Colorado Ice Fishing Reports
These Colorado ice fishing conditions and reports are a result of the fishing adverntures of Sport Fish Colorado. You can find the most current ice fishing report for each lake below, or you can see all of the Colorado ice fishing reports for Antero, Blue Mesa, 11 Mile by clicking one of the corresponding tabs on the left, under the "Fishing Report" tab. Each report will typically contain as much information as we could gather and pass on to you. This information includes, lake levels, water temperatures, ice safety and conditions, how well the fish are biting, trip results, and any additional fishing information we can pass on to you! Use these Sport Fish Colorado ice fishing reports to your advantage! For live, on the water Colorado ice fishing reports and pictures, follow us on Facebook and Twitter!
March 19, 2013 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: Save the best fishing for last ice!
As the days are getting warmer, the fishing is on fire! We still have lots of safe ice across the lake with 12-30" although the shorelines are getting soft along rip rap or rocks. There is also some open water growing daily by Red Creek Island. The kokanee salmon and trout bite has been unbelievable with 60-100 fish being landed in a 3-4 hour span! You can find kokanee, rainbow trout, brown trout, and even some perch hanging out along rocky shorelines in 15-50 feet of water. The trick is to figure out what color and action the fish want that day. Lately the Pk Flutterfish has been a hot producer as well as kastmasters, crippled herring, cabelas living image spoons and smaller ice jigs. The Mackinaw lake trout fishing has been good as well with some nice fish being caught and released across the lake! The standard tube jig and sucker meat has been producing. Take advantage of these hot bites!
February 27, 2013 11 Mile Ice Fishing report: Put your time in for great rewards!
Plenty of safe ice stretches across 11 Mile. Eleven Mile has been getting a lot of pressure this year as ice fishing popularity grows across the state! Because of this, the fish have seen A LOT of jigs and take a little more coaxing at times to see consistent results. Think small, natural, and light line. More live bait presentations can improve your success as well. The important part of the puzzle is paying attention to how the fish react to your bait. If you get denied by 3 or more fish, it's time to try something new! A lot of the trout have been flying in, taking a quick bite at the lure and then moving on. Be quick on the hook set to take advantage of these opportunities!
The Kokanee salmon fishing has been surprisingly good this 2013 ice fishing season! These fish have been hanging in 15-40' of water over the deeper channel areas. Pk spoons, smaller lazer jigs, kastmasters, and crippled herring have been working. Change your colors often if you are seeing fish and not getting bit. Your jigging action is very improtant as well. Some days they like aggresive jigs, other days short, little jigs works better.EXPERIMENT!
The northern pike fishing has been fair to good, but per usual, every day is different. A live water dog or some type of dead bait (suckers, anchovies, etc; the fresher the better) uner a tip up has been the best producer. Try to cover several different depths and structure types to narrow down where the most active fish are!
February 27, 2013 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: Fishing is good and the kokanee are hot!
My apologies for not doing a better job keeping this updated! The Sport Fish Colorado team has been on the ice almost every day and as a result, the fishing reports have suffered. Since I have one of those smart phones, it is far easier for me to update pictures and reports to our facebook page, so please check it out (from the link above) and feel free to ask questions or for more reports on this page! Now for the fishing....
Rainbow/Brown Trout- The trout fishing has been truly phenominal this winter with 25-50 fish days being fairly common! The rainbow and brown trout have been heavily concentrated on rocky shorelines in 10-40' of water. Elk Creek marina and The Narrows have been a great spot to get into action! Small tube jigs, smaller Pk spoons, kastmasters, trout magnets, and maribou jigs have all been producing lots of fish!
Kokanee Salmon- Kokanee Salmon are a totally different animal through the ice as far as behavior goes, but the fishing for them this winter has been very good! A lot of trout fishermen have been "accidentally" catching them in their trout spots. There are a lot of schools wandering the open basins of the lake, but don't be fooled! Kokanee salmon tend to come in and feed in the shallows and a lot of times you can find these fish in 10-20 feet of water! The pink and white Pk Flutter Fish has by far caught more kokanee than any other lure for us this winter and I'm talking LIMITS of kokanee! Mealworms have outperformed corn and wax worms as the bait to tip your spoon or jig with.
