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 8/13/2018, the trout fishing has been great especially near Roger's Mountain, Howbert Point, Sucker's Cove and near the islands. Try using pink and green PowerBait along with Kastmasters, plastic Worms or tube jigs in White/Green variations. The Kokanee salmon are tough to catch at the moment. Try the main channel at about 30-35 feet deep near Deer and Duck Island. Trolling with Cowbells, Kokanee Killers, or down riggers have shown some success as well. Northern Pike fishing is good right now. Try the west side along the shallows and weed beds. Try using Rapala's, tube jigs, Kastmasters or Krocodiles..
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 8/13/2018, trout fishing remains good and they are currently feeding off of chronomids, spoons, tube jigs and Tasmanian Devils are getting a lot of takers right now as well. Northern pike fishing has been great! Your typical locations such as weed beds and sandbars are currently where you can find the pike. The pike are focusing on Rapalas and tube jigs. Try putting a tube jig over a spoon so the treble hook is exposed. Retrieve more or less like a typical spinner with a few jigs here and there. When tube jigs are on, the extra action/presentation the spoon gives can sometimes be the little push the fish needs to take your lure.
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 8/11/2018 water levels are dropping every day at approximately a tenth of an inch. Surface water temperatures are approximately 82 degrees. Fishing has been fair to good for channel catfish, crappie, wiper, and walleye. Even with the lower water levels, boating is still open for the time being.
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 8/13/2018, Water temperature is about 76 degrees with some warmer temps in the shallow coves. The lake is about 20 feet down from full and dropping at about 2-3 feet a week. Fishing is fair for Walleye, Crappie and Wiper, with slower bites being reported lake wide. 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
Updated 8/10/2018. Fly fishing mindsets for smaller creeks, especially in the foothills, needs to be focused towards the summertime conditions we are showing (hot days, lower flows with mixed thunderstorms). Fish will be looking up for summertime bugs. Think smaller in the morning such as a PMD or #18-20 sized caddis. As the afternoon approaches hoppers and bigger terrestrials will attract the trout. Trout will always be feeding below the surface so try a hopper dropper rig and mix the lower fly around (nymphs and emergers) and colors depending on the cloud coverage and sun intensity. Flows: 7 CFS
Deckers and Cheeseman Canyon
As of 8/16/2018, the flows are up again as Denver Water released a lot of water out of Chessman Reservoir to drain some sediment caused by a recent flash flood in July. The canyon hasn't had much in terms of new hatches but smaller sized midges and baetis flies have been getting some fish. Pat's rubber legs have been a good lead fly followed by your RS2's, baetis emergers, and midges etc. Keep the nymphing flies small, around the #20 range. For the Deckers area, a lot of the same flies mentioned last week will still get some fish as flows are very similar. Reports coming in are saying smaller Pat's rubber legs, San Juan worms, caddis imitations, PMD emergers and Juju Baetis are catching plenty of fish. Flows: Deckers 358 CFS (8/16/2018) CFS Canyon 358 CFS (8/16/2018)
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 8/16/2018 - The Poudre is fishing decent to good right now. You will be looking at your typical summer hatches this time of year. For early mornings the PMD's are coming off around the #18 size, so keep them small. Also be on the lookout for trico hatches most likely during the mid-morning. If you are not aware of what a Trico spinner fall is, read our tip of the week! Later in the day when it heats up use your hopper dropper rigs and as the day progresses, the caddis hatch should be on the menu. Flows: 270 CFS near Rustic and 100 CFS at Fort Collins
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 8/1/2018 the Lake is at 738 surface acres with a surface elevation of 6185.30. Surface water temps around 72 degrees. Shore fishermen are catching trout on homemade dough bait, PowerBait (green color) and worms all along south shore. Reilly Canyon River has slowed down to a trickle and sandbars 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 Boaters have done well targeting walleye. Smallmouth caught early in the morning and late evening. Trout are caught during all hours. Worm harnesses and crank baits have worked well. Fish are being found around 15-25ft. The shallow water tends to be too warm for fish during the majority of the day, the technique has been to find the deep channels where colder water exists or wait for cooler morning and evening temps. BOATING ALERT: Due to water being released, boaters be aware of underwater hazards. Not all hazards will be marked.
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 8/10/2018 Fishing has been "decent". Water temps are low so trout will be heading a little deeper during the warmer days and afternoons. Anglers have been having some success with terrestrials and other top water bugs. During the summer months and hot weather focus your bug patterns to hoppers, aunt patterns and beetles. Try and bubble with a 20inch plus leader to your fly. Early morning and evening will see more active fish. Water levels were reported as "LOW". Summertime conditions means different bugs and hatches. If you are lure fishing, test your depths instead of repeating the same retrieval as fish will start to move deeper throughout the day. Sometimes even jigging a Kastmaster or other jigs (usually at a 15-20 + foot range) will tempt holding fish at deeper depths during warm days
As of 8/16/2018, the typical summer rigs will produce. PMD hatches in the morning and hopper droppers when it warms up after about 10-11am will yield fish. The flows are well below historic averages so fish will be on the lookout and skittish. Use your sight fishing skills and approach slowly with a soft presentation. The caddis hatch has been active so use emergers early and when you see the hatch progress later in the day, experiment with different sizes. Try an elk hair caddis that sits high in the water and floats well (foam bodied) followed by a caddis emerger. Experiment with emergers that have reflective material and some without. The weekend shows possible storms so you will be getting cloud coverage coming and going. Flows: 80 CFS (8/16/2018)
Upper Arkansas - Above Lake Pueblo
Conditions Report - Metro Denver Area
This 762-acre impoundment is located off of E. Quincy Avenue, two miles east of E-470. As of 8/1/2018 Water temp is 69 degrees. Trout fishing from shore is slow. Occasionally we have received a good report using PowerBait off the dam. Boaters reporting fair to good conditions on trout trolling with crawlers and lures. Some nice trout in the 18 -21 inches range have been caught recently. Walleye action from boats is slow to fair with an occasional good report. Some reports of largemouth being caught on top water lures. 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 8/16/2018 the walleye fishing is on fire at Cherry Creek right now! The shad are schooled together so the walleye are in hunt mode. Anglers are having a lot of success with blade baits and other shad imitations. Trolling for walleye is also producing a lot of fish up until the heat of the day, about 3pm. If you can find a shad ball in the morning hours, get that line out there and hold on!
Cherry Creek Reservoir
As of 8/10/2018 Water temp is 65 - 69 degrees. As far as the warm water species goes, Quincy has been doing great as of late. If you are a trout fisher maybe it's time to expand your interest because the bass and pan fish have been very active and feeding heavily especially on top water lures. For bass particularly, reports of hoppers and poppers have been very successful (these flies and lures are particularly good in the mornings and evenings). The reservoir has also been a destination for people to flock on the weekends so it has been crowded so try fishing on a weekday. 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 8/5/2018, Early Settlers and Oak Point boat ramps are CLOSED for the season. The Island boat ramp remains open at this time. The lake level is receding rapidly. Fishing is good. Yellow PowerBait is landing some nice rainbows and cutthroats. Don't 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 7/23/2018 Trout fishing has slowed down with the warm weather but fishing for sun fish and bluegill is good. 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.
Conditions Report - Southwest Colorado
Blue Mesa Reservoir
This 8,900-acre reservoir is located west of Gunnison. As of 8/16/2018, the kokanee are beginning to school and are being caught using various jigging techniques. They are somewhat finicky and not easily caught so be sure to switch up the colors and presentation to find what is on the menu. Perch have been caught in the shallows with small Maribou jigs and worms attached. Water levels are about 50 feet below "full". 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 8/1/2018 Fishing at Navajo Lake has been good. Small mouth bass fishing has been good in the main channel where the water temperature is a bit cooler. Many large Pike have been reported being caught using bait fish lures. Catfish fishing has been good by Windsurf beach area. The boat ramp at Two Rivers Marina is in good shape, and launching is good. The Marina store at the Arboles boat ramp has been moved to the Visitor center due to low water conditions. Ice, ice cream, drinks and snacks are available at the visitor store, gasoline is not. The boat ramp and ANS inspection station remain open. Colorado and New Mexico fishing licenses for the 2018-2019 season are now on sale and are available at the Visitor Center. Social security numbers are required for license purchase. ID is required for purchase of all Colorado licenses. Please remember to bring sunscreen, insect repellent and clothes appropriate for changes in the weather.
Navajo State Park
As of 8/10/2018 Fishing for trout is good, lures of choice are worms, salmon eggs, spinners, and Rapala's. Fishing Ponds at Pa-Co-Chu-Puk have been fishing slow to decent with small worms, and egg imitations. Pa-Co-Chu-Puk River: has been fishing well with small nymphs, pale morning duns/nymphs, with occasional Green Drake hatches. Pink Cahill's have been producing excellent. Terrestrial season is here with hoppers, ants, and similar producing fish.