Kingman State Fishing Lake
One reason club members like to try Kingman State Fishing lake is because it is one of the only local areas you can fish for Northern Pike. This is because there is a natural spring in this lake that keeps an area of the lake cold enough for them to survive the summers. The club has done a few group outings fishing for Pike early spring when water temperatures are low enough that they are more active. Normally this is around when the ice clears from the lake. The spring is located on the North end of the lake.
This is a lake that you can go bass fishing in the summer.
Here is some information from club members on fishing Kingman for Northern Pike.
Some type of watercraft is also very highly recommended, whether it’s a boat, float tube, pontoon or kayak. Shore fishing limits an angler to the opportunities within casting range only. If you’re gutsy enough to wade, it can probably be done to some extent, but I would not recommend it. There are a lot of pot holes in the bottom and also a lot of dead vegetation that could entangle your feet.
To get up close and personal with something toothy, at bare minimum bring a 6 wt, but rods in the 7 to 9 weight range will likely server you better. Not so much for the size of the fish, (although the Department of Wildlife and Parks shocked fish up approaching thirty inches during fall sampling), but more for keeping the fish out of the weeds and throwing bigger flies, when necessary. Reels should match the choice of rod. A reel with a smooth drag is necessary, as these fish are lightning fast when they run in their short bursts. A weight forward floating line will cover most all situations you will encounter. There are a few occasions when a sink-tip is the answer, but the WFF will do for the bulk of your fishing. An 8 wt rod will help you cast the large wind-resistant flies and the heavy, weighted flies you need to throw to catch these aggressive predators.
Flies should be geared towards presenting a large baitfish profile to the Pike. A Northern can consume a baitfish that is 1/3 its own body length, so a 30″ Northern is comfortable consuming a 10″ fish! That‘s as large as many (most) of the trout typically caught at the Slough. Obviously, you probably can‘t throw a fly bigger than what a Northern is willing to choke down. What color of fly? I‘m not sure there is a clear preference, the old bright day bright fly – dark day dark fly is not a bad theory to hang on to. If backed into a corner, I would say chartreuse is a good place to start. One cautionary note: slow hook-sets often result in Pike hooked deep in the gillrakers. This is almost always a death sentence for the fish. Be quick on the trigger and avoid hooking them deep.
I tend to keep leaders on the short side; around 7 ft. for top water flies and 7 to 9 ft if I‘m using a sinking fly on a floating line. Using a sink-tip line I will cut back to around 4 ft of straight mono. The one thing all my leaders have in common for Northern Pike is around 8‖ of Rio 20 lb. knotable wire bite tippet. I‘ve tried 30 lb. hard Mason mono – if the Pike are going away from you on the hook set, they will cut even the hard Mason like a fat kid through birthday cake. They have not cut the Rio wire; although they will turn it into an unusable twisted slinky if they clamp down on it.
Affix your fly to the wire using a non-slip loop knot so the wire will not impede the movement of your fly. Tying the wire to your leader can be accomplished using several different knots. I have used the Albright knot and the shock-gum knot; because it is the knot I am more comfortable with tying, I typically use the shock-gum knot.
Finally, as robust as Northern Pike appear to be, they still require, and deserve, careful handling – for their sake as well as yours. A Boga-grip or one of the knock off‘s is of great comfort when handling these toothy critters. Large hemostats or long needle-nose pliers are a must – you don‘t want to reach into the business end of one of these fish with your bare hand. Handle them gently and get them back in the water as quickly as possible. These great game fish deserve our consideration and respect. Try being quick on the hook-set because slow hook-sets often result in Pike hooked deep in the gillrakers. This is almost always a death sentence for the fish.