Access to Blue River is tricky: Be sure not to trespass
A number of anglers have been ticketed for trespassing on private property while fishing the Blue River below Green Mountain Reservoir this season. As an excuse, the violators told law enforcement officers that the Division of Wildlife’s weekly fishing report said it was open to fishing.
For the record, the Fishing Report clearly states – and has said since early April – that public accesses on the Blue from Green Mountain Dam to the confluence of the Colorado River are quite narrow and anglers should respect adjoining private property. All four accesses are clearly marked and those caught trespassing simply ignored the signs.
A three-mile stretch of river immediately below the dam is public water but subject to security closures. Further downstream, off Highway 9 on the Summit-Grand County line, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) access exists on a quarter mile of river bank, only on the east side. Closer to Kremmling, off County Road 1, BLM land is accessible on a quarter mile of river bank on the west side only. This access sits in the middle of the Blue Valley Ranch and will be lost if it is abused, said Holger Jensen, fishing report coordinator.
At the confluence of the Blue and Colorado Rivers, anglers can access the east bank of the Blue only. Outdated maps say they can fish two miles of river bank on both BLM land and the adjoining Yust property. But this is no longer true. Because some anglers trashed their property, the Yusts now limit public access and require anglers to get permission before venturing on their land.
A few anglers have also tried to reach the Blue River by going through the subdivision on County Road 10. It is all private property and there is no public access there. Dan Murphy at the Fishing Hole in Kremmling has maps of the public access points. He can be contacted at (970) 724-9407.
Free fishing clinic
“Take a Family Fishing,” an annual Colorado tradition that is part of National Fishing and Boating Week, will be held June 5 at the Kassler Education Center and Lehow Lake in Littleton. It features a free fishing clinic for children and their parents with three sessions beginning at 8:45 a.m., 10:15 a.m. and 12:15 p.m.
Because space is limited, participants must register for a start time by Friday. Registration forms are available at the DOW headquarters, 6060 Broadway in Denver, or can be ordered by phone at (303) 972-6626.
The clinic will give some 300 children and their parents the opportunity to learn knot tying, fish identification, casting, angling safety and sporting ethics.
Fishing licenses will not be needed. All tackle will be provided and no personal tackle or pets will be allowed.
Clear Creek (above Hwy. 119) – Use a San Juan Worm with a Stimulator and Blue Dun for trout. Rainbows, brookies, cutthroats and browns can be caught here. Most are small but they feed actively all day.
Clear Lake – Best bets here are Zeke’s Floating Bait and Power Bait. Most rainbows and brookies are small but plentiful. Mornings are best. This lake is located above Georgetown heading up Guinella Pass.
South Platte River (Waterton Canyon) – Fly fishing slowed somewhat this past week but is still very good. Use small nymphs, such as Hare’s Ears or Pheasant Tails. The farther up the canyon you go the better.
Blue River (below Green Mountain Reservoir) – Flowing low and clear out of the dam and fishing well. Mayflies and Miller Moths have been providing good surface action for flyfishers. The tailwater beneath the dam is subject to periodic security closures. There are three other public accesses on BLM land downriver to the confluence with the Colorado, but they are narrow and anglers are warned to stay off adjoining private property.
Blue River (Dillon to Green Mtn. Res.) – Midges and baetis are still hatching and look for Blue Wing Olives where warm water from Straight Creek enters the Blue. Many fish are still being hooked on small flies in the #18-22 range such as cream WD-40s, Miracle Nymphs, Disco Midges, Candy Canes and Mysis Shrimp. Fishing between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. has been best, with dries after noon. However, clarity is starting to turn murky in the afternoons so throw bigger beadheads and San Juan Worms. Many larger fish have been spotted in the higher reaches below the dam in town. Be persistent as these fish are notoriously picky.
Colorado River (below Parshall) – Very little runoff is expected on this section of river, which continues to run low and clear. Fishing for rainbows and browns has been good with Blue Wing Olives emerging on cloudy days and gray caddis on sunny days. When the water temperature hits 56 degrees anglers will begin to see big Salmonflies. Usually the Salmonfly hatch occurs when the river is blown out by runoff, but with the low water this year it may provide fantastic fishing. For now use #18 Prince Nymphs, #14-16 Elk Hair Caddis, brown stonefly nymphs and hellgrammite patterns.
Colorado River (Glenwood to Rifle) – The Colorado River through Glenwood Springs is currently flowing at 4,110 cfs and muddy. Runoff makes fishing tough but if you must try, use streamers and big stoneflies in the soft pockets and edges along the banks.
Colorado River (near Granby) – Runoff is much less than last year and the river is fishing well. Nymphs and midges still work but surface action is starting to pick up with Caddis, Olive Duns and Blue Wing Olives. Dry/dropper rigs, egg patterns and black or olive Woolly Buggers all catch fish. Stonefly and other larger patterns are beginning to get hits and stormy weather improves midday action.
Elkhead Reservoir – Water is discolored and cold. Anglers are still catching a few pike but mostly stocker trout. Crappie have not started to bite yet.
Fryingpan River – Clear with great water levels, flowing at 114 cfs, and good hatches of BWOs and midges. Look for rising fish starting around 11 a.m. Mysis Shrimp are also being flushed out of the dam in good numbers. Hot flies include BWO Comparaduns, Sparkleduns, Bill’s Adult Midge, Fryingpan Emergers, Fryingpan Baetis, CDC Loopwings, Jujubees, Johnny Flash, Tim’s Mysis and Will’s Mysis.
Grand Lake – Trout fishing for rainbows remains good at the river inlet and near the boat ramp. Lake trout have been a little more wary but some are being caught on sucker meat and large spoons. Trolling is a good option.
Green Mountain Reservoir – The lake level is coming up and the water temperature is 49 degrees. Lake trout fishing has been great. In the past two weeks anglers have caught fish weighing 30, 27, 25, 21 and 18 pounds along with many smaller macks. All were caught on lures trolled by boats. Fishing for trout and kokanee salmon has been almost as good.
Rifle Gap Reservoir – Trout fishing is excellent using Rapalas, green or silver spinners and waxworms. Flyfishers have done well nymphing the east inlet and, further upstream at Rifle Falls, enjoy a great Mayfly hatch around 8:30 a.m. So far the lake has yielded at least one 20-inch brown and a slew of 14 to 16-inch rainbows. It also harbors large crappie, perch, smallmouth bass, pike and walleyes, which are starting to become more active as the water warms. The bag and possession limit for smallmouths is two fish 15 inches or larger and fish caught between May 1 and June must be released.
Roaring Fork River – The Fork is fishing well from Basalt to Aspen. Flows are 184 cfs in Aspen with good Caddis and BWO hatches daily. The lower river below Carbondale is high and muddy, flowing at 1,610 cfs and unfishable. Hot flies include BH Princes, P-Tails, Fryingpan Baetis, X-Caddis, Peacock Caddis, Sparkle Pupas, Glo-Bugs and San Juan Worms.
White River – The river is high, muddy and blown out by runoff. It probably will not be fishable for the next couple of weeks. Flow on Monday was 1,640 cfs near Buford, 1,570 cfs near Meeker and 1,490 cfs near Rangley.
Williams Fork Reservoir – Water level is rising but still has 2 feet to go before the the boat ramps become usable. Some people are launching from shore and fishing for pike and lake trout is excellent. Most of the lakers run 25 to 28 inches but a 40-incher weighing 26 pounds was caught on sucker meat recently. Pike fishing is very good in the flats at the south end of the lake and fingers on the west side. Use whole dead suckers, large red and white Dardevles and big streamer flies. Trout fishing is consistently good with a lot of browns and rainbows being caught on #5 Rapalas, gold-colored Super Vibrax spinners and nightcrawlers.
Williams Fork River – Running low and clear. Fishing for rainbows and brown trout is excellent using Mayflies, Blue Wing Olives, Prince Nymphs, Copper Johns and White Millers in the evenings. Lower sections of the river may see some Salmonflies hatch when the water temperature hits 56 degrees. Lure casters are doing well with gold on gold Panther Martins and Honeybee Roostertails.
Yampa River – Blown out by runoff, though pike can still be caught in the sloughs and backwaters. Flowing at 1,790 cfs at Steamboat Springs, 4,140 cfs near Hayden, 4,490 cfs near Craig and 5,750 cfs near Maybell.
Adobe Creek Res. (Blue Lake) – Some crappie are being caught as well as some nice blue cats and channel cats. The best fishing is from a boat, but be cautious about the ramp. The water level is low, the boat ramp is nearly out of the water and most of the lake is only three feet deep. But there are some deeper holes that still harbor a fair population of crappie and catfish.
Arkansas River #3 (Through Pueblo) – Flows beneath Pueblo Dam are moderate and clear. This section of river has been repeatedly stocked and fishing for 10 to 17-inch trout is excellent.
Arkansas River (Buena Vista to Salida) – Flow is 500 cfs and alternating from clear to murky due to snowmelt. Caddis have advanced through Browns Canyon and into Buena Vista. Blue Wing Olive and stonefly nymphs continue to be active as well. Look for improving conditions as cooler temperatures stabilize melt and flows, improving clarity and strengthening fish feeding patterns. In murky water, fish larger Pheasant Tails, Copper Johns and Stoneflies.
Arkansas River (Leadville to Buena Vista) – Flow is 350-400 cfs and alternating from clear to murky because of daily snowmelt. Caddis are now present in Buena Vista with good hatches late in the day. Blue Wing Olive and stonefly nymphs continue to provide good action; go to larger patterns during periods of murky water.
Arkansas River (Salida to Canon City) – Below Salida, the Arkansas suffered some murky water. Some of this is from snowmelt upstream, some is coming in from the Little River in Salida. Look for improving clarity this week as cooler temperatures slow the melt. The caddis have completed their life cycle in this reach but Blue Wing Olive and stonefly nymphs continue to be very active and are producing good action. Streamers are also becoming effective in response to the emergence of brown trout fry from the redds.
Clear Creek Reservoir – Fishing from shore has been very good. Some nice trout have been caught on Rooster Tails including a 17-inch rainbow and a 19-inch brown over the weekend. Nightcrawlers and Power Bait also work. Boat fishing is best along the south shore, drifting and casting small lures toward the shoreline.
Elevenmile Reservoir – Fishing for all species is fair. Boaters are having better action towards the east end of the lake and off Roger’s Mountain; shore casters at Lazy Boy and Sucker’s Cove. Most effective baits are salmon eggs, spawn sacs, worms and pink or green Power Bait. Best lures are split-jointed Rapalas in gold, black or peach colors, Needlefish and Dick Nites. Pike fishing is starting to pick up a bit but kokanee salmon remain slow.
South Platte River (btwn Spinney and Elevenmile) – The river is running at about 44 cfs between Elevenmile and Spinney Mountain Reservoirs and fishing is very good. Cutthroat and rainbow trout are hitting on Sparkle Wing RS2s, orange or gold Scuds, peach and apricot egg patterns, gray or brown Chironomids and black or olive Woolly Buggers. Hatches include small midges and Blue Wing Olives.
Spinney Mountain Reservoir – Anglers are still seeing good action along the dam and shoreline from the South Ramp to Buffalo Cove. Many 18 to 24-inch trout are being caught in 5 to 15 feet of water. Top flies: green or black Woolly Buggers, gray or brown Chironomids, San Juan Worms and Blood Worms with an egg. A black Marabou Jig bounced off the bottom also works well. Early morning hours are best with action slowing down around noon before picking up again from 5 p.m. until sundown. A few pike are starting to be caught on black Woolly Buggers and medium-sized rainbow-colored Rapalas. The river flow above Spinney has increased to 122 cfs. Due to road construction, overland access to the south shoreline is closed at Spinney Reservoir.
Turqoise Lake – Ice still covers most of the lake. The south road is open and there is open water around the islands, but it is inaccessible for now. When the lake clears, Gitzits tipped with sucker meat, Hi Rocky Specials and green Kastmasters work best for lake trout. Rainbow trout can be caught at the upper end on nightcrawlers and smaller lures.
Twin Lakes – Boat fishing is excellent for lake trout using Gitzits and sucker meat, Rapalas cast toward shore or trolled Flatfish. Shore fishing for rainbows is slow, but a few fish are being taken on salmon eggs and rainbow Power Bait at the junction between the lakes.
Gunnison River (below Crystal Dam) – Flow is 360 cfs while the average for this time of year is 2,687 cfs. Clarity remains good and the water temperature, now 44 degrees, is inching its way up slowly. Fishing has been good with consistent caddis and Blue Wing Olive hatches. Recommended nymphs: midges (larvae, pupa and emerger phases), Pheasant Tails, Flashback PTs, Copper Johns, RS2 emergers, Dandelions, Scuds, eggs, San Juan Worms and Woolly Buggers. Dries: BWOs, Adams, Elk Hair caddis and stimulators. Look for large stonefly nymphs toward the end of the month in the lower gorge section. Call Cimarron Creek Fly Shop at 970-249-0408 for the latest conditions.
Gunnison River (through the canyon) – Flow through the canyon is now about 350 cfs and the water is fairly clear. Fishing in the upper river to Smith Fork has been exceptional. There was a huge caddis hatch last week that provided great surface action. Hot flies: Halfbacks, #14-15 Gray Caddis, #14-16 Cutter and #8-10 Mercer Golden Stone. The Gunnison River Pleasure Park is offering ferry service across the North Fork to help fishermen access the upper Gunnison.
Gunnison River (Upper from Almont to Blue Mesa) – Flows are 1,300 cfs in Almont and 1,400 cfs in Gunnison. Look for peak run off in the next couple of weeks. Fishing is slow right now but look for good action on the downside of peak.
For the complete report, visit http://wildlife.state.co.us/dowfish/index.asp.
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