This week I fished Lonetree, Lon Hagler, Boedecker, and Jackson lakes. I was expecting to get up and check out Big Creek to see if it is open, but couldn't get a full day to do so. My buddy Phil and his daughter are heading up today with Charlie Meyers to see if they can catch a state record grayling. Chances are you'll be able to read about it in the Denver Post soon.
I caught my best walleye of the year on Lonetree in 6-10 feet of water. One was 19 and the other was 20 inches, and healthy fat. This was the start of my three-lake day, my goal being not to get skunked at any. My last lake would be the toughest, as I've never fished Boedecker before. I hit Hagler hoping to find some tigers but to no avail. The water is high enough to get a boat in but not high enough to reach the trees. I trolled a bit and then broke out the fly rod again along the dam and caught a couple small bass.
Hagler is a great place be a kid and join the masses of folding-chair anglers that line the shores for the catch-able trout prevalent in the lake. That is, unless you were the two little girls I saw this day with their parents (I assume). It was a dead calm day where you can hear a moderate conversation and singing birds across the lake. Unfortunately today all I heard was the constant yelling by the man at these two girls. "GET AWAY FROM MY POLES!" and "YOU BETTER GET DOWN FROM THERE!" and "IF YOU THROW ROCKS AGAIN I'M GOING TO THROW YOU IN!" were the various shouts that tainted the air.
If you're going to take kids fishing, you might as well not call it a "fishing trip." Dedicate yourself to the kids, and consider it a "trip with the kids" instead. Chances are they will lose interest in fishing, and you just have to realize this. If you make it fun, they will want to go again. "Learn from others' mistakes" is a good rule for many things, and I think I will learn, or rather reaffirm, at least one thing from this disturbing occasion: Save my serious fishing trips for the days I am without impressionable young minds that simply want to have fun - let them play. I was pretty disheartened by all this and felt really bad for these girls.
Anyways, it was off to Boedecker to try to catch some carp. But I got the zip and did not complete the cycle. Thursday was more carp fishing at Jackson lake. This is the place to go to get your carp fix. Every corner of the lake, and everywhere in between, is loaded with very large carp. Most of the fish were spawning, making it hard to find carp willing to eat. 99 out of 100 fish were paired up with at least one other fish doing some kind of spawning ritual. I did find a few willing to eat, and got one 10 and a half pounder to take a small streamer. I also got a surprise attack by a chubby 20 inch wiper on a metallic-red woolly bugger while I fished to another cruiser.
And so another week down of decent fly fishing for warmwater species in northern Colorado. Now the weekend is here and it's time again for some quality family time, which I hope includes some fishing, but chances are my 3 year-old boy would rather be playing soccer or throwing rocks. In time I hope he catches the bug, but until then I am happy to let him be a kid and do whatever makes him happy. There's hope - he has started talking about catching muskie!
Matt.....Is Jackson fishable for carp from the bank? Is there lots of "flats"?
I've never fished from the bank there, but I am sure it would be great. There's quite a mix of private and public land, so you'd have to do a little exploring. There's a state wildlife area on the north end that you should check out too besides the State Park land. I am not sure of the SWA boundaries, but from my boat I did see a lot of carp up that way.
Operation Game Thief Call to report illegal fishing/hunting: