Michael Hadley, a UDWR fisheries biologist in southern Utah, sent in the first gill net survey report of the spring. Check out the fast-growing rainbow trout at Wide Hollow Reservoir near Escalante.
Division of Wildlife Resources fish biologists conducted a gill net survey at Wide Hollow Reservoir near Escalante on March 15, 2012. They found that rainbow trout stocked at 10 inches in spring 2011 have grown fast; those fish now measure 16 to 18 inches and weigh 2 to 3 lbs. This exceptional growth can be attributed to the outstanding water year in 2011 in addition to the refilling of the reservoir after dam reconstruction in 2010. An empty, recently-filled lake is very productive and provides a lot of food. Additional 10-inch fish will be stocked very soon, meaning that right now is a great time to visit this reservoir and experience some quality fishing. Spring is a great time to visit the Escalante area and you can put together a unique trip by combining some fishing with sight-seeing at Escalante Petrified Forest State Park, which is located right next to the reservoir. Other places to visit nearby include the Escalante canyons, Calf Creek Falls, Hole-in-the-Rock Road, Kodachrome Basin State Park, Scenic Highway 12, and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. Largemouth bass and bluegill are also being re-established in Wide Hollow Reservoir, but it will take another couple of years before they are large enough for anglers to target.