Lake Trout- The lake trout bite has been good overall for numbers of fish, while the trophy bite has been a bit tougher due to a late spawn. We are finding fish in 20-120' of water depending on the structure and covering water is very important because these fish have been moving a lot! Tube jigs, in the 3-5" range, are the go to bait, tipped with the freshest sucker meat you can find! Pk flutter fish and panic spoons have also been working when the fish are more aggressive.
Perch- The elusive Blue Mesa perch has been showing up occasionally along rocky shorelines in 10-40 feet of water with one angler reporting that he had caught well over a hundred one week! The Yellow Perch in Blue Mesa tend to move a lot since they have become a primary food source for the lake trout, brown trout, and even rainbow trout!
January 30, 2013 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: Safe ice across the lake and the action has been GOOD!
Blue Mesa has 12-30" across the lake with the west end being closer to 12" and the east end around the 30" mark. Fishing for rainbow trout and brown trout has been excellent this year with plenty of 30-50 fish days! We have been hearing some good reports of Kokanee Salmon being caught at Elk Creek Marina and in the Narrows, but have not been out to check it out! The kokanee have been running 10-50' deep with most fish coming in the 15-30' range. The lake trout bite has been good for smaller fish and a little tough for the bigger fish. As usual, persistence and being in the right place at the right time is KEY! Check out our Colorado trophy lake trout video and let us know if you like it!!
January 8, 2013 11 Mile Ice Fishing report: Steady action for all species!
The Eleven Mile has 12"+ across the entire lake for safe ice fishing! The tournament last Saturday yielded some beautiful 7-10 lbs trophy trout! The best action has been at Cross Creek, but the Eastern half of the lake has been putting out more big fish. Reds, pinks, whites, and oranges have been good early and then the bite seems to be better on more natural colors. Some nice pike have been caught on tip ups on weed edges and rocky points with water dogs and suckers. The kokanee fishing has also been surprisingly good if you can find the fish! Several limits were caught last saturday as well. Kokanee are hitting pink and white pk spoons, kastmasters, and lazer jigs.
January 07, 2013 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report:The lake has capped!
Blue Mesa Reservoir has completely capped with the exception of a little bit of open water at Middle Bridge. Iola has 12", Elk Creek has 10", Cebolla varies with 3-10", and Sapinero just capped. The trout fishing has been excellent with lots of browns and rainbows caught in 5-30 feet of water. The Kokanee Salmon bite has also been good with most of our fish coming between 15-40 feet of water. Lake Trout are scattered across the depths with the bigger concentrations being found in 50-80 feet of water.
December 20, 2012 11 Mile Ice Fishing report: Ice is here and some big fish are being caught!
The entire lake has 4-7" of good hard black ice with patches of snow across the lake! Fishing has been good to excellent most days with A LOT of 17-19" fish being caught and several fish in the 8+ lbs range being caught! Eleven Mile is a put and take fishery meaning that it is stocked with rainbows every year to replenish the fish that are caught out of it every year. Despite this replenishing, I would like to strongly encourage anybody that catches a fish over 5lbs to consider releasing it, especially a fish approaching the double digits! If enough of these bigger fish are released, you will see some GIANT (15+ lbs) trout come out in the next couple of years!! Fish are biting a variety of baits with pink, pink & white, green, and orange yielding the best results lately. Small tube jigs, paddle bugs, lazer jigs, rat finkies, dynamic hd ice, pk spoons, kastmasters, and any bait similar to these have been producing. Cross Creek and Sucker cove have been good, but also getting a lot of pressure. We have been fishing 8-18 feet of water and been finding good numbers of fish! Take advantage of this early ice bite as it is one of the best bites of the year!
December 12, 2012 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report:Ice in Iola!
Just got back from the lake and there is 3-4 inches of ice from the inlet to a little West Stevens Creek. From this point to about a half mile west of Sometimes Island has a layer of skim ice. The rest of the lake is still open, but our nights have been getting into the negatives all week so more ice is in the near future!
November 28, 2012 Antero Fishing Report: Warm Temps Reverse Ice Progress!
