A good spot to shore fish would be off of the lake fork arm. Find a rocky point and work it with spoons, curly tail grubs, and big spinners and see if you can catch some browns. Make sure to fish these presentations deep. Good luck.
The DOW just released a report about Blue Mesa. Here it is:
BLUE MESA LAKE TROUT
Now through late May is an ideal time to fish for big lake trout in Blue Mesa Reservoir. And by fishing at this time of year, anglers can help to maintain a delicate biological balance in the reservoir.
Lake trout ? also known as mackinaw ? are now feeding in shallow water at the reservoir and are easier to catch now than at any time of the year, explained Dan Brauch, aquatic biologist for the Colorado Division of Wildlife (DOW) in Gunnison. As the water warms in late spring the fish descend to deep waters and are difficult to catch.
Anglers can keep eight lake trout of any size - and there is a large population between 20 inches and about 35 inches in size.
The lake trout population is strong in the reservoir ? perhaps too strong, Brauch said DOW biologists are concerned that lake trout - which feed on kokanee - are causing a decline in the population of the salmon species. This has led to a shortage of kokanee available to stock in other Colorado reservoirs.
?We do not have enough kokanee this year to meet our needs,? Brauch said. ?And in fact we are about three million fish short.?
Consequently, the DOW would like to see anglers increase their harvest of lake trout.
?We know that there is significant predation of kokanee by lake trout,? Brauch said. ?We also know that lake trout are reproducing on their own. So we need to maintain the pressure on lake trout.?
Blue Mesa is the best waterway in the state for production of kokanee. The reservoir produces large quantities of daphnia, a type of zooplankton which is the preferred food for the salmon. After three to five years of life in the reservoir, the kokanee swim 20 miles upstream to the Roaring Judy fish hatchery where their eggs are gathered by DOW personnel and volunteers. The eggs are incubated and hatched by the DOW and are used to sustain kokanee populations in Blue Mesa and other reservoirs throughout Colorado.
Lake trout are large and voracious fish and were last stocked in Blue Mesa in 1992.
The biggest fish ever taken in Blue Mesa was a lake trout measuring 42 inches long and weighing almost 47 pounds. Anglers need to be outfitted properly to catch large fish. Brauch suggests using tube jigs tipped with sucker meat, whole suckers or large, flashy lures. Brauch suggests contacting bait and tackle shops in the Montrose and Gunnison areas to learn what type of bait or lure is working best.
Blue Mesa Reservoir is located in south central Colorado, about 20 miles east of Montrose and about 10 miles west of Gunnison on U.S. Highway 50.
My brother was down there last Saturday. Caught 4 lakers doing a open bail/sucker meat combo. He was using a slip sinker on his main line, then a swivel (to keep the sinker from sliding down to the hook) then a section of leader of 1-1/2 to 2 feet, then a large hook. He put a good 2 inch size chunk of sucker meat on it and cast it out. Let it sink to the bottom then reel in your slack. After your line is tight, open your bail and set your pole down. I always wrap the line out of the reel around a beer can (always beer ;D) so that when the laker runs with the bait you can hear the can flip over. Let the laker run for a short moment then set the hook. Don't forget to adjust your drag.
The biggest he caught was around 4 lbs. Lost a MUCH bigger one by him accidentally giving it some slack as it ran close to the shore as he was fighting it.
He also caught a small one jigging with a tube jig tipped with sucker meat.
Good luck and don't forget to pick up your can on the way out 8)
Don't forget a good sized net, you just might need it...
Yes, you can buy sucker meat at many local bait shops. Frozen or even better, alive/fresh. Absolute Angler carries them from time to time. 303-421-4025.
Keep in mind that you can't use live suckers for bait at Big Blue...
Hey HunterFisherCamper, Lake Fork is productive for nice rainbows and browns, especially with spinning gear. It's doubtful you'll get into any macks fishing from the shore this time of year, but the real action is going to be trolling for those tastey Kokanees. Try the pink & green popgear, tasmanian devils, or cherry bobbers. In the spring, leadline is a necessity, but you should get plenty of action on monofiliment in August. I see a few people from all along the west bank doing okay, but the Soap Creek arm, by the old boat ramp, is probably your best bet for shore fishing. You'll have to drive down thru the campsites to get there.