Tag Archives: fishing Colorado

The Angler’s Crystal Ball

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Josh Nehring shows a catfish from a recent survey. All photos by © Wayne Lewis/CPW.

Have you ever wished that you could see beneath the surface of a new fishing spot – just to get a quick glimpse – a small clue – of the variety and size of fish? Often, what lies beneath the surface of Colorado’s fishable waters would shock the average angler and, at times, even shocks CPW biologists. Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) is the lead agency responsible for fisheries management of public waters in the state of Colorado. And while fishing pressure, weather changes and a number of other factors can impact fishing locations from year to year, CPW aquatic biologists spend a great deal of time in the field making sure that they have their fingers on the pulse of the underwater world. Read more

Colorado’s Top Springtime Fishing Destinations

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Early spring is an ideal time to catch lake trout (Mackinaw). Photo by Jerry Neal/CPW.

If you’re a fisherman, there’s no better time to fish Colorado’s lakes and reservoirs than early spring. Not only is it a great time of year to shake off your cabin fever, but many trophy sized rainbow, cutthroat, cutbow and brown trout are caught in those first days and weeks after ice-out. If those weren’t enough reasons to make you want to grab your fishing rod and tackle box, spring is also the best time to catch lake trout (aka Mackinaw) — a species that can reach upwards of 50 pounds in Colorado.

Although many of Colorado’s lakes and reservoirs offer excellent fishing, the following waters provide exceptional fishing opportunities this spring: Read more

Colorado’s Top Springtime Fishing Destinations

dougs with fish

Early spring is a great time of year to catch lake trout (Mackinaw). Photo by Jerry Neal/CPW.

If you’re a fisherman, there’s no better time to fish Colorado’s lakes and reservoirs than early spring. Not only is it a great time of year to shake off your cabin fever, but many trophy sized rainbow, cutthroat, cutbow and brown trout are caught in those first days and weeks after ice-out. If those weren’t enough reasons to make you want to grab your fishing rod and tackle box, spring is also prime-time to catch lake trout (aka Mackinaw) — a species that can reach upwards of 50 pounds.

Although many of Colorado’s lakes and reservoirs offer excellent fishing, the following waters provide exceptional fishing opportunities this spring:

NOTE: Some of these locations have slot limits and catch-and-release restrictions. Be sure to read the Colorado Fishing Regulations brochure before fishing any of these waters. Depending on weather conditions, ice-melt varies at high-altitude lakes and reservoirs. Call Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s area offices for the latest conditions. Always play it safe and never venture out on late-season ice.

Delaney Buttes Lakes

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Caryn Feil displays a Delaney Buttes brown trout. 

Nestled in the sagebrush flats of North Park, 10 miles west of Walden, the Delaney Buttes State Wildlife Area is a sure bet for ice-out trout. The area consists of three separate lakes—North Delaney, South Delaney and East Delaney. The south and east lakes boast large rainbows, Snake River cutthroat and hybrid cutbows. North Delaney, the largest of the three lakes, is managed as a trophy brown trout fishery. It’s the most challenging of the three lakes to fish and can humble even the most skilled anglers. However, the rewards can be great for those willing to put in the time and dedication. Bruiser browns in the double-digit weight class roam this Gold Medal Water. All three Delaney Buttes Lakes are restricted to fishing with flies and lures only. Woolly Buggers, olive scuds and chironomids are excellent fly choices here. Kastmasters and Rapalas  (in various colors) and crayfish imitation jigs/lures are always good bets to tempt North Delaney’s browns. Read more

Simply Perfect

Rainbow trout ready for the grill. All photos by Wayne D. Lewis/CPW.

Rainbow trout ready for the grill. All photos by Wayne D. Lewis/CPW.

I’ve long thought, and it’s highly unlikely that I am alone in the thought, that bananas are the perfect food. They come in easy-to-carry bundles, are individually wrapped, with the biodegradable wrapper giving an extremely accurate and up-to-date report of the condition of the nutritious goodness within. But for the omnivore, carnivore or pescavore, what food comes close to the banana’s perfection?

Rainbow trout.

Rainbow trout.

My vote is for trout.

And I’m talking fresh-caught trout, not the store-bought kind. Not that there is anything particularly wrong with store-bought fish, but when you catch them you get the satisfaction of knowing freshness, and going fishing and bringing trout to the net is far more enjoyable than the bumper-cart madness of the grocery store. In addition, a stringer of rainbows, browns, brookies and/or cutthroats is much more satisfying to carry than a bunch of bananas. Once caught, trout are almost as easy to clean for the grill as bananas are to peel. Bass, bluegill, crappie, etc. are all delicious, but filleting them (for me anyway) is a far more arduous task. For years, I’ve released every fish I caught back to the water, but some tasty meals over the last year or so have me thinking, “the heck with catch and release, fish are for eating.” Read more