I wanted to check on one of the first species I ever caught in Colorado....the Arctic Grayling.
This is really the pristine time of year to hunt grayling. I did a little homework, received a few tips, and was off. I started at a stream with the fly rod.
Ah, success. It was a fun little stream to throw flies on, but my 9' 5wt proved a little too cumbersome for the small overgrown stream. I actually ended up using the spinning rod like a fly rod. Not the prettiest sight, but it worked.
I love the turquoise and purple tones of these fish. It was a fun little creek to play on. Plus not all fish caught were grayling.
Not a monster, but my first brookie of the year.
I moved on to a lake that I heard held good fish in the past. I actually planned on going to another lake that was farther along the trail, but my curiosity and eagerness got the better of me. I gambled on stopping here.
I started to toss the good ol' marabou jig and was surprised by what hit it first.
Hmmm what a pleasant surprise. Didn't think they were in here...
I started to see the cutts cruising the shore line and was immediately satisfied with my decision to stop at this lake. Although catching them would prove more difficult.
A couple small things like this came first.
More cutts would come later. However, I was pleased to find my main target for this lake.
The brook trout were chubby.
Still not the tank I was looking for, but healthy. It was such great looking brookie water though.
As I worked my way around near the inlet and found more and more cutts willing to play.
The inlet creek was jammed packed full of cutthroat doing their fling in the spring. They paid absolutely no attention to me whatsoever. I took a video of them and was amazed to see them biting each other. Must be fighting for dominance or something. Beautiful fish.
The inlet was dammed up a few yards above the lake and made a BIG shallow pool.
Surprisingly, it was crawling with fish. They were a little more willing to play.
These guys were in here too!
Poor guy had a deformed gill plate.
I hung around here quite a while. The fish weren't too shy and let me sneak up on them for a shot or two.
As daylight was dwindling I made my way back to the lake. I wanted to get back to the car before dark and that required a stroll through the woods.
I was straight up giddy about the trip thus far, but really wanted a bigger brook trout to finish the day.
I began throwing my jig near fallen trees and big boulders as I trekked around the lake.
The good Lord smiled on me...
What a fight, and what a way to finish the day. Not the biggest brook of my life, but it had some shoulders. One of the best fights I've had with a fish in a long while.
The Grand Mesa...is grand
Life is short, live it well.