Strawberry Reservoir is Utah's premier trout fishery. It offers consistently good action for large rainbow and cutthroat trout and kokanee salmon. Rainbows and cutts up to 24 inches are caught regularly, and larger fish show up occasionally. The largest cutthroat ever caught in Utah was taken here in 1930. It weighed 27 pounds.
Strawberry is a fertile reservoir where fish grow quickly. Its water quality is good and its tributary streams offer good spawning habitat. Some 60% of the cutthroats in Strawberry result from natural reproduction.
Non-game fish also thrived in Strawberry and compete with the trout. Management at the reservoir now favors Bear Lake cutthroat trout, which are native to some Utah waters, because they can compete well against the native non-game species. At some times in the past, non-game fish have dominated the Strawberry system and extensive measures have been needed to eliminate them. It is hoped that the aggressive cutthroats will keep a healthy balance in the reservoir.
Rainbows stocked into Strawberry are sterile, so they will not cross with the pure-strain cutts. The sterile 'bows grow very quickly and provide excellent sport fishing.
Kokanee also reproduce in the reservoir's tributaries. Their numbers are enhanced annually through stocking.
Strawberry is located in Wasatch County, 65 miles east of Utah's heavily populated Wasatch Front. Its elevation is approximately 7,602 feet. The reservoir is contained largely within lands managed by the Uinta National Forest.
In general, people fishing from boats and float tubes do better than shore anglers. Bank fishermen find good action during spring and fall, when the water is cold and the fish can range freely. Water near the surface warms during summer and so fish seek deeper areas where temperatures are more comfortable. During summer you need to be able to work the cooler spots to find good fishing.
The limit at Strawberry is 4 fish (trout and kokanee are counted together). No more than 2 may be cutthroat trout under 15 inches, and no more than 1 may be a cutthroat trout over 22 inches. All cutthroat trout from 15 to 22 inches must be immediately released. Anglers are strongly encouraged to release all cutts because they are needed to eat those pesky non-game fish.
Flies, lures, jigs and baits are all effective. Many anglers choose to fish with flies or jigs because it is much easier to release fish unharmed when using a lure with only one hook. Fish tend to swallow baits and that makes it more difficult to release the fish.
There are four developed marinas with paved boat ramps at the reservoir: Strawberry Bay Marina, Renegade, Soldier Creek Marina, and Aspen (see this Strawberry map). The Strawberry Bay and Soldier Creek Recreation Complexes are full service developments that contain campground loops, sanitary dump stations, day use areas, group pavilions and marina stores. In addition, the Strawberry Bay Recreation area contains a restaurant and a full service lodge. There are a variety of additional day use developments around the reservoir at such sites as Haws Point, Mud Creek, Chicken Creek East and West, Soldier Creek Bay, and Soldier Creek Dam. The Forest Service operates a Visitor Information Center at the junction of US-40 and the West Side road.
The reservoir is open to fishing year-round. From late December through February it provides good ice fishing.
The Strawberry area receives heavy snowfall during winter and offers excellent snowmobile trails. Many anglers use snowmobiles to access their favorite ice fishing spot on the reservoir.
For more information about the surrounding area:
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