Conditions Report - Statewide
Rivers and Creeks
With the warm dry conditions we have been experiencing this year the rivers and creeks across the state are experiencing much lower flows and higher water temperatures than normal. Fishing for trout should be focused to the coolest parts of the day, fishing early in the morning when the water temperatures are cooler from overnight is recommended. Nymphs and emergers have been productive patterns throughout the state. For the dry fly fisherman mid-summer means terrestrials! Ants, hoppers, and beetles have been consistently producing fish. Keep in mind that when water temperatures rise near 70 degrees trout are at their most vulnerable, it is important to play and land the fish as quickly as possible and waste no time removing the hook and returning the fish to the water. Looking forward to fall we have multiple fall spawning fish that will become active shortly, keep an eye on future reports for kokanee runs and brown trout spawn reports.
Colorado Fishing Atlas
Conditions Report - Northeast Colorado
Eleven Mile State Park
As of 8/23/2018, the weeds in the reservoir are still fairly high especially along the west end due to the hot summer the lake has experienced. The recent cooler and wetter weather has stunted the growth some but be on the lookout for floating weed beds when trolling. If you are not getting any hits during trolls, check your lines and make sure your rigs are clean. Trout fishing has currently been very good especially for this time of year. The cooler nights have dropped the water temperature for the better so the early morning bite is the best time of day for success. Trolling has been successful when using needlefish, Kastmasters, and Tasmanian Devils. The fly fishing has been doing great as well for many anglers. Use your Callibaetis patterns during mid to late morning for the best success. The kokanee fishing is poor but picking up so keep an eye out for news on the bite to improve soon. The pike fishing has also been slow lately with mostly smaller fish taking the bait. Spinner-baits in the white, black and blue patterns or tube jigs in white and chartreuse colors are having success in the weedy coves. Retrievals with some stutters and pauses have had decent success in convincing the pike to strike.
Eleven Mile State Park
Aquatic Nuisance Species Inspection hours for the month of May are 6:00 am-10:00 pm daily. As of 8/16/2018, anglers are throwing crankbaits (i.e. #5's shad Rapalas) and catching bass, especially whites. Trout are deep right now and reports of Lindy Rigs are producing well. Reminder -No fishing from marina slips or docks (next to is okay but can't use them in any way).
Spinney Mountain Reservoir
As of 8/23/2018, the fishing at Spinney has been good, even with the heat. For trout, look for them to be schooling up along weed beds and reports of tube jigs and Tasmanian Devils have been working well. Give your retrieval a little action with some pauses every so often. For pike, anglers have been having great success in the same weed lines using buzzbaits in the morning and spinnerbaits when temperatures start to rise. Fly anglers are also doing well at Spinney using leaches, Wooly Buggers, and various sculpin style streamers. Bead head scuds with a little flashback or other brightly colored Callibaetis have been bringing in some nice fish as well.
Spinney Mountain State Park
Barr Lake State Park
As of 7/29/2018 activity has picked up the past couple weeks. Walleye are regularly being caught throughout the lake and from shore. Reports of smaller fish being caught have increased, so have a tape measure ready to make sure it's legal! Wiper are feeding on the shad in the reservoir. Carp fishing has been consistent for the people targeting them.
As of 8/20/2018, the Lake level is dropping at approximately a tenth of an inch a day. Surface water temperature is approximately 70 degrees. Fishing has been fair to good for channel catfish, crappie, wiper, and walleye. We are open to boating.
Jackson Lake State Park
As of 8/16/2018 the water level is at 71% capacity and sitting down 26 feet below the "full" mark. Water surface temperature is about 76 degrees making it difficult for shore anglers as the fish are retreating to deeper waters. Boaters who cover a lot of water and under water structures are having success with the warm water species especially bass. Worms and minnows for bass have been the best bet for bait fishing as well as mid to deep level crank baits. p rigs.
As of 8/19/2018, the water temperature is about 76 degrees with some warmer temperatures in the shallower coves. The lake is about 25 feet down from full and dropping 2-3 feet a week. Fishing is fair for walleye, crappie, and wiper, with slower bites being reported lakewide. Shore fishermen are reporting a decent catfish bite at the West Trailhead lot. The Reservoir is OPEN to BOATING. The Inlet is OFF and the Outlet is ON.
As of 8/1/2018. Fishing should be pretty fun at Staunton as they typically stock the lakes first week of the month. For stocked fish look for hungry fish cruising for worms and PowerBait. Competition will be high so get their attention with bright colored baits or lures. Both ponds are typically stocked the first week of each month starting in May, with rainbow trout. Our ADA accessible fishing pier is complete and ready to be fished from. Please contact the park about how we can provide an accessible fishing experience. Due to construction access to the ponds is is currently available from the Ranch Hand Group Picnic parking area only. There is no public access below the dams on Elk Creek Road. Do not drop people or equipment off at this location. Violators will be ticketed. From more information contact staff at 303-816-0912
As of 8/22/2018, flows are remaining fairly low at around 10 CFS but catches are being reported mainly in the morning or evening when temperatures are not as high. Hopper droppers are still doing well and most likely will be on the menu for the remainder of the summer. Mix in some caddis, stimulators, and ant patterns for the top fly. Bead heads always do well this time of year at Bear Creek, but keep them fairly small so the dropper does not sink your top fly. Recommended sizes for bead heads right now are in the #18-20 range. Flows: less than 10 CFS (8/22/2018)
Deckers and Cheeseman Canyon
As of 8/22/2018, the flows have dropped, but the water temperatures are still cooler than earlier in the month. The trout are active and feeding so the fishing has been good and steady. Larger lead flies are producing so take advantage with some Pats Rubber legs, stoneflies and leach patterns. Nymphing with the usual Juju baetis and emergers such as the Chocolate Thunder are tempting trout when anglers present with a good drift. The trico and Pale Morning Duns hatches have been active so be prepared to switch the rigging when you see action on the water's surface. Flows: 255 CFS (8/22/2018)
Deckers and Cheeseman Canyon
South Platte - Middle Fork
As of 8/16/2018, fishing at the Dream has been good. Trico hatches have been very strong anywhere from 7:30 to 11 am. Be prepared to switch to your trico set up when you see it happening (see the tip of the week). Some bigger resident fish have been caught out of slots and deeper runs. BWO's, caddis, stoneflies and even egg patterns have convinced some fish in current seems and riffles. Some suggested flies are natural pheasant tails size #18-20, Bling Midge Cream, Radiation Baetis, and Two Bit Hookers all in the #18-20 range have been getting some good takers. Flows: 125 CFS (8/16/2018)
South Platte - Middle Fork
Cache la Poudre
As of 8/23/2018, the higher, steady flows have improved the overall fishing in the river. The summertime rigs are working well such as a hopper dropper. Various hatches are coming off such as Pale Morning Duns and caddis in the evenings. Keep the terrestrial flies somewhat smaller but look to tie one on your rig when temperatures are hotter towards the middle of the day. Various nymph patterns in the #16-20 range are working well. Look to find fish feeding in pocket waters and slower runs that match a brisk walking pace. Flows: 320 CFS near Rustic and 149 CFS at Fort Collins (8/23/2018)
Cache la Poudre
Conditions Report - Southeast Colorado
Arkansas River-Lake Pueblo
As of 8/16/2018, the tailwaters below the reservoir are still low so use caution on these trout. Pay close attention to the water temperatures. Nightly temperatures are dropping a little allowing for some cooler, morning conditions. The lower flows can give you a good opportunity to try some sight fishing. Morning hours are going to be the best bet before it gets too hot before 10 am. We recommend fishing above Pueblo Blvd as anything below will have the higher water temps to avoid stream fishing (>66 degrees). Flows: 70 CFS (8/16/2018)
Lake Pueblo State Park
As of 8/18/2018, the lake is at 723 surface acres with a surface elevation of 6183.92. Surface water temperatures are around 69 degrees. Shore anglers are catching trout on homemade dough bait, PowerBait (green color) and worms all along the south shore, which has been picking up recently with both trout and perch. Reilly Canyon River has slowed down to a trickle and sandbars are starting to emerge around the lake. The most action for fish is occurring in the early mornings and late evenings. Some catfish are being reported around the inlet which is now off color due to the recent rains upstream. Boaters have done well targeting walleye and smallmouth early in the mornings and late evenings. Trout are being caught during all hours. Worm harnesses and crank baits have worked well. Fish are being found deep, 20 or more feet down. Remember, all boats must be inspected prior to launching on the lake.
As of 8/16/2018 fishing has been decent to slow. The water levels are low for the reservoir and sitting at about 64% capacity so careful of underwater structures if you are boating. Surface water temps are around 77%. Bass are going to still be active during these water conditions so be on the lookout for shad balls. Reports of fishing being caught at the 10-15 foot levels. Largemouth bass have been active in the coves. Try some Texas rigged plastics around structures.
John Martin Reservoir
As of 7/23/2018 due to a low water year throughout the state and the Arkansas River drainage water levels are dropping and the fishing has been tougher. Walleye fishing is slow with water temperatures in the mid 70's. Fishing for white bass and wiper can be good if anglers are able to figure out where the bait that these fish are feeding on is located. Crappie fishing has also slowed drastically as the water temperatures have forced the fish into deeper water.
John Martin Reservoir State Park
Lathrop State Park
As of 8/6/2018 the surface temperature at Martin Lake is approximated at 72 degrees. With temperatures rising to around 90 degrees or more, the fishing has been abundant during early mornings and late evenings. Pike have been the most popular catch during the summer months using fake Smelt. Smelt is a very small fish similar to a minnow. With the frequent rain we have been getting during the evenings, trout have been very active during these times. Trout in Martin Lake have been known to be feeding on power bait or night crawlers. Largemouth Bass have also been another popular fish being caught, especially with crayfish lures and shallow water lures. The surface temperature at Horseshoe Lake is approximated at 69 degrees. The most popular fish Horseshoe has to offer is the infamous Tiger Muskie. The largest Tiger Muskie recorded at Horseshoe Lake was 46 inches long and weighed at 25 pounds. With reports from fisherman on the lake, crappie and trout have been the most caught here. Smallmouth Bass have been another frequent catch using Sammy lures and Spinner bait in the evenings.
Located off of Garden of the Gods Rd and just East of I 25, this reservoir has just about all the typical species of fish found in Colorado. From warm water fish like largemouth bass to other species such as trout and pike - this small, urban reservoir has it all. As of 8/10/2018 fishing reported as decent to slow. When recently stocked the fishing will be good but during these warmer days fish have been lethargic and deep. Look to mix up the techniques/lures and fish during the cooler times of the day. This reservoir packs some resident fish that have avoided the "hook" over the years and can reach very decent sizes. Throw them something that they don't see every day to spark their curiosity, you could get a taker and be on our next catch of the week!
As of 8/23/2018, the fishing has really been picking up in these 3 mountain lakes due to the cooler, nightly temperatures. The trout are hitting topwater flies and feeding on various terrestrials. Anglers have been having success with fly and bubble rigs. A good set up to start with is a terrestrial followed by a chironomid, callibaetis, or beaded hairs ea. The trick right now is to retrieve slowly with the bubble rigs. Fly anglers are having success with similar rigs and just letting the currents move the flies around instead of a slow retrieval. The weather forecast for the weekend looks to be about the same with some possible cloud cover which should bode well for topwater fishing. Early morning should produce some good fishing when temperatures are still cooler and fish more active. During the warmer parts of the day, Kastmasters, rooster tails and spoons could tempt hungry trout when the action on flies slows down.
As of 8/22/2018, the fishing has picked up some and anglers are reporting good success. Fish are starting to hit streamers as the season is around the corner. Hopper dropper rigs are also a good option. Keep in mind that the Caddis and Pale Morning Duns are coming off so make sure to have some in your arsenal when you see the hatch start. Terrestrials are also a good option closer to the banks such as Amy's Ants, and Chubby Chernobyls. Flows: 250 CFS (8/22/2018)
Upper Arkansas - Salida
Conditions Report - Metro Denver Area
This 762-acre impoundment is located off of E. Quincy Avenue, two miles east of E-470. As of 8/23/2018, the water temperatures are about 69 degrees. Trout fishing from shore is slow to fair. Lately the dam has been the most productive area for trout using PowerBait. Boaters reporting fair to good results when trolling for trout using lures and night crawlers. Another technique working well for anglers is anchoring at about 20-30 feet of water and dropping down PowerBait and night crawlers. Reports of jumbo perch have been caught with split shots and night crawlers as well as trolling with size #4 flicker shads. Restricted to electric motors only. For more information call 303-326-8425. Park hours August 5:30am-9:00pm.
This 881-acre impoundment is located in Cherry Creek State Park, in Aurora. There are two entrances to the park, the east entrance off S. Dayton St. and the west entrance off S. Parker Rd. As of 8/23/2018, the walleye fishing is still fantastic! Look for walleye to be feeding in shallower waters early in the morning, 6 feet or less. Blade baits and jigging Rapalas have been producing with high profile patterns such as chartreuse and fluorescent colors. After the morning hours, the fish are retreating to deeper water. Best chances for success in the warmer hours of the day is trolling at faster speeds, 2-2.2 MPH. For the shore fisherman, some walleye are still catchable at around 10 feet once the temperatures rise but your best chances will be early in the morning when they are feeding in the shallows.
Cherry Creek Reservoir
As of 8/19/2018, water temperatures are approximately around 70 degrees. Bass fishing is rated as slow to fair. Try fishing chatter baits just outside the weed lines in 10-15 feet of water. Reports of small yellow perch are being caught using jigs. Park hours for August 5:30am-9:00pm. Restricted to artificial flies and lures only. Electric motors only and hand launched watercraft only-trailers and vehicles prohibited in the water. For more information call 303-326-8424.
This 1,356 impoundment is located in Chatfield State Park, as of 8/16/2018 the water surface temperature is sitting at about 69 degrees. The shad schools are splitting causing the walleye to scatter in search of food making the walleye fishing very difficult. The smallmouths are biting especially top water in the early morning, before 10am. Later in the day look for the smallmouth to be feeding off of minnows at medium depths or next to obstruct structures.
Conditions Report - Northwest Colorado
Rifle Gap Reservoir
As of 8/7/2018 pike and trout are being caught throughout the lake. Bass fishing has been good near the Cedar Campground as well as near the dam. Keep in mind that there are a couple of fishing regulations that are specific to Rifle Gap: Walleye - Bag/possession limit= 1 fish Size= Must be 18 inches or greater All other species are same as the statewide regulations.
Rifle Gap Reservoir
As of 8/20/2018, the Early Settlers and Oak Point boat ramps are CLOSED for the season. The Island boat ramp remains open on a day to day basis due to the extremely low water levels. Please call the park prior to arrival for boat ramp closure information. Fishing is good, yellow PowerBait is landing some nice rainbows and cutthroats. Do not forget to stop at the entrance and have your boat inspected prior to launching. The ANS inspection station is open from 6:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. 7 days a week. If at any time it is closed, please come to the Visitor Center for boat inspections.
James M. Robb
As of 8/20/2018, the trout fishing has slowed down with the warm weather but fishing for sunfish and bluegill is good. All lakes are expected to be stocked in the fall when conditions allow so keep your eyes out for our stocking reports as the season approaches. Please ensure the responsible and ethical release of fish. Trash cans are available to dispose of fishing line.
James M. Robb State Park
Stagecoach State Park
As of 7/28/2018 the lake is starting to experience some algae blooms which can make the fishing tougher with decreased water clarity. Some pike have been caught on various baits along the edges of the weed beds. Trout fishing has been good using lures like in-line spinners or spoons for the larger fish.
As of 8/22/2018, the flows are well below average. With flows this low and high sun intensity, these well-educated trout will be skittish so try moving slowly and do some sight fishing. Keep the rigs somewhat simple and don't overdue them with too many flies that could spook the fish, especially with the heavy pressure they see during the summer months. Reports of Mysis shrimp #16-22, Barr's Emergers and Bling Midges have landed some nice trout. Other flies that are having some success are #18-22 pheasant tails in black or natural colors and very small Juju baetis sized #20-26. Flows: 55 CFS (8/22/2018)
Blue River - Silverthorne
Frying Pan River
As of 8/22/2018, the green drakes have been hatching in full swing so make sure to bring plenty and pack enough sizes to best match what is currently coming off the water. Drakes tend to move around the river so try not to stay in one spot for too long. Pale Morning Duns are also abundant right now and success using some sparkle duns, thorax duns, and others with extended bodies have been reported. The mysis shrimp are on the menu for waters closer to Ruedi, below the outlet. Flows are a little under the historic average. Flows: CFS 180 (8/22/2018)
Frying Pan - Ruedi
Conditions Report - Southwest Colorado
Blue Mesa Reservoir
This 8,900-acre reservoir is located west of Gunnison. As of 8/23/2018, the kokanee are starting to scatter and the schools are very spotty. Jigging is still bringing in nice fish but we are now at the tail end of the schooling period. Reports suggest about another week or so before the salmon are no longer schooled together and the focus will be on the spawn. Some anglers are still reporting that they have caught their limits but the bite has slowed since the last report. Anglers can check on current conditions and boat ramp inspection schedules by contacting the Curecanti National Recreation Area at (970-641-2337).
Blue Mesa Reservoir
As of 7/22/2018 Mancos is a great place for consistent action from trout and yellow perch. Most of the trout action is from 10-12 inch fish, but there's very good opportunity at an 18-20 inch trout and a few 12 inch-plus perch. Great opportunity for kids to catch fish. Most anglers are finding success with bait (PowerBait, eggs, and crawlers) fishing just off bottom or under a slip bobber. For a chance at the yellow perch and trout, a small jig fished under a bobber on a long leader and tipped with a piece of worm is a good bet. Casting or trolling typical in-line spinners (Panther Martins, Mepps) from boats is another approach at the trout. Hand-launchable boats (non-motorized kayaks, canoes, belly boats, etc) are a great way to fish the lake in this off-season. This is the first year in more than 15 years that the lake has not gotten decent ice to fish.Mancos State Park
Mancos State Park
Taylor Park Reservoir
As of 8/16/2018, lots of rainbows are coming in off of trolling rigs with pop gear and worms. Lake trout are catchable but really deep, around 80 feet. Anglers have been catching the lake trout off of sucker meat and worms. Pike fishing has mainly produced smaller sized fish from the weed beds using big spoons and spinners. Water levels are down about 20 feet at the moment.
Taylor Park Reservoir
As of 8/22/2018, the fishing at Navajo Lake is good. The numbers of fish being caught has slowed down a bit in August, due to the warmer water temperatures, but a wide variety of fish species are still being caught. Smallmouth bass are being landed using jigs mostly in the main channels where the water is a bit cooler. Reports of pike are being caught using any lure that resembles a bait fish. Good numbers of catfish have been reported using night crawlers or various catfish baits. The boat ramp at Navajo State Park in Arboles is open and in good condition.
Navajo State Park
As of 8/23/2018, the fishing for trout has been good and the most productive lures have been spinners and Rapalas. Anglers bait fishing with salmon eggs and night crawlers have also been successful. A few smallmouths are being caught on spinners and drop shot rigs with small gulp minnows. No reports of Kokanee salmon have been recorded yet. The fishing ponds at Pa-Co-Chu-Puk has been slow but anglers have caught several trout with small worms and flies. Pa-Co-Chu-Puk River has been fishing well with small nymphs, pale morning duns, and nymphs. Reports of Green Drake hatches have been coming off. Pink Cahill's have been producing well. Terrestrial season is here with hoppers picking up fish. Success with streamer fishing has also been reported by anglers recently.
As of 8/23/2018, the fly fishing has been picking up due to the recent rains and cooler nightly temperatures. The river experienced record lows in stream flows this summer so the weather and slight bump in stream flow is a welcomed event by anglers and fish alike. The afternoon trico hatch has been abundant and micro caddis is on the menu. Stoneflies are always an option on the Gunnison so check a local fly shop for recommendations on appropriate size and patterns to use. Although the cooler weather has helped, be mindful of the water temperatures as we will still see some days where it will reach over 65 degrees. When the water gets over 65 degrees please consider other options to give the fisheries a break from the stress. About 2pm has been a good time to start checking and ensure the water is not too warm to continue fishing.