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Fishing Report - Northwest (4/23)
Changes to the 2012 Fishing Report
From Colorado Parks and Wildlife: Customers who use the weekly seasonal fishing report might notice a few changes this year. First, we're working to improve the product and target it directly to novice anglers looking for basic information and information about great places to fish. The amount of reliable fishing information available to more experienced anglers has expanded exponentially in recent years and the private sector seems to be doing a great job of sharing angler information.
This new report will still guide anglers to places to explore, but it focuses on getting out and getting started. More experienced anglers that are seeking up to the minute conditions are encouraged to check out some of the statewide fishing forums and websites such as fishexplorer.com, coloradofisherman.com or coloradofishing.net. There are also dozens of websites out there that provide local and regional fishing information from other anglers and professional guides and outfitters.
2012-13 fishing licenses on sale now!
Regions: Southwest, Southeast, Northeast, Denver Metro
Delaney Buttes, Cowdrey and Lake John (Jackson County)
Cowdrey Lake and Lake John were both stocked with catchable rainbow this past week. The lakes are free of ice. Here's what the folks at Lake John Resort are telling us this week: "Due to the reclamation, we still need a little more water to top off Lake John. The inlet has been running for about three weeks, with levels coming up slowly. Initially, we'll only have water until ranchers need to irrigate, which will be another few weeks. At that point, the topping off will need to wait until after the haying season. But that's all right, 'cause we're only a foot or two low, and the boat ramps are working fine. Speaking of boat ramps, the local Parks and Wildlife personnel have put the docks in for use early this spring."
Elkhead Reservoir State Park (Moffat County)
The ice has melted off the lake. Muddy conditions have limited the fishing activity. Pike anglers reporting increased action and are reminded that there are no limits on pike at Elkhead Reservoir. There are no fishing reports from anglers on other species at this time. You can provide your fishing report from Elkhead by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fryingpan, Crystal and Roaring Fork Rivers (Pitkin and Garfield County)
Here's some information on the middle Roaring Fork (Basalt to Carbondale stretch) from the folks at Taylor Creek Fly Shop: "Flow is currently 286 cfs in Basalt with water conditions green and clear. FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Midges 18-24. Stoneflies 16-20. Beatis 18-22. Caddis 16-18. Consistent fishing from in-town Basalt down to Catherine's store bridge with beatis, stoneflies and caddis. Dry-fly action has been best between noon and 4 p.m. with beatis and midges and caddis in the late afternoon till dusk. Nymphing will be the most productive in between hatches with stoneflies as a lead fly and beatis or midge patterns trailed behind. Now's the time to be on the freestone rivers, bugs are coming off in good numbers and the trout are on the feed. Good beatis or blue winged olives in the fast riffle water and midge action on the surface in the slow slack water, keep your eyes peeled for those rising fish. Nymphing fishing has been best between those bug hatches with light weight set ups in the faster riffles and tailouts. "
Harvey Gap State Park (Garfield County)
"The Gap" was stocked this past week with 3600 catchable (~10") trout. Anglers are reporting good success for yellow perch throughout the lake. Fishing has also been good for northern pike.
Highline Lake State Park and Mack Mesa Reservoir (Mesa County)
Fishing at Mack Mesa is still excellent - more trout have been stocked into Mack Mesa in the past week or so and they are still biting. Highline Lake will also be stocked with more trout soon. The bass are finally biting; a 5 pounder was landed recently! So far no word on crappie. Power Bait is available in the Visitor Center, along with nightcrawlers and fishing licenses. For those who prefer to troll Highline Lake, ANS boat inspections are available at the WEST ramp, from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. ONLY. As always, "… the worst day fishing is better than any day at work." If you catch or see a Northern Pike at either lake, please remove it from the water if possible and show it to the park staff.
James M. Robb Colorado River State Park (Mesa County)
Fishing has been great at Island Acres. People are catching their limit in trout at Old Orchard Lake and there are a few large trout that were stocked that have been biting on flies. At Corn Lake the trout fishing is excellent as well and most people are using power bait. The water at Red Rocks Lake in Fruita is warm enough now for the crappie and catfish to be active. The trout are still biting and there have been a few lucky people who have caught trout that were over 24 inches long!
Lake Granby (Grand County)
The lake trout are hitting well, according to the chatter on coloradofisherman.com. Sounds like anglers in deep water trolling from boats are bringing them in. Water temps are in the 46-48 range so laker fishing is NOW at Granby.
Pearl Lake State Park (Routt County)
Pearl Lake is ice free and a few reports of the fishing getting very good. The road is open to motorized traffic. Please remember Pearl Lake is regulated to flies and lures only, with a bag limit of two 18"+ trout.
Rifle Gap State Park (Garfield County)
Most anglers are looking for perch (no limit), pike (no limit) or trout (limit 4). Most recently some large walleye have been spotted on the bottom of the lake off the Cedar campground loop. It was reported that a 22" walleye and a 24" northern pike were caught by the same angler.
Stagecoach State Park (Routt County)
No recent updates out of Stagecoach but anglers are fishing the open water near the inlet and coves. Tailwaters anglers are using San Juan worms, RS2's and zebra midges. CR 18 is now open. During the busy season for the Tailwaters, anglers are asked to be mindful of the resources and help avoid overcrowding.
Steamboat Lake State Park (Routt County)
All fishing acces roads are open with the exception of Sage Flats we are letting that dry out more. The reports on fishing are Great! reports of 17-20 inchers being caught. The fish seem to be hitting just about everything. Remember only hand launched boats are allowed at this time.
Sylvan Lake State Park (Eagle County)
The Lake is ice free as of April 12. Fishing should really take off over the next few days. East and West Brush Creek are open, but slightly cloudy from the runoff. The beaver ponds between the lake and Visitor Center have been good for smaller brookies and browns on a variety of flies.
Vega State Park (Mesa County)
Fishing is excellent with rainbows being caught in the 12 - 18 inch range. Early Settlers boat ramp is open at this time. All trailered boats must be inspected at the Visitor's Center prior to launching.
Williams Fork Reservoir (Grand County)
Williams Fork is reported ice free but no fishing reports from the field so far. If you have a fishing report for Williams Fork Reservoir or any other body of water, you can email it to email@example.com.