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Southeast Colorado Fishing Conditions – May 31, 2017

Arkansas River
Upper River: BWO’s are the main menu item right now, but caddis larva and pupa are becoming increasingly available and important. In the late afternoons be prepared for BWO hatches, we’ve had excellent reports on the river above Buena Vista. Sporadic adult stoneflies have been found along the banks at Hayden Meadows, so large attractor dry flies should be in your kit if you’re headed there. Nymphing slow, consistent pools and runs early and mid-day in the upper basin can be productive, with fish moving into faster riffles to feed when nymphs are drifting, primarily in the afternoon. Be thorough in your approach, and adjust your weight and depth often to locate fish.

Middle River: Cooler weather will be slowing the melt during the latter part of this week, reducing the tributary flows and clearing up the Arkansas River. This will provide a window of opportunity for anglers in the Brown Canyon/Milk Run area – quite possible to see resumption of caddis and BWO activity. Fish will gravitate to edgewater pockets, so dry-dropper fishing should be effective. This is a great opportunity to get on the Arkansas River one more time before runoff commences in earnest!

Lower River: Warm weather over the weekend and early this week increased snowmelt in the tributaries, raising the river level and murking up the water. However, those tributaries appear to have stabilized now and the river’s clarity is showing improvement. With much cooler weather forecast for the rest of the week, expect those tributaries to decline and the river to return to good conditions. The flows will be higher than last weekend, but visibility should be good and many fish will be taking up opportunistic feeding lies along the edges of the current. Pocket water fishing with dry-dropper combos ought to be quite productive –think attractor dries and nymphs, like stonefly nymphs, adult craneflies, and some last BWO emergers. Streamers should be very effective as well.

(Courtesy of ArkAng​​ler​s)
Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area

Henry Lake

Fishing for wipers has been rated as good. Anglers have had success using jigs, spoons, and spinners. There have been a few anglers getting bites using muscles as bait.

John Martin Reservoir 
Fishing has been rated as slow. The recent influx of 80,000 acre feet of water due to all the rain has caused turbidity in the water and has caused the water temperature to drop. The fishing should pick up once the water temperature and clarity recover. There have been crappie, white bass, and caught recently, but not in great numbers.

John Martin State Park

Meredith Reservoir

Fishing for wipers has been rated as good. Anglers have had success using a variety of baits and lures. Fishing for catfish has been rated as slow.

North Gateway Park

Fishing continues to be steady for rainbow trout. Bass and crappie are being caught at a fairly steady rate on various jigs and Rapala’s. There have been a few anglers catching some decent sized catfish, but not in great numbers.

O’Haver Lake 
Anglers have had success catching rainbow trout in the 12 to 13 inch range using PowerBait from the pier on the southeast side of the lake.

Trinidad Lake

Fishing from the south shore has been very slow due to the off-color of the water. Anglers that have found success have been using worms and PowerBait. Reilly Canyon, where the river comes in, has been very hot with anglers pulling in walleye and trout. Boaters have been catching mostly trout and walleye, but in very small numbers. Perch fishing has started to pick up for both boat and shore anglers. Jigs tipped with worms have been the go-to.​

Trinidad Lake State Park