Sign In
Conditions - Statewide
Conditions - Statewide
Father and Son Fishing

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Conditions for the week of April 26, 2016. Information is provided by CPW employees and local fishing enthusiasts. ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Keep in mind that fishing conditions change on a con​stant basis. A lot can change in a week from the time this fishing conditions report is produced. ​​

Conditions Report - Metro Denver Area​

Aurora Reservoir

The reservoir is open to boating and the water temp is 45 degrees. Trout fishing from shore is rated as anywhere from fair to good.  Most trout are being caught using power bait from a slip rig and some reports using crawlers. The West and East end of the dam have been productive areas for trout. Boaters report slow to fair success on trout trolling slowly with lures and crawlers. Fly casters are reporting fair to good success using olive leech patterns and bead head prince nymphs. Some reports of walleye being caught from shore using jerk baits and jigs. Restricted to electric motors only. All watercraft must be inspected prior to launch. For more information call 303-326-8425. April park hours are 6 a.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Chatfield Reservoir

The water temperature is currently around 52 degrees. Anglers trolling for trout are having success near the inlet with a variety of lures. Fishing near the dam has slowed down. The walleye reports have also slowed down. Anglers are reporting that most of the walleye have moved off the rocks and are now in different locations. 

Quincy Reservoir

The reservoir is open to boating and the water temp is 50 degrees. Bait is restricted to artificial flies and lures only. Electric motors only and only watercraft capable of being launched by hand are permitted. Boat trailers are not permitted in the water. Bass fishing is rated as slow to fair using jigs, soft plastics, jerk baits and lipless crankbaits. Trout fishing is fair to good using spoons, spinners and flies. Some reports of perch being caught using jigs. All watercraft must be inspected prior to launch. Other special use rules apply. For more information call 303-326-8424. April park hours are 6 a.m. - 8:30 p.m.

​​​​​​​​​>>Return to top​​​

Conditions Report - Northeast Colorado

Barr Lake

Fishing is not allowed in the wildlife refuge or off the dam. The lake is now open to boating, but it has been a slow start to the season. A report of a 27-inch wiper landed from a boat came in earlier in the month. From shore has been slow-fair for trout with folks mostly using Powerbait, and night crawlers. Water temperatures are slowly warming up and hopefully the fish will start to move off the bottom. Current water temperature is in the upper 40's.

Boyd Lake

The water temperature is currently around 50 degrees. Reports from Boyd Lake have varied from very slow, to fishing great, so try changing lures or flies if you are not having any luck. Trout have been biting on jigs and minnows and are biting worms with spoons on the north end of the lake. The water has been very clear. Large rainbow trout and bass have been caught recently. 

Eldorado Canyon

Fishing conditions in the canyon are currently good. Water levels are at 63 cfs which is average for this time of year. Fishermen have been having success with blue-winged olives, hoppers, and worms. Colorado Fishing Licenses are required and are available for purchase at the park visitor's center.

Eleven Mile Reservoir

Eleven Mile Reservoir is open to boating. The North Shore boat ramps are the only ramps open. The Witcher's Cove boat ramp on the south side will remain closed until Memorial Day Weekend.​​ Trout: (Fair) In general, catching has been difficult, but there are some great fish to be had with patience. Timing is everything, and in the spring that can be anytime. Trolling action is difficult. If you get two fish a hour be happy. Action should continue to improve as the water warms. Most fly anglers are working Spinney and the Dream Stream. However, those that know Eleven Mile have their favorite spots that consistently produce large fish with less crowded conditions.​​ Kokanee salmon: No report yet. Northern pike: (Slow) The pike are not cooperating yet.​​ (Courtesy of 11 Mile Marina) Dream Stream: (Good) Wooly buggers, chironomids, blood worms, egg patterns, scuds, black beauties, zebras, stone flies, midges in the deeper pools and in the center running with the current. A lot of bigger fish are being caught near the red barns. (Courtesy of Chaparral General Store)

Jim Baker Reservoir

Water levels are average for this time of year. Trout have been active and feeding throughout the day. Anglers are having success using silver spoons, blue silver spoons, and rainbow trout spoons. Good areas to fish are near the banks about 15 feet off the eastern bank of the reservoir. Slow casts with a slow retrieval are producing big strikes from the trout. Bass in the 4 to 6 pound range are also being caught.

North Sterling

The lake has dropped from 55 degrees down to 52 degrees with the recent wind and rain. Boat anglers have had success fishing near Goose Island using jigs and spinners for walleye. Boat anglers have also done well on the North side of the Darby Arm casting shad lures for walleye. A few wipers have started to come out near Darby Point. Shore fishermen have had minor success for catfish at night off the West Trailhead and the swim beach overflow parking area using shrimp and mussels. A few walleye were caught from shore in the Elks Bay across from the boat inspection station. Fishermen have been more successful in the morning and late evening when the fish are near the surface in shallower waters. Note a new 10-inch minimum crappie length went into effect April 1, 2016.

Spinney Mountain Reservoir

Spinney Mountain State Park has opened for the season. The north boat ramps are open and available for use. The south boat ramp will remain closed at this time due to the lower water level. Trout: (Good) Wooly buggers, chironomids, leach and egg patterns, blood worms are all seeing good success. Evenings are the best time to fish. Healthy 10-14 inch rainbows caught along the SW shore. During the vessel operation season, the lake is open for use starting 30 minutes before sunrise, until 30 minutes after sunset. All vessels and fishing aids are required to be off the water by one half hour after sunset. The park exit gate is locked promptly in the evening one hour after sunset. All trailered vessels and gas powered vessels must be inspected for invasive plants and animals both prior to launch and before exiting the park. All vessels MUST be cleaned, drained and dried prior to the inspection taking place. This includes requiring the removal of all snow, mud or other road debris from both the trailer and the vessel prior to the inspection. It is illegal to knowingly transport Aquatic Nuisance Species. For boating regulations information, see the CPW boating section .

 ​​​​​>>Return to top​​

​Conditions Report- Southeast Colorado

Arkansas Headwaters

The Arkansas River has hit prime spring form with great flows (400 cfs at Wellsville and 350 cfs in Browns Canyon). Several different hatches are occurring in Bighorn Sheep Canyon, while upstream in Browns Canyon and above, the focus is on blue-winged olive mayflies in the afternoon, with golden stone, midge, or caddis larva nymph rigs being the most effective in the morning. As of April 25, the caddis hatch is the strongest in the Texas Creek area of Bighorn Sheep Canyon. Expect lighter populations of bugs up through Howard. There are also blue-winged olives hatching throughout this section. There have also been some inspiring hatches of craneflies in the late morning. With multiple aquatic insects emerging in Bighorn Sheep Canyon, it is helpful to have some entomology knowledge and experience spotting the visual cues that trout provide when feeding like the gentle nosing of the surface when feeding on adult mayflies. A splashing rise is more typically associated with trout feeding on caddis. This time of year, a splashing rise in the morning is more often associated with craneflies. When imitating the blue wing olives, a size 18 to 20 barr's emerger, juju baetis, rs-2 or pheasant tail are good imitations of the ascending nymphs. For the adults, size 18 to 20 parachute adams, gulper specials, brooks sprout baetis or puterbaugh's blue-winged olive are all effective. For the caddis, a size 16 olive soft hackle is a good representation of the pupa. A size 16 black foam, elk hair, or peacock caddis is good for the adult. When the craneflies are emerging, fish seem open to many attractor patterns in a size 12 to 14, though a traditional mosquito trailed behind a more visible dry works as well as anything. Due to the high elevation of its snowpack, the Arkansas River is typically the last of the major Colorado rivers to run off. As a result, we anticipate good fishable conditions to persist through the weekend of May 14. (Courtesy of ArkAnglers)

Blue Lake or Adobe Creek

Fishing for crappies is slow. A few saugeye are being caught using jigs with an occasional wiper being caught. Fishing for catfish is slow. Lake levels are high and the high water boat ramp is usable.

Henry Lake

Fishing is slow for all species. Boat ramp is usable.

John Martin Reservoir 

Fishing on the reservoir is starting to pick up for wiper and white bass, the water temperature is below 60 degrees so still a little cold for fish activity. We have not seen many walleye, saugeye or crappie caught on the main reservoir. Fishing at the stilling basin and Lake Hasty is slow we are only seeing a few catfish and trout being caught. 

Lake Pueblo

Fishing is moderate to slow. Anglers are having the best success during the early morning around sunrise. Fishing is slow during mid-day. Rainbow trout in the 16 – 18 inch range are biting right off the bank. The large fish are feeding actively, with hard strikes being reported. Be prepared for very light strikes from the smaller fish.

Lake Meredith 

Fishing is slow for all species. Boat ramp is usable. ​

​ ​​​​​>>Return to top

​​​Conditions Report - Northwest Colorado​​​

Elkhead Reservoir

The ice is gone off the reservoir but the water is quite muddy at this time. We have had no recent fishing reports.

Sylvan Lake

No activity due to ice conditions. Sylvan Lake is completely iced over with 20 plus inches of layered ice and areas of thick slush. There is no open water. UNSAFE areas of ice can always exist so please use caution. If you are willing to put forth the effort, nice brook trout & brown trout can be caught on flies in East Brush Creek.

Vega Reservoir

All of the ice is off the lake and most of the snow has melted in the park. Fishermen are starting to catch some very nice rainbows in the 16 - 18 inch range using Powerbait, spinners and worms. The fish are spawning and anglers are having a lot of luck near the dam and the inlet. There is more success first thing in the morning and the fishing usually slows down around 11 am. Some anglers are catching their limit of 4 trout in a matter of 30-45 minutes. The boat ramps are planning on opening by May 1. Please keep in mind that it is extremely muddy on Fisherman's Flats near the dam, so use caution if driving in that area.  

​​​​​​​​​​>>Return to top

​Conditions Report - Southwest Colorado​​

Blue Mesa 

Blue Mesa Reservoir always produces great fishing right after ice-off. The brown trout fishing is currently excellent, with large numbers of fish swimming along the shoreline in shallower water. Trout are averaging between 17 to 20 inches, but much larger fish are getting caught. The reservoir is currently down about 30 feet, but is slowly starting to rise back to normal levels. The reservoir may not reach full water capacity this year, unless more storms pass through with heavy rainfall. Boat ramp hours are consistently adjusting with the season, so make sure you know the correct times before heading out.

Lemon Lake

Lake is open and trout fishing is excellent with power bait.


The water temperature at Two Rivers Marina is 48 degrees at the surface. Fishing at Navajo Lake has been very good. Some crappies in the 12 to 13 inch range are biting. John Deere Green jigs in shallow water are working well. Pike are being caught in some of the shallow coves, using lures that resemble small bait fish. Colorado and New Mexico fishing licenses are available at the visitor center. The new fishing license year began April 1 for both states. Social security numbers are required to purchase a license. ID is required for purchase of all Colorado licenses. Please remember to bring sunscreen, insect repellent and clothes appropriate for changes in the weather.

Vallecito Lake

The lake is open and fishing is slow. A report received of a four-pound trout caught using power bait.

​ ​​>>Return to top​​​​​