Monday, October 15, 2018

Hobart Reservoir

Between the trees: Hobart Reservoir near the dam with angler

Hobart Reservoir is located west of Carson City in the Marlette-Hobart Backcountry of Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park. This area is accessible, for example, by ascending the unpaved road from the Lakeview Gate Trailhead at the end of Hobart Road in northwest Carson City to a rusted metal multitube named “Ghost of a Sawmill”. Continuing the stiff ascent for about another mile and then descending into the valley of Franktown Creek leads to Hobart Reservoir (at an elevation of 7,850 feet or 2,393 meters)—and the historic Red House further downhill. This is a popular mountain biking route. Backpackers, day-hikers and mountain joggers also love crisscrossing this subalpine landscape.

Also, the single-lane Ash Canyon Road, which was closed throughout most of  the year 2017 after suffering slides and wash-outs, is again open for public use, including four-wheel vehicles. The steep, five-mile long road starts at the end of Winnie Lane in Carson City. Passing the water tanks and the Ash Canyon Trailhead (Ash To Kings Trail connecting with Upper Waterfall Loop), the road winds uphill, westward through a steep V-shaped canyon. Past a switchback the road continues eastward with views of Carson City and sonns bends left to traverse a more densely forested area to the Hobart Reservoir parking lot.
Hobart Reservoir fishing regulations

The reservoir itself is closed to vehicles: Hobart reservoir will be found a half mile north. A steep, 1/4-mile-long trail connects the parking lot with the dirt road between the “Ghost of a Sawmill” and the reservoir. Following the road northbound, you will catch your first glimpse of the lake through the trees and soon arrive at the signboard with fishing regulations and other information.

With a maximum depth of 15 feet, Hobart reservoir is relatively shallow. A surface area of approximately 10 surface acres has been reported.

Reed-bed habitat blurring southeast shoreline of Hobart Lake
With the exception of the south-corner reed beds, the lake shoreline is easily accessible via trails. On a hot summer day, swimmers enjoy the lake. Throughout the fishing season you will find anglers around the lake. A primitive campground can be found near the lake. Hobart Reservoir contributes to the municipal water supply of Carson City.

Trout fishing

The season is open from May 1 until September 30. The only self-sustaining population is brook trout. In addition, rainbow trout, cutbow trout and tiger trout have been introduced to the reservoir. The cutbow trout is a hybrid between a rainbow trout and a cutthroat trout. The tiger trout is a hybrid between a brook trout and a brown trout. Its name derives from the black-on-white vermiculation pattern evoking the stripes of a tiger.

Vermiculation pattern of tiger trout
Vermiculation pattern of irregular, worm-like lines and yellowish underside of a caught tiger trout

The lake may not be what you are looking for to catch big fish, but is an excellent site for fishing in a scenic environment.
Catch of the day: tiger, brook and rainbow trout

What is that device floating on the lake?

That's SolarBee. A PUBLIC INFORMATION NOTICE explains that the State of Nevada - Marlette Water System has installed this high-flow long-distance circulation equipment to improve the water water quality and enhance the recreational value of the lake. The machine is entirely powered by solar energy. Its long distance water circulation helps to prevent lake water stagnation, control blue-gree algae blooms, improve the lake ecosystem and provide a healthy environment for fish, frogs, crayfish and other aquatic organisms.

Floating SolarBee machine
SolarBee with “half-under”angler in the background

Other Carson Range sites and trails

References and more

Nevada Wildlife > Hobart Reservoir:
Hipcamp > Hobart Campground:
Angler Guide > Hobart Reservoir:
SolarBee technology:

Hobart Reservoir
Hobart Lake seen from dam at northern end