Colorado Fishing Report for September 3, 2013

Catching a Fish

Check out Colorado Parks and Wildlife fishing videos
 “Fly Fishing Colorado” is a feature length video journal highlighting major fly-fishing events and top destinations throughout the state. Fly fishermen of all skill levels will benefit from this comprehensive look at Colorado’s year-round fly-fishing opportunities. Each monthly entry is filled with action at recommended destinations, fly-fishing techniques, major insect hatches and proven fly patterns. This week, check out our video with more fall fishing tips: fly fishing in the Gunnison Gorge. For more videos, check out the next video in the “Fly Fishing Colorado” series.

Public fish salvage at Barr Lake State Park
A public fish salvage at Barr Lake State Park began on Friday, Aug. 30. Due to high irrigation demand created by severe
brought, the water level in Barr Lake will be drained to a conservation level of 442 acre feet to meet the needs of its intended agricultural use. The public salvage is being announced in order to optimize use of the fishery resource as outlined: 1) A valid Colorado fishing license is required in accordance with state statutes. 2) A state parks pass is required ($7 Daily Pass or $70 Annual Pass). 3) All legal fishing methods are allowed. 4) Small boats such as kayaks or canoes can be launched –no large boats allowed. 5) Bag, possession and size limits are suspended for Barr Lake only until this emergency public salvage is lifted. 6) The end date of the public salvage effort will be announced by Park Manager Michelle Seubert or district wildlife manager Joe Padia.

Wild Times at St. Vrain State Park, Sept. 7
Get ready for the 4th annual “Wild Times at St. Vrain State Park,” Saturday, Sept. 7. Families, friends, and new outdoor recreationists are invited to join us for a morning of fresh air, fishing and more. Attendees will have the opportunity to shoot bows and arrows, fish in one of the park’s many ponds, and try their hand at shooting air rifles: all under the watchful eyes of trained professionals and partners. A migration game, snacks, and goody bags will round out of this morning of healthy fun. Registration is $5 (no credit cards) and is limited to 100 attendees. A daily Colorado State Parks Pass ($7 per vehicle) or an annual pass is required and can be purchased at the park on the day of the event. Participants will receive instruction in the fine arts of outdoor recreation and leave the event ready to get outside with confidence. St. Vrain State Park is a family-friendly destination for visitors seeking a peaceful and simple outdoor break. It’s easy to reach along I-25 between Denver and Ft. Collins at Highway 119 (exit 240). $7 per vehicle entry fee required, or State Parks pass accepted. This nature and people-friendly park offers 604 acres of land and 152 acres of water split among several ponds. It’s a great place for anglers, campers, photographers, birders, walkers and anyone who loves nature.

Rio Grande fires not affecting trout in San Luis Valley
Agency aquatic biologists are evaluating the effects of the summer fires in the Rio Grande National Forest on rivers and streams in the San Luis Valley. Evaluation of the fires’ effects is still in the very early stages, but here’s what they’re finding so far: They have seen no evidence of any large scale die-offs of trout or other fish species, and some anglers are catching fish and say that the trout appear to be in good condition. Run-off from the burned areas is carrying ash and silt into creeks, the Rio Grande and the South Fork of the Rio Grande. The water ranges in color from black to somewhat clear, depending on recent rainfalls, but so far there have not been any excessive debris flows. Depending on the day, the Rio Grande has been running clear just below Rio Grande Reservoir for a few miles. But ash does flow from creeks in the burn area into the river when rains are intense. Above Rio Grande Reservoir the river is running clear. Areas north of the Rio Grande did not burn, so the upper reaches of the river and Rio Grande Reservoir are unaffected. Fishing is excellent in the smaller creeks in areas that did not burn. The Conejos River was unaffected by the fire. Sediment flows from fires can negatively affect waterways and fish in several ways: ash can cause detrimental changes in water chemistry; large sediment flows can cause oxygen levels to drop; sediment that settles in pools and slow-moving areas can smother ideal habitat for aquatic life; and ash can interfere with the gill function of fish and aquatic insects. Young fish, hatched this year, are most likely to be affected by ash because their gills are still developing.

Stocking Report
The following waters were recently stocked with catchable (approximately 10″) trout:

Metro Denver
South Platte River #3B Jefferson County; Strontia Springs Res. to Scragyview
Northeast Region
Jefferson Lake Park County; 7.5 miles northwest of Jefferson
Northwest Region
Bear Lake Garfield County; 14 miles southwest of Yampa
Cottonwood Lake #2 Grand Mesa
Meadow Lake Garfield County; 20 miles southeast of Buford
Southeast Region
Catamount Reservoir, South Teller County; 8 miles northwest of Cascade
Daigre Reservoir La Veta
Manitou Reservoir Teller County; 9 miles north of Woodland Park
Monument Reservoir Monument
North Lake Las Animas County; 40 miles southwest of Walsenburg
North Fork Reservoir Chaffee County; 11 miles northwest of Maysville
Rampart Reservoir El Paso County; 10 miles east of Woodland Park
San Isabel Lake Pueblo County; 16 miles northwest of Colorado City
Skaguay Reservoir Teller County; 7 miles southeast of Victor
Wahatoya Reservoir La Veta
Southwest Region
No stockings this week.

Conditions Report – Metro Denver Area

Aurora Reservoir (City of Aurora)
Aurora Reservoir is open to boating. Water temperature is 68 degrees. All watercraft must be inspected prior to launch in the lower parking lot at the entrance of the boat ramp. This includes all hand launched watercraft. Trout fishing has slowed down and is rated to slow to fair at this time. From the dam try using PowerBait casted out deep using a slip rig. Boaters have been doing slow to fair trolling with various spoons and crawlers. Walleye action is slow to fair — some reports trolling with bottom bouncers and crawlers. Perch action is slow to fair some reports using jigs tipped with worms.Slow on all other species. Restricted to electric motors only. For more information call 303-690-1286. Park hours for August are 5:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Arvada Reservoir (City of Arvada)
This is the slow time of year, but fishing is still fair at the reservoir. Approximately 3,100 rainbows were stocked on Aug. 20. We had a nice 20-pound catfish taken last week. And for those of you who didn’t see the article in the paper, we had a fisherman who was reeling in a fair sized rainbow trout when a walleye tried to eat the trout and the fisherman landed both. The walleye weighed in at eight pounds and 27 inches. On my questioning of anglers leaving the reservoir, the favorite bait seems to be green PowerBait.

Barr Lake State Park (Adams County)
Due to high irrigation demand, resulting impending draining of Barr Lake and subsequent potential for loss of all fish, public fish salvage is hereby authorized effective August 30, 2013. The public salvage is being annonced in order to optimize use of the fishery resource in accordance with Parks and Wildlife Commision Regulation 104.G. The following emergency salvage regulations apply only to Barr Lake: – A valid fishing license is required – A State Park pass is required ( $7 daily or $70 yearly). – All legal fishing methods are allowed – Bag, possession and size limits are suspended for Barr Lake only until this emergency public salvage is lifted – Notification of the opening and closure will be made through press releases and informational signs posted at strategic locations at Barr Lake – Salvage will begin immediately and will end on a date deemed necessary by the District Wildlife Manager and the Park Manager.

Chatfield State Park (South of Littleton in Douglas and Jefferson Counties)
Fishing has been getting better along with the rising water levels in the reservoir. The water level is up two feet from the lowest level of the year, but it is still down seven feet from normal levels at this time of year. The water temperatures are holding in the low 70s. Many reports have been received of catfish being caught in all hours of the day. Eagle Cove and Roxborough Cove have been popular areas with worms and stink baits being used to attract these fish. Many fishermen have been successful fishing for trout at the gravel ponds using live baits and flies. The south ramp has recently been stocked with many 10-inch trout in the last week. Perch are another fish shore fishermen have had good luck with. Worms are producing many fish up to 8 to 10 inches. Boaters have been doing well along the dam for smallmouth bass with swim baits and blade lures. Boaters have reported catching many different fish in all parts of the lake. Bluegills have been landed in deeper waters and walleye have been decent along the centerline and roadbeds.

Cherry Creek State Park (South of I-225, East of I-25 in Arapahoe County)
The water temperature is 73 degrees. The water level is about 3.5 feet low. At Tower Loop, walleye are being caught with jigs and night crawlers. At Lake Loop, walleye are being caught using jigs and night crawlers. Mountain Loop is reporting trout using night crawlers. Just a reminder, boaters must stay at least 60 feet away from in front of the tower structure at Tower Loop. Both ramps are open 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day. Due to the low water levels, small water craft are being asked to launch at the West Ramp and Larger craft at the East Ramp. Also, due to the low water levels, be aware of unmarked hazards and shallow areas. No launching is permitted outside the posted hours without previous inspection.

Quincy Reservoir (City of Aurora)
Water temperature is 70 degrees. The water level is good at this time. Fishing is restricted to artificial flies and lures only. Only watercraft capable of being launched by hand permitted and electric motors only. All watercraft must be inspected prior to launch. Trout fishing is slow to fair in the morning and evening using spoons and flies. Bass fishing is slow to fair using top water lures and soft plastics. No other reports at this time. For more information call 303-693-5463. Park hours for August are 5:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Standley Lake (City of Westminster, Jefferson County)
Standley Lake is open for day boating and permit holders. The current lake temperature is approximately 71 degrees. Fishing times are 6:30 a.m. to sunset and will be strictly enforced. Aquatic bait is not allowed at Standley Lake; this includes salamanders, leeches, crayfish, frogs and minnows. Aquatic Nuisance Species (ANS) regulations are in effect. Call for more details. A $7 fee is charged for all drive-in traffic. A $15 fee for daily boating is required for canoes, kayaks and small fishing vessels. No belly boats are allowed. Any trailered boat must meet ANS program protocols and are subject to a fifteen day quarantine. Drive-in access is available from 7:00 a.m. to sunset. For more information, contact the Standley Lake Nature Center at (303) 425-1097.

Conditions Report – Northeast Colorado

Boyd Lake State Park (North of Loveland, Larimer County)
No new reports.

Carter Lake (Larimer County)
Fishing for walleye remains good in the evening and morning from shoreline using worms. Anglers are having the most luck using trolling harnesses on boat. Fishing restrictions have changed for lengths and possession limits of walleye so be sure to check signs prior to keeping any fish. Trout are biting on everything. Crappie are plentiful and biting on everything. The water levels are at a season low, if you’re fishing from shore you’ll get a nice drop in depth off of green cove by the North Pines Sun dance trail head.

Eldorado Canyon State Park (South Boulder Creek, Boulder County)
No recent reports.

Eleven Mile State Park (Park County)
Trout fishing is good to very good. Shore and boat anglers are all consistently landing four- to six-pound fish. Standard sizes are running 13 to 7 inches with lots of rainbow, cutbow and cutthroat in the mix. Tasmanian Devils and Kastmasters are doing particularly well, although a wide variety of lures and flies are working. Shore anglers working night crawlers, marshmallows or PowerBait (corn variety) are seeing good success. Coyote Ridge through North Shore, especially Rocky Flats, Suckers Cove, Lazy Boy, and Witchers Cove are all seeing good action. Early afternoon through the evening hours are best right now. Salmon fishing is slow. Try the deeper parts of the lake at 30 to 40 feet in late morning to early afternoon using spoons tipped with meal worms, Swedish pimples, jigs and Kastmasters. Pike is fair. The typical weedbeds along North Shore, Rock Flats, Stoll, Cross Creek and Witchers Cove are still producing a few on spoons and tube jigs Dream Stream is good. Large fish are being caught using midges and Barr’s emergers.

Flatiron Reservoir (Larimer County)
Flatiron produces best with PowerBait and worms from the shoreline. Cheyenne day use is open and allows for fishing from the southern shore of Flatiron. Pinewood continues to fish very well from the cove with flies especially midge imitations. Use Griffins Gnat and small Zebra Midges in the evening. A 40-inch musky was reported from Pinewood and the possibility remains to catch the largest fish of the year. Other parts of the lake fish best with baits and worms and a limit of fish can be caught from the shore. You’ll have the best luck just before the sun comes up! Day passes are available 24/7 at either entrance to the park through an automated pay station next to the gate!

