Golden trout are found clear, cold mountainous waters at altitudes over 6,890 feet. The best methods for catching Golden trout are bait casting, spin casting or flying fishing using worms, lures, salmon eggs, spinners, spoons or flies.
Habitat: Lake, River, Stream
How to identify Golden Trout
The golden trout has a red steak that runs down the length of its body that is accompanied by 10 parr marks. Unlike some of its close relatives, these parr marks never disappear. Its body, for the most part, is yellow, as is its tail. The back half of its body also has heavy markings, while the front half sometimes contains markings just above the lateral line, towards the top of its head and back. Its throat and the sides of its head are a rose-gold color. At higher altitudes, its colors are vibrant and beautiful, whereas in lower altitudes, these fish lose their brilliancy, becoming gray/blue.
Where to catch Golden Trout
The native habitat of the golden trout is in the upper basin of the Kern River that runs through Tulare/Kern County in California. It prefers chilly, mountainous waters at altitudes of over 6,890 feet. Golden trout have been introduced to Washington, Idaho, and Wyoming. Most self-sustained golden trout are hybrids of cutthroats. Fish scientists claim that recent hybrids account for most of the trout in the basin of Kern River. True genuine golden trout are only found in headwaters.
The following are habitats where you can catch Golden Trout:
- Backwater Fishing
- Current Edges
- Dams and Falls
- Freshwater Lakes and Ponds
- Inlets and Outlets
- Open Water
- Outside of Bends
- Rivers and Streams
- Rock and Boulder Pockets
- Small Pointed Waves
- Undercut Banks
How to catch Golden Trout
Golden trout can be found in clear water, which can make them difficult to sneak up on. The best time to catch them is in the early morning or late evening. To catch a golden trout, most anglers use standard spinning rods and reels. When fishing near shorelines, bait fishing can be very effective. Fly fishing is yet another option. Try using a medium weight line with a light leader. Golden trout can also be caught by trolling with spinners and spoons.
The following are effective fishing methods and techniques for catching Golden Trout:
Best Lures, Bait & Tackle to catch Golden Trout
When using bait to catch golden trout, try midges, insects, caddisflies, salmon eggs, small crustaceans, and worms. For lures, choose spinners and spoons. When fly fishing, use blue dun, black ant, hare’s ears, and wooly worms.
The following are fishing lures, bait and tackle that can be used to catch Golden Trout: