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April 18, 2017
Conditions Report - Metro Denver Area
The current water temperature is about 55 degrees and the reservoir is full. Anglers have had success catching perch off worms. The walleye and smallmouth bite is still going strong.
Cherry Creek Reservoir
The reservoir is now open for boating. Fishing is off to a slow start. For more information call the Cherry Creek State Park at 303-690-1166.
Anglers have had success catching smallmouth using jigs and swimbaits in the shallow flats. If you are using streamers, stick to black or olive.
Conditions Report - Northeast Colorado
The current water temperature is about 43 degrees, with flows at 149 cfs. Focus efforts on the riffles, where they will be feeding. Anglers have had success starting with an attractor followed by a beatis or midge pattern. Princes, Hare’s Ears, and Pheasant Tails have all worked well.
The current water temperature is roughly 44 degrees, with flows at 170 cfs at Trumbull. The BWO hatch has continued to be strong, and the Caddis is starting to come in. Anglers have had success with Copper Johns, San Juans, RS2’s, and any baetis pattern. Focus fishing efforts in the riffles and pockets.
The current water temperature is about 43 degrees, with flows at 97 cfs. Focus efforts on the riffles and drop-offs. Anglers have had success using RS2’s, Top Secrets, Parachute Adams, as well as beatis and midge patterns. Crowds have been heavy, so get the water early.
Eleven Mile Canyon
The current water temperature is about 44 degrees, with flows at 91 cfs. Fishing has been excellent so far this spring, and with great fishing conditions comes big crowds. Anglers have had success all over the river using Juju Baetis, RS2’s, Caddis patterns, and any midge pattern in red or black.
Eleven Mile Reservoir
Trout fishing has been slow to fair. Boaters have had success either trolling or casting and retrieving jointed Rapala’s. Gold, rainbow, and brown trout patterns have worked very well. Shore anglers have been having some difficulty. We still haven’t seen the large groups of spawning trout in the shallows yet. Northern pike fishing has been slow to fair. The water temperature is still a bit too low for the spawn.
Eleven Mile State Park
North Sterling Reservoir
The lake is roughly 58 degrees and full. Both the inlet and outlet are off. Walleye have been caught off the south ramp parking lot and Balanced Rock. Crappie have come out in the marina and Elks Bay, as well as Balanced Rock. Catfish have come out at the Inlet. Fish have primarily come out in the afternoon and early evening. Keep in mind that size and bag limits apply to the outlet.
The water temperature is about 38 degrees and the fishing has slowed down considerably since the ice-off. The best chances are still near the dam and along the eastern shoreline. Anglers have had success using Woolly Buggers and egg patterns.
Spinney Mountain State Park
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Conditions Report- Southeast Colorado
Upper River: Flows have declined on the upper river, in part due to an effort to achieve the spring fishery flow recommendations and in part due to cooler weather and a cessation of the daily melt cycle. Expect low flows supporting the brown trout fry emergence and pre-runoff fish conditioning until the melt begins in earnest, typically around May 20th. While the Salida area is probably the most productive stretch of the river currently, the upper basin is seeing some changes with the warming weather. Nymphing slow, consistent pools and runs mid-day in the upper basin can be productive, with fish moving into faster riffles to feed when nymphs are drifting, primarily in the afternoons. If you find one fish, you will likely find several grouped together. Be thorough in your approach, and adjust your weight and depth often to locate fish.
Middle River: Spring fishing is now underway up through Browns Canyon and the Milk Run. Daily nymphal drifts of BWO’s, as well as some good cloudy day hatches have energized the fish population and allowed them to disperse from winter water. Also, look for morning caddis larval drifts. With the significant decrease in flows, crowing the river at Hecla is now relatively easy and the wading through the Big Bend area is very accessible too. Cloudy weather later this week should produce some excellent afternoon hatches. Be prepared by stocking up on BWO dry flies and emergers in the #16 to #20 range. Nymphing will still probably be your best bet throughout the day, but don’t limit your strategy to deep water; shallow riffles can be productive in the afternoons once mayflies become more available.
