East Fork Carson River
The East Carson River
The East Carson River has 40 plus miles of fishable river starting in the backcountry of The Carson-Iceberg Wilderness below Carson Falls reaching all the way to Lahontan Reservoir. From High Mountains down to High Desert, the East Carson River gives the fly fisher a lot of options from Trout in the higher elevations to great Carp fishing down in the Valleys.
The three sections we pay most attention to start below the Carson Falls down to where Wolf Creek flows into the East Carson River. This section is considered the backcountry portion and has mostly wild trout and no road access. The next section goes from Wolf Creek down to Hangman’s Bridge and is mostly paralleled by the highway. This portion is stocked heavily through out the summer months and can be some of the best beginner water for those just getting into the sport. The next section is from Hangman’s Bridge down to the Carson Valley. This portion is split by Nevada and California and is considered the Wild Trout section and is Catch and Release/Zero Limit throughout the California side. This section is where we do most of our guided fly fishing trips and it is one of the most beautiful rivers as well as having a Wild and Scenic designation.
Although we have caught trout as far down as the town of Dayton, there are mostly Carp from the Carson Valley section down to Lahontan Reservoir. The East Carson River can be floated in the Spring but most years it is too low to float by the end of June. Our guided trips on the East Carson River are considered Walk/Wade trips; we have access for everyone from roadside fishing to hike-in and overnight options.
Due to the mixed regulations on the river, here is a brief recap. Please check the appropriate CA or NV regulation pamphlets for updates or call the shop.
- The East Fork and its tributaries above Carson Falls are closed to fishing all year.
- Above Hangman’s Bridge, The East Fork of the Carson River is open from the last Saturday in April through November 15.
- The Wild Trout Section of the East Fork is from Hangman’s Bridge to the Nevada state line. Only artificial lures with barbless hooks may be used and a zero limit applies. Rainbows make up the bulk of the catch, but Lahontan cutthroat and German browns also reside in this gorgeous stretch of river. This section is open to fishing all year.
- Nevada sections are open year-round.