Catch a 30-Pound Trout in Southern Utah

The areas north of Zion, northern Nevada and Idaho are premier fly fishing destinations. They welcome the removal of non-native trout.

Once outside Zion National Park, the Virgin River has its own problems with degraded and fragmented habitat and people adding non-native fish into the ecosystem. Trout (and catfish) are not native to the river and therefore, the park welcomes their removal.

The areas north of Zion, northern Nevada and Idaho are premier fly fishing destinations.

Heber Valley, the Green Rivers, Fish Lake, Provo and Logan often provide big game wild trout as prized catch. Provo is a blue ribbon trout fishery. The brown and rainbow often reach record length with record trout reaching more than 30-pounds. Managers say that some areas within the river have more than 7,500-trout per square mile.

Logan River is another blue ribbon trout stream with easily accessible roadside pullouts where fishermen and women can access the 30-miles of stream.

The Beaver River has two stretches of water that are especially productive for fishermen and women.

The East Fork of the Sevier River is a particularly abundant fishing area before it flows into Bryce Canyon. Rainbow, cutthroat and brown trout swim in the steep-sided canyons. The lower section of the river below through Garfield, Paiute, Sevier and Millard counties also contain bass and walleye as well as perch, suckers and carp.
The Green River below Flaming Gorge Dam may have the best tailwater fishing in the U.S. Floaters, waders and fly fishermen dot the 30-miles of scenic river. Wild brown trout are a specialty, but the river is also stocked with rainbow and cutthroats.

The stable water temperatures create a perfect breeding ground for insects, which is a boon for flyfishers who want to fool the big fish. The most popular stretch is the 7 miles below the dam with water so clear you can target a specific fish.

Navajo Lake offers great sport fishing. The 1,500-acre natural alpine lake with its magnificent surroundings is stocked with brook and rainbow trout. Non-fishing companions can hike, bike, bird and butterfly watch, or simply laze in the sun.

Duck Creek and Duck Creek Lake offer high mountain shore fishing in an aspen and ponderosa pine forest.

Lake Mead, Lake Powell and Lake Mojave offer great bass fishing and are stocked with trout. The many nooks and crannies that lie along the edges of these manmade lakes offer excellent opportunities for float tube fishing as well as shore fishing.
In the winter, Panguitch Lake, Lost Creek Reservoir, Otter Creek, Current Creek Reservoir, Minersville Reservoir offer ice fishing.

Fish Lake may offer the best ice fishing in the state. Navajo Lake is often inaccessible during ice fishing season, but fishing is reportedly good if you can get there. Panguitch Lake is a 777-acre lake in the Dixie National Forest that offers excellent spring fishing as the ice thaws.

Bear Lake is renowned for its winter fishing, which offers wind burn, frostbite, chapped skin and the chance to fish for the endemic Bonneville cisco and Bonneville whitefish, found nowhere else on the globe


A lizard in Zion National Park. Photo by Elisabeth Kwak

Reptiles in Southern Utah

Lizards and snakes flourish in Zion Canyon. Chances are, as you walk the many trails, you'll see one of the 16 species of lizards or 13 snake species.