Warm temperatures and some windy days have eaten up a lot of Antero's ice! The lake is now about 60% ice free with the only safe ice residing in the little cove at the south boat ramp. You can find 3-5" here with open water near by. The fishing is slow to fair with not a lot of fish moving through this area. The 7 day forcast doesn't look too promising with day time temps getting into the 40's so safe ice might not be back until 10-14 days from now! Hopefully, we will start to see ice making weather very soon!
November 17, 2012 Antero Fishing Report: First Antero ice of the season!
We heard a report of some safe early ice and couldn't resist the urge to find out for ourselves! The south boat ramp has a small section of 5-6" ice and the rest of the lake had 2-3.5" of ice. Conditions are still very risky so don't put yourself in a precarious situation! Warm weather and wind can quickly turn safe ice into unsafe ice! With that said, we did find enough safe ice to wet a line and catch our first several fish of the 2012/2013 Colorado ice fishing season! We caught several nice rainbows, cutbows, and some kokanee salmon!
March 28, 2012 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: Get Ready for Ice Out!
Safe ice no longer exists on Antero and 11 Mile and Blue Mesa only has a day or two left. We are gearing up for a predicted awesome open water season! Check out what we are catching @ http://sportfishcolorado.com/fishing_reports.html
March 28, 2012 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: Milking it til' the end!
Yesterday I had first time ice-fishers Linda and Craig. We found some safe ice at Elk Creek Marina and spent the cooler part of the morning chashing fish! Linda and Craig both caught on very quickly, especially since the fish were biting light! Craig caught a grand slam in come back fashion to take the "most" and "biggest" fish title away from Linda who started out hot! We kept some fish for dinner and threw the rest back. Get ready for ICE OUT!!!!
March 18, 2012 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: Big lakers, kokanee, grandslams and a rod buster!
First things first, Blue Mesa is quickly melting. There is still safe ice on Iola and the Narrows, but from Elk Creek west to the dam is deteriorating quickly! Shorelines are melting or soft and open water is opening up in several areas so be CAREFUL! Fishing has been very good for all species with some reports of 12-30+ salmon being caught in one day. We have been primarily chasing lake trout and having moderate success with lots of fish coming off or being missed. Last week I had some familiar faces nick named "Queenie" and "Mac" from past fishing trips out on the ice. We chased lake trout and caught some nice fish. We also caught some trout and salmon. On our last day, we landed two traditional Blue Mesa Grand slams and the last fish of the day was the little lake trout in the middle of the picture. Mac "laid the lumber" on this fish and the rod snapped in three places!!! Ice out is near!!! Be Safe, Fish On!!!
March 6, 2012 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report:A special day for a special father and son!
Last weekend I had the pleasure of taking Chuck and his son Chris from Grand Junction. Chuck and Chris have been fishing with me for the last five years. This fishing trip was planned special for Chuck's birthday, but Chuck is such a selfless guy that his primary focus is always on making sure that his son Chris is comfortable and having a good time. These guys came ice fishing with me last year and it took Chris about 3/4 of the day to catch on to setting the hook with the always tricky lake trout. However, this time Chris brought his A-game! The fish moved out of our first spot so we had to hop around for the first hour and a half, but once we got on the fish, Chris was on fire! He was dominating for the first half of the day until Chuck finally decided that it was HIS birthday and time for him to catch some fish! All said and done, we had a great day with plenty of action and birthday fun! We had several schools of kokanee come through from 10-25' deep while we were primarily focused on lake trout on the bottom in 70 feet of water. Smaller was better for triggering lake trout bites, while the kokanee didn't really care as long as you had a lure in their face when they came through! One key to taking advantage of our opportunities was using 4/0 Trokar 90 degree jig heads in our tube jigs! When accompanied with Power Pro braided fishing line, these incredibly sharp hooks get the job done when fishing deeper water! Great job fellas and Happy Birthday Chuck!
February 28, 2012 11 Mile Ice Fishing report: Small baits = fish!
Fishing was great at first light and then the storm rolled in and the bite got tough! The trick was to downsize everything and keep moving despite heavy winds. We landed quite a few trout with the biggest fish being over 3 lbs. We also threw a few tip ups out later in the day and had 3 flags, but no pike landed.
