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View Full Version : Colorado Kokanee???



Draggin Yak
08-28-2008, 12:38 AM
Need a little help, looking for some suggestions.
I am doing a two week Grouse grand slam, Blue, Sage, Dusky, Ptarmigan over two weeks in Sept bouncing in a circle around the state over the first half of the month, but to give my dog breaks (and me too), I will make some stops for fishing, mostly flyfishing. I am no stranger to fishing CO, but most of my experience is in the South Fork area in the south. I have fished a couple creeks feeding into Blue Mesa and fished the Gunnison NP several times, so I am familiar with the area. But I have never fished for Kokanee, nor have I ever caught one. Know nothing about them. It is my understanding they have started the runs up the rivers around the time I will be in CO. So my questions are.

Is above Blue Mesa going to be my BEST option to make a stop for?
Any particular locations I should try?
What flys/lures are most people using during that time?
What other areas of the State will have a similar spawning run that is worth fishing?

Thanks for any help, even if it is just general. I would really like to give Kokanee a shot at least one day on this trip.
John

kochanut
08-29-2008, 08:35 AM
two best places for running koks i have found are:

where the gunnison and east rivers confluence at almont, and the south platte river above eleven mile res (which will be dead for the next few years because of the kok die off).

DWR realses millions of kok fry every year from the roaring judy fish hatchery, they then run back every fall in prolific numbers. there is miles upon miles of public access on the east river and its prety much a crap shoot from anywhere near the hatchery.

FishHunter
08-29-2008, 05:27 PM
I would suggest near Almont as well. Fishing with a fly rod is a lot of fun when the kokes start their run up the river.

bobco
08-30-2008, 12:31 PM
violinviolinoh well here I go again,,,,,,,,,,IMHO the Gunnison and East river should be Closed to C&R on kokes making the spawning run. Theese fish have traveled miles to get back to spawn and the thought of the elbow to elbow flyfisherman catching and releasing theese already stressed out fish is troubling to say the least. Most of theese released fish will not survive to spawn, It just does not make much sense to me to do this if you want kokonee in your lakes, Blue Mesa is the largest egg supplier in Colorado probably the US. The CDOW when confronted about this state the "loss of fishing opprtuintys" the all mighty dollor again wins in Gunnision. If the CDOW is really concerned about egg recruitment they would close this down like the DOW in Alaska does, when you have the numbers open it back up to fishing, but not until you have gotten your escapement numbers. fencing

Draggin Yak
08-30-2008, 11:12 PM
Thanks guys,
Great help. Ten Mile is probably out, but Almont may be right on my driving route. I could be hunting Ptarmigan near one of the passes just east of there, though I really don't know what I am doing and it will be the most difficult of the four grouse for me to find, so I may have to cut that one out of my trip. :-(

This is mostly a run and gun camping trip/bird hunting trip, but I am waiting to hear back from one of the lodges on the river there to find out their cabins are dog friendly. Traveling with a hunting dog makes the fishing difficult sometimes.

Draggin Yak
08-30-2008, 11:37 PM
violinviolinoh well here I go again,,,,,,,,,,IMHO the Gunnison and East river should be Closed to C&R on kokes making the spawning run. Theese fish have traveled miles to get back to spawn and the thought of the elbow to elbow flyfisherman catching and releasing theese already stressed out fish is troubling to say the least. Most of theese released fish will not survive to spawn, It just does not make much sense to me to do this if you want kokonee in your lakes, Blue Mesa is the largest egg supplier in Colorado probably the US. The CDOW when confronted about this state the "loss of fishing opprtuintys" the all mighty dollor again wins in Gunnision. If the CDOW is really concerned about egg recruitment they would close this down like the DOW in Alaska does, when you have the numbers open it back up to fishing, but not until you have gotten your escapement numbers. fencing

bobco,
I perfectly understand. I imagine there is some political pressure due to the money that the fishing brings to the area. Something I have seen done in Texas with a couple special curcumstances is a regulation for a lake or a spillway where a fish in question could be retained, but every fish up to the limit had to be retained, no catch and release allowed.

One of the lakes was having the Crappie population descimated due to crappie stacking up in a few deep holes where they were easy to find and catch, yet so deep that every fish would die when caught. Huge numbers of fish were being caught and released either because they where too small or a limit had been reached and guys just kept fishing for the fun of it.

If that many Kokanee are dying from overfishing the catch and release, perhaps the State should look into something like that as a way to appease the local political pressure yet still have less fish killed. Where a small limit could be retained, three for example, no fish could be released, so the day was over once that limit was reached.

I don't know, not familiar enough with how things are there, just thinking out loud. I guess the question would be, how many fish does the average person fishing there unintentionally kill when caught and released. I am not sure that is a question that could be answered.
John

bobco
08-31-2008, 10:24 AM
sorry to drag that into your post but sometimes I cannot help myself stomper hey 3 river resort in Almont allows you to fish a private section there if you stay there, since it is the Taylor river you can also keep the fish, other than that there really is not any other runs out of Blue Mesa, the CDOW only stocks out of the RJ hatchey and directly into the lake anymore. another option would be a walk down to Morrow point below Blue Mesa Dam.....