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2017 Free Fishing Tournament at Ridgway State Park
2017 Free Fishing Tournament at Ridgway State Park
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​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Win fishing gear​​​!! NO entry fees!

Anglers, test your skills. How many smallmouth bass can you catch?

RIDGWAY STATE PARK TOURNAMENT: JULY 7-30, SMALLMOUTH BASS ONLY

Ridgway Prize; Creek pontoon boatFor the Third Annual Tournament at Ridgway, the more fish anglers catch the better their chances of winning prizes. Participants will receive a raffle ticket for every smallmouth bass they check in. Six tickets will be drawn for prizes at the end of the tournament on July 30.

Prizes are valued at more than $8,000. The top prize is a 14-foot Tracker fishing boat, complete with trailer, a 20HP engine, life jackets and a Humminbird sonar/GPS unit. 

Anglers with lined up bassIn addition, five Creek Company Clark Fork single-person pontoon boats will be awarded. All anglers 12 and under who check-in a smallmouth bass will receive a package of fishing lures.

See the Tournament Rules for Ridgway​.  

Anglers can fish as many times as they want during the 24-day tournament. To learn the best ways to catch smallmouth bass and more about issues with non-native fish species, see the Smallmouth Bass at Ridgway Reservoir page. 

Boys with bass caught
Camping facilities are available at Ridgway State Park, including 283 sites―many with full electric hook-ups―and three yurts. Daily entry to the park is $7, campsites range in price from $20 to $30 per night. 

​Those who plan to fish from boats must make sure their boats are cleaned, drained and dried before getting to Ridgway – or any other reservoir in Colorado.

For more information, call the park at 970-626-5822.

Be a partner with Colorado Parks and Wildlife 

Participating in these fishing tournaments will help assure a variety of game-fish opportunities in Elkhead and Ridgway reservoirs. Smallmouth bass and northern pike are not compatible with endangered fish recovery in waters downstream of both reservoirs. Smallmouth bass and northern pike can escape from reservoirs and/or be moved illegally to waters where these species can predate upon native fishes and compete with natives for food and habitat. We​ are asking anglers to catch and keep all smallmouth bass and northern pike that they catch from these reservoirs. Anglers are reminded that is illegal to move live fish from one water to another in western Colorado.

If the Upper Colorado River Endangered Fish Recovery Program​​ fails to make sufficient progress at recovering the four endangered fish species (Colorado pikeminnow, bonytail, razorback sucker, and humpback chub), all water users on the West Slope will likely be required to consult with the federal government if they need to use water for irrigation, to fill a pond, or to supply drinking water.

CPW strives to provide the best fishing opportunities that are appropriate for each body of water in the state. Biologists must carefully consider a variety of factors when managing fisheries, including:  impacts to native fishes, water quality, habitat availability, size of water to be stocked, how water will be used, forage fish availability, federal and state laws, etc. Please help CPW manage YOUR fisheries by working with our biologists and not against them by illegally stocking fish!​

Illegal stocking hurts Colorado's anglers

Illegal stocking of fish is a significant issue that affects all Colorado anglers. In western Colorado, not every body of water or waterway is suitable for every species of fish. CPW must remedy fisheries where illegal stocking has taken place. This means the agency must expend significant resources that otherwise could be used to improve angling opportunities elsewhere. For example, in the fall of 2013, CPW spent more than $100,000 to eliminate smallmouth bass and restore the renowned trout fishery at Miramonte Reservoir in San Miguel County.

​Help prevent illegal stocking

If you have information about illegal stocking of fish, please contact a CPW office immediately, or call Operation Game Thief​ at 1-877-265-6648. Tips can be given anonymously and rewards are possible.