Waiting for Roads to Open and Rivers to Clear
by Gus Jarvis
May 27, 2009 | 1536 views | 0 0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Ridgway Reservoir is full and spilling over. Pa-Co-Chu-Puk, which was one of the last fishable stretches of river during the runoff season, is now blown out and full of driftwood debris. Yes, still water fishing is really the only option right now.

For all of you that are eager to cast a fly, I would suggest going home and tying a few instead.

Jerry over at the Ridgway Conoco on Tuesday reported that angling on Ridgway Reservoir remains hot and that he can’t keep dark-colored Kastmasters on the shelf.

Fishing from the banks of the reservoir has garnered a good number of rainbow trout and boaters have brought in some large browns. Unfortunately, he said, “It looks like Pa-Co-Chu-Puk is not fishable.”

Jerry has also heard reports that the Dallas Creek Channel has been fishing well for those drifting night crawlers. If chucking meat isn’t your thing, throw a San Juan worm or a Red Copper John and see if that works. If not, go to the meat and a drifting bobber.

This time of year can be a depressing time for fly-fishers as even the dam-fed rivers are blown out or off-color. On an average spring, the Uncompahgre will crest usually around the first week of June (last year it was last week in May). So the wait could be short to fish the waters below the Ridgway Reservoir or it could yet be a while. Anything could happen with this erratic Colorado weather.

While officials in both Ouray and Gunnison counties couldn’t confirm when County Road 5 to Silver Jack reservoir would be open, it’s time to think about heading up into the high country for some good non-motorized boat fishing at Silver Jack.

“That usually fishes really well,” Jerry said, “especially at the inlet. It is normally well stocked.” He went on to say that Rowdy Lake, which is right next to Silver Jack, is also a fun and happening place to fish – once the road is open, of course.

Jerry also said that Silver Jack’s three main inlets, the East-, West- and Middle forks of the Cimarron, are great places to fish and are usually some of the first streams in the area to clear after the heavy runoff.

Until then, stay happy on the lakes and reservoirs in the area. As the snow continues to slowly melt off the tops of the mountains, all we can do is wait for the rivers and streams to clear.
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