February 26, 2012 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: Laker Smackdown part 2!
Back on the ice again today with Fishexplorer member Kayakfisher and his buddy Jeff. We wet up in an area where salmon have been moving through up high with lake trout coming through on the bottom. We saw a few small pods of salmon, but they didn't want to hang around long. The lake trout however, were coming through in droves and they were hungry! Below is a picture of a school of lake trout. We saw several of these schools today and the action was great!!!
February 25, 2012 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: Laker Smackdown!
Today I had five ice fishermen from Colorado Springs. They got up at 1:45 to drive up and meet me on time! The bite started hot at first light and then we had a little lull. After some moving around, we dialed in a flat and started catching fish from 70-80 feet of water. The action was great and we ended up with 35 lake trout and 1 brown landed! A lot of our success can be attributed to the new Trokar 90 degree hooks and Eagle Claw rods we were using. Braided Power Pro line is also essential for catching fish at these depths and getting a good hook set! Come take advantage of the great ice fishing bite we have around this new moon phase!!!!
February 24, 2012 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: The lake has safe ice from east to west!
Blue Mesa finally has safe ice (5+) inches across the whole lake! We have been taking full advantage of this ice and fishing EVERY day! Fishing has been good most days and great some days! We have been priamarily targeting lake trout, but the trout fishing has been good too! We are also seeing several kokanee schools each day, but getting them interested has been a challenge. Trout action is good along rocky shorelines especially in the canyon around Elk Creek. Lake trout have been showing up between 40-80'. Kokanee schools have been showing up in the same areas as the lake trout and running between 15-40'. There are some pressure ridges and small open water areas to watch for, but overall we have good ice and fishing! Here are some pics!
February 13, 2012 Antero Fishing Report: More first timers, more fish!
Austin and Rachel met me early at Antero to try their first ice fishing experience! The action started off hot and then slowed, which proved to be a consistent pattern throughout the day. The fish were a little picky once the sun came up, but once we found out what they wanted we had a lot of opportunities and caught plenty of fish! We also spent some time watching and recording the fish below us on the underwater cam. The video below has some very cool underwater footage!
February 9-12, 2012 11 Mile Ice Fishing report: Tough fishing, but bite windows do exist for the persistent!
On day 4 of my trout excursion with Dan and Andrew, we were focused on catching some cutthroat. The bite was very tough this day, but we put a full day in on the water and ended up landing 3 snake river cutthroats and at least 10+ fish! On the last day of our excursion we were looking for some bigger rainbows (4 lbs+), and ended up catching close to 25 fish with the biggest fish going about 2.5 lbs. Andrew also caught his two biggest Colorado pike and one of them was our pet for a little while! Eleven mile has been tough at times, but experimentation and persistence has been paying off and the chance of latching on to a lunker is ever present!!! There is about 4 inches of annoying powder snow on the ice and cleats do help with traction.
February 6-8, 2012 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: A week of fishing with some hardcore fellas from Wisconsin!
Dan and Andrew drove down from Wisconsin for a week of chasing trout across Colorado. We spent 3 days at Blue Mesa chasing lake trout and a few browns and then headed over to 11 mile for two days. Day one on Blue was slow chasing lake trout as a lot of my go to spots didn't have fish moving through very often. Day two was great for rainbows and a few browns and day three was excellent for lake trout! The rest of the lake has capped, but ice conditions vary depending on the part of the lake you are interested in fishing.
February 3 & 4, 2012 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: More of the same with a special guest !
Over the last two days we have chased lake trout and some rainbows and browns with success! The bite times have been pushed around a little by the approaching full moon, but the action is good when we find one of those bite windows. We have been finding good trout action right up against rip rap shore lines. Today we had a special guest, Rowdy the dog, who was less than thrilled to be out in the cold at 6:30 this morning, but found that his little doggy jacket and boots kept him warm!
January 30-February 1, 2012 Blue Mesa Ice Fishing Report: Hot and cold fishing w/ ice progress!
