Outdoors - Hunting and Fishing

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Miramonte springs to life

By Dave Buchanan

NORWOOD — Like the phoenix rising from its own ashes, Miramonte Reservoir is alive again. Nearly two years after being killed with poison by Colorado Parks and Wildlife to get rid of unwanted smallmouth bass, this popular 420-acre impoundment again is one of the best trout fisheries in Southwest Colorado. “I’m pleased with how well the reservoir has responded to our treatment and restocking,” Eric Gardunio, Parks and Wildlife’s Southwest Region fisheries ...

Stocking illegal bass harms area

By Dave Buchanan

It’s unlikely anyone will confess to illegally stocking smallmouth bass in Miramonte Reservoir, one of the state’s premier trout fisheries. These self-appointed fish biologists are dead-of-the-night bucket brigades, smuggling fish around the state to satisfy their own limited desires without considering the impacts of their actions. Instead of expanding fishing options, unauthorized fish introductions may hurt or even destroy what the official management plans are aimed at ...

‘Incredibly exciting’ fishing at Lake Powell

By Dave Buchanan

It’s not an advertising gimmick: The fishing at Lake Powell continues to get better. The latest report from Utah fisheries biologist Wayne Gustaveson says anglers are reporting the first weekend in May as “the very best fishing of the year and perhaps the best seen in a very long time.” Gustaveson said all species of the lake’s sport fish were caught along the length and breadth of the lake. “Smallmouth bass were the leader by a country mile, followed about ...


Spring over to the Arkansas

By Joel L. Evans

Hoping that no one else has the same idea, about halfway between Salida and Buena Vista, I turn off U.S. Highway 24 onto a dirt road marked only by a small sign reading “Hecla Junction.” The easily traveled dirt road winds for a few miles up and over the ridge, then leads down the other side to Brown’s Canyon, at the bottom of which lies the Arkansas River. Any time you combine the words canyon and fishing, you have found my favorite kind of water. Arriving at a ...


Spring for turkey

By Dave Buchanan

So who’s the turkey? Despite the connotations of being called a turkey, let’s face it: Ben Franklin had it right. In 1784, Franklin wrote a letter lobbying to have the smart, hardy and wily wild turkey recognized as the national bird, not the more-popular but admittedly fish-scavenging bald eagle. The “turkey is in comparison a much more respectable bird, and withal a true original Native of America,” Franklin wrote. “He is besides, though a little vain ...


CMU fishing duo places 4th at national event

By Dave Buchanan

It’s no surprise to hear Colorado Mesa University athletes are competing for national titles. Now, you can add bass fishing to mix. Anglers Josh Worth and Kennedy Kinkade, the two-person team representing Colorado Mesa University, finished fourth at the 2015 FLW College Fishing national championship held April 16-18 at Lake Murray, near Columbia, S.C. The two CMU anglers earned their spot at the national finals by winning the FLW College Fishing Southern Conference tournament last ...

Getting the facts on turkey hunting

By Dave Buchanan

A few turkey facts: Merriam’s turkeys were named in honor of C. Hart Merriam, the first chief of the U.S. Biological Service. Merriam’s migrate from wintering at lower elevations to higher elevations in summer where they breed and nest. This migration to breeding and nesting grounds gives turkey hunters an idea of where to start their search. In western Colorado, it’s not unusual for turkeys to follow the snow line in their migration to higher elevations, although in a ...


Fender knows nymphs

By Dave Buchanan

A recent day on the Gunnison River revealed a flurry of caddis flies filling the air and a puzzling lack of interest by the river’s trout. “What’s wrong with these trout?” asked Gale Doudy of Gunnison River Expeditions. “You’d think they would be going crazy, feeding on top.” A few feet away, Randy Fender of Montrose was fishing a dead-drift nymph and having little trouble hooking and landing trout. “He’s the best nymph fishermen ...


Taking a spin on the Gunnison

By Dave Buchanan

AUSTIN — With a spin of the wheel, Al DeGrange turned his aluminum boat in a tight circle and headed upstream. Guiding the jet-boat across the runoff-charged North Fork of the Gunnison, DeGrange leaned forward and growled at the three passengers sitting before him. “Here we go,” he warned. “You gents might want to hold on to your hats, it gets a bit windy.” And with that, the boat jumped ahead, letting the morning and the Gunnison unfold in mid-spring ...


Angler nets big catch in his first Powell trip

By Dave Buchanan

A Clear Lake, Iowa, angler made the most of his first trip to Lake Powell and went home with the story of catching a 31-pound striped bass. According to Utah fisheries biologist Wayne Gustaveson, angler Steve Roberts hooked the big fish at the back of Warm Creek bay and then spent 30 minutes easing the big striper close enough to be netted. “He did his homework by reading all the fish reports on Wayneswords.com two weeks before his arrival,” said Gustaveson, who also is the ...


