Summit County Fishing Report: Ice creeps into High Country waters |

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Summit County Fishing Report: Ice creeps into High Country waters

Editor’s note: Dave Coulson is the Colorado state editor for He contributes a weekly fishing report to the Summit Daily News. For more local and regional fishing info, visit

Signs of winter are increasingly evident, with ice far along lakeshores and riverbanks – and smaller waters icing over. While smaller high mountain streams are starting to ice up, the larger rivers, such as the Eagle, Colorado, Blue and South Platte rivers remain open and very fishable.

Below Dillon Reservoir, the Blue River is running low and clear. Though the fish are active and will readily take midge and egg patterns, it is highly technical fishing requiring good imitations, solid presentations and fine tippets. If one pattern isn’t working, keep changing them out, as the fish will continue to feed despite anglers being present.

The South Platte River below Spinney Reservoir continues to fish well, although the flows were recently increased. Egg patterns, midges and small may nymphs are producing decent numbers of rainbows, an occasional brown and a few kokanee, although the run looks to be nearly over.

The best kokanee action continues to be Wolford Mountain Reservoir. Most anglers are concentrating on the dam face, where limits are being taken with small jigs and brightly colored flies. Remember, snagging is prohibited, so foul-hooked fish must be released.

Once the Snake River inlet at Dillon ices up, look for good action from kokanee through the ice through the end of the year. As ice is just starting to form on larger reservoirs, be extremely cautious when testing newly formed ice. It will be thickest near shore and thinner further out, especially if current is present. While some will go out on thinner ice, 4 inches is a minimum for most anglers.

South Park waters are starting to ice up. Tarryall has ice as much as 3 feet out on some sections of shore. It won’t be long before it caps. Fishing has been good at Eleven Mile Reservoir with typical trout baits, but it won’t last long as the inlet at Eleven Mile has skimmed over and other areas are seeing shore ice in the morning.