While all cutthroat trout can turn a beautiful bright red during the spawn, the Colorado River Cutthroat seems to show off its colors year round, making it a favorite with artists and photographers. This native subspecies is also at home in some of the most beautiful places Utah has to offer. Colorado River cutties are found in the high elevations of the Uintas and in many lakes and a few streams on Boulder Mountain as well. There’s nothing quite like catching one of these gold and crimson beauties miles and miles away from civilization way up in the high country.
Colorado River cutthroat trout (CRCT) are native to streams that flow into the Green and Colorado rivers. Any cutthroat trout caught while angling streams that are tributaries to the Green or Colorado rivers will be accepted as a CRCT for the Utah Native Cutthroat Slam. Some headwater lakes in the Uinta Mountains have been historically stocked with non-native cutthroat trout. If you wish to angle CRCT from headwater lakes in the Uinta Mountains, check with the Northern Region UDWR Office (801-476-2740) or Northeastern Region UDWR Office (435-781-9453) for a list of lakes containing native CRCT. While many of the streams containing CRCT in Utah are remote and access can be difficult, the following areas/streams will provide the best opportunities to catch native Colorado River cutthroat trout in Utah:
North Slope of the Uinta Mountains:
South Slope of the Uinta Mountains:
North Tavaputs Plateau:
Southeastern Utah: (for more information contact the Southeastern UDWR Office 435-613-3700)
Southern Utah Lakes: CRCT are stocked annually in several Boulder Mountain lakes, including Dougherty Basin Lake, Round Willow Bottom Reservoir, Long Willow Bottom Reservoir, Pine Creek Reservoir, Solitaire Lake, Crescent Lake, and Short Lake. Several other lakes on Boulder Mountain and Thousand Lake Mountain have had non-native cutthroat trout stocked historically. For a full list of lakes stocked with CRCT, refer to the Boulder Mountain Sport Fish Management Plan, Boulder Mountain fishing brochure, or call the Southern Region Office at 435-865-6100.
Found in several high elevation streams and lakes in the Uinta Mountains and Boulder Mountains
Currently present in about 30% of its historic range
Has a tendency to be colored very brilliantly when found in the right habitat
The Utah Cutthroat Slam is a challenge and an adventure. Visit incredible waters to see what trout fishing in Utah was like way back then. Help Trout Unlimited and the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources restore and protect Utah’s incredible trout legacy and have fun along the way.