Crane Prairie Reservoir, Oregon
Crane Prairie Reservoir, Oregon is world famous fly fishing for large rainbow trout
Crane Prairie Reservoir is one of the top producing rainbow
trout fisheries in Central Oregon. Rainbow trout here average 2 inches of
growth a month during the summer. The record rainbow to date weighed over 19
pounds, with abundant rainbows in the 4 to 10 pound range. Crane Prairie
Reservoir is a Wildlife Management Area. Osprey, bald eagle and many
waterfowl frequent the area.
Crane Prairie Reservoir is located on the Deschutes National Forest and is a
large, shallow impoundment on the upper Deschutes River approximately 30
miles southwest of Bend and is accessible from Century Drive (Forest Service
Road 46), and Forest Roads 40, 42, and 4270. Crane Prairie was a natural
meadow in which the Deschutes River, Cultus River, Cold Creek, Quinn River,
Deer Creek, and Cultus Creek Converged. Crane Prairie Reservoir was first
created in 1922 by rock filled dam and reconstructed by Bureau of
Reclamation in 1940. The inundated trees and five square miles of shallow
water coupled with 24 miles of shoreline and many cool water inlets makes
Crane Prairie Reservoir a very rich and productive aquatic system producing
numerous trophy size rainbow trout.
lake is not very deep (11 to 20 feet), water levels are fairly consistent.
Fish enjoy good cover and plenty of insects. Most people fish the reservoir
from a boat or float tube. Try trolling large streamers and other wet flies.
Nymphing works well early in the season. Fish near Crane’s distinctive
submerged trees and stick-ups and close to the shoreline when the water is
high. In low-water conditions look for the two main (submerged) river
Large Mouth Bass were illegally introduced into Crane
Prairie in the mid-1980's and have prospered. Crane Prairie bass are big for
Oregon standards. Bass is excess of 8-pounds have been landed in local bass
tournaments. Bass fishing starts in the shallows at the north end of the
lake in late May.
Information Source: Deschutes National Forest
Lake Size: 4,940 acres
Maximum Depth: 16'-20'
Elevation: 4445 feet
Fishing Methods: all methods allowed
Fish Types: rainbow trout, brook trout, bass
Access: many Forest Service camp grounds,
Crane Prairie Resort 541-383-3939
Open April 26-Oct. 31.
Closed from 1 hour after sunset until 1 hour before sunrise.
Daily trout limit may include only 1 rainbow trout over 16
inches in length.
The Fly Fishing Shop, Welches, OR
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