Golden Gate Canyon State Park Ponds (Jefferson and Gilpin Counties)
Golden Gate Canyon State Park offers five fishing ponds open year-round to all park visitors. The ponds are Kriley, Slough, Ranch Ponds East and West, and Dude’s Fishing Hole. Each angler is allowed four fish per day with eight being the maximum number in possession. No live baits are allowed with the exception of worms. Please call the Visitor Center for directions at 303-582-3707.

Horsetooth Reservoir, Lory State Park (Larimer County)
Trout have remained at a low to medium density continuing to go after spinners to worms. Bass are still out in force. Large bass are moving out of the coves early in the morning with the small ones staying in the coves during the day. Warmer water temperatures are continuing to provide very good smallmouth bass fishing. They are going after crank baits, minnows, jigs and worms. Walleye are still hitting hard with a majority of activity in the coves especially in Inlet Bay.

Jackson Lake State Park (Morgan County)
Water levels are low and boating is by hand launch only. Canoes, kayaks, etc. that can be carried to the water are allowed. There is not enough water at the ramp to allow a trailered vessel to be launched. Surface water temperature is approximately 80 degrees. Fishing has slowed down some but people are still catching carp, wipers, walleye and trout. It’s usually best to fish in the early mornings or late evenings. For wipers and walleyes, the bait has been nightcrawlers from the shoreline.

Jumbo Reservoir (Logan and Sedgwick Counties)
The boat ramp will likely be closed by Thursday or Friday this week at Jumbo Res. No vessels will be able to launch due to low water and the ANS station will be closed.

North Sterling State Park (Logan County)
Water levels are good with the south boat ramp still in the water. Crappie fishing is slow along the dam, marina and outlet areas on jigs and minnows. Best fishing has been in the mornings and evenings. Lots of catfish are being caught at Balanced Rock, Darby Arm and Elks Bay on worms.

Prewitt Reservoir (Washington County)
Water levels are still dropping. Prewitt is closed to boating, only hand launched boats are allowed. The ramp and dock are out of the water. Fishing has been slow for all species. A few wiper and walleye are being caught at night off the dam. Prewitt requires an annual fishing license or a State Wildlife Area access permit for anyone ages 19-64. The minimum size for walleye and wipers is 15 inches.

Spinney Mountain State Park (Park County)
Trout fishing is good. Fishermen are reporting the most success in the deep waters. Good catches are being seen in the inlets and closer to the dam. Try using a drake fly, hopper dry flies or a black tube jig. Pike fishing is also good. Try using spoons, stickbaits or tube jigs. The best reports are coming from those fishing 100 to 150 meters from the shoreline.

St. Vrain State Park ponds (Weld County)
Believe it or not, there are still plenty of fish to be caught at St. Vrain State Park! This time of the year, most of the ponds are producing primarily warm-water species. Bluegill and crappie are a good place to start. Get a worm and a bobber (and a fishing pole of course) and throw it out there. Sandpiper, Mallard, Killdeer, Coot, Redtail, and even Pelican Ponds are all good places for “panfish.” If bass are more to your liking, try Bald Eagle and Coot Ponds. There are lots of largemouths in each! Lucky Tip: Be either as natural as you can, or as bright/loud as you can because these fish have been playing the “avoid the hook” game all summer. The trout bite is slim but there’s still a chance if you can find a deep/cool channel in one of our ponds. But beware, the few that are left are smart! Try flies/rooster tails/panther martins or some kind of legal bait to bag ’em. Coot, Sandpiper or Mallard ponds are your best bet. If catfish are more to your liking, you’re in luck! There are catfish in every accessible pond on our park. Try stink bait and liver, or something else with a smell! Good luck! Please remember that Bald Eagle Pond has the following restrictions: 1) Fishing with artificial flies and lures only, 2) Scented plastics must be one and a half inches long or longer, and 3) ALL bass must be returned to the water immediately. On that note, the bass are still producing. Try senko’s, drop shots, and crawdad immitations (weedless) for some good morning/evening results. The mid-day bite is slow. Lucky Tip: The bass have been biting on flies too (be as natural as possible and try dragon-fly immitations). The sunfish are still playing the “take the worm” game and can be caught in every accessible pond on our park. Try worms below a bobber around the shorelines and rocks/structure. Good Luck! If you’re planning on coming out, please bring your fishing license and keep it with you.

Conditions Report – Southeast Colorado

Adobe Creek Reservoir/Blue Lake (Kiowa and Bent Counties)
Catfish are biting fair, the crappie bite is slow. Other species are hit or miss. Water levels are low; boat access is limited to one low-water ramp. Shallow draft boats launch easiest; deep draft boats are difficult to launch at this time.

Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area/Arkansas River (Lake, Chaffee and Fremont Counties)
Here’s an update from Greg at ArkAnglers: “Flows in the Arkansas River have benefitted from recent rains, currently flowing about 430 CFS through Bighorn Sheep Canyon. While this is a great fall flow, water quality in lower Bighorn Sheep Canyon is compromised. Expect continued clearing below Howard over the next several days. From Salida upstream, the water is in excellent condition. Currently, active aquatic insects include caddis, blue wing olive and red quill mayflies, midges, tricos, and some golden stoneflies. There are also some very large and colorful moths around that are bringing fish to the surface in the evening twilight. Fish are driven to feed by all of this food, but the variety of it means that opportunism remains the dominant feeding behavior. As a result, double-dry and dry-dropper rigs with a large hopper or adult stonefly trailing either adult caddis or attractor/mayfly nymphs or midge pupae have been the most common successful approach.”

Brush Hollow Reservoir (Fremont County)
The water level has come up and some boats are able to launch from the boat ramp. However, the water level can fluctuate daily. Consequently, access to the boat ramp may also change rapidly. Fishing has been good for bluegill and a small number of bass have been reported being caught.

Clear Creek Reservoir (Chaffee County)
Clear Creek Reservoir boat ramp is open Thursday through Monday, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Here is an update from Jerry Hornbuckle: “Weather continues to dominate fishing at Clear Creek Reservoir and is expected to do so for the next week. In general fishing has been down except for a few people who always catch large numbers of fish. Many fishermen are being skunked, whether fishing from boats or shore. As for specific details, no more tiger muskies have been reported caught, and each day fewer than half a dozen kokanee salmon are reported to have been landed. As for insect hatches, mayflies continue to be seen every day, and the largest numbers of catch and release trout are caught with dry flies along the south shore. Dry flies such as an Adams Parachute were the best patterns. PowerBait fished from shore still produced limit catches in two or three hours. Worms were not quite as good as PowerBait, and flies fished with a water filled bubble and spinning tackle sometimes did reasonably well. Trolling with worms or small spoons beneath “dodgers” have worked for some boat fishermen, but a variety of lures (such as Needle Fish, Tasmanian Devils, Panther Martins, Blue Foxes, Flat Fish, Rooster Tails, and Rapalas) also worked well. Sept. 30 is the last day of the season where trailered boats may be launched and beginning next week the boat ramp is open from 7 5 p.m. every day except Tuesday and Wednesday.”

Lake Henry (Crowley County)
Henry Lake is closed to fishing and all other wildlife-related recreation.

John Martin Reservoir State Park (Bent County)
The stilling basin and the Arkansas River below the dam have produced large catfish, saugeye, and striper using minnows and worms. White bass and wiper are being caught by the dozens out of the reservoir on jigs, minnows, crawfish, and shrimp. Drum, bluegill, carp and walleye have also been caught in the reservoir, but with varying frequency. Please be mindful of all regulations concerning size and creel limits. Good Luck!

Lake Pueblo State Park (Pueblo County)
While the crowds will ramp up one last time for the year, the fishing has been gradually slowing lately. Reports of fish caught are fewer, but those brought in are usually nicer fish. The cloudy water may be to blame, but those with patience are being rewarded. The Arkansas River continues to clear by the day, and fishing is consistently well. The hot place for families this weekend will be Anticline and Valco Ponds, with many fish waiting to be caught of various species. As always please be considerate of all other users here at the park and know they are out enjoying our natural resources just as you are. Also, please continue to follow the rules and regulations regarding method of take and bait use while on the river. If you have any questions please stop in at our visitor center or ask a ranger on the park. Tight lines everyone!

Lathrop State Park, Martin Lake and Horseshoe Lake (Huerfano County)
The fishing is picking up on both Martin and Horseshoe. The pike bite is starting to pick up a bit, along with the bass bite as the weather cools off. Overnight fishing isn’t producing quite as much as it was earlier in the summer, but both lakes fishing is picking up. This is a reminder, though, that if you are fishing overnight, you must be actively fishing, and not camping on shore.

Lake Meredith (Crowley County)
Meredith Reservoir is closed to fishing and all other wildlife-related recreation.

Mt. Elbert Forebay (Lake County)
Fishing conditions at Mt. Elbert Forebay have been slow. A few anglers reported catching multiple trout from shore with most anglers catching one trout or none at all. Shore anglers fared better at the southern part of the reservoir when compared to the overall catches at the northern part of the reservoir. Near the inlet, trout were taking live grasshoppers and worms. At the southern section of the reservoir, trout went for rainbow PowerBait and salmon eggs. Morning fishing at the southern section of the reservoir has been more productive than midday fishing. Anglers reported landing both rainbow trout and cutthroat trout between 8 to 12 inches. Midday water surface temperatures were in the low 60s.

Nee Gronde Reservoir (Kiowa County)
Carp are biting well, catfish are fair to good. Slow for all other species. Water levels continue to decline and temps are in the mid 70s. Access is difficult around much of the lake due to low water and muddy shorelines.

Rampart Reservoir (El Paso County)
The U.S. Forest Service opened the reservoir to shoreline anglers and hand launched watercraft on May 24. The road across the dam is now open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays and Sunday. It will not be open during the week. Motorized boats are not allowed across the dam and cannot be launched from the boat ramp. Fishing continues to be fair to good for cutbows and rainbows.

Turquoise Lake (Lake County)
Some fish are being caught be things are extremely slow. Cooler weather may help with the catch rate.

Trinidad Lake State Park (Las Animas County)
Trinidad Lake is approximately 482 surface acres and the surface temp is in the low to mid 70s. The water is beginning to clear up. We are starting to get more reports of the trout biting. The catfish are biting on chicken liver. Two 30-inch catfish were caught this week. Anglers are reminded to check the regulations for bass and walleye.

Twin Lakes Reservoir (Lake County)
Fishing conditions at Twin Lakes Reservoir have been fair from shore but remain slower from a boat. A majority of boat anglers reported not catching multiple fish. Boat anglers employing lures reported fishing for several hours without catching a single fish. Successful boat anglers caught a few trout by floating a worm 6 feet deep at the lower lake. At the Dexter Point boat ramp, shore anglers caught 10 to12 inch rainbow trout by fishing off the bottom with PowerBait. Between 100 to 200 feet away from the power plant, shore anglers experienced some success with fishing the bottom with PowerBait. None of the surveyed shore anglers fishing near the power plant obtained a four trout limit. No one reported landing a fish at the upper lake. Without the assistance of a dock at Dexter Point boat ramp, boat launching might be a more onerous task. Midday water surface temperatures were in the low 60s.


Conditions Report – Northwest Colorado

Colorado River at Glenwood Springs (Garfield County)
Here’s the latest from the Taylor Creek Fly Shop: ” Flow is 2170 CFS in Glenwood Springs. The Colorado has been in fairly decent shape over the last week, if there are two feet of visibility, game on. There are still very decent hatches of pale morning duns, caddis, golden stones and sallies, as well as tiny blue winged olives in the size 22 range. As with the other rivers, streamers are really starting to become effective again as the fish sense winter around the corner. This water is obviously best approached from the boat, although there are wading spots here and there for the physically fit angler. Check out Grizzly and Canyon Creeks, Dino Truck Stop and Newcastle bridge if you are on foot.”

Crystal River (Gunnison County)
Here’s a report from the Taylor Creek Fly Shop: “Flow is at 94 CFS in Redstone and 20 CFS in Carbondale. Attractor dry patterns and nymphs are all that you need, and perhaps a few small streamers for early and late in the day. Dries should consist of stonefly, caddis, pale morning duns and blue winged olive patterns, nymphs for the same. The Crystal fishes very well this time of year and is a good back up plan for those who abhor crowds. Between miles 50 and 60 are some of our favorites, as well as the Staircase in Carbondale.”

Delaney Buttes, Cowdrey Reservoir and Lake John (Jackson County)
No recent updates.

Elkhead Reservoir State Park (Moffat County)
Pike are biting at Elkhead Reservoir with anglers reporting success five or six feet below the surface. A couple of 23-inch northerns caught by an angler this weekend looked small compared to the 40-inch pulled out by a father and son team on Sunday. Crappie and blue gill are being caught with jigs at the north end of Elkhead Reservoir. The pike pond at Yampa Headquarters gave up a 42-inch northern on Friday afternoon, but a larger pike remains, according to anglers this weekend.

Fryingpan River (Eagle County)
Here’s a report from Taylor Creek Fly Shop: “Flow is at 192 CFS. There is a lot going on up the Fryingpan these days, and dry fly fishing at its finest is officially here. Crowds are thick, but there is a good reason for so many people on the river right now. Green drakes are coming off more heavily with each passing day, and the pale morning duns are hatching prolifically too. Localized Seratella and blue winged olive emergences are happening here and there as well. The streamer bite is very good early and late in the day, or any time there is sufficient cloud cover. Mysis shrimp are pouring out of the dam in the bowl and flats, be sure to carry a few clear as well as white shrimp patterns. The drakes and PMDs get going around 11 a.m. on cooler, cloudy days, and closer to 2 p.m. on hot, bright days. On the lower river, caddis and PMDs are the hatch.”

Harvey Gap State Park (Garfield County)
No recent reports.

Highline Lake State Park and Mack Mesa Reservoir (Mesa County)
No recent updates.

James M. Robb Colorado River State Park (Mesa County)
Channel catfish are biting on worms in the Colorado River. The Fruita section, Connected Lakes and Corn Lake all have boat ramp access to the river. Bluegill and trout are biting on worms at Fruita and Island Acres. Try using worms at Corn Lake to catch some bullhead catfish.

Lake Granby (Grand County)
Here’s an update from Tracy Featherston, the Lake Granby skipper from “Lake Granby is minus-27 feet below full, clarity is to six feet and surface temperature is 67 degrees. Salmon fishing should start to pick up with kokanee starting to school. Lakers are very hard to catch lately in 60 to 120 feet of water. Please take great care if you catch a large laker in deep water — by taking time reeling the fish in so the fish can release its bladder bag.”

Pearl Lake State Park (Routt County)
Blue Kastmasters and Rapalas have been hitting well in the evening, as have wooly boogers. Crawdad type flies have been hitting well also according to our guests. A few brook trout have been caught in Pearl lately.

Rifle Falls, Rifle Gap State Park (Garfield County)
Fishing is good in Rifle Gap State Park! Lots of large perch being caught, especially near the Cedar Loop shoreline. Trout are being caught throughout the lake. Pike and Walleye are being caught near the dam.

Roaring Fork River (Garfield County)
Latest info from Taylor Creek Fly Shop: “Flow is at 148 CFS in Aspen and 540 CFS in Glenwood Springs. The dry fly fishing is slowing up a bit, there has been some decent caddis and PMD action early and late in the day. Drakes are starting to fall off in Aspen, but there are still a few more twilight hatches in store for us before they peter out completely. Tiny blue winged olives are popping mid-day on the lower river and we are still seeing fair amounts of golden stones flapping about as well. Nymphing has been rock-solid with tiny and shiny baetis nymphs following a worm or stonefly nymph. Streamers become more and more significant as the month comes to an end, these fish will start sensing the shorter days and cooler temperatures and start packing on the pounds for a long, dark winter.”

Stagecoach State Park (Routt County)
The Tailwaters will be closed to all public access beginning Sept. 16, 2013 for the restoration project. It is expected to be closed through the end of the year. Contact the park office for more information. Trout have moved to deeper, cooler water. Orange or green PowerBait, wooly buggers, Tasmanian devils, and worms are working well for trout. Anglers have been successful fishing from the shore or a boat. Pike activity has picked up with a few 20-plus pound fish being landed in the shallows at the inlet. Buzz baits have been working well for pike. The harvest of pike at Stagecoach is encouraged. Please don’t throw them on shore or in the dumpsters but take as many as you like for the fryer. Algae are beginning to bloom. Emergers, midges, and prince nymphs in dark colors have yielded some beautiful rainbows at the tailwaters below the dam. Small sections of shoreline have been roped off to help prevent erosion. If the tailwaters parking lot is full, please park at the dam or come back another time to avoid overcrowding.

State Forest State Park (Jackson County)
No recent updates.

Steamboat Lake State Park (Routt County)
Bank fishermen have been hitting Meadow Point and Rainbow Ridge area pretty hard with worms and eggs being the bait of choice. SPinners have been working very well also I have not heard from boat fisherman lately, so no report for them.

Sylvan Lake State Park (Eagle County)
Gold spinners and and PowerBaits are working well, and small caddis or black nymphs are, too. There is a good mix of rainbow, cutthroat and even brookies and browns. Good time to try the beaver ponds on West Brush Creek.


Vega State Park (Mesa County)
Early Settlers and the Oak Point boat ramps are closed at this time. The Island boat ramp is open. The gravel pit and Fisherman Flats areas are open and fishing is very excellent. Power bait, worms and spinners are working well. Please make sure to have your boat inspected prior to launching. Sealing your boat upon exit will make your next outing much quicker. Fishing licenses and boat registrations may be purchased at the visitor center open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Yampa River State Park (Routt County)
The Yampa River is fishing well due to the water releases from upstream dams. Browns and pike are continuing to dominate the angler reports coming in from the Yampa.

Conditions Report – Southwest Colorado

Crawford State Park (Delta County)
No recent updates.

Gunnison Gorge, Gunnison River (Gunnison – Delta County)
The Black Canyon of the Gunnison Gorge is running around 536 CFS. The river is starting to clear with about four feet of visibility and improving every day. Flies that have been working are streamers, caddis emergers, and San Juan worms. The Lower Gunnison at the Confluence is running around 635 CFS. It is also clearing up and fishing well. San Juan worms, copper johns, streamers and Pat’s rubber legs have been working well.

Mancos State Park, Jackson Gulch Reservoir (Montezuma County)
The Jackson Gulch reservoir inlet is only flowing during rainstorms. Outflow for domestic uses continues so, the lake remains quite low. In spite of the low lake level shore fishing has been excellent for 10 to 12 inch rainbow trout and 6 to 7 inch yellow perch with an occasional large brown trout. Trout are biting on glitter PowerBait, as well as worms, grasshoppers and salmon eggs. Some inline spinners such as Panther Martins and Kastmasters have seen success. Fly fisherfolk have been catching their limit using small dry flies, especially in the early morning and late evening hours along the dam and in the west coves. Perch love all kinds of worms: nightcrawlers, mealworms or waxworms. Perch are small, averaging about 6 to 7, but anglers should keep them if they’ll eat them — they make yummy fish tacos! There is no limit on the number of perch you can keep; the daily limit for trout is four. A park pass is required when utilizing the park. Daily park passes are available at the self-serve pay post at the park entrance. Park passes and fishing licenses are on sale at the Mancos entrance station during staff hours.

Navajo State Park (Archuleta County)
Crappie fishing has slowed some; however, the smallmouth bass have been biting recently. Water temperature is currently approximately 75 degrees. Colorado and New Mexico fishing licenses for 2013-14 are available at the Visitor Center at this time. Please remember to bring sunscreen, insect repellent and clothes appropriate for changes in the weather.

Ridgway State Park (Ouray County)
The reservoir is 86.6 percent capacity and falling. Our most recent stocking of the reservoir, with 2,000 catchable rainbow trout, occurred on July 23. Both shore fishermen and boaters are reporting very good fishing for stocker-sized fish (eight to 12 inches) with a few larger fish (18 to 20 inches) being caught. The catch is mostly rainbows, but there have also been some browns and smallmouth bass.

 Rio Grande River (Rio Grande County)
No recent updates.

Taylor Reservoir (Gunnison County)
Here’s an update from Dee Dee at Taylor Park Marina: “Fishing is quite good; there is already fall weather up here. Try trolling with cowbells and nightcrawlers with leadline out using three to five colors. The bigger rainbows are biting right off the marina, and on the west bank. Also, try fishing off the bottom with a worm using a worm blower and open bail, nice fat rainbows. Lake trout are a little slow, but if you hit the right time, you will catch a few. With these cooler temps, I think the mack spawn might start early. Pike have been slow due to all the stock trucks the last couple of weeks.”

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