One of the best fishing experiences Utah has to offer is when Strawberry’s winter ice cap begins to recede. The trout congregate in the open water and many fish haven’t seen a lure in months. If Paul says today is the day, you’d better get up there and fast!
The Phillips family grew up at Strawberry, and ice off is one of their favorite times to fish. Paul has assembled a huge group for this years outing. Their favorite lure, is this black marabou jig and our first starting point, is near the Aspen Grove boat ramp.
<(Adam) For people who don't fish this marabou jig, give them the technique that you use and why it works so good. (paul Phillips, Strawberry Bay Marina) When you are fishing a marabou jig you want to find some water depth that is a little bit deeper. Because you want to be able to give it a five count. As you can see I'm letting it sink down a little bit and then just a slow retrieval. If you have shallow conditions it's hard to do that and work it and the jig represents a natural leach that is in the lake and the motion jig represents it's motion and it does really well.
(Peter Milburn, Sportsman’s Warehouse) Black jigs are hard to beat, but any kind of tube jig works pretty good, even whites, the green ones will work real well. Jakes spin lures are hard to beat this time of year. Especially for the kids that aren’t quite as good with the jig.
(Pete Milburn) The jig you can usually land it on the edge of the ice and slide it right off and let it drop off and almost instantly as it falls off you’ll have a fish on.
To give you some extra incentive to come fishing at Strawberry, Paul along with many friends and local retailers have decided to hold a tagged rainbow trout fishing contest at the berry this year.
(Paul) We did a tagged fishing contest a couple of years ago and it was quite a success and I think we want to try it again and I was glad to see KSL and you guys excited to do it. What a great reservoir to do it on. It’s a great family fishery, great for kids to come out and catch fish and what a better way to do it than have a tagged fishing contest and have these kids have an opportunity to win a really neat prize. (adam) so how’s it going to work. We’ve decided to tag three hundred fish. (paul) correct tag 300 fish, 5 of those fish will have an orange tag, that will be associated to grand prizes.
(Alan Ward, DWR; Strawberry Project Leader) “We actually ran some surveys back in 2012 when we ran that other contest and what we noticed is that it generates some excitement. Those people will come up here more often, they may choose to change their habits and fish a little bit more because there is an enticement there. Those people that love the thought of catching those prized fish.
(Adam) there are some still good rainbows up here, look at that 17-18 inch fish, thick, healthy, man they fight well.