Lake John/Delaney Buttes Ice Fishing/Conditions Report 2-20-16
Bill Wilcox, Lake John Resort
Ice Fishing/Conditions Report
Lake John/Delaney Buttes
20, February, 2016
With the unseasonable warm weather of late, I have received numerous calls inquiring about ice conditions. Of course North Park has not been as warm as the Front Range, but temperatures have been unusually elevated this week, especially for the time of year. When this condition happens in the middle of winter in Colorado, one thing you can pretty much always count on are the extreme winds. So far this week, gusts of at least 40 mph have happened every day but one. Although try as it might, the ice on area lakes is still holding quite firm. There are several trucks traversing the 20 inches of ice on John as I write this. As far as Iíve heard, other lakes are similar, and I am not presently aware of any dangerous areas. This has been a very snowy winter however, and the snow on top of local reservoirs is getting slushy and wet, especially by early afternoon. Even with sufficient hard water underneath, wet areas are slowly becoming more obvious. The Delaneys received even more snow, so expect heavy slop to be yet a deeper factor on warmer days.
Roads are open to all frequented fishing areas, though secondary roads around perimeters of impoundments are risky at best. Excessive winds have blown drifts ALMOST hard enough to drive over. Being high-centered, in the middle of no-where, with no shovel or cell service, sucks, and may be life-threatening. Use caution and common sense.
As far as the bite, Lake John remains tough. For those picking up fish, white seems to be the choice. A few have been using glow-in-the-dark, even during the day, and still charging them with a flashlight. Tip a small tube or Rat Finkee with a petite piece of meat and up your odds. The glow-in-the-dark tip has been working for some cold footers over at the Delaneys as well, but forget the meat because no bait is allowed. East Delaney has been putting out some good numbers of smallish fish with a few 17ers mixed in. On occasion, a reel smoker will test your mettle. Same over on the South Lake. A good friend did well on black leech patterns, both plastic and marabou, landing several nice Cutts. North Delaney was hit hard, and won almost all the money in the contest 2 weeks ago, but has continued to be fairly consistent. Some huge fish are nonetheless hiding, so donít be afraid to go big.
No word either way about Cowdrey or Seymour.