The Utah Cutthroat Slam has generated a lot of excitement for anglers since its 2016 introduction by challenging anglers to catch four different subspecies of native cutthroat trout within the state in designated waters of these trout.
The cost to participate is $20 for those over 18 years of age, and $10 for those younger than 18. Anglers can sign up online at utahcutthroatslam.org, at any Division office or participating license agents. Once anglers register and catch all four subspecies of cutthroat trout (Bear River, Bonneville, Colorado River and Yellowstone), provide photographic proof of the catch and the locations where they caught the fish, anglers will receive an official certification letter and a medallion recognizing both angling skills and support of cutthroat trout conservation efforts.
Of the $20 registration fee, $19 goes right back toward conservation projects that benefit Utah’s cutthroat trout. The four fish photos submitted by each angler are also posted on the program’s website (utahcutthroatslam.org). Anglers can view photos of each catch at this website, view photos of each subspecies, see a map of waters that hold each type of cutthroat trout and more.
The event provides funding for several upcoming projects, including a cutthroat trout restoration project in Mill Creek Canyon in Salt Lake City.
The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources is working with many partners in this effort. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Trout Unlimited, Pacific Corp, SLC legislators, Boy Scouts of America, private landowners and others are joining forces to remove non-native fish from Mill Creek, take out fish barriers and restock native Bonneville cutthroat trout to the creek.
Removal of fish barriers improves fish migration in the creek, which will provide a healthier setting for Bonneville cutthroat trout. Another project that will be completed using Cutthroat Slam funds involves removal of the Porter Fork weir, which is a fish barrier in Mill Creek Canyon. Revenue from the Cutthroat Slam will be combined with grant money from the National Forest Foundation to remove the weir.
Mill Creek is now an important piece to restoring the Bonneville cutthroat trout population. As recently as the 1970s, Bonneville cutthroat trout were thought to be extinct. After small populations were discovered, many organizations have worked diligently to ensure expansion of our state fish.