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Catch of the Week & Fishing Tips
Catch of the Week & Fishing Tips
​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Jeff with healthy bass.​​

Jeff Ericson hauled in this healthy bass out of S. Prospect Pond in Fort Collins!

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Fishing Tips of the Week

Fall Fishing

Fall is upon us, and that means spawning season for brown trout and kokanee salmon. Because eggs have a high nutritional value and are an easy target, they become a large portion of the diet of many species here in Colorado. Kokanee will naturally go after any eggs other than their own as a protective measure to minimize competition with their own eggs. Rainbow trout will position themselves downstream from the spawning browns for an easy meal. As a result, egg fly patterns or beads are a great way to catch fish in the fall in Colorado. However, you should also expect to hang up more flies using egg fly patterns and lose more flies because the best presentation is often bouncing off the bottom. This can also make strike detection more difficult as it can be hard to tell if the fly is hitting the bottom or if a fish is gingerly taking the fly. This makes indicators crucial when fishing these patterns. These should be easy to see on the water while also not being flashy enough to spook fish. White indicators, that are easy to see on the water, are a good option. Make sure to set the hook quickly when a bite is felt as trout can often times swallow the eggs quickly, deep in their throats, which can result in mortality of the fish. If this occurs, it is best to clip the line because removing the hook can cause more damage and stress on the fish. An egg pattern below a REDD for scavengers works well but be sure you cast low enough below the REDD so you do not accidentally hook or harass one of the spawning fish. While most fly anglers prefer not to use plastic, beads (plastic egg replications) can have advantages and are another great option for catching fish in the fall. Beads come in a variety of colors and sizes and it is important to base the types you use on the body of water you are fishing and the time of the season. Beads are usually much cheaper than egg fly patterns and the glossiness of them gives them a more realistic look than the fabric used in egg fly patterns. The buoyancy of the plastics also gives them a more realistic presentation than most egg fly patterns. Everyone has their own preference but when it comes to using egg fly patterns or beads you should find success! Bright and florescent colors will be the best as the spawn begins and more mute/natural colors will be better as fall continues.     

For our Sons & Daughters

As anglers, we are reliant upon water to fill the lakes, rivers, and streams to sustain healthy populations of fish. This year feels like there has been an unusual amount of stress upon water resources that has threatened the lakes, rivers, streams, and the fish that we cherish. Currently, the federal government has categorized the majority of Colorado as experiencing either severe or extreme drought like conditions. We can see how drought can impact anglers through emergency public fish salvage orders at Barr Lake, or Jumbo Reservoir, the voluntary closures of rivers in southwest Colorado, or wildfires that limit access to fishing opportunities or deteriorate the conditions of nearby bodies of water. While drought is a natural occurrence across Colorado's landscape, it is anticipated that Colorado will experience increasing instances of drought like conditions, among other changes to the water cycle. As anglers, we must be aware of the threat and challenges that face our vital resources. The most important action that an angler can take to be prepared for future conditions is to become knowledgeable. Many state and federal agencies provide resources that give in-depth explanations on how climate and weather patterns have changed in the recent past, are expected to change in the future, and how these changes are related to human activity. By understanding how our actions on and off the water impact lakes, rivers, streams, and fish populations, anglers can be advocates for developing resilient water systems for the future.