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Discussion Starter #1
Hello Fishamaniacs,

I am traveling to Colorado this Saturday and have an 11-year-old son who is absolutely addicted to fishing. We are from Illinois, so angling in the Rockies is an awesome opportunity for him to encounter species he has never seen before.

He has been doing his homework on how to catch trout, but we'd accept any advice from experienced locals. Also, if anyone can PM a decent spot or two, we will only be fishing for two days of the trip and we always catch and release. This kid just loves the sport of the catch! I'd even entertain paying somebody who is willing to be a guide for a day.

Thanks in advance to any who can help to make the trip of a lifetime for a young enthusiast,

Ed B
 

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Will you be fishing with spinning tackle or fly fishing? Also are you staying in the town of Nederland? If you are it might be worth trying a few casts into Barker reservoir since you will be right there. It can be hit or miss, but you might do ok tossing something like a Kastmaster in.
 

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From Nederland, take 72 north approx 15 miles to Ward and fish Brainard (go through the very small town of Ward and then look for the road to Brainard on your left). You can catch trout all day from the NW bank of the lake where 2 streams flow in.

If you are up for a nice hike to an alpine type lake, from Brainard you can hike to Long Lake or Mitchell lake. I always went to Mitchell and another smaller lake right next to it. You can also push forward to another lake above tree line, but can't recall its name. Well established trails up from the trailhead to both places. I'll be honest, it used to be a little busy with hikers, but not around the lakes. Its been a decade since I have been on the front range, and I suspect that its only gotten more busy.

If you have a truck, I also suggest Gross Reservoir. Easy shore access around the campground on the west side of the lake.

Best of luck and have Fun!
 

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Waterfowler is dead on... I would suggest a fly and bubble if you are not going to actually fly fish. This time of year a very small wooley bugger, a pistol pete in olive or a caddis emerger would be best. Get a clear bubble and fill with water. Use 4lb test for the leader and fan cast where you see rises. Early morning and late afternoon are usually best but all day they will eat flies. I would say 4' of leader between the bobber would be fine. Hope you do well.
 

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Be advised the road into Brainard might still be closed. It typically doesn't open until the end of June. You can still hike in from the main parking lot at the visitor center, but it is a 2 mile hike.
 

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Brainard is a beautiful place and close to Nederland. You might see a moose if you take the short hike to long lake.

If you wanted to take one of your days, you could also drive trail ridge road in Rocky Mountain National Park over to Grand Lake and Granby. There is fishing in the park. Most requiring a bit of a hike. And of course fishing in both Grand Lake and Granby. It's a beautiful drive, unlike anything you'll see in Illinois.
 

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Be advised the road into Brainard might still be closed. It typically doesn't open until the end of June. You can still hike in from the main parking lot at the visitor center, but it is a 2 mile hike.
Yes I just checked. The road to Brainard is closed till June 28th. That might not be a bad thing if you are up to a two mile hike though. Brainard can get crowded when the road is open. It is also a good opportunity to see Moose. I see them about every other time I am up there.
 

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There's still snow above 10500 and ice. Its only June 5th.
 

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Trail Ridge is open to Grand Lake...and there's always some fish in the meadow around the corner from Fall River Road.

Another option close to Nederland is Golden Gate Canyon State Park. There are five ponds you can fish in the park.
 

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If he isn't using bait, as mentioned, a fly and bubble works. In addition to the flies mentioned, I'd add some Royal Coachman in 12 or 14. Also, a few Kastmasters in 1/8 and 1/4 ounce. A couple of Thomas Boyants and a couple mepps spinners in gold and silver.
 

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Yes I just checked. The road to Brainard is closed till June 28th. That might not be a bad thing if you are up to a two mile hike though. Brainard can get crowded when the road is open. It is also a good opportunity to see Moose. I see them about every other time I am up there.
The road into Brainard is closed to all traffic, including bikes and pedestrians, until June 28 for reconstruction.
 

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If you're looking for easy fun, there's a stocked kids pond in boulder. 12 and under only. We pulled a 16" rainbow out of there last weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
THANKS!

I appreciate all of the advice and suggested spots! I bought the Boulder / Denver book that a few members (in other posts) have referenced and read about a bunch of smaller lakes right in the 'Ned' area. We're up for a 2 mile hike, so I will check that less accessible spot out. We will certainly hit Barker because our rental house is about 2 blocks away! My son is bringing a spin caster and an assortment of baits / lures. I will have him read about the fly suggestion; I honestly know a lot less about fishing than he does, but it is a blast to watch him enjoy the sport. His grandfather, who will be joining us later in the trip, is also severely addicted to fishing. We will be close to Longmont for that leg of the trip. I hope these dudes have fun roping in some new species. Thanks again to everyone who posted; this is a cool community of enthusiasts.
 
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