This last weekend I spent hiking and fishing at a couple of lakes near Leadore, Idaho. We camped at what I call "No Name Lake" (because the map does not reference a name), a small lake nestled below some of the impressive Lemhi range mountains. No Name is full of native cutthroat trout which range from the 4" to 16". I have seen a few bigger fish taken out of this lake but based on the number of campers/backpackers, No Name is no longer a secret. Fishing pressure and keeping the larger fish has taken a toll on the bigger fish. However, I did land two beautiful 16" inch cutthroats as well as a couple of 14" cutthroats.
I was fishing with my spinning rod, a clear plastic bubble, and flies. At first I tried wet flies and caught a few on bead headed woolly worms (green was the best) but overall it was pretty slow. I ended up catching three small cutts.
Friday morning we hiked over the mountain to Yellow Lake. Fishing was relatively slow at Yellow Lake. I caught three 12" rainbows. One on a size 12 black gnat and two on a size 4 bead headed woolly worm (green).
Friday afternoon changed things for me. I noticed the fish jumping and just happened to have a size 16/18 black bodied mayfly land on my arm. So of course I switched over to a the closed thing I had...a size 18 parachute adams. I drained my bubble to 3/4 so it would float and threw it out for a test run. First cast resulted in a nice 12" cutthroat. After about 6 fish I finally caught a hefty 16" cutthroat. The water was so clear that I was able to watch him take the fly about 20 yards out. I ended up catching over 10 trout with this set up.
I went back out later that night and after a very slow start finally found the right fly...a size 16 yellow bodied elk hair caddis that was similar in color and size to some golden stoneflies that I noticed flying around. I ended up catching 7 fish on the caddis, one was another 16" cutthroat that I watched sneak up from the bottom and take it off the surface.
The fishing wasn't the hottest but after 30+ fish I definitely call it a success. No Name and Yellow Lake are amazing high mountain fisheries and should be visited by any lover of trout fishing.