Fish Explorer Logo
Colorado Fishing
Colorado Fishing  
Login Usr:Psd:
Don't have an account? Register now...
spacer spacer
Go back to Main FxR Forum listings
Lake: Horsetooth Reservoir

New SUP/kayak only areas at Horsetooth Reservoir

Post By: fishman1      Posted: 4/2/2021 3:29:55 PM     Points: 21181    
There are now areas that only SUPís and kayaks can access on Horsetooth, one being Satanka cove. Itís only going to get worse.

 Reply by: skiman      Posted: Apr. 2, 3:39:03 PM     Points: 2507    
I agree things will only get worse. Sign of the times I guess?
Maybe itís time for SUPís and kayaks to pay a fee for ďprivileged accessĒ.
Just sayin!
 Reply by: aarhal      Posted: Apr. 2, 3:54:07 PM     Points: 339    
From my experience in a boat, it makes sense to give these folks some safer places to access where the drunken ski boats are not running them over. It's kamikaze boating up there sometimes.
 Reply by: Fishful Thinker      Posted: Apr. 2, 4:09:44 PM     Points: 11453    
This is a ridiculous closure, unfounded by anything other than paddlers wanting their own cove. There are no documented accidents involving boats and paddlers here and the entire area is a no wake anyway. The closure might be justified if they paid any sort of fees or contributed in any way to the management of this lake, but they don't. Boaters pay $90 annually. Horsetooth runs on entrance fees alone, the facility does not receive tax dollars, so boaters are once again left to pay for paddlers' privileges.

This whole scenario makes about as much sense as closing popular roads to cars because there are more bicycles these days...never mind that car registrations and vehicle sales taxes pay for said roads...not bicyclists.

This closure sets precedent to future closures simply because one user group that does not pay their own way cries about a perceived, yet undocumented, safety issue. It's nothing more than unearned privilege.

I wrote letters to the Larimer county should do the same regardless of which side of he issue you are on.
 Reply by: Smelly      Posted: Apr. 2, 5:04:45 PM     Points: 25806    
Seems to be an issue everywhere Chad. It kinda what our state has become. Iím a delivery driver. I deliver in the city of Denver. My vehicle is a small semi. About the same length as a beer truck. Over the years I watched almost every loading zone in Denver disappear to make room for bike lanes. Which the bikes rarely stay in . Now if I park at the meters , or even block the meters Iím subject to a ticket for every meter ď takenĒ. If the parking people want to be an arse. And sometimes they have been. I been given up to 3 tickets for one violation. One for the tractor two for the trailer. I work for a really big company they cover the tickets. But hereís what irkís me. Not only does my company pay tens of thousands in registration fees yearly to the state . Theyíve donated hundreds of thousands to various organizations in the city of Denver . Sure makes me feel ď warm and fuzzy ď when one of those bikes comes wizzing up along side of me . Cutting me off and and flipping me the bird , while Iím driving. And doing everything possible to keep from squishing them with my front bumper.Wonder what they pay for their ď right ď to use the road. Weed is legal out here now. Even our legislators imbibe !
 Reply by: pike&cats      Posted: Apr. 2, 5:47:36 PM     Points: 48    
One would hope if they have their own area they should not be allowed anywhere else. Doubtful though
 Reply by: spicyhombre      Posted: Apr. 2, 7:26:27 PM     Points: 6751    
Doesnít make sense. No wake zones that hold fish on that lake is very limited already. This is a penalty against fisherman. I like every type of water craft but realize there are plenty of smaller waters that are perfect for paddle boards and kayaks that already donít allow motor boats. We donít need to create a ďsafe placeĒ for them on this reservoir IMO.
 Reply by: Ryan      Posted: Apr. 2, 11:36:15 PM     Points: 2599    
The first email address has come back to me as undeliverable.
 Reply by: El Jefe      Posted: Apr. 3, 12:38:16 AM     Points: 428    
Looks like Fishful Thinker was spot on about the future impact of SUP's at Satanka Cove:

Reply by: Fishful Thinker FxR+ Member Posted: 5/20/2019 3:48:56 PM Points: 11399
I had a paddle boarder harass us on a guide trip last year...schmuck tried to tell me boating was not legal in "paddler's cove" (actually Satanka Cove at Horsetooth) because the ramp itself was closed. I explained to him the real rules...he still refused to leave us alone. I called the rangers and they promptly arrived and explained why he would be ticketed for harassing anglers if he didn't shut his pie hole.

In my opinion, call the authorities every time...they need to be aware of harassment or it will only get worse. CL
 Reply by: fishthumpre      Posted: Apr. 3, 2:31:26 AM     Points: 4388    
Like Chad, Iíve written the commissioners to complain about the unfairness of this to anglers who pay a premium to launch in Horsetooth. I limited my complaint to paddleboarding, but if I wanted to contribute to conflict between fishermen Iíd point out that some kayak fishermen and women might be quietly tickled by this. Except for a handful of folks who trek in to shore fish, youí now suddenly have exclusive access to some pretty decent fishing grounds. Kind of like homeowners around lonetree reservoir a few years ago, or lake Loveland starting in the Ď90s. This new restriction is sure to create more conflict, not less. (Now that weíre on the subject, Iíd like to formally complain about the swarm of paddle boarders who now sunbathe on one of my favorite offshore boulders on the south end of the lake...) Bill
 Reply by: James Woods      Posted: Apr. 3, 3:06:50 AM     Points: 560    
Can anyone direct me to where this information is? Also what other areas of the lake are subject to this change? I cannot seem to find it anywhere on the horsetooth webpage. Thanks for posting, I would of found out by trying to launch in Satanka, only to find out id have to drive to the other end of the lake.
 Reply by: MOJO      Posted: Apr. 3, 8:38:05 AM     Points: 490    
Are canoes allowed?
 Reply by: fishthumpre      Posted: Apr. 3, 8:39:46 AM     Points: 4388    
[log in for link]

Hereís the county press release. Bill
 Reply by: James Woods      Posted: Apr. 3, 8:48:28 AM     Points: 560    
Thanks Bill.

 Reply by: Goosehunter82      Posted: Apr. 3, 10:17:40 AM     Points: 64037    
Yep. That's bs. It would be one thing if they were limited to that area but they won't be so we can't go use that cove which imo is one of the best spots on the lake but they can continue to get in our way all over the lake......

On a side note I just like complaining about this. I refuse to go to Horsetooth and Carter and pay for both my truck and my trailer to get in.
 Reply by: panchaser      Posted: Apr. 3, 1:46:27 PM     Points: 33    
Welcome to Calirado.... I do fish from from a paddle board or kayak depending on the water. But this is total BS for those with boats. Especially in a state that well, doesnít really have much recreational water compared to other states I have spent time in. That is why I have yet to buy a boat, canít justify one for my 2-4 trips to John Martin a year. No wake zones are safe enough for those on paddle boards. If anything there should be rules placed on the paddle boards. Main one would be a fee for each craft you put on the water and the rental place that puts 30 boards on the water each hour needs to be reeled in some. I have watched the rangers tell paddle boarders over and over not to sit in the middle of the no wake zone (South Bay) where they block boat paths to the docks. Sucks for you all, hope this gets resolved.
 Reply by: D-Zilla      Posted: Apr. 3, 5:58:49 PM     Points: 2474    
I LOVE my Kayak. I'm not going to lie about it. I don't care if a boat is out there or not though.

I absolutely think that ALL operators of watercraft should have to take a class and pay a fee to use all areas. I also don't think any of them deserve a special "spot" just for them. ESPECIALLY that cove!

Some politician is a paddleboarder, it would seem. I think there are more than enough "no wake" lakes for that sort of stuff, and if you can't run with the big dogs, stay on the porch. I go out on Cherry Creek and Chatfield with the metro ski nuts and I don't complain unless they wash me. If they observe the rules, and act responsibly, I've no issue sharing the water. Same goes for the paddleboards, and other Kayak users as well. Follow the rules, share the water and accept the risk you're taking. Then again, if they corral them into a small area, MAYBE they won't have to close the whole lake to rescue one...right? Dark, I know but there you have it.

I don't agree with the lack of fees though. I buy my parks passes every year. I pay for a fishing license. If I had to I'd register my kayak without a complaint. I'm not going to demand a special area just for me though, it's just not right.

Problem is though, is you can't take a boat into their area, but you can guarantee that isn't stopping them from being in the boat areas. Looking at the map, at least you can still get to/from the boat ramp right? (I could be seeing it wrong, I've only fished that lake once) Just sucks that they cut that amazing fishing area off like that.
 Reply by: kirbydog      Posted: Apr. 3, 6:03:31 PM     Points: 82    
This is why I'm spending more time in TX. Given our population we have
very little in the way of lakes and reservoirs and overcrowding brings all the
problems. Its only going to get worse and there is no cure.

We can sit around and complain but nothing good comes of it. I moved here in 1972 and I look back on those days fondly. Colorado is a very nice place and lots of people want to move here (and bring their politics with them).
 Reply by: walleyeshark      Posted: Apr. 3, 8:08:51 PM     Points: 143    
Closing Satanka cove is so against responsible people that not only fish the lake, but do a clean up along the shores every fall. It's a big time joke on us that do whatever it takes to ensure a "great fishing experience" on the Tooth. I fish it Tues. eve, Thur. eve, Sat. A.M., and then Mon. when the the morons are off. Got very difficult last year, and it will no doubt, be tougher this year. Express your concerns PLEASE!
 Reply by: nparker      Posted: Apr. 7, 10:43:20 AM     Points: 882    
Canoes, kayaks, and float tubes are allowed in the "paddleboard" area.
 Reply by: Walleye Guy      Posted: Apr. 7, 10:52:41 AM     Points: 133    
I too am concerned with Texans bringing their politics here.
 Reply by: spicyhombre      Posted: Apr. 7, 11:59:33 AM     Points: 6751    
We should organize a "fish in". We can all show up with boats and crash the line.
 Reply by: walleyeshark      Posted: Apr. 7, 8:27:40 PM     Points: 143    
We try hard to fish the Tooth very early or launch near sunset on the weekends. It's a madhouse after 10 am. It would be a kick to line up along the bouys and fish a couple of hrs. though. At least make a point of our displeasure. Maybe next year they will close Soldier Cove or anywhere behind Goose Island.Sad state of affairs we are approaching...🐟🐟🐟🐟
 Reply by: walleyeshark      Posted: Apr. 7, 9:16:25 PM     Points: 143    
I did not figure I would ever ne "CANCELED" from a favorite fishing spot!🤔🤔🤔😥😥😥😥
 Reply by: spinn3r      Posted: Apr. 7, 10:45:58 PM     Points: 6051    
I own a fishing kayak and not a motorboat, but I don't like this type of watercraft segregation because it's unjust. It's somewhat akin to a poorly-designed parking lot. You can't fit a larger vehicle in a "compact" space, but there's no restriction on parking a smaller one in a regular space.

 Reply by: El Jefe      Posted: Apr. 8, 7:16:26 AM     Points: 428    

"It's somewhat akin to a poorly-designed parking lot. You can't fit a larger vehicle in a "compact" space, but there's no restriction on parking a smaller one in a regular space."

Those parking spaces AREN'T "poorly designed".
They were SPECIFICALLY designed to EXCLUDE and PUNISH the owners of large, "gas-guzzling" vehicles.There's a reason why the "poorly designed" parking spaces are the new NORM in places like Boulder.
And all of you who accuse me of bringing "politics" into every discussion, if you think the decision to exclude specific activities/watercraft from specific areas in specific bodies of water aren't made "politically", you're dead wrong.

P.S. Those of you that are going to reply that these decisions are made for the safety of the public, then answer me this....
Why are SUPS given their own designated "safe areas" on a body of water BUT NOT EXCLUDED FROM OTHER, "LESS SAFE" AREAS i.e. water skiing areas?

 Reply by: 007      Posted: Apr. 8, 9:19:40 AM     Points: 80    
Submitted my comments to the commissioners via their website. Anglers who are typing onto the forum, desnarkify your words and put them in a pace that can actually have a chance of changing something. Check the link. Use words like "Dear Commissioners", "Please and thank you" and use words such as "inappropriate" "negatively effecting stakeholder" and "Please reconsider"...

[log in for link]
 Reply by: D-Zilla      Posted: Apr. 8, 4:32:10 PM     Points: 2474    
I guess if all else fails you could speak the only language they understand. LEGAL.

Class action suit is a BIG word for "the vocal minority is wrong and we're not gonna take it any more." You pay for access to the lake. You pay to take your trailered craft in there. You pay for a fishing license every year that Larimer county receives proceeds from. Offer to take some of that back from them.

I do NOT understand how they think that's fair to the people who basically PAY for that lake, in some cases OWN parts of it, to limit the access like that. I don't agree with the idea of special areas. I can understand a no wake zone, but to completely block an area off to access just because you have a motor? Are you going to corral them into that area? No, you're not. They'll be all over the lake, and without consequence at that.

It's not right. I don't really have a stake in it as I've only fished that lake once in all the years I've fished this state, but I know right and wrong. I might be more understanding if that was the ONLY area they could be in, but it's NOT and will never be. I could understand if it was habitat for some endangered species and ALL access was blocked, but it's not. It's "Joe Politico's private paddle board area"....simple as that.

I encourage you to write your county reps, and express your concerns in an adult manner. It is your right to protest! Maybe one Saturday or Sunday, gather up all the boats on the lake, and block the paddle boarders into their special area, in protest.

I have already written them, because it's not right. I don't know if my voice or opinion counts as heavily as those of you who live there, work there, and recreate there on a regular basis, but I did my part and expressed my concerns. If simply to put it on record in the hopes that this "paddleboard disease" doesn't spread. I'm sorry, but this is wrong on every level, and it needs to be reversed. (or stopped)

Follow the links folks, please!
 Reply by: motoxxx43      Posted: Apr. 8, 9:07:35 PM     Points: 2667    
Never fished Horsetooth so I had to search Satanka Cove. Google maps shows this area of the map is pinned by a SUP business.
[log in for link]

This place appears to have a launch ramp. How does does this work if the cove is closed to boating traffic?
 Reply by: walleyeshark      Posted: Apr. 8, 9:49:43 PM     Points: 143    
You can launch a boat still at the North end and use their poorly designed parking area. Not much room to safely park a vehicle & trailer however. Never would consider launching there myself. Once launched, you have to go straight out and turn into the larger body of water. Have to be cautious of the shore fishermn and manuver your way from the hoards of paddle boarders. They are on the boating side all day long🐟🐟🐟🐟
 Reply by: Fishful Thinker      Posted: Apr. 15, 11:13:50 AM     Points: 11453    
PLEASE email commissioner John Kefalas ASAP, regardless of your opinion. They are looking for input and are reconsidering the closure. Whether you fish at Horsetooth or not, this closure will be used to set precedent on other bodies of water.

 Reply by: Smelly      Posted: Apr. 15, 1:42:34 PM     Points: 25806    
A question CL. Is there a better alternative spot on Horsetooth that they could give to the SUP crowd. Say , a cove that doesnít see a lot of fishing traffic ? Iím not sure that it would be a bad thing to close some ď dead spotsĒ on a body of water and let the SUPrs have them . You know . The SUPs play over there and the fisherman play over here kinda thing. I know they all wonít stay in one spot. But it might help to control the problem .
 Reply by: Goosehunter82      Posted: Apr. 15, 3:59:57 PM     Points: 64037    
Thanks for the link Chad. I just fired off an email!
 Reply by: Smelly      Posted: Apr. 15, 4:20:47 PM     Points: 25806    
Ditto on the E Mail
 Reply by: spicyhombre      Posted: Apr. 15, 4:30:54 PM     Points: 6751    
Email sent.
 Reply by: walleyeshark      Posted: Apr. 15, 8:50:18 PM     Points: 143    
E- mail sent CL. Lets hope for the best...Thx...
 Reply by: ErieOriginal      Posted: Apr. 16, 2:51:05 PM     Points: 531    
It's a little ironic that when read though everyone's comments an add for a paddle board company was right in middle of them.
 Reply by: BrentCarder      Posted: Apr. 26, 9:21:38 PM     Points: 5    
I was just at Horsetooth for the first time this season and saw the NO BOAT buoys today and about lost it. We all know that that cove has some of the best fishing on the reservoir. This is an unfair restriction on we boaters. I am usually fishing that cove at 6 or 7 am, well befeore the hoards of lake lice even arrive. I honestly would give up fishing that cove if paddleboarders were restricted to that cove and that cove alone. I couldn't find anything in the press release that they would be restricted to that cove so how does this keep us separated? It is already a NO WAKE ZONE. This makes no sense. I sent several emails.

Chad, I was wondering if we could start a petition or something for this? I wonder how many folks we could get to sign it? Are we just wasting our time or is there a chance that they could reconsider this ridiculous restriction.
 Reply by: Speezer      Posted: Apr. 27, 7:55:06 AM     Points: 880    
Ill sign it and i dont even own a boat. Very unfair how this is all happening
 Reply by: Steelhead      Posted: Apr. 27, 2:12:01 PM     Points: 465    
there are sup rentals at carter and boyd. look for this to spread to these lakes as well.
 Reply by: Steelhead      Posted: Apr. 27, 2:38:42 PM     Points: 465    
this is a copy of the letter i sent to the county.

Dear Sirs,

Please reconsider this closure of Santaka cove to boats.

I have been fishing Santaka cove since 1982 in the NO WAKE area.
This is quality fishing area away from heavy boat traffic for small boats with limited range like mine and many others.
I understand that the majority of Horsetooth $ funds are from boat and camp fees.

What percentage of fees due the paddleboards contribute?

I understand the concern for safety but my personal experience is that the paddleboarders are the ones not educated/trained in water safety if relation to interaction with boats.

Since boaters have made the investment and paid the fees to access this area, it should be open to boats.

I should mention that the paddleboarders poor etiquette to park their cars in the limited trailer only parking spaces is already a problem for boaters as is their ability to park and unload in the ramp area blocking boat access to the ramp to drop and load in a timely fashion.

So this closure appears to be a punishment for boaters because the paddleboards are unsafe to interact with boats. Am I wrong?

I VOTE NO on boat closure.

Please note that if this closure stands, many boaters will take their $$$$ elsewhere.
 Reply by: BrentCarder      Posted: May. 9, 7:59:29 PM     Points: 5    
More salt to our wounds. Has anyone looked at the updated ramp hours as of May 2nd? No ramp will be open until 7 am thru the end of May except for Saturdays and Sundays. Satanka ramp is closed for the entire month. Are they trying to run all of us off? I always looked forward to getting on the water at 6am, especially when the sun comes up around 530 for a good part of the month. We as boaters seem to be getting less and less for our money at Horsetooth. I just wanted to vent a little bit. Rant over!!!
 Reply by: Goosehunter82      Posted: May. 9, 8:07:49 PM     Points: 64037    
I finally got a response to my email..
Just want to make sure you are aware of the following community forum regarding Horsetooth Reservoir and Satanka Bay. This message is from our DNR Director. "The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will host a community input/feedback session to help inform and guide visitor management practices at the Horsetooth Reservoir on Thursday May 20th from 6:00-7:30 pm. The input session will be a facilitated Zoom webinar. The purpose of the input event is to help inform and guide visitor management practices at the reservoir park to ensure public safety and access in a time of significant crowding constraints. All community members are welcome to attend and will be invited via social media channels, a website spotlight / press release, and through DNR's May e-newsletter. With Horsetooth Reservoir becoming more crowded than ever before, the community will be invited to share their view or perspective on potential strategies of visitor management, the separation of recreation uses on the water and on land, future capital infrastructure plans, and possible future considerations such as timed reservation systems. Following a short staff presentation, input will be gathered via a moderated Q & A session and survey to those attending the forum, which will measure the community's willingness to consider a diverse set of visitor management strategies. In addition to the event on May 20th, a Horsetooth Reservoir Community Forum will be housed on a new public engagement web platform that will allow community members to review the topic, participate in the survey, and post feedback on an "idea board" function at a later time and at their convenience. Each of these components of feedback will be gathered by staff and compiled for analysis and reporting back later this summer. All components of the community forum will be web-based and available for translation via google translate."

Horsetooth Reservoir Community Forum scheduled for May 20

LOVELAND - Larimer County Department of Natural Resources (LCDNR) is inviting any interested community member to share their view on visitor management and recreation at an upcoming Horsetooth Reservoir Community Forum, a virtual community input session. This meeting will help inform and guide visitor management practices at the exceedingly crowded reservoir park and is scheduled for Thursday, May 20 at 6:00-7:30 p.m. as a Zoom webinar. With Horsetooth Reservoir becoming more crowded than ever before, the community will be invited to share their view on potential strategies of visitor management, the separation of recreation uses on water and on land, future capital infrastructure plans, and potential long-range considerations, such as timed entry or reservation systems.

Natural Resources staff will recap 2020 visitation highlights along with current visitor management strategies, priorities, and constraints. Following the short presentation, input will be gathered via a moderated Q & A session and survey. For those who are unable to attend the meeting but still want to provide feedback, opportunities to share input later will be provided. All are welcome to attend. Register in advance for this webinar here: For more information, visit Horsetooth Reservoir online.

Back to top...
Operation Game Thief
Call to report illegal fishing/hunting:
Email CPW