Lower River: Flow are now within the prime range for spring, specifically for the brown trout population. Though the river is still floatable, it is now very easily waded. The cloudy weather in the forecast should make for great fishing conditions. We are seeing consistent BWO nymphs drifting daily, and duns on the water on cloudy afternoons. The recent warmth seems to be motivating fish to move into shallower water as they feed; so don’t spend all your energy on the deep runs. There they can be best tempted by striated midge patterns (black beauties, zebras, etc…), golden stonefly nymphs, mayfly nymphs and emergers, and “meat & potatoes” patterns like pheasant tails, hares ears, and princes. Focus fishing efforts on the periods of peak warmth from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.(Courtesy of ArkAnglers)
Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area
Fishing from the south shore has been good with anglers catching 16 to 20 inch trout around the lake using PowerBait and worms. Reilly Canyon, where the river comes in, has been slow due to the muddy water from recent rains. Anglers have also been catching a few walleye and catfish. Boaters have been catching mostly trout and walleye. Perch fishing is starting to pick up, with anglers having success from both the shore and floating. Jigs tipped with worms have provided the most bites.
Trinidad Lake State Park
Conditions Report - Northwest Colorado
The current water temperature is about 43 degrees, with flows at 98 cfs below the reservoir. Anglers have had success using Mysis Shrimp patterns paired with black or red midges. Egg patterns have also been producing bites. The fish have been very cautious lately, so make sure to use 5x or 6x flouro.
Colorado River (Lower)
The current water temperature is about 42 degrees, with flows at 3200 cfs at Glenwood Springs. Anglers have had success using Twenty Inchers and Princes in the #10 to #12 range, red and black zebra midges in the #18 to #20 range, and San Juans and egg patterns in the #18 to #20 range. Anglers have also had success using black and brown streamers with a sinking leader. Try sticking to the drop offs and deeper pools, then to the shallower riffles as it warms up.
Delaney Buttes / Lake John
For updated fishing reports please contact the Lake John Resort at 970-723-3326, or the North Park Chamber of Commerce at 970-723-4600.
Be advised: Special regulations exist for fishing this property, so anglers should consult their 2017 Fishing Regulations brochure.
The current water temperature is roughly 40 degrees, with flows at 150 cfs at Basalt. Anglers have had success using Mysis Shrimp patterns paired with black or red midges.
The current water temperature is about 40 degrees, with flows at 1090 cfs at Glenwood Springs. Anglers have had success using Golden Stoneflies or Twenty Inchers in the #10 to #12 range, followed by a smaller purple Juju Beatis. As always, Pheasant Tails have also been producing bites. As the weather continues to warm up, expect strong BWO and Caddis hatches.
The lake is now ice free and the rainbow spawn is on. Anglers have had success at the Inlet/Lot 14/Lot 16 area, Keystone Cove, and Morrison Cove using PowerBait, nightcrawlers, spoons, jigs, and crankbaits.
Stagecoach State Park
The Island boat ramp is now open and the gravel pit area is now open for shore fishing. There is a considerable amount of water flowing into the lake at Plateau creek, the inlets, and the feeder canal. Fishing has been very good with reports of some nice rainbows in the 18 to 22 inch range being caught using PowerBait and worms.
Vega State Park
The current water temperature is about 39 degrees, with flows at 42 cfs below Stagecoach. Barr’s Emergers, RS2’s, and Juju Baetis have all worked well for anglers this past week. For now, the tailwater below Stagecoach is your best fishing, the Steamboat stretch still has high flows and is off-color.
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Conditions Report - Southwest Colorado
Blue Mesa Reservoir
The Elk Creek and Lake Fork boat ramps are now open. The current water temperature is about 44 degrees. Anglers have had success catching kokanee between Lake Fork and Soap Creek.
San Juan River
The current water temperature is about 44 degrees with flows at around 1700 cfs at Pagosa Springs. The fish have been feeding on midge larva and emergers. We are starting to see a solid beatis hatch coming in the afternoons. Anglers have had success using RS2’s, Juju Baetis, and Woolly Buggers.
Conditions Report - Statewide
Rivers and Creeks
As we head into the spring season, anglers can expect to be fighting the crowds for a spot on the river. Rainbow, cutthroats and cutbow trout are all into their spawn, so be cautious of redds while wading on the rivers and creeks. Redds are easily distinguishable with their lighter color, ranging anywhere from 2 to 5 diameters in size. As the temperatures continue to rise, anglers can anticipate the BWO hatches to start coming in stronger. For patterns, try sticking to BWO’s, Stoneflies, Caddis, Juju Beatis, RS2’s, Parachute Adams, and Pheasant Tails. Anglers should look for ideal times to be from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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