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Elkhead Reservoir Fishing Classic starts June 22

Colorado Parks and Wildlife
Anglers, mark your calendar. Colorado Parks and Wildlife invites you to the annual Elkhead Reservoir Fishing Classic starting on Sat., June 22, at Elkhead Reservoir State Park. With nearly $10,000 in prizes, anglers of all ages are encouraged to participate.

Tournament angling will begin at 6:30 a.m. on Sat., June 22. Fish caught before the start of the tournament will not qualify. Tournament angling will conclude on Sun., June 30. Anglers must have their catch of northern pike and or smallmouth bass for that day turned into the CPW fish scanning station by 3:00 p.m. on June 30 to qualify for tournament awards and prizes. Other than the tournament start time and final check-in of fish, there are no time restrictions on angling during the tournament.

There are no size or bag limits on northern pike and smallmouth bass at Elkhead Reservoir, and anglers have a chance to win multiple awards and prizes for legally harvesting these species during this nine-day tournament. One northern pike and one smallmouth bass will be tagged internally and released prior to the start of the tournament. The angler(s) who catches one or both of the tagged fish will receive $1,500 per tagged fish caught. If one or neither of the tagged fish are caught, the remaining award(s) for this category will be drawn for and presented by CPW during the angler ticket drawing after the tournament on Sunday, June 30.

In addition to the tagged fish prizes, the angler(s) who turn in the most northern pike and or smallmouth bass during the nine-day tournament will win $750 (per category). Additional prizes will be awarded daily after 5:00 p.m. from June 22 - 29 and 3:00 p.m. on June 30 in the following categories:
Northern Pike: smallest fish per day, largest fish per day, and most fish caught per day.
Smallmouth Bass: smallest fish per day, largest fish per day, and most fish caught per day.

"We are looking forward to another great tournament," said Area Aquatic Biologist Tory Eyre. "We recently started stocking tiger muskie in the reservoir to provide additional angling opportunities. Tiger muskie are often confused with Northern Pike. We want to remind our anglers to pay close attention to the fish they are catching."

Participants are not required to register before the event. However, those who wish to compete for awards and prizes must register upon arrival at the park or when turning in their first fish at the CPW fish scanning station located at the Elkhead Reservoir State Park maintenance shop near the park entrance. There is no tournament entry fee, but a State Park pass is required to enter Elkhead State Park. Any individual aged 16 years and older will need a valid Colorado fishing license.

For more information about the tournament rules, visit the tournament website ( [log in for link] ) or contact Elkhead Reservoir State Park at 970-276-2061.

Photo: CPW
Member comments
by: devon234 on 6/26/2024 9:34:00 PM
Boo. If they are so concerned about native fish than they should begin removal of brows and rainbows in all of the major watersheds in Colorado and start stocking cutthroats. Plus browns make there way down the yampa river far enough to be in the same vicinity with those native fish. Browns are just as predatory as anything else. They donít have teeth for no reason. Which all trout are predators. In a lot of lakes where they live eating fish isnít the best option because the water is so cold all year long. But in warmer waters trout are just as predatory as anything else. 20 inch browns will eat 10 inch fish. Kamloops rainbows feed on Kokanee salmon as there primary food source. Itís just the parks and wildlife preferring one fish over the other. I love fishing for trout, but Iím getting sick of there being so many places to catch stockers. If the state wanted to they could pull back on tearing so many stockers and use that money/ resources to make better bass fisheries and make better trout fisheries for Troy that are stocked as fingerlings and are not fish that are basically out of an aquarium. Colorado could have better bass and trout fishing if parks and wildlife cared more about actual fisherman who use skill and knowledge to catch fish instead of people who just throw bait out and drink beer.
by: Artsy on 7/9/2024 10:41:00 AM
Devon, I couldn't agree more! Every body of water in this state has trout in it. Which is why i cant understand the criticality of removing/killing the other game fish in some of these lakes. I'm not even going to ask why it's sooo important to kill off everything except trout anymore because the state has made it very clear that they only want trout in 99% of the lakes here. Some of us like variety. Some of us like Bass fishing. Some of us like fishing for the Great Essox, Northern Pike. Geez, I pay all this money for fishing license, park fees and tackle just to be relegated to a small handful of lakes that offer more species than just stocker rainbow trout. And then to find out that the state wants to rid these lakes of non-trout species is extremely depressing.
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