HOT SULPHUR SPRINGS, Colo. - Colorado Parks and Wildlife managers have temporarily lifted bag and possession limits at Dumont Lake. Parks and Wildlife engineers determined that draining the lake is necessary to facilitate repairs of recently discovered structural damage to the Muddy Creek dam, which serves to hold back the lake's 220 acre feet of stored water.
Draining operations will begin as soon as possible, and the lake is expected to be completely drained before the temporary lifting of restrictions ends on October 31.
"This lake is considered an above-average fishery and is currently stocked with catchable, 10 inch rainbow trout that we don't want to see go to waste," said Northwest Region Senior Biologist Sherman Hebein. "As they have in the past, we anticipate that anglers will assist in the effort to quickly salvage the fish.
Using hook and line with conventional tackle, anglers will be allowed to catch as many fish as they are able during daylight hours. Snagging or the use of dip nets will also be allowed however, the use of explosives, toxicants, firearms or electricity will remain illegal.
All anglers are required to have a valid Colorado fishing license, and the usual restrictions will remain in place at all other lakes in the area, as well as throughout the state.
The repairs are expected to be completed next year, and managers will resume stocking the lake with catchable-sized rainbow trout once the lake is refilled.
"We appreciate the public's cooperation and assistance with managing this fishery, and we hope the salvage is a success," continued Hebein.
Dumont Lake is located near the east summit of Rabbit Ears Pass, just northeast of the intersection of Hwy 40 and CO Rd 199.
The public is advised to use caution, as deep mud will be present as the lake is drained. Signs alerting anglers about the fish salvage will be posted at the lake, and anyone with questions about the operation can call Colorado Parks and Wildlife's Hot Sulphur Springs office at 970.725.6200.
Operation Game Thief Call to report illegal fishing/hunting: