Friday, July 19, 2013

Arrowhead & Airplane Lake

Looking at Old Hyndman left, Hyndman right
Arrowhead Lake looking at Hyndman Peak
The mouth on this one
Last week a buddy and I decided that we would go and backpack into a meadow and hit a few lakes that don't see many people whatsoever, maybe 20 people a year if that. The plan for the first day was to set up camp in the meadow and continue to head up to Arrowhead Lake, one lake that I haven't ever been to which is rare since I've been to most of all the lakes around Mackay. Anyway I was the first one to get to the lake so I set up my fly rod and on the first cast I hooked into a 16 inch cutty but after a short dance it got away, but that's alright because I knew it was going to be an awesome day of fishing. Once my friend got to the lake he set up his tenkara rod and wasted no time hooking into fish. It was funny to watch him hook into these 14 inch cuttys and loose them right at the bank, eventually he smartened up and as soon as they would get off he would drop his pole and jump on them like Smeagol from Lord of the Rings, it was quite the site. He had awesome day, he caught thirteen cuttys with his biggest one being 17 inches, I as well had a good day. I enjoyed watching these cuttys slam my four inch streamer, what a great day of streamer fishing.

Airplane Lake
Stream flowing into the lake
On the way up to Airplane
The next day we headed up to Airplane Lake, they name it Airplane because when you get the lake you wish you would have used an airplane to get there. Airplane Lake is known to hold huge rainbows ranging to 27 inches in size, and a handful of goldens if you are able to catch them. The fishing report is short, no big rainbows and I was only able to catch one golden around 12 inches. We were able to catch about five goldens with are hands out of the stream and put them back in the lake before the stream dried out. I think this is one lake that would be better to hit in the fall. Overall the reason people don't go to these lakes is because there hard to find, there's no trail to them and they are hard to get to. From the trailhead to the Arrowhead Lake is about 3 miles with an elevation gain of 2200 feet. Airplane Lake is about 3 miles with an elevation gain of 2400 feet. This lakes may be hard to get to but the views on the way up are one of a kind.

One of the fish we released


Gold in the stream
On the way out


  1. Great blog. Some of my favorite areas. Maybe you can clear up a question for me. Which lake is actually considered Airplane Lake? I have seen maps that list it as being several of the Wildhorse Lakes. Usually they show it as either being Wildhorse #1 which is closer to Arrowhead Lake, or as Wildhorse #8 which is closer to Boulder Lk... Other side of the ridge that is.. Which one did you go to? Thanks!

  2. Thanks, I have a ton of more lakes to add to. I have been to all of the lakes in the Lost River Ranger District multiple times but wildhorse is one of my favorite spots cause its so isolated. You are right Airplane is located closer to Hyndman Peak on the west side of wildhorse canyon. And Wildhorse #8 is just the next ridge over closer to Boulder and Washington. I actually went to Wildhorse #8 last year before I went back to school and my boss caught some nice golden trout out of there the year before but I fished for about two hours and didn't see anything but I did see a lot of goat tracks. I could send you a map of my tracks on how to get to some of those lakes because there pretty hard to find if you don't know the country very well.

  3. That would be amazing! I don't hike into as many of the longer ones as often.....getting older, but The Copperbasin/Wildhorse area is one of my favorite for highcountry lakes. We had planned on making a loop of the Moose, Angel, and Fall Lakes last year, but didn't make it. Not much prettier country anywhere on earth. Our last few successful hikes have been to the Boulder Lake area, and the Bench, Betty, Goat, Baptie Loop. Have studied and looked at the Wildhorse ones, but so far have been distracted with fishing the creek. :)

    1. If you send me your e-mail to I can send you those pictures.

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  5. Hey, do you happen to have the gps track for that hike? Thank you!