Upper Green River Valley offers first-rate fishing opportunities year-round, and
winter is no exception. With nine months of winter in western Wyoming, it's a
good thing for the avid fisherman!
lakes typically freeze around late December and stay frozen until about mid-March.
Our coldest month generally is January, bringing several weeks of sub-zero weather
to put a good layer of ice on even our largest lakes. Closest lakes for ice fishing
near Pinedale are Fremont and Half Moon Lakes.
winter, usually in early March, the Pinedale Boat Club sponsors the Big Fish Ice
Fishing Derby on Fremont Lake. This is a 2-day weekend event that draws fishermen
(and women) from all over western Wyoming, Idaho and Utah.
Wyoming Game & Fish Department recommends at least four inches of clear ice
for safe fishing. Although 12-14 inches of ice are reported to support a vehicle.
The G&F discourages driving on a frozen lake. Fluctuating water levels in
reservoirs and our wind impact ice conditions and can create very dangerous conditions.
Be aware of recent weather conditions and temperatures and scout out the lake
your wish to fish for overflow, wet areas and open water. With variable ice conditions
across the state anglers are urged to call local sources to confirm conditions
and to drill test holes when venturing onto the lake or reservoir.
G&F recommends fishing on the buddy system for safety. Anglers are advised
to wear a life jacket or personal flotation device, plus a pair of ice picks,
screw drivers or big nails with about 5 feet of wire draped around the neck. The
PFD will help you stay buoyant while grabbing the ice picks to get a grip and
pull yourself safely onto the ice. The G&F also suggests team anglers bring
a small extension ladder in the truck which can be pushed to the hole so the victim
can grab it and be pulled out. To help fend off hypothermia in the event of getting
wet in an ice fishing accident, extra clothes and hot liquids are also mandatory
ice fishing equipment.
southwest Wyoming, G&F Fish Biologist Bill Wengert warns anxious ice anglers
the ice on the Green River, or any river, is never safe. "Shifting river
currents under the ice and weather conditions make river ice very unpredictable
and extremely dangerous," he said. "Parents are advised to keep their
children off the ice on the Green River and to keep a close eye on pets as well."
and where to ice fish
to be found include Mackinaw, our largest species, German brown trout and rainbow
trout. In a few select locations on New Fork and Boulder lakes it is possible
to find kokanee (freshwater salmon). The two closest large lakes near Pinedale,
Fremont and Half Moon, are both open to ice fishing in the winter, and can be
driven to year-round. Other lakes may require a snowmobile trip to access (Willow,
New Fork, Boulder, Green river Lakes and Middle Piney Lakes). Lakes CLOSED to
fishing in the winter include Burnt, Meadow and Soda Lakes.
requires fishing licenses for resident and nonresident anglers 14 years of age
and over. Fishing
licenses, regulations, bait and gear, are all available in Pinedale at local hardware
and sporting goods stores.
Game & Fish Fishing Regulations
Local Outfitters & Guides
Pinedale Online News Stories & Ice Fishing Photos:
Big Fish Ice Fishing Derby on Fremont Lake March,