‘Cast and Blast’ targets father-son fishing duos

By Dave Buchanan

Colorado Parks and Wildlife is offering a father-and-son “Cast and Blast” weekend June 12-14 at the Lone Cone/Jim Olterman State Wildlife Area located south of Norwood. This free weekend outdoor workshop will feature instruction about some original “technology”: hunting, fishing, camping, archery, firearms training, and how to sit around a campfire.  The workshop is aimed at men who have little or no hunting or fishing experience. “No experience is ...


Lake Powell fishing report

By Staff

Lake Powell Report By WAYNE GUSTAVESON Special to The Daily Sentinel PAGE, Ariz. — The fishing reports from Lake Powell this weekend were the best reports of this year by far. Virtually all who went fishing caught fish. Some found phenomenal fishing success.    Bass anglers led the way: Reports of 50 bass (45 smallmouth and five largemouth) per trip were common lakewide. Bass were caught equally well on plastic baits fished along the bottom or with crankbaits cast ...

Area fishing meeting set

By Dave Buchanan

Anglers in the Delta and Montrose area can offer comments on local fishing regulations and opportunities at a public meeting from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on 
April 23 at the Bill Heddles Recreation Center, 530 Gunnison River Dr. in Delta. Eric Gardunio, aquatic biologist for the Montrose area, will discuss management objectives for local river and lake fisheries. The waters include the lakes of Grand Mesa, the lower Gunnison River, Uncompahgre River, and Miramonte, Ridgway and Crawford ...


Big-game Jack

By Dave Buchanan

After nearly 40 years in the outfitting business, big-game outfitter Jack Cassidy of Loma may have seen just about everything. An original member and the first president of the Colorado Outfitters Association, Cassidy and his guides have hosted hunters from most states and many foreign countries and have pursued almost every huntable wildlife species in Colorado. As one might expect, Cassidy has enough tales (ask him about riding a center pivot while archery hunting for elk) to fill more ...

It’s April, and that means it’s time to secure licenses

By Dave Buchanan

Nothing like April to make you think of spring, taxes and turkey hunting. Or getting a 2015 hunting and fishing license, for that matter. It’s not like you had to wait for April 1 to get those 2015 tags — the 2015 turkey licenses went on sale March 11 — but now it’s time you have one to fish, hunt and putter around on that ATV. The spring turkey season begins April 11 and runs through May 24 in most of the valid turkey units, but a few units differ. A complete ...


Early fishing at Lake Powell is 
a great catch

By Wayne Gustaveson

April 1 is here, but this is no joke: Fishing success makes it seem like the end of April and early May. Bass and stripers took little notice of the jokesters holiday as they have been swimming in warming water for the past two weeks. We usually have to wait until mid-April for the magic 60-degree water temperatures that start bass and crappie spawning, but those temperatures are already here. Here is the summary of current conditions. Largemouth and smallmouth bass have been active in ...


The rainbow time machine

By Joel L. Evans

If this story was a movie, the kind you hear about but never actually see, it might go something like this: Curious young boy meets crazy old professor who invents and attaches a time machine to a fancy car. Together they travel where no man has gone before: Back To The Future. Not without travails, their time travel gives a glimpse of what we commoners can expect to encounter in the coming years. Eric Gardunio, Colorado Parks and Wildlife aquatic biologist, like the professor, is ...

GJ lawmaker Willett eyes legislation for bear hunting

By Dave Buchanan

A Grand Junction lawmaker who sought a summer hunting season for black bears will instead try to persuade state officials to study what he calls a bear overpopulation and find ways to reduce conflicts with humans. House Bill 1099, sponsored by Rep. Yeulin Willett, R-Grand Junction, originally proposed establishing an annual “general purpose” hunt for black bears between Aug. 1 and Sept. 1, after which the Colorado Parks and Wildlife commission would have the option to ...

Turkey Hunting 101 at Parks and Wildlife

By Dave Buchanan

With an estimated 7 million-plus wild turkeys in 49 states, turkey hunting continues to be the fastest growing hunting activity. Prospective and experienced gobbler hunters can take advantage of expert guidance from Colorado Parks and Wildlife in a free, one-evening seminar titled “Turkey Hunting 101,” set for 
6 p.m. on April 9 at the Parks and Wildlife Hunter Education Building, 711 Independent Ave. The clinic is co-sponsored by Parks and Wildlife and the Western ...


Beginner’s blues

By Staff

Fish on! I did not want to hear that shout one more time. At the moment, I just wanted to grab my fly rod between both hands and crack it over my knee. I couldn’t buy or bribe a fish. My day was all about tangles and wind knots. As a beginning fly fisher, I remember being totally exhilarated and frustrated with the experience. Today, I still feel the same Zen magic when standing in a stream with the water rushing past my legs. When first learning to fly fish, that magic was ...

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