In part one of this series,Fast Fishing Bait we looked at the types of water found in Colorado’s high country
wilderness areas. From small streams to beaver ponds and alpine lakes,
there is a variety of waters, each with its own set of challenges and
opportunities. Here we’ll discuss wilderness access, so let’s jump in.
With only a few exceptions, wilderness areas are open to the public,
offering priceless opportunities to visitors. Access to most wilderness
areas in Colorado is as easy as finding a trailhead. Wilderness units
can border private land, so access may not be available everywhere along
the boundary. But from any public access point, including state or
federal lands, established trailheads, or public campgrounds, visitors
are free to explore. Always carry a map and compass and/or GPS. It is
your responsibility to know where private-land boundaries exist, and to
Fly-fishing opportunities can exist from wilderness boundaries to the
remote interiors. As a general rule, the harder an area is to reach,
the less fishing pressure it receives. In our home waters in the Flat
Tops Wilderness Area, we find that the most remote lakes and streams can
be the most rewarding. With very little pressure, trout tend to be less
wary and eager to take a fly. In some remote locations, we also find
opportunities for larger native cutthroat and brook trout.
Reaching these waters leaves anglers with a couple of options. Travel
in wilderness areas is restricted to foot or horseback only. No
motorized vehicles or bicycles are allowed. While car camping along the
wilderness boundary might be convenient, day hikes will limit your
distance from the trailhead.
Instead, anglers can either backpack into more remote areas on foot,
or travel on horseback
Of course this is where we’d offer our shameless
self-promotion for horseback expeditions to some of Colorado’s most spectacular streams and Lakes.
But however you choose to travel, staying mobile is the best
strategy. Mark trails on your maps and then mark the bodies of water
that you’re most interested in fishing. Planning a loop that passes a
variety of waters will make for a memorable adventure.
Most wilderness areas in Colorado are accessible by mid-June.
Immediately after ice-off can be a great time to land large fish as they
scour shorelines for drowned insects and worms from the runoff. By the
second week in July,Cheap Fishing Line dry-fly fishing will have turned on in the high
country and will remain active through early September, or the first
One of the advantages of early-season wilderness fishing is even less
pressure than normal.Fast Fishing Lure Trails receive their heaviest use between the 4th of July and Labor Day. Exploring these waters in June gives you the
first crack at hungry trout. The downsides, however, are higher water
levels from runoff and the potential for a muddy experience.Fishing Reels Before
leaving, you may want to contact the nearest Forest Service office to
check the condition of roads and trails you intend to travel.
As temperatures rise and runoff levels subside in early to mid-July, Fishing Bait insect activity will begin to peak. Although wilderness traffic is
highest during midsummer, even a busy day inside a wilderness boundary
will look uninhabited compared to an urban state park or a popular
campground. And the period from mid-July until at least Labor Day is
arguably the best fishing of the year.
Fall in Colorado can be an excellent time to fish, but the weather
can be unpredictable and access more difficult. Depending on early
snowfall and temperatures, the fishing will often remain steady well
into October. However, by that time most campgrounds are closed and
unmaintained Forest Service roads can become impassable with snow. If
you plan a fall fishing trip, bring a good set of tire chains and be
prepared for any weather. A dry road on the way to the trailhead could
be a mess before you leave. Wholesale Fishing Tackle Online Fly-fishing Colorado’s wild backcountry is a wonderful opportunity
that’s easy to do. Our nation’s wilderness areas are treasures that we
should enjoy and share with our children. The only hard part is getting
from the trailhead to the beautiful waters of the remote wilderness
interior. But that’s half of the adventure!