Photo of waterfall in the Sabrina Basin, Inyo County, CA

Inyo County Fishing

Dave's Sierra Fishing

Inyo County Fishing

Inyo County stretches about 100 miles along the eastern side of California's Sierra Nevada from Mono County to Kern County. Inyo's western boundary follows the crest of the Sierra and includes 14,495-foot Mt. Whitney. Numerous streams cascade down the rugged escarpment of the eastern Sierra through Inyo County, providing some of the best mountain stream fishing in the state. Dozens of popular trout fishing lakes are nestled in the high valleys, many accessible by car.

Inyo County Lakes

In the north part of Inyo County, beautiful Rock Creek Lake lies just within the county border. Four-pound rainbows are caught regularly there. A gentle hike leads into Little Lakes Valley with a dozen large lakes and as many smaller ones clustered near one another.

A little farther south, only 20 miles west of Bishop, are three lakes that draw a steady flow of anglers: North Lake, Lake Sabrina, and South Lake. Each lake has trailheads leading into back country with boundless fishing opportunities.

Photo of South Lake, Inyo County, California

South Lake

Baboon Lakes

  • Magnificent lakes in the Sabrina Basin
  • Fish for rainbow and brook
  • Best as overnight backpack

Big Pine Lakes

  • Nine great fishing lakes
  • Fish for rainbow, brook, and brown trout
  • Fabulous weekend backpack

Bottleneck Lake

  • Remote Sabrina Basin lake
  • Cross-country route
  • Fish for native brook trout

Bull Lake

  • Day-hike or backpack from South Lake
  • Amidst dramatic peaks
  • Other lakes nearby

Chickenfoot Lake

  • Easy hike day-hike, for rainbow and brook trout
  • In Little Lakes Valley
  • Other lakes nearby

Gilbert Lake

  • Two miles into the John Muir Wilderness
  • Day-hike or camp in area
  • Good fishing lakes nearby

Hungry Packer Lake

  • Fish for big rainbow trout
  • Great backpack in Sabrina Basin
  • Close to other lakes and streams

Marie Louise Lakes

  • Easy 2-miles from South Lake
  • Full of hungry brook trout
  • Good destination for children

Big Pine Lake #2, Inyo County, California

Big Pine Lake #2

Recommended Books, Lures, and Flies for Fishing Inyo County

Land the Big Ones

Polarized Sunglasses

Fishing Hat for Women and Men

More Inyo County Lakes

In the high country west of Big Pine the Big Pine Lakes offer fabulous mountain fishing amidst magnificent country. A few miles to the south deep in the John Muir Wilderness the Cottonwood Lakes have been a popular destination for anglers for many years. (Check special fishing regulations covering Cottonwood Lakes, its tributaries, and Cottonwood Creek.)

Inyo County Rivers and Streams

Inyo County's rivers and streams are famous for their excellent fishing. Creeks that hardly appear robust enough to support anything more than pan-size trout regularly produce 14" rainbows. Pine Creek, Bishop Creek, McGee Creek, Big Pine Creek, Independence Creek, and many others offer rewarding fishing throughout the season. At lower elevations the famous Owens River never fails to provide exciting fishing.

Inyo County Campground Highlights

Nearby ever major creek flowing eastward from Sierra peaks is dotted with comfortable campgrounds. Rock Creek boasts 10 great campground choices, some of them group camps. One campground is right at Rock Lake.

A short distance to the south, Bishop Creek has nearly as many campgrounds along its several forks. Among the most popular is Sabrina Campground. Down at Big Pine Creek are another half dozen campgrounds.

In the southern part of Inyo County campgrounds are found at Onion Valley, near the trailhead for Mt. Whitney, and around Cottonwood Lake.

California's Best Camping

For complete information about campgrounds in the Eastern Sierra, see

California's Best Camping website logo

High Sierra Trails

High Sierra Trails website logo

Fishing Supplies

On your way to fish in Inyo County, you can pick up fishing supplies at

  • Lake Sabrina Boat Landing
  • Crowley Lake Fish Camp Tackle
  • Rock Creek Lake Resort
  • Brock's Flyfishing Specialists, Bishop
  • Sierra Trout Magnet Fly Shop, Bishop
  • Culvers Sporting Goods, Bishop
  • High Sierra Tackle, Bishop
  • Parchers Resort, South Lake
  • Lone Pine Sporting Goods