Southeast Colorado Fishing Conditions – March 14

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Published Saturday, March 18, 2017

Arkansas River Headwaters
Fishing has been increasingly productive as the river has warmed and the period of direct daily sunlight increases. Midge hatches have been consistent and we have daily morning drifts of free-living caddis larvae. Golden stonefly nymphs are also molting at this time of the year, making themselves more available to fish. The energy will shift significantly in the next two weeks as the spring BWO hatch gets underway. This hatch always seems to be "the switch" - the fundamental change in the economics of a trout's life, making it worth the expenditure of calories to move out of the deep, slow winter water and into the pocket-water feeding lies for which the Arkansas River is known. With this dispersal of the fish, much more of the river corridor becomes productive fishing water, dispersing anglers as well. Recent stomach checks have shown large quantities of mature mayfly nymphs, indicating that the BWO hatch is imminent. Absent that surface activity, most anglers are still employing multi-nymph rigs combining stoneflies, caddis larvae, and midge larva/pupae. However, trailing a mayfly nymph, particularly in the afternoons, now seems to be a logical and effective add-on. Direct sunlight is as important as air temperature, so focus on those blue-sky days! Warm, sunny days will still find plenty of fish on the feed in pocket water with mid-speed current and good structure, but expect most fish to be congregated in the deeper, slower runs we term "winter water". There they can be best tempted by striated midge patterns like black beauties and zebras, golden stonefly nymphs, and "meat & potatoes" nymphs like pheasant tails and hares ears. Try focusing fishing efforts on the period of peak sun coverage and warmth between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. (Courtesy of ArkAnglers).
Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area

Brush Hollow Reservoir

(Ice conditions as of 3/8/2017) The reservoir is ice-free at this time, and fishing has been slow. Anglers have caught a few perch on the north end with worms and jigs. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the CPW Salida Area Office at 719-530-5520.

Clear Creek Reservoir 
(Ice conditions as of 3/8/2017) Clear Creek has about 10 inches of ice covering the whole reservoir. Fishing has been fair. Anglers have had success catching trout with meal worms, jigs, and PowerBait. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the CPW Salida Area Office at 719-530-5520.

Cottonwood Reservoir 
(Ice conditions as of 3/8/2017) Cottonwood has about 12 inches of ice and fishing for trout is good. Anglers are reporting catching trout with meal worms, jigs, and PowerBait. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the CPW Salida Area Office at 719-530-5520.

Crystal Lakes 
(Ice conditions as of 3/8/2017) Crystal Lakes has about 10 inches of ice, and trout fishing has been good. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the CPW Salida Area Office at 719-530-5520. Just a reminder: Fishing is restricted to artificial flies and lures only.

Frantz Lake

(Ice conditions as of 3/8/2017) Frantz now has open water. Fishing for trout has been good, and anglers have had success using meal worms and PowerBait. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the CPW Salida Area Office at 719-530-5520.

Hayden Meadows 
(Ice conditions as of 3/8/2017) Hayden Meadows is fishing well at this time and has about 10 inches of ice. Trout are being caught with meal worms and PowerBait. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the CPW Salida Area Office at 719-530-5520.

Monument Reservoir 
(Ice conditions as of 3/7/2017) There is almost no ice remaining on the lake due to recent warm temperatures and high winds. Any remaining ice should be considered extremely unstable and unsafe. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the Pueblo Office at 719-561-5300 or the DWM, Bob Holder at 719-680-1410.

North Lake 
(Ice conditions as of 3/8/2017) Most of the ice is gone or broken up due to recent high winds and warm temperatures, and is considered extremely unsafe to traverse. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the Pueblo Area Office at 719-561-5300 or the DWM, Bob Holder at 719-680-1410.

Just a reminder: Fishing is restricted to artificial flies and lures only.

Ohaver Lake 
(Ice conditions as of 3/8/2017) Ohaver is iced over with about 10 to 12 inches. There is a spring near the center of the lake that keeps the ice weak in that area, so use caution near the center. Fishing has been good, and trout are being caught on most types of bait. The lake is only accessible by snowmobile at this time. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the CPW Salida Area Office at 719-530-5520.

Riverside Ponds 
(Ice conditions as of 3/8/2017) Both the lower and upper ponds at Riverside have open water. Fishing is good, and anglers have had success using PowerBait and worms. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the CPW Salida Area Office at 719-530-5520.

San Isabel Lake 
(Ice conditions as of 3/7/2017) There is now open water around most of the lake and soft spots in the remaining ice. Conditions are not safe for ice fishing at this time. Any remaining ice is expected to be gone in the next few weeks. For current conditions, contact the Pueblo Area Office at 719-561-5300.

Skaguay Reservoir
(Ice conditions as of 3/8/2017) Skaguay has about 12 to 16 inches of ice covering the reservoir. Trout fishing has been good, and anglers have had success using nightcrawlers and green PowerBait. Most trout are being caught in 10 to 12 feet of water. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the CPW Salida Area Office at 719-530-5520.

Trinidad Lake 
The lake is now open for boating, and every boat must be inspected unless it is sealed with a Trinidad seal and receipt. Fishing from shore has been good, with anglers reported 16 to 20 inch trout being caught around the lake using worms and PowerBait. Boaters have just started, but worm harnesses and jigs have been working well.
Trinidad Lake State Park

Twin Lakes
(Ice conditions as of 3/8/2017) 
Twin Lakes is iced over with roughly 14 to 18 inches of ice. The ice has become more stable, but there are still pockets of slush forming on the ice during the day. The ice near the south shore of the lower lake is unstable. Fishing has been poor with anglers using jigs, grubs, sucker meat, meal worms, and PowerBait. For updated fishing reports and ice conditions, contact the CPW Salida Area Office at 719-530-5520.