New Mexico’s newest fishing challenge is here

In January of 2020, the Department of Game and Fish launched the New Mexico Trout Challenge. This challenge was the first of its kind for New Mexico and encourages anglers to catch five of New Mexico’s trout species: the Rio Grande cutthroat trout, Gila trout, brown trout, brook trout and rainbow trout. The challenge has been a huge hit with cold water anglers in New Mexico, with 753 entrants that have submitted 1,233 trout pictures so far.

Above: Five-year-old Augustus Guikema with the smallmouth bass he caught at Navajo Lake. Ross Morgan, New Mexico Department of Game and Fish.

This fall, the Department launched New Mexico’s newest fishing challenge for warm water anglers, the New Mexico Bass Challenge. “This challenge will not only test the fishing skills of bass fishermen, it will also be a good excuse for the whole family to get out and go fishing,” said Tristanna Bickford, communication director for the Department of Game and Fish. To participate and complete the challenge, anglers will have to catch four of New Mexico’s bass species, the largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, spotted bass and white bass.

Anglers will also need to download the Powderhook app on their smartphone or tablet to track their progress. Information such as the lake where the fish was caught, how much the fish weighed and a picture of the fish are just a few examples of what will be required from anglers. For anglers that do not have a smartphone or tablet, there will be alternative ways to enter this information, such as calling the information center or by submitting the information via email or regular mail.

There is no time limit to complete the challenge and every angler that completes the challenge will receive a New Mexico Bass Challenge certificate of completion and coin for bragging rights.

Find the official rules on the New Mexico Bass Challenge webpage, and see if you can be the first of your friends and family to complete it.

About Ross Morgan

Ross Morgan is the Public Information Officer in the Northwest Area for the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish.