Bear Lake water elevation is now over 5920.25 feet and surface water temperature is 59 degrees. Launching access is available at all boat ramps around the lake. These include the State Park marina, First Point, Cisco Beach and Rainbow Cove in Utah and the Idaho State Park (east side) and North Beach boat ramps. Courtesy docks are in the water at all locations.

The cutthroat trout spawning run is still going on, but many fish have spawned and returned to the lake where they are beginning to feed again. Trolling is the most popular method for catching cutthroat and lake trout during the summer months. Try trolling flat lines behind your boat, 100-feet or more works good in the early morning hours. Look for “flotsam” line (debris on the surface in long rows parallel to shore). These occur mainly on the eastern side of Bear Lake where wind and upwelling currents concentrate debris and insects on the surface. After the sun comes up, use lead core line or down riggers to go deeper. Pay attention to your sonar and search for fish until you find some that are active. Popular lures to use include minnow-type lures, flat fish and dodger/squid combinations. Popular colors are chrome, white and fluorescent colors. If you are interested in casting for fish (fly or lures) try off the mouths of South and North Eden canyons in the early mornings and late evenings when insects get blown out onto the surface of the lake.

You can also try jigging for fish off the east side of the lake from First Point north to the Idaho State Park. Begin fishing on the bottom in 50- to 65-feet of water, move deeper if you are not seeing fish on your sonar. Use tube jigs or swim baits in ½ to 1 ounce sizes and 3- to 6-inches long, tipped with cisco, sucker meat or Gulp minnows. Reliable colors are white, green and chartreuse.

Remember the trout limit is two fish. Cutthroat trout with a healed fin clip may be kept; cutthroat trout with all fins intact must be immediately released. Large lake trout take a long time to reach large sizes, and while they are legal to keep, many anglers are encouraging other anglers to release them. (June 27, 2019)