Time to reel in the new year | RecordCourier.com

Time to reel in the new year

Doug Busey

Hello fellow anglers, I hope Santa was good to you. We are coming up with in a few days of the Topaz opener, which is January 1.

The water level is coming up, but still down from last years opener. A couple new things this year. First and most important, Where else can you get paid to go fishing. The Topaz Lodge annual fishing derby will officially start at 6:15 a.m. Any Topaz Lodge tagged trout will be worth $100 cash instantly plus $10 free slot play and 10 drawing tickets. All trout weighing two pounds and over will get $5 free slot play and 5 drawing tickets. Each week there will be two angler winners boards in the general store. One will have the weekly winners, 1st place is $25 and 2nd place will get $10 in free slot play. The other board will hold the names of the anglers with the largest trout weighed in to that day. At the end of the derby on April 14, $1,000 will go to the top five anglers. And there also will be a drawing for all those earned tickets to get you a chance to win a ton of prizes and $500. You must be 21 years of age to enter, entry is free, all you have to do is be a member of the Topaz Lodge and Casino. Which is free to join.

Last year Dustin Parker from Gardnerville weighed in the largest trout at 9.04 pounds. I am here to tell you, I caught and released a trout just large or maybe bigger. This year I will not be surprised to see a few weighed in over 10 pounds. Second on the list is The Douglas County Park boat ramp does not accept cash for camping or launching. They have removed the iron ranger and replaced it with a kiosk to accept payment for day use and boat launch. For those that frequent the park and day use. You can obtain an annual pass from the Douglas County Parks Department on Watterloo lane in Gardnerville. There is a QR code you can scan and download on your cell phone which is available at the entrance or at their website. For those of you that will angling from shore. On the north west end of the lake, it seams that someone has removed the signs that said, no vehicles are allowed on the shore. That rule will be enforced with or with out signs. You will have to park on the road and carry your gear down to the shore to fish. It was apparent that to many people abused the area by trespassing on private property and leaving trash to waste products. To bad the many have to suffer from the actions of a few. That is what happens when we don't leave or lakes and streams as clean as when we arrived.

For those headed up to the higher country to do some ice fishing, here is a brief report.

SILVER LAKE: The lake level had dropped about 20 feet before the snow fall. The lake as of last week had 6-8 inches of ice. But now has a some snow on top of that. No report from anglers yet.

CAPLES LAKE: I spoke to Joe Voss from the Caples Lake Resort last week. Note, the resort is closed for the season. Joe reported many anglers by the dam with approx 8 inches of ice on the lake. With our recent snow storms, I would imagine a foot or so of snow on top of that.

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RED LAKE: I ventured up a couple weeks ago and the lake had 6 inches of ice with an inch of snow. There again with our last snow storm, there will probably be a foot or so of snow on top of the ice. Fishing was slow with only a couple fish caught on salmon eggs or worms. Best action is usually within 10 to 15 feet from shore.

Please use caution when venturing out on any ice covers waters. Conditions can change, always let someone know where you are going and when you should return. A couple safety tips to remember. Bring extra clothing, you can always layer down, bring a hat to keep the body heat in, bring extra water to keep hydrated and don't forget your sunscreen. If you get stranded and cannot call out due to cell reception. Remember the SOS code. You can use this with a light or with a horn. Three short, three long and three short. It may sound old fashion, but may save your behind. One other important rule to remember, and I would like to see every one do this every time you fill up. Keep a towel in your vehicle and wipe off your headlights. Road grime can change the distance in what you can see ahead of you. Especially on the early morning road trip to Topaz Lake on January 1st. The weather report for opening day is low of 18 with a high of 42, winds peaking at 5 mph in the afternoon. Slow down and watch out for left overs from the new years celebration trying to make it home.

Good luck on your next fishing adventure. I hope to see you on the waters, If you get a picture of your catch, send it to sports@recordcourier.com. Good fishin' and tight lines.