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Discussion Starter #1
Happy New Year everyone!

I've been a lurker here for a while and wanted to participate. Actually, I could really use some pointers. I've been a fly-fisherman all my life, exclusively wading rivers and streams. But I'd like to focus on Colorado's lakes and reservoirs going forward. But I really don't know anything about how to "read" a lake, pond, or res...finding structure, finding fish. What types of fish, and where to find them. Lures, baits, techniques, etc.

I'm really wanting to chase warm water species like bass, walleye, wipers crappie, northern's and muskies. Not really looking for trout. Frankly, I'm getting sick of trout. But I don't know anything about these fish. Can anybody help me out or point me in the right direction to learn about tackle, baits, lures, bodies of water, seasons, and anything else.

Is it worth it to get a guide? When I was learning to fly-fish, this definitely helped in learning to read different water and find holding fish.

I'm in SW Denver, but will travel up to 2-3 hours for quality fishing once the ice melts.

There's a ton of knowledgable fishermen on this board, and I'd really like to learn from your experience rather than read a ton of books, mags, etc.

Thanks guys, I appreciate it!
Mike
 

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Welcome to the board... you get right to the point. LoL, well each one of those questions would fill a book with the answers. Lake and Reservoir fishing isnt much different from river fishing, fish are pretty general. You just have to find the pattern the fish are using during the time of year you are fishing and its always changing with weather and all kinds of other things. You mostly want to focus on structure when fishing warm water species, laydowns, sunken trees, stumps, riprap, rock ledges, drop offs, weedlines. Most warm water species are ambush predators so they like to hide and attack their prey. In colder weather or cold fronts you have to slow fishing down in warmer weather and warm fronts you will want to speed up presentations and fish aggressively.
This is just general stuff to let you know where to start.
Baits swimbaits, rapalas, and jerkbaits will attract most of these species, worms tubes for panfish and bass sometimes pike, spinners and buzzbaits for bass pike and northerns. Any fishing tackle place should help you out when asking questions like this... I wouldnt hire a guide unless it was for walleye or wiper (because I dont have much luck with these 2).
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks epic,

Yeah, I am pretty straighforward...hazard of my occupation. Anyway, thanks for your response. As a follow up, what kind of structure is laydown and riprap? How do you identify it? I got a depth finder for xmas, so that should give me an underwater picture, if I know what to look for. Do you identify things by looking at the shoreline? Can you recommend some spots for bass, crappie and walleye that are in the Denver area. I read a book that says crappie are in just about every body of water around here, but I haven't been able to locate any in the past year.

Any help or ideas are greatly appreciated.
Lip Ripper
 

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Laydown - a tree or man made structure that is laying down in the water you usually want to try and picture how big the tree is and fish the deeper part of the laydown (fish finder will help in telling you how deep the laydown is)
Riprap is man made rock dams or peninsulas just a bunch of rocky structure that the fish can hide in... and you can snag alot in.
If you know where the Department of Wildlife office is, you can stop in there and they have a free map that lists a lot of lakes in the state and what species are in those lakes. It would be the easiest way to find what you are looking for, there is also a book called fishing close to home that focuses on the front range lakes mostly those closest to the Denver area.
You may also want to type the species that you want into advanced search option on this board and select fishing reports only and you should find some great reports which can give you an idea on where to go.
 
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