We have seen a bit of a slow down for trout on Blue Mesa over the last week. A lot of pelagic trout or trout that we found crusing out over deep water have seem to be relating more to rocky shorelines. The lake trout bite has been good if you can find a spot with fish consistently moving through. We have been doing well on lake trout in 50-80 feet of water and as usual these fish have been very structure related. Big schools of kokanee salmon have also been showing up through the narrows, but they have been inconsistent as far as when and where. Typically these schools have been seen in 10-40 feet of water with some singles showing up as deep as 60. The good news is that the rest of the lake is starting to button up with ice! Safe ice still only extends from the Lake City Bridge to the end of the narrows, but a lot of ice has formed along the north shoreline in Cebolla, from Red Creek island to Middle Bridge, and from the Pinnacles to the dam. Hopefully we will continue to get cold weather!
January 29, 2012 Antero Fishing Report: Good bite for first timers!
When young Logan stepped out of the truck, introduced himself and immediately asked how long I had been guiding, I knew this kid was serious! Logan and his cousin Emma along with their dads and grandpa joined me for an ice fishing adventure on Antero. I showed everyone what we were doing and immediately they started catching fish! Emma and Logan picked up everything we were doing in order to catch fish exceptionally well and as a result we caught a bunch of fish! Good job everyone! The water has really cleared up all around the lake, which makes for some exciting site fishing! The snow on the ice has melted and crusted nicely so that towing a sled is easy. Cleats are suggested for the slick spots. Fishing was good on trout magnets, crappie tubes, and other small shrimp imitations.
January 26, 2012 Florida Fishing report: Snuck away to thaw out!
Yes, we have had a relatively mild winter here in Colorado, but I had to take advantage of an oppotunity to go explore some different fishing in the warm state of Florida! Sorry for the lake of reports during this time. We are back on the ice almost every day now and steady reports will follow!
January 14, 2012 Taylor Ice Fishing report: Late Report..
We checked out Taylor a few weeks ago and access was already tough with snow piling up to the main road, but ice conditions were safe with 6-12 inches of ice. Fishing wasn't on fire, but we managed a few quality fish. The lake trout came in and slammed my bait in the first ten minutes of the morning! I could tell he was a decent fish and set my drag accordingly, but as he got close to my hole my line broke! I saw my line curl up on the surface of my hole and immediately grabbed it. I was fortunate enough to hand line this fish in the rest of the way! The norther pike below bit five minutes before we had to leave at the end of the day. It fought very hard for a pike and was a great ending to a great day!
January 14, 2012 11 Mile Ice Fishing report: Bite is getting better!
The trout bite has grealty improved as we move away from this full moon. The full moon doesn't always mean bad fishing, but it typically changes the pattern by pushing the bite later into the day, changing the effective technique, or by altering a multitude of other variables. The trounament yielded some very impressive catches in all three categories by some very talented ice fishermen and ice fisherwomen! The largest trout landed was 6 lbs 8 ounces, one limit of salmon was weighed, and a fourteen pound pike were the highlights of the first leg of the 11 Mile Colorado classic tournament! Keep fishing hard and if you land a trophy, email us a pic and we'll throw it up on our facebook page!
January 14, 2012 Blue Mesa Fishing Report: Still waiting for the rest of the lake to freeze!
It is finally starting to get cold up here, but safe ice only extends to where the narrows meet Cebolla. From the bay of chickens to the dam is all open water! The ice that we do have is running 6-14 inches and 4-wheelers have been all over it. Fishing is excellent for rainbows, browns, and lake trout most days with a few salmon showing up. Rainbows are cruising 5-25 feet deep and keying in on rip rap shorelines. Most browns have been coming from 25-60 feet of water and lake trout have been most consistently showing up from 40-80. Hopefully the rest of the lake freezes up this year!
January 5, 2012 11 Mile Ice Fishing report: As full moon approaches, fishing varies!
A lot of Eleven Mile's snow blew off the lake last week. Some areas still have 4-6 inches of crusty snow, but towing has gotten a lot easier. Fishing has been good overall, but the fish have been moody on certain days as this full moon approaches. Eleven mile is producing some nice fish this year, but whether or not they feel like biting depends on the day. When I get denied by three fish in a row, I switch baits. I will continue to do this until I figure out what they like. Every day is different so don't fish a memory with worked yesterday! Be willing to adapt to the current conditions.
January 4, 2012 Antero Fishing Report: Work for those FISH!
