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With these cooler temperatures and shorter days it can only mean 2 things, 1st fall is in the air, and 2nd the fish are biting. This is my favorite time of year to fish. The weather is usually really nice, and then scenery is breathtaking in many parts of the state. This is the time of year that the fish really start eating. Many of our warm water species like bass, crappie and walleye are feeding hard now, some because they don’t eat much in the winter months, and others cause they will spawn in the spring and they need to eat as much as they can so they can nourish their eggs. When it comes to our cold water species like trout and salmon the water is cooling down and getting into their comfort level. They are catchable all year, but they become very aggressive once the water starts to cool.I want to talk about a few surefire places and techniques to help you have a good fall day or night on the water.
First off I want to talk about trout fishing and 11 mile reservoir. There are so many different ways to catch them right now, so whatever way you like to fish should be good. You can go during the day and catch them on spoons, like Kastmasters, Daredevils, Krocodilles and Tasmanian Devils. You can throw small minnow imitations like Rapalas, and Dynamic Lures HD Trout. When fishing spoons or minnow imitations it’s pretty easy, just cast out and slowly retrieve them back, occasionally twitching the bait. Look for areas with minimal weed growth or on the edges of weed beds. Cast over the tops of the weeds as long as there not to the surface, or cast alongside the weed edges.    Tube jigs and Maribou jigs are really good this time of year as well. When fishing tubes and jigs I look for rocky areas or flats with sparse weed cover. Cast the baits out and slowly work them back on the bottom, drag the bait and occasionally hop it very subtle. These baits are imitating crawdads.  If you like to bait fish, you will catch a lot as well. One of my favorite ways to catch them is with white Kraft marshmallows and a half of night crawler. It has to be Kraft; imitations do not work very well. Kraft has more vanilla then imitations and that is why they like them better. Who would have thought trout were brand selective. Power bait always works this time of year, choosing what color or flavor is the hard part. Salmon peach is a hot , one this time of year, as well as orange and rainbow. The garlic green and garlic rainbow is also a hot one.  When rigging for bait fishing, you want to rig it Carolina style. First you want to slide a ½ oz. egg sinker onto your line, and then tie a barrel swivel to the end of your line. Make a leader about 24 to 30 inches long and tie that to the bottom of the barrel swivel and then tie your hook.  This way is perfect for bait fishing, because when the fish grabs the bait, they won’t be able to feel the weight because the line will go freely through the weight. The hook will differ depending on the bait you use, if your using power bait I like to use a small treble like a size 12, it holds the bait on better than a regular bait hook. If using marshmallow and crawler i use a size 8 or 6 bait hook. I will slide 4 or 5 marshmallows up the hook onto the line so they sit right above the hook, then I slide the crawler on the hook. Once you’re all baited up, just cast it out and sit back, and relax and watch your rod tip. Night fishing can be extremely good when bait fishing. A few areas to check out are Howberts point, Rocking chair, lazy boy and suckers cove. Any of the areas can be good, so if you have a favorite spot, go to it.
Pueblo Reservoir is a good choice if you’re looking for warm water species. Everything is eating shad, and there eating a lot. You can catch almost all species right now on small crank baits, rattle traps, and curly tail grubs. Look for some points or flats close to deeper water, and bluff walls. Shore access is a little limited this year with the low water, but there is still a lot of it. Throwing a minnow under a bobber can be really good this time of year if you would prefer to fish with live bait. When choosing a bait to throw, color is key right now. These fish are eating shad so you want to match the hatch. I would be throwing white or silver colored bait.  A size 5 Rapalla shad rap in shad pattern is deadly. Try to fish the low light conditions, early morning, evening and night, especially if you are trying for walleye. Fish your baits fairly slow.
There are some great fisheries on Ft Carson as well, you will need to check on their rules and access, but there is some awesome fish to be had in some of those lakes, and they too will be on the feed.
Fall can bring some of the best fishing of the year, so get out and catch some fish.
Thanks again for your service and good fishing.


Jim Douglas


 

 

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