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Colorado Fishing News Back to Colorado Fishing News
North Park Fishing Report 12/28/08
Bill Wilcox Lake John Resort
In last week's report, it was mentioned that I had been shoveling
snow and watching ice fishermen chase their ice huts across the lake
because of the strong winds, for a week. Well, now it's been two! I'm
really not complaining though. Snow removal, atop a hill, overlooking a
beautiful frozen lake, gives the greatest of opportunities to watch a
long distance race between an inanimate object the size of a small Tuff
Shed, and half a dozen screaming fishermen. This has actually happened
several more times this week with the same results. The fishermen cheat,
and resort to using their truck. Although beneficial, hard water
"runners" across North Park may have to find a new exercise due to the
possibility of improving weather conditions.

I know you're wondering why anyone would go through such a display
of embarrassment. (Getting beat in a race by an ice hut!) The reason is
simple. Cold-footers have been consistently catching good quality fish.
On Lake John, limits of football-shaped 17 inch trout have been common,
with most fishermen mixing in a couple 20 plus inchers along with the
occasional "hog". (I refer to them as hogs if they're at least 23
inches long with a girth that makes you wish your hole was bigger.)
Fish are being landed all over the lake with no one area standing out,
as it's been more important to move toward or away from shore to find
the right depth. However, after hammering a region hard at a variety of
depths with little or no success, it's time to move. 6 to 10 feet of
water has been consistent, but I did talk to one group that did fairly
well in 18 feet. Ice thickness at present on Lake John is 8, maybe 10
inches, which is about right considering it formed a week or so later
than usual. Many of the fish caught have been full of fathead minnows
which are natural to the lake, so lures and jigs that imitate will work
fine. If you fish with bait, a Rat Finkee tipped with a small piece of
meat is hard to beat. No one has taken anything besides snowmobiles and
ATVs on the lake surface yet, but I'm sure it won't be long.

I have not had a chance to fish any of the Delaney Lakes lately,
but my guru fishing friends are telling me of a fairly consistent bite
on good fish at East and South. North Delaney has produced some hog
fish already this year, however lately the bite has been best in early
morning. This trio produces best in fairly shallow water. Don't
hesitate to try 4 to 6 foot depths. Full of crawdads, these
impoundments lend themselves to jigs, flies and lures that imitate the
tasty crustaceans. Kastmasters, tube jigs and Jigging Rapalas are also
great offerings, but whatever you choose, motion is key.

Last but definitely not least, it's time to get ready for the 2009
Lake John/Cowdrey Lake Ice Fishing Contest. Just over a week is all you
have to prepare to win nearly a $1000 in cash for catching just one
fish, albeit the right one. The contest kicks off at 6 am on Saturday,
January 10th and runs until noon on Sunday the 11th. Prizes are paid
out at 2 pm Sunday at our Lake John Resort restaurant, and we have a
great raffle planned right after. Our donors have been very generous
this year, and you have a chance to win an ice hut, an underwater camera
system, an ice auger, or other great prizes.