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August 12, 2014
Conditions Report - Metro Denver Area
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 been hit or miss from shore. From the dam try using power bait from a slip rig casted out 40-50 yards! Boaters have been reporting success ranging from fair to good trolling with spoons, rapalas and crawlers for trout. Walleye action is reported as slow to fair from boats trolling bottom bouncers with crawlers, jointed shad raps and jigs. Most walleye are under the 18" size limit. Some reports of yellow perch being caught in the marina cove using worms and jigs. All other species are slow or no reports. Restricted to electric motors only. For more information call 303-326-8425. Park hours for August 5:30AM-9:00PM.
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 using flies. Bass fishing is rated as slow to fair using swim baits, top water lures, spinner baits and soft plastics. Some reports of yellow perch being caught using jigs. No other reports at this time. For more information call 303-326-8424. Park hours for August 5:30AM-9:00PM. Quincy will be closed to boating September 23-25 for maintenance work on the aeration line.
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Conditions Report - Northeast Colorado
Reported by Type of Fish: Grade, Lures Reported Used, Location Reported. Bass, Largemouth: GOOD, Plastic Lures, Marina, Pumphouse & North Cove; Bass, Smallmouth: FAIR, Lures, Marina, Pumphouse, North Cove; Bass, White: GOOD, Lures, Worms , Lakewide; Blue Gill: FAIR, Report, Lake Wide; Carp: POOR, Report, Lake Wide; Catfish: FAIR, Report, Lake Wide; Crappie: FAIR, Worms & Lures, Lake Wide; Trout: GOOD, Worms, Lures, Powerbait, Lake Wide Walleye: GOOD, Bottom Bouncers, lures, Shallow Waters Off the Points & Trolling; Yellow Perch: POOR, No report, Lake Wide; The current water temperature is estimated to be approximately 70° with a depth of approximately 51 feet. Estimate approximately 1600+ Surface Acres. PLEASE NOTE: Any live fish collected for use as bait may only be used in the same body of water from which they were collected. All live baitfish from a commercial source and transported by anglers must at all times be accompanied by a receipt for the source. See the Colorado Fishing Regulations for further clarification and information.
The walleye fishing has been slow due to rising water temperature. The walleye have been suspended off of the bottom and have been proving to be very illusive. However, the trout fishing has picked up for anglers using night crawlers and leeches off of the bottom. The bass fishing has also been slow with anglers only having luck using small finesse worms to get bites.
Fishing conditions in the canyon are currently fair to poor due to the disturbance of the creek by heavy equipment. Reconstruction of the creek bed and picnic area is underway and the creek from the vehicle bridge adjacent to the picnic area to the west boundary of the park is CLOSED to fishing. Fishing is still allowed from the vehicle bridge to the East park boundary however the disturbance of the creek due to the construction has resulted in poor conditions. Repairs to the picnic area are progressing well and we hope to have the area reopened in early Fall. This site will be updated when the creek reopens for fishing.
Eleven Mile State Park
Trout (Excellent): Good news, the great bite continues with lots of fish being caught here at Eleven Mile. Look for Cuttbows, Rainbows and occasional Browns running 13 to 24 inches. Trolling is extremely effective with lead core line, downrigger, and cowbells. Needlefish continue to be a hot spoon this year. Tasmanian Devils have been coming on strong. Color patterns can change daily, although pink has been the most consistent. Look to greens and chartruese on cloudy days. One thing for sure is the bigger fish have been biting between 11:00AM and 1:00PM. KOKANEE (Slow): People are still catching a salmon here and there. Most are big ones and most are coming out of the North Shore area out near the marina. A number of things are working like a sling blade or dodger with a Dick Nite, Needlefish or Hoochie attched with about a three foot leader. Fish are running 15 to 40 feet deep. NORTHERN PIKE (Fair): Action continues to improve but you will work for those big ones. Work shallow water using large Rapala's or big spoons and big tube jigs. Mid morning from 8:30AM to 11:00AM seems to be the best. (Courtesy of 11 Mile Marina) DREAM STREAM (Fair): Red Nyphms and Cooperhead Midges have been the most successful flies on the stream this week
The trout fishing has been slow due to fluctuating water levels and cloudy water. Anglers have been catching fish on brightly colored power bait on the west shore.
Horsetooth Reservoir (Larimer County)
Water temperature was 74.7 degrees, and the level has leveled out at 99.8 full. Walleye are starting to bite during day now on worm harness; try shallow first with shad raps and worm harness down 12-15 feet. Still best fishing evenings and early night, and look deeper if they aren't up! Want to try something different? Try a Mepps spinner for those walleyes in 11-18 foot of water! They sometimes move out 20-25 feet. Bass have slowed and mostly smaller fish. Lots of bass feeding on shad and smelt. Very slow presentation on tubes works, as well as craw colored crank baits, and senko type worms, top water baits early morning. Trout is fair; try worms under a bobber in Satanka and Inlet Bay, and also crawfish crank baits, and Mepps style spinners.
Lake level is full. Surface water temperature as of August 9th was at 76 degrees. Fishing has been slow to fair for species. A few trout have been taken with your typical bait and wipers using nightcrawlers.
The fishing has been good with anglers catching rainbow trout on night crawlers and power bait. The bigger bites have come from the east shore line near windy pines.
Spinney Mountain State Park
SPINNEY RESERVOIR (Fair): Tasmanian Devils and #2 Rainbow Needlefish have been successful with the Trout this week. Reports point to Large Spoons and Rapalla's at the west end of the reservoir for Northern Pike. DREAM STREAM: No significant report.
Conditions Report - Southeast Colorado
We had a major thunderstorm in the Browns Canyon area Sunday night which sent a 500 cfs spike through the canyon and down into Bighorn Sheep Canyon before dawn. As a result, conditions are tough below Browns Canyon today. The flows are normal again but there is a lot of sediment still moving through the river. This should improve as the day goes on. Pale morning dun hatches in and around Browns Canyon are bringing big rainbows into the top laminers of the current while evening edge fishing with golden stonefly/hopper patterns has played well with the ambush tactics of some of the bigger browns. It is really good fishing on the Arkansas right now, and the middle river has had some of the most stable conditions riverwide. After several days of respite, monsoon rains returned Sunday night with a fury. The river is not fishable this morning below Browns Canyon and all of Bighorn Sheep Canyon is a mess. Some drying out will help but we need to watch the weather later today to see what happens. Despite the rain episodes and impacts to visibility, the Canyon is alive with aquatic insects right now - just ask the swallows! Pale morning dun mayflies, caddis, yellow sally stoneflies, golden stones, red quills...there is enough variety that most fish are remaining opportunistic rather than developing any serious selectivity. The one exception we've seen at times is with bigger fish hovering on foam lines during the afternoon pmd hatch. At those times, it may be necessary to present a realistic facsimile of the hatch. Otherwise, plausible food with a good drift in productive water should take fish throughout the day.
Monsoon rains have continued to fluctuate the flow and clarity through Bighorn Sheep Canyon (below Salida) but conditions have remained mostly stable and clear upstream in Browns Canyon and above. Pale morning duns, red quills, caddis and tricos have all been active, keeping fish on the feed through much of the day. Look for a slowly dropping flow as we move through August and a resumption of great fishing in Bighorn Sheep Canyon once this southwestern flow of moisture subsides.
Clear Creek Reservoir (Lake County)
Shore fishing near the dam and upper part of the reservoir has been slow, although shore fishing at the boat ramp parking area has been fair. At the boat ramp parking area, shore anglers caught trout on rainbow PowerBait and worms by fishing the lake's bottom. Either silver or gold Kastmasters (1/8 oz or 1/4 oz) normally works well at the boat ramp parking lot area. A few anglers reported catching 14 to 17 inch rainbow trout near the boat ramp. Shore anglers employing PowerBait at either the upper part of the reservoir or near the dam experienced more success at landing trout. Anglers targeting suckers for lake trout bait may want to consider fishing the lake's bottom with worms. Fly fisherman caught several trout on Adams flies (#18). Green or red Woolly Buggers has been an effective fly for some fly fisherman too. Fishing from a boat has been fair. Trolling at the southern part of the reservoir with worms coupled with troll blades remains the most consistent method to catch trout. Small Rapalas, green Needlefish lures, and Pistol Petes worked well for trout from a boat. Landing a Kokanee salmon from a boat remains a herculean task. The reservoir is closed to trailer and motorized watercrafts on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Boating hours are 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Midday water surface temperatures were in the mid 60's F°.
The weather has a mind of its own the past few weeks. The drop in temperature and rain storms have made for some interesting changes in the fishing. The cooler weather has brought about an upswing in the conditions, and we are seeing some nice fish coming out all over the park. The lake has seen an increase in Wiper and Bass fishing, and Walleye still being caught as well. Anticline Pond received a stocking in the recent weeks, making for a great family fishing opportunity. The river has been fishing well, but the rain has brought in muddy water, making the visibility poor. With the cooler weather it is still a great time to get out and enjoy the water. As always please continue to follow the rules and regulations regarding method of take, size limits, and bait use while on the river. If you have any questions please ask a ranger on the park. Tight lines everyone!
Conditions Report - Northwest Colorado
The lake continues to fish well for bluegill, large and small mouth bass, pike and crappie. Anglers are reporting fishing is better at the north end of the reservoir.
OVERALL RATING: 5 out of 10. THE SHORT AND SWEET: Are you the angler that doesn't want to see anyone (or at least just a few others) all day? This is your section. Hatches get rolling down on the lower river before the upper due to warmer temperatures, and we are already seeing good numbers of caddis, PMDs and baetis. Green Drakes are starting to show up on our radar, although numbers are still on the light side.
Lower Roaring Fork (Carbondale to Glenwood)
OVERALL RATING: 8 out of 10 Conditions are ideal but are still amazingly improving daily as the water continues to drop and the fish become more concentrated. FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Drakes have moved through Basalt, but fish are still willing to eat them! There are plenty of caddis, PMDs, golden stones and big sedges moving around these days. THE SHORT AND SWEET: Pack up your fishing gear and get your butt out on the river! Like the other sections of water along the Roaring Fork, nymph the fast water with larger flies and the soft water with smaller flies. As the water continues to fall, look for the fish to make the transition from holding along the edges eating big flies (stoneflies, sedges, etc) to holding more midriver and eating smaller flies (PMDs, caddis etc).
Middle River Fryingpan
OVERALL RATING: 8 out of 10. THE SHORT AND SWEET: The middle section of the Fryingpan sees far, far less pressure than the upper miles, and this can play to your advantage. The middle river also offers plenty of places to duck out of the ever-present wind. Temperatures warm with the drop in elevation, so the lower and middle river typically see earlier and later hatches in the year as well.
Middle Roaring Fork – Basalt Downstream to Carbondale
OVERALL RATING: 7 out of 10. FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Stoneflies, Caddis, PMDs. THE SHORT AND SWEET: We are back in business on the Roaring Fork. The water is still high and just a tad swift, but visibility is perfect (when the lower Fryingpan isn't adding a bit of mud) and the levels are dropping daily. All of the fish are still on the edges and side channels, and where you find one, you'll find many right now.
Stocked with Rainbows 07/21 & 07/24 and fishing has been VERY good. Still seeing a few Brookies too. Powerbaits, salmon eggs, woolly buggers. A variety of flies: gray, green or brown caddis, parachute adams are all working well. Time to try West Brush Creek near Bear Gulch.
State Forest State Park
First and foremost thank you for your interest in State Forest State Park! If you are staying with us for the first time than let me be the first to tell you that the fishing here is fantastic! Both North Michigan Reservoir and Ranger Lakes are stocked with Rainbow and Cutthroat Trout that are all catchable size of twelve inches or better. For the best luck fishing in these areas try spin bait or rooster tails. The water in North Michigan Reservoir and Ranger Lakes are relatively silt free and offer some good views of fish swimming below. If you choose to fish at North Michigan Reservoir try fishing at the inlet or the dam. It seems that many of our visitors have done well at these locations. If by chance you are interested in a decent hike and some great fishing then I would recommend both Kelly Lake and Clear Lake. You may begin your hike for these lakes at the closure, which is at the end of County Road 41. Be prepared for a six mile hike to Kelly and a seven mile hike to Clear one way, and enjoy the gift of beautiful views and great fishing at your destination. Remember that the bag limit at our alpine lakes is two per person and four at either Ranger Lakes or North Michigan Reservoir. If you wish to do some fly fishing in the park then you also will be very pleased. Since early July we have seen a decrease in the flow of our local streams, although this has left many trout seeking shelter in deeper waters collected by beaver dams. I would recommend using midges or olive woolly buggers to fish these waters. One last thing, if you have a motorized boat please bring it by one of our ANS (Aquatic Nuisance Species) inspection stations unless you have a green seal, then you may place it in our ANS self-service box on the North or East side of North Michigan Reservoir. Happy fishing and best of luck to you!
OVERALL RATING: 8 out of 10. THE SHORT AND SWEET: The Fryingpan River is renowned world-wide for quite a few reasons, the first that come to mind are the prolific and year-round dry fly hatches as well as fish measured in pounds instead of inches. People jokingly refer to Basalt as a small drinking town with a big fishing problem, and we can certainly vouch for that. Hatches currently on the Fryingpan consist of PMDs, BWOs, and midges in the upper reaches, and down low you can add in stoneflies and caddis too. FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Green Drakes, PMDs, BWOs, Stoneflies, Midges, Mysis.
Upper Roaring Fork (Aspen downstream to Basalt)
OVERALL RATING: 6 out of 10 though some local anglers would argue that it's rating at least an 8 out of 10. If you know the river well and enjoy pocket water fishing, this upper section of river is right up your alley. THE SHORT AND SWEET: Bye, bye runoff. It's summer time and the fishing and water conditions are much, much improved now. In general, look for the fish to be stacked up in the softer water eating general attractor patterns. Hatches are consisting of predominately green drakes, caddis, BWOs and midges. Stoneflies, PMD and green drake nymphs are also fishing well. And of course, don't count out the San Juan Worm either. Look for the fishing to go from 0-100 in no time flat! Right now it feels like the calm before the storm, where the locals and fish-bums are taking advantage of the conditions before the crowds of summer roll in in the coming weeks. Fish the softer pockets and seams and you'll get em!
The lake is receding daily and fishing is still very good. Anglers are reporting that worms, powerbait and spinners are catching some nice rainbows and cutthroats in the 12 - 16 inch range. All three boat ramps remain open at this time. All boats are required to have an inspection prior to l aunch. Anyone failing to receive an inspection will be given a citation. The Visitor Center is open daily from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and we do sell fishing licenses .
The salmon are hitting very well less than 5 feet below the surface in water up to 40 feet deep. This is really unusual this time of year. I usually find them much deeper right now. The most productive method for me has been by using Off Shore Tackle Companies planer boards pulled to the outside of my boat with small spoons. With the mild summer we have had this bite might continue through September.
The river continues to fish well for browns with water levels seasonal.
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Conditions Report - Southwest Colorado
Over the last few weeks we have slowly transitioned from trolling to vertically jigging for the kokanee salmon. Although some days the trolling is still producing decent numbers, it has been slow over all. The jig bite depends on the day and the school. Trout fishing is good in a few select areas of the lake and lake trout fishing is slow. The water level has only dropped a foot and is holding around 19 feet low. The water temps are still hanging around 69 degrees and climbing to as high as 73 degrees some afternoons. Kokanee Salmon- We have seen some better fish catches lately, but it's still day to day and not easy. Vertically jigging has been the most effective IF you know how to read your electronics and find fish. If you sit around in hopes of joining in on a school that somebody else finds the odds are against you. Jigging for kokanee salmon is a very unique pattern that requires a lot of courtesy, etiquette, and ethics, but unfortunately we seem to be moving away from these necessary qualities. Just because somebody is on a school and catching some fish does not mean that YOU are entitled to invite yourself over for some of the action! If you can't find your own fish, be courteous and ask if it is okay if you join. If you are blessed with limits of fish, please honor the daily bag and possession limit of 10 fish per person at any given time. This means that you can NOT keep another salmon until you consume (not can or smoke or freeze) one of your ten salmon. Schools have been running 60-120 feet deep and being caught on Pk Panic Spoons, Kastmasters, P-line Kokanator spoons, and Crippled Herring. Rainbow & Brown Trout- The trout bite is fair if you work "trouty" areas. Rainbows can be found from the surface to 35' and if you can find a color they like the action can be good! Brown trout can be found 15-75' and the action for them has been fair. Shorelines and coves with rocks have been holding more trout. Rocky Mountain Tackle, Venator lures, Arnies, Needle Fish, Taz's and Radical Glow spinners have all been producing. Use your electronics to your advantage as some areas are holding trout! Mackinaw Lake Trout- Slow; the fish are deep and take some dedication to catch. Targeting the big fish this time of year can be very harmful if not fatal and is not the best idea. Perch- Same--The perch are in the coves and there have been several reports of lots of action! Elk Creek, Lake Fork, and Bay of Chickens are just a few of the areas holding fish. Smaller perch can be found in the backs of brushy coves in 8-25' of water. They will be hard to see on your electronics due to all of the brush, but a small jig and a piece of night crawler will quickly tell you if they are in the area!
Anglers have reported catching catfish and rainbow trout. There have also been a few crappie.
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