By Tom P., October 2021
I had offered to stock any lakes that the usual chapter effort doesn’t cover — I enjoy hiking, and this has been a fun (and hopefully helpful) way to get a look at new places. This year I stocked four different lakes, from Monarch Pass to Hagerman Pass.
Arthur Lake is a beautiful lake near North Fork Reservoir. I had wanted to fish it for a few years, but always got distracted (or detained?) by some of the other lakes in that area. CPW had 700 golden trout to stock there, and I jumped at the chance. I rode my motorcycle to the North Fork Reservoir, crossed the dam, and took a bushwhack route to the lake. Along the way I naturally ended up on some game paths, by now covered with light snow. It was great to spot so many animal tracks, from rabbits and squirrels, through deer and elk, to bear! The bear tracks I spotted were pretty fresh, but I never saw any animals directly. Arthur Lake is beautiful, nestled in a bowl of rock, looking like an infinity pool — one shore opens up over the valley, merging with the color of the sky. A beautiful spot.
On my way back from Arthur Lake, I fished another body of water (you’ll have to discover it for yourself), and caught some nice cutthroats. Nothing over 14″, but all very pretty.
A few days later CPW had graylings to stock in both Pomeroy lakes. I had been eyeing an alternate route to those lakes, following the goat tracks over a ride from Billings Lake, and glassed it while I was at Arthur Lake. A storm moved through the area a few days prior to my trip, and there was another storm moving in. I thought I’d have enough time to ride my motorcycle back up to a few miles past North Fork Reservoir, hike up and over the ridge, stock the fish, and make my way back. Alas, that turned out to be an overly optimistic outlook. I had two sets of fish, with 700 graylings for the upper lake, and a 1,000 for the lower lake. CPW managed to fit them both into a single insulated bag, so that I could strap it more easily onto my bike. The road up was snowy — a lot more covered than I expected, and much slicker. My bike spun out from under me at least 5 times on the way up, and I got to a point where I could no longer ride it. I pushed it, driving it in first gear, the last quarter mile or so, to where the road to Billings Lake branches off. I parked the bike on the side of the road, and continued on foot. A mile or so later I realized the folly of my plan — the ridge was fairly snow covered, but most importantly the ridge I glassed earlier dropped off to Grizzly Lake. To get to the Pomeroys I’d have to get over a bit of a hump, and with the storm it just wasn’t a smart idea. Snowflakes were swirling in the air, thick storm clouds just over the ridge. I ended up turning around and walking back to the North Fork Reservoir.
Having discussed backup plans with CPW earlier in the day, I had the option of driving the fish back to the hatchery, or stocking them in North Fork Reservoir. I put all 1,700 graylings into the reservoir, where hopefully they will prosper and grow. I find it exciting that we’ll have another place to pursue them — I have never caught any graylings over 8″ out of Pomeroys :)
You can watch a movie of my attempt to reach the Pomeroy lakes below: