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Records by Length
Records by Length
​​​​​​​ Wiper held by CPW Employee

As of January 2020, Colorado Parks and Wildlife has a new State Records by Length program. The new program recognizes the longest fish of a particular species that is caught and released by an angler, anywhere throughout Colorado. In this program, records are by length (inches), as opposed to our other program, the records by weight, which does not allow for catch-and-release entries. Unlike the Records by Weight program, these fish MUST BE RELEASED in order to qualify. The new stand-alone program requires anglers to follow specific steps for record submission and acceptance.

Old Length Records

Prior to January 2020, the fish that were considered for the Records by Length program came through our Master Angler program. The Master Angler program had minimal length verification requirements to verify the size of the fish before it was released. Because of this, the validity of some catches was brought into question.

To view state records that existed before January 2020, please see the Heritage Master Angler Length Awards. The Heritage Master Angler Length Awards are a culmination of the largest fish of each species that was submitted through our Master Angler program since its inception through 2019.

Apply for a Length Record

The angler will fill out and return the application form (PDF), provide a picture of the fish on a measuring device and a witness signature on the application. This will be mailed to the Assistant Chief of Hatcheries in Denver.

NOTE: Northern pike and smallmouth bass caught in waters west of the Continental Divide will only be recognized for the State Record by Weight category. As a partner in the Upper Colorado River Endangered Fish Recovery Program and San Juan River Basin Recovery Implementation Program, CPW encourages anglers to catch and keep northern pike and smallmouth bass in most waters on the Western Slope of Colorado.

Applications can be sent to:

Record Fish Program
Colorado Parks and Wildlife
Attention: Assistant Chief of Hatcheries
6060 Broadway, Denver CO 80216

Measuring Fish for Record Application

Fish measurement illustration

To accurately measure a fish for a length record:

  • You MUST place the fish directly on the measuring device (ruler, tape measure, etc.). As pictured above, the measuring device shall be behind or under the fish and not following the curvature of the fish.
  • You MUST align the fish at a clearly marked area of the measuring device. In the image above, the 1-inch mark is used to clearly and accurately indicate the starting point for measurement.
  • You MUST place fish on its side with the jaw closed.
  • You MUST squeeze the tail fin together to obtain the maximum overall length.
  • You MUST measure a straight line from the tip of the snout to the extreme tip of the tail fin.


When applying for a state record by length, the fish must be greater than the length of the current record fish, or if there is no current record, the fish must be greater than the qualifying length, both of which are listed in the table below.

Arctic Char182021NoneNo current record holder.
Black Bullhead14.192022James M Robb CO River State Park (CO River Section)Marc Melnick
Black Crappie18.25
McKay LakeEric Allee
Blue Catfish302021NoneNo current record holder.
Castle Pines Village LakeMiles Cullum​
Brook Trout172021Antero ReservoirKyle Schelhaas
Brown Bullhead142021NoneNo current record holder.
Brown Trout25
South Platte River (Park County)John Raine
Channel Catfish39.52021Pueblo ReservoirColten Smith
Chinook Salmon282021NoneNo current record holder.
Common Carp35
Chatfield ReservoirJames Hurrell
Thomas Horne
Cutthroat (Native) Trout202021NoneNo current record holder.
Flathead Catfish302021NoneNo current record holder.
Freshwater Drum202021NoneNo current record holder.
Golden Trout162021NoneNo current record holder.
Grass Carp36.5
Pomona Lake #2Daniel J. Leonardo II
Grayling (Arctic)16.752023
 Bonham Res. 
Kenzie Sanderson​
Green Sunfish10.252022Private Farm Pond (Mesa County)Andrew Potter
Hybrid Sunfish10.882021Juniata ReservoirTristan Francis
Kokanee Salmon202021NoneNo current record holder.
Lake Trout322021NoneNo current record holder.
Largemouth Bass22.52023
Longview Pond (Private)Timothy Holt
Longnose Sucker182021NoneNo current record holder.
Mountain Whitefish20
Roaring Fork RiverJohn Whiteley
Northern Pike46.252023
Spinney Mtn. Reservoir
Anny Atwell
Pumpkinseed102021NoneNo current record holder.
Rainbow Trout29.752022Blue RiverZach Langer
Redear Sunfish122021NoneNo current record holder.
Rock Bass102021NoneNo current record holder.
Sacramento Perch122021NoneNo current record holder.
Sauger162021NoneNo current record holder.
Saugeye262021NoneNo current record holder.
Smallmouth Bass21.252023
Valco PondsCorey Ricker
Snake River Cutthroat202021NoneNo current record holder.
Splake202021NoneNo current record holder.
Spotted Bass182021NoneNo current record holder.
Striped Bass282021NoneNo current record holder.
Tench182021NoneNo current record holder.
Tiger Muskie41.52023
Clear Creek Reservoir
Kevin Snell
Tiger Trout20.252022South Platte RiverKolton Paulson
Rifle Gap Reservoir
Steven Stanton
White Bass172021NoneNo current record holder.
White Crappie15.75
2022Pueblo Reservoir
Pam Mitzner​
White Sucker222021NoneNo current record holder.
Pueblo ReservoirGary Nussbaum II
Yellow Perch14.625
Blue Mesa Reservoir (Gunnison County)​
Theodore Spence