Umarex Axeon


Nevada Freshwater

Pyramid Lake’s big cuts blast off!

BY PAUL LEBOWITZ/WON Staff WriterPublished: Nov 07, 2018

SUTCLIFFE,  Nev. — It was the week of giant cutthroat at Nevada’s Pyramid Lake, as the heaviest fish of the young season was caught, a massive 23-pound, 2-ounce fish, and Joe Mendes of Eagle Eye Charter and his clients notched the guide’s personal best single outing on Sunday with 7 fish over 10 pounds.

Matt Smeltzer caught the 23-pound, 2-ounce behemoth at Hell’s Kitchen from a boat while using a P-Line Bleeding Frog, then weighed it in at Crosby’s Lodge, where he smiled brightly for a photo with his fish.

biggestyetmattBIGGEST YET — Matt Smeltzer caught the heaviest cutthroat of the new Pyramid Lake season last week, a fine 23-pound, 2-ounce giant from a boat at Hell’s Kitchen. He used a P-Line Bleeding Frog lure. His fish stood at the forefront of a terrific big fish week.

Mendes was ecstatic with his outstanding day of catching 7 fish over 10 pounds in a single outing. “Today was epic and all the records were broken. The fish count was 40. We had a super good week, with way over 120 fish,” he said.

“I can’t believe what happened today,” Mendes said. “He caught a 15 pounder, two 12s, two 11s, and two 10s on what was a heck of a day for his Pyramid first-timer clients Charlie Rogers, Robert Clegg, and Jaden and Noah Gravatt of Loomis, California. It followed Mendes’ excellent Friday trip, which included a 15 and an 11.

Mendes and his clients used Firetiger Apex trolling lures and #1 FlatFish at 25 to 30 feet and caught their fish between Pelican and Warriors. He was at a loss to explain what happened between this week and last, when the fishing was dismal. “If I knew the answer I would write a book about Pyramid Lake cutthroat fishing. I feel like playing the lottery,” he said.

An additional two big fish were weighed in at Crosby’s, a 16-pound, 9-ounce beauty caught by Tony Major from a boat at Pelican, and a 14-pound, 9-ounce cutt’ roped from a boat by Jason Kepke at Anderson Bay.

Shore anglers are beginning to see more fish in the shallows. To this point they’ve had to work hard for their fish. A report from Pyramid Fly Co. recommends shore casters work beaches that have access to deep water or steeper drop-offs. They also note the lake is beginning to turn over and suggest stripping beetles or boobies with buggers or streamers in white, black and olive or indicator fishing with a balanced leech.

* * *

We hope you enjoyed this article on our no-charge website Of course, this site contains only a small fraction of the stories that Western Outdoor Publications produces each week in its two northern and southern editions and its special supplements. You can subscribe to the print issue that is mailed weekly and includes the easy flip-page full-color digital issues, or you can purchase a digital only subscription. Click here to see the choice.

Advertise with Western Outdoor News