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Big Lake Report
Skagit County, WA

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Details

11/06/2017
31° - 35°
Trolling
Cutthroat Trout
Attractor
Silver-Gold
Sunny
Flasher/Lure
Morning
11/08/2017
4
2489

11/6/17 Big Lake, Skagit County
I was long overdue for a day of fishing. Work has a way of taking this time away, but I saw an opportunity and blocked out some time in my schedule. The plan was to head out to one of my favorite small lakes that always produced nice bows. Oops, surprise! All of my favorites were closed to fishing on Oct 31! I saw some recent reports on NWFR for Big lake. Never been there. Sounds good. It must be a BIG lake!

Targeting Big lake Cutthroat required some different setups that I had not tried before. Also, I had some lead weighted line to try out and a dry suit that my bro gave me that could help with winter conditions. Predictions were for 29 degrees, warming into the balmy mid 30s, so I started my fishing at the casual time of 10:00am. It was sunny and comfortable in my dry suit. Water was like glass and nearby hills were dusted with snow. It was gorgeous! I ran out a mono line with pop gear and woolly bugger (typ bow setup) while I set up the other line with a downrigger to Dodger and spinner. Soon I had something on the rigger, but not popping off. 8” perch, C&R unharmed. Dropped the pop and replaced with my lead weighted line and a smile blade+fly combo, increased speed to 1.5-1.7mph. 8” perch#2 C&R.

Could not get my leaded line to fall below 10’, so added additional sinker to make 15’. Continued heading North, 9” cutthroat#1 C&R. Hit the North end. Changed leaded line to use clown dodger+ 50/50 Gods tooth (Fast action rig) + night crawler gel. Almost immediately, 11” Cutthroat#2 C&R.

Return trip, 9” perch#3 C&R. Light breeze and lowering sun, the temperature went waaay down. Feeling chilled, even with dry suit. Had the lake all to myself the entire time. Slight note of concern when I returned in need of a pit stop and found difficulty getting out of my dry suit (upper back zipper). Now I know why they pay the big $$ for a front side zipper. Beautiful lake, easy access, nice boat launch, lots of perch, cutthroat when you find them.



Comments

FishingTenor
11/8/2017 7:43:08 AM
Shout out to Joshh for your nice report that was spot on with location and setup for the cutts at Big lake. Why do they call this Big lake?
ElginFishing
11/8/2017 9:07:38 AM
Thank you for an excellent report and sharing your success with the God's Tooth! We greatly appreciate your support!
FishingTenor
11/8/2017 9:15:14 AM
I am quite impressed with h the results of the God’s tooth lure and the versatility available to reverse directions for fast or slow action. Thanks for letting his innovation!
JoshH
11/8/2017 10:00:32 AM
Hah yes a drysuit with a relief zipper is a life saver!
FishingTenor
11/8/2017 10:13:01 AM
A diver friend of mine recommended installing a relief zipper. Not sure who would do this, but could start with a dive shop.
Anonymous
11/8/2017 12:33:47 PM
Are these cutthroat planted? Or are they native?
JoshH
11/8/2017 1:17:42 PM
They are native. Big Lake receives no planting.
FishingTenor
11/8/2017 10:10:38 PM
Hey tyee33, these cutthroat are very lean and joshh showed pics a few days back with eggs. They are definitely natural and sustaining, I would not rule out that they were introduced to the lake once upon a time. The perch are quite abundant in the lakes also.
Anonymous
11/9/2017 7:02:43 AM
I think it's great that some lakes can still have self-sustaining cutthroat. Most lakes had them before the Largemouth Bass was intro-duced.
JoshH
11/9/2017 8:54:13 AM
Large mouth is what the majority of folks fish for at Big Lake. The lake has a great drainage system. South end of the lake where the creek flows in is almost like a mini estuary. North end of the lake is Nookachamps creek which flows to the Skagit river, and along the way forms Barney Lake. Good spawning and rearing habitat for cutthroat. My first time fishing cutts there since I was a kid. I know searuns come up the Nookachamps to spawn and some filter into the North end of Big Lake, at least when I was younger they did. Locals always knew when they would be there and you could catch them.
FishingTenor
11/9/2017 8:31:42 AM
Hey tyee33, I could see the largemouth bass winning that one. I think joshH also reported tiny perch in the cutthroat intestines. Straight across and a little bit north, I could not keep the perch off my line. They must be numerous there. The next couple of coves had slightly deeper water (25’) and my finder was marking fish. I caught both perch and cutthroat there. The north end is likely where the cutthroat hang out most.
FishingTenor
11/9/2017 9:30:59 AM
Thanks joshH for sharing your knowledge about Big fish. It is even better than I knew. Ever fish the south end near the creek?
JoshH
11/9/2017 2:37:06 PM
I have, but only for Bass and brown bullhead catfish. I have those taken a canoe as far up that creek through the marsh area until it becomes and actual creek and fished the small pools in that creek. Don't remember if they were cutthroat or rainbows, but they were on the small side, maybe 6 inches.
Busterdog3!
11/9/2017 6:21:36 PM
Hey fishing tenor I love on big lake and the cutts are all through out the lake and the perch are all over and great for fish tacos
FishingTenor
11/9/2017 10:15:26 PM
Hey Busterdog3, sounds like you love those cutts, perch and can turn them into some great tacos. Great idea. See you on the water...
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Available Guide

Available Fishing Guide:
Website: Salt2Summit Guide Service

Phone: (509) 540-1417