just starting out, Bighorn Lake has something to offer for everyone. From the cool, deep waters teeming with trout to the rocky shores perfect for bass fishing, this lake provides endless opportunities for a memorable fishing experience. So pack your gear, gather your friends and family, and head to Bighorn Lake for an unforgettable fishing adventure.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Bighorn Lake Fishing Guide

Q1: Do I need a fishing license to fish at Bighorn Lake? A1: Yes, a fishing license is required to fish at Bighorn Lake. Make sure to check the local regulations for the appropriate license.

Q2: Can I rent a boat at Bighorn Lake? A2: While there are no rental services directly at the lake, you can find boat rental services in nearby towns.

Q3: Are there any fishing tournaments held at Bighorn Lake? A3: Yes, Bighorn Lake hosts several fishing tournaments throughout the year. Check the local events calendar for more information.

Q4: Is there a limit on the number of fish I can catch? A4: Yes, there are specific regulations on the number and size of fish you can catch. Make sure to review the local fishing regulations.

Q5: What other activities can I do at Bighorn Lake? A5: Besides fishing, you can enjoy boating, hiking, camping, and wildlife viewing at Bighorn Lake.

That’s all for now, folks! We hope this guide helps you have an amazing fishing trip at Bighorn Lake. Tight lines and happy fishing!

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Best Fishing Bait, Lures & Tackle

Here’s some of the best fishing bait, fishing lures and fishing tackle Bighorn Lake Fishing Report Guide: