Conditions for the week of August 19, 2014. Information is provided by CPW employees and local fishing enthusiasts. Keep in mind that fishing conditions change on a constant basis. A lot can change in a week from the time this fishing conditions report is produced. If the water you are interested in knowing more about is not listed here or if you're looking for the most current information, we encourage anglers to explore some of the numerous private websites that offer fishing condition reports.
Many other fly shops and marinas also offer fishing condition reports on their websites as well.
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. Reports of yellow perch being caught 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 good. Bass are doing great from shoreline off worms. Bass bag limit is 5, 15 inches long. Walleye are doing well from boats off lures. Please remember, Walleye bag limit is 3, 18 inches long, with one of those over 21 inches. Trout are slowing down. Trout bag limit is 4, any size. Some Perch are being caught from the Gravel Ponds area.
Cherry Creek Reservoir's water temperature is at approximately 73 degrees. Our "Hot Spots" for the week have been; Tower Loop with multiple Walleye being caught using worms, and Lake Loop and Marina Pier have had numerous Rainbow caught using worms as well. Just a reminder, a valid Park's Pass is required: $9/Daily or $73/Annual.
Fishing is restricted to artificial flies and lures only. Water level is good but algae blooms are occurring. 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. 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
Eleven Mile State Park
Trout (Fair): Trolling is becoming more and more difficult as floating and submerged weed beds get in the way. You simply won't catch if you are dragging even a little weed. Make sure to check your line often. Down riggers are less likely to be effected. The cable can pick up weeds but not the lure. Needlefish and Tasmanian Devils continue to be productive. We have had decent action on Super Dupers and Thomas Bouyants on the down rigger. Try pitching tube jigs or Kastmasters around the weeds on a cast and retrieve. Shore anglers have had very good action as the weather moves in and out with action right before the rain being excellent. Night anglers have been very happy. Salmon Peach Power Bait has been the big winner this week and don't forget the famous Eleven Mile marshmallow crawler sandwich. KOKANEE (Slow): The majority of fish being caught are large four year olds. The primary area is from North Shore to Goose Island, Howbert Point to Duck Island. They have been caught in 35 feet of water off of Howbert, in 45 feet off of Goose, and in 60 feet in the Channel off North Shore. Down riggers more effective than lead core. Arnies Dynamic and Reflecto in green, pink and white Needlefish , #55 Tasmanian Devil and Macks Wedding Ring have been productive. NORTHERN PIKE (Fair): If you fish the whole day you will get on the bite which has been sporadic but generally between 2:00PM and 4:30PM. Bill's Spinner Bait in black/blue and orange/brown have worked well. Large Rapala in Firetiger and black/white are also doing well. The east end of the reservoir seems to hold the bigger fish. Pitching lures and spinner baits has been more productive than trolling. (Courtesy of 11 Mile Marina) DREAM STREAM (Fair): No significant report.
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 16th 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.
Water levels are good and the lake is near full. The outlet is running and the lake is dropping slowly. As of July 20 the water temperature was 80 degrees. Few crappie up to 14 inches being caught along the dam and in the marina bay on jigs and minnows. Walleye and wiper are slow but starting to improve. Catfish are being caught on the flats on cut bait.
Spinney Mountain State Park
(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.
All ponds on the North and South sides of the park are open to fishing and have been stocked several times this year. Fishing for bass and trout is good! Bald Eagle Pond is artificial flies and lures, and catch and release only. Don't forget your fishing license!
Conditions Report - Southeast Colorado
As is typical during the third week of August, there has been a significant decline in flows on the Arkansas River (534 cfs as of 8/19). Clarity has improved with a reduction in monsoon moisture and the shift toward fall insects and feeding patterns is underway. Fairly cool weather has kept water temperatures productive and red quills, caddis, tricos, and midges have been the hatches of significance. Look for blue wing olive mayflies to join this roster in the weeks ahead.
Clear Creek Reservoir (Lake County)
Shore fishing throughout the reservoir has been fair. Morning fishing from the shore has been the most productive time to fish for trout. Anglers fishing during the afternoon and evening found it difficult to land a single fish. Near the dam, shore anglers caught a few trout on green PowerBait. Fishing the lake's bottom with either worms or rainbow PowerBait at the boat ramp parking area worked well from dawn till noon. Due to the plethora of vegetation at the upper part of the reservoir, shore anglers fished the surface of the reservoir with worms. Boat fishing has been slow. Some boaters reported not landing a single fish. Successful boat anglers caught several trout by trolling the southern part of the reservoir with worms coupled with troll blades. Boat anglers experienced moderate success on Kastmasters coupled with worms and Tasmanian Devil lures. Kokanee salmon fishing from a boat remains slow. Squids and Dodgers are the most productive lures for kokanee salmon fishing. 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 lake is at 480 surface acres and the water temperature is 70 degrees. The trout fishing remains slow from shore. The trout that are being caught are biting on nightcrawlers and powerbait. Walleye and Bass are being caught from boats using crankbaits and jigging methods. Catfish are still biting on chicken liver and night crawlers.
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Conditions Report - Northwest Colorado
Fishing at Elkhead Reservoir is really great this season. Anglers are reporting catching their limit on bluegill, small and large mouth bass, crappie and pike. Black and Green jigs seem to be the thing to use and some report that boat fishing is better than bank fishing.
FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Green Drakes 10-14, PMDs 16-18, Baetis 18-20, Caddis 16-18, Midges 20-24, Golden Stones 6-10
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
FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Green Drakes 10-12, PMDs 16-18, Midges 20-24, BWOs 20-22, Caddis 14-18, Craneflies 6-8 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.
Float tube fisherman seem to be doing well. Bank fisherman have not been having much success as of late. The dam area in late evening has been better than during the day.
Fishing has slowed down on the reservoir, particularly from shore. However, there have been several trout in the 22-24 inch range being caught on powerbait. Boaters are having luck with rapala suspending lures/stick baits, tube jigs, buzz baits and Kastmasters. There is a high algae content on the reservoir. The responsible harvest of pike at Stagecoach is encouraged. The Tailwater Area is open but expect heavy equipment and some trail closures in the area as the restoration project is finishing up. For current flows p lease visit the USGS website .
State Forest State Park
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 you are interested in a decent hike and some great fishing, then I would recommend both Kelly Lake and Clear Lake. Start at the closure 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 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. 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!
Stocked with Rainbows 08/15/2014 and fishing has been good. Some 20-22" Rainbows still being caught. Seeing a few Brookies too. Powerbaits, salmon eggs, woolly buggers. A variety of flies: gray, green or brown caddis or parachute adams are all working well. Best in early AM and evening
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! FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Green Drakes, PMDs, Caddis, BWOs, Midges, Stoneflies, PMD and Drake nymphs
The lake is receding daily and fishing is still good. Anglers continue to report that worms, powerbait and spinners are catching some nice rainbows and cutthroats in the 12 - 16 inch range. The Island and Oak Point boat ramps will remain open as long as possible. 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 Yampa River continues to fish very well for brown trout with anglers reporting catching their limit in just about any location on the river from Steamboat Springs to west of Craig.
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Conditions Report - Southwest Colorado
Big Meadows Reservoir
Fishing has been fair to good for 10-12" rainbow trout using powerbait.
The Gunnison is currently running 755 CFS and clear. Fishing is excellent right now, flies that are working are hoppers, Blue Winged Olives, and Stone fly nymphs. The lower Gunnison is currently running 854 CFS at the confluence and is also fishing well.
Fishing has slowed down as water levels have dropped and aquatic vegetation make shore fishing very difficult. Very few fish are being caught.
The catfish have been biting well, and there have been recent reports of northern pike caught as well. 2013-14 Colorado and New Mexico fishing licenses are still available at the Visitor Center. 2014-15 Colorado fishing licenses went on sale March 12, but cannot be used until April 1. Social security numbers are required for purchase. Please remember to bring sunscreen, insect repellent and clothes appropriate for changes in the weather.
Fishing has been good for anglers using silver and gold spinning tackle (Panther Martins, Mepps, etc.). Fishing is restricted to artificial flies and lures only. Bag, possession and max size for trout is 2, 12 inches long.
The reservoir is at 84% capacity and falling. Our most recent stocking of the reservoir, with 2,100 catchable rainbow trout, occurred on August 15th. Shore fisherman and boaters are reporting very good fishing for stocker-sized fish (8"-14") and a few larger fish (18"-22".) The catch is mostly rainbows, with a few browns and smallmouth bass. Shore fishermen are doing well along Dallas Creek day use area and Mears Bay shorelines. Shore fisherman should try gold Kastmasters, Power Bait, or worms off the bottom. Boat fishermen are having luck with jigs and black/silver sinking Rapalas near the dam and around the opening to Mears Bay. Fishing in the Uncompahgre River at Pa-Co-Chu-Puk is excellent. The river flows are around 380 CFS and stable. Fly fisherman are doing well on bead-headed nymphs, wooly buggers, copper johns, pheasant tails, and small midges. Spin fisherman are doing well with gold Mepps and yellow/black Panther Martins. Please remember that the Uncompahgre River in Pa-Cu-Chu-Puk is restricted to flies and lures only, and all fish caught must be returned to the river immediately. The ponds at Pa-Co-Chu-Puk have a population of rainbows and some brown trout. Fishing in the ponds has been very good. There have been several larger fish (18"-20") caught. Fishermen have been doing well with worms and Marshmallow Bait on top in the mornings and evenings, and various colors of Power Bait off the bottom in the afternoon.
Rio Grande Reservoir
Fishing for rainbow trout has been good from shore, particularly near the boat ramp. Trolling has also been producing good numbers of fish.
Fishing has slowed down as the amount of aquatic vegetation has increased, making shore fishing much more difficult. Trolling has been producing a fair number of fish, particularly early in the morning and just before sunset.
Tucker Park Ponds
Fishing has been very good for 10-12" rainbow trout using nightcrawlers.
Mountain Home Reservoir
Fair to good fishing for rainbow trout 10-12" using powerbait. A decent number of large trout are also being captured. Anglers are encouraged to keep all northern pike they catch as the bag and possession for this species is unlimited statewide.
Fishing has slowed down as water levels have dropped. Few fish are being caught.
Fishing has been fair to good for 10-14" inch trout using powerbait.
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