Eleven Mile slow, but quality fish to be caught
Special to the Daily
Open water is limited to tailwaters and the lower sections of the Colorado and Roaring Fork rivers. With all winter fishing, other than the occasional midge hatch, these fisheries are best fished with nymphs in the deeper sections of the runs. Often the best action will be in the afternoons after the waters warm ever so slightly.
For most anglers, ice fishing is the ticket. South Park waters are very popular and have good ice caps at this time. While fish are being caught, the reports are mixed. Antero has been producing a few on small jigs tipped with mealworms. Fish away from the crowds for the best action.
Tarryall Reservoir has slowed from earlier in the year, but those with a bit of patience are still getting a few. Pay attention to your rod, as bites have been soft. Set the hook to any hint of a take.
Eleven Mile Reservoir has been very slow, but for those willing to work it, the quality of fish has made up for the lack of action. Fish exceeding 20 inches have been showing up, but not many of them.
Recent snows have made it much better for snowmobiles heading into Jefferson Lake. Ice is over a foot thick, and lots of fish are being marked, but the lake trout have been mostly uncooperative. Silver spoons have been mildly productive.
Officers Gulch Pond has a good coat of ice, but the snows have made for a slushy layer on top. Wear waterproof shoes if you fish there. That’s often true for any water with a heavy snow coating.
Green Mountain Reservoir is iced over for a mile or more around the inlet. The surface is mixed — some areas are wind polished with a dusting of snow on top and very slick; wear cleats to be safe. The good news is the bite has been good for smallish lake trout to 20 inches. Most of the fish are coming out of 30 to 80 feet of water. Further downstream, Wolford Mountain Reservoir has several inches of ice along the dam, although there are some soft spots on the reservoir so use caution.
A few kokanee are being caught along with a number of trout.
Taylor Park Reservoir is capped with 8 inches of ice. The lake trout bite is slow.
Willow Creek Reservoir has a solid cap at this time running 8 inches and better with a slush coat in places. Red ice jigs tipped with a mealworm have been an effective combination.
Grand Lake has a few inches of ice, but there are areas of fewer than 4 inches in thickness so use caution. This is a good choice for early ice lake trout, especially once the ice gets a tad thicker.
There are lots of other options out there, so grab an auger and explore.
Dave Coulson is the Colorado state editor for http://www.fishexplorer.com. He contributes a weekly fishing report to the Summit Daily News.
Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.