Pyramid Lake

Veronica Norris
Veronica Norris
Pyramid Lake
Pyramid Lake, Nevada
Table of Contents
Table of Contents

Where is it?

Pyramid lake is 40 miles northeast of Reno, Nevada.  Lake Tahoe outflows to form most of the Truckee River, which flows into Pyramid Lake. But unlike some other lakes in the area, its an endorheic lake. It has no outlet, with the water leaving only by evaporation or sub surface seepage.  

The Lake itself

The lake is approximately 15 miles long and 11 miles wide. It covers about 112,000 acres which is about 1/10 the size of the Great Salt Lake. Its entirely enclosed by the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe Reservation. Two side of the lake (North and East) are restricted to the public and non Tribal members. The tufa in the picture below is what give Pyramid Lake its name.

Our Day Trips

My husband and I have taken several day trips out to Pyramid Lake. Its is an excellent place to set up camp (for a small fee) but we usually stay with friends in Reno. The main attraction of the lake is its fishing. You will find the Cui-ui lakesucker, the Tui chub and Lahontan cutthroat trout. In fact, the world record cutthroat trout was caught in Pyramid Lake. The fish we caught were not world records, but sizeable and well worth the trip.


Our day trips have been in May. The weather has been lovely that time of year, averaging 70 degrees during the day and about 50 degrees at night. It does start to get hot in June, averaging in the high 80 until September. There is not much chance of rain as this area only gets about 7 inches of rain a year.

Rock Formations

As mentioned above, the lake is named after the tufa formations found in the lake. The largest formation is called Anaho Island. It is home to colony of American white pelicans, so its restricted. Another tufa formation called the Needles is also restricted due to vandalism. The rock formations almost seem alien. Its a beautiful landscape with neat vegetation. There are many opportunities for taking pictures.


Water sports are very popular during the summer months, including jetskiing and boating. For more information on the current activities and fee schedule, please visit

If you go

Please remember to respect Mother Nature and leave no trace behind. There has been recent vandalism at some of the formations and it would be a shame to have more areas restricted from use.


Veronica Norris

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