Tripadvisor Award

Tips for Fishing at Priest Lake

image of pontoon boat at Priest Lake

Come to catch “the big one” at Priest Lake. Whether you are a novice fisher who just wants to spend a lazy Saturday casting in a line or a master fisherman looking to catch that prize-winning trout, fishing at Priest Lake is great for all skill levels.

Guests of Elkins Resort enjoy easy access to Priest Lake with its 40 square miles of “lucky fishing spots”. Offering boat slip rentals, Elkins Resort makes it easy for those who want to bring their own fishing boat or rentals are available for a half or full day.

What you can catch

Within Priest Lake’s 23,000 acres of freshwater, fishers can catch smallmouth bass, cutthroat trout, lake trout, bluegill, pumpkinseed sunfish, yellow perch and kokanee salmon. Also known for its large population of Mackinaw, fishing at Priest Lake provides anglers the chance to snag that prize-winning trout.

When to fish

No matter what time of the season, fishing at Priest Lake is an activity enjoyed by most visitors. In the summer, fishers can catch lake trout as deep as 100-feet or more using fishing methods such as; downriggers, leaded lines, wireline, and jigging. In the fall season into early spring, fishers can snag a Mackinaw in shallow waters, making fishing along the shoreline optimal. And anytime there is safe ice, fishers can brave the cold and ice fish in the winter. Priest Lake is open all year round with a limit of six lake trout per day.

image of man holding a brown trout

Where to fish

With most of the shoreline surrounded by roadways, there are plenty of opportunities to stop off and fish from the bank or put in a canoe or kayak to take your fishing adventure off-shore.

If fishing near upper Priest Lake and the Upper Priest River, this area is restricted to catch-and-release to protect the bull trout, a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.

There are many streams along Priest Lake that make for a relaxed fishing spot. The main species found in the steams are brook trout with the occasional cutthroat or rainbow trout. Seasonal dates vary so be sure to check the Idaho Fishing Regulations booklet.

Downstream from the Priest Lake dam, the Priest River is open all year long, with winter, late spring and early summer as the best times to catch a trout or the occasional mountain whitefish.

image of people having lunch outside at Elkins Resort

Where to stay

Fishing at Priest Lake is easy when you stay at Elkins Resort. Fish all day and enjoy a restful night’s sleep in one of our cedar log cabins, with comfortable and tranquil accommodations to complete your wilderness getaway. So, start planning your next fishing adventure at Priest Lake and be sure to book your stay at Elkins Resort.