Antero's has 8-12 inches thick with 4--6 inches of crusty snow on top of the ice. There are also some patches of slush showing up. Fishing has been fair to excellent depending on the day with fish acting a little moody on some days lately. Cycle through your presentations on the tougher days because there usually is a bait that will out perform the rest of your baits!
December 30, 2011 Blue Mesa Fishing Report: MORE rainbows Galore!!!!
More great action today with five people landing close to 100 fish!!!! Great job today guys! If you want to get in on some great action, fish Elk Creek Marina Bay on Blue Mesa, it is loaded with rainbows! The temperature reached 55 degrees today in Gunnison and the ice on Blue Mesa lost some more progress. The edges are soft or open in a lot of areas so be careful out there this weekend!
December 29, 2011 Blue Mesa Fishing Report: Rainbows Galore!
Today I had Russel, Brady, Katy, and Laney from Louisiana out for some ice fishing and they spanked the rainbows! They caught their limit and threw a bunch back. We also caught our first kokanee salmon of the year and some brown trout. I also met two die hard ice fishermen Dave and Bill who caught a bunch of lake trout! Good job everyone! The ice is safe for now, but todays warm weather and wind opened some areas back up so be careful!
December 26, 2011 Antero Fishing Report: First time ice fishermen put up big numbers!
Antero's ice is 6-12 inches thick with 6-10 inches of powder snow on top! This snow has made towing sleds very difficult, although there are several hard packed trails stemming from each major parking area. There are also some patches of slush showing up. Fishing remains good to excellent on all of the typical baits, with fish changing color preference daily. Today I had three first time ice-fisher-people and they caught on very quickly landing close to thirty fish! They kept their limit for the smoker and plan on joining Colorado's fast-growing ice fishing population! Good job guys!
December 23, 2011 11 Mile Ice Fishing report: Snow makes for rough towing, but fishing is good!
11 mile now has 8-12 inches of safe ice across the lake with 4-6 inches of poweder snow that makes towing very tough! Fishing continues to be good for those who are persistant in changing their tactics as the fish change their preferences. We have been finding fish in 8-15 feet of water throughout most days. Productive baits are the same as last week with pink being the best color. We haven't heard of any salmon reports yet. The occasional pike has been showing up across the lake.
December 16 & 17, 2011 Antero Fishing Report: Rugby gals get physical with some fish!!
Antero now has 4-9 inches of safe ice across all of the lake. There are a few unsafe pressure ridges to be careful of, but cold overnight temps and a thin layer of snow have helped the ice thicken up. Fishing is good, but you have to find the feeding lanes! I can't stress this enough. I scouted several of last years spots (weed edges) and have found that Antero is a totally different lake this year with more large weed beds and the lake being 2' low. Some of my waypoints were still existing weed edges, but contained very little fish activity, while others were what we call "honey holes" with a lot of fish activity! Yesterday I had Glendale Raptors Women's Rugby Head Coach Lisa Rosen and USA Rugby National Team member Stacy Baker out on the ice and they putt a hurting on the trout catching 25 fish and having several others come off in the hole! If action slows, keep hunting for a fish highway!
December 08, 2011 11 Mile Ice Fishing report: Safe Ice is HERE !
11 Mile has 3-8 inches across most all of the lake! There are some big pressure ridges and unsafe areas that can be seen from a distance, so be careful! Fishing has been hot and cold with the majority of anglers saying that fishing is on the slow side. We got out on the ice last week and found that the morning was slow, but mid-day was hot! That's very characterstic for Eleven Mile! Fish were hitting a variety of pink, orange, green, and white in typical baits such as shrimpos, kastmasters, marbious, and small ice jigs. All of these fish were CPR-ed (Catch, Photo, Released)!!!
11-27-2011 Antero Fishing Report: First Colorado Ice Fishing Trip of The Year!
Antero has safe ice on both sides of the reservoir, but there is still a lot of unfrozen or sketchy areas. The north side has 3-7 inches in areas and the south side has 3-5 inches. Fishing is good for numbers of trout, kokanee salmon, and the occasional splake or sucker. Typical trout baits tipped with a meal worm or wax worm are producing! Be safe and don't fish alone!