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Discussion Starter #1
Yesterday I tried Watson lake in Fort Collins for the first time and decided it was pretty slow. I lost something near the inlet (rainbow/ walleye) on a tube jig setup that I was attempting to catch smallmouth with.

I headed over to Horsetooth to give it a quick shot before I had to go back to work. I caught a 14" smallmouth on my texas rigged/ pegged weight 4" tube setup in the first few minutes and then didn't have much action for the next hour.

Right as I was about to call it a day, I thought the tube setup had snagged on a rock (because it had been doing that frequently) and I gave the rod a snap to get it free or at least see what was going on and it pulled back quite strongly!

I knew it was a pretty big fish but was surprised to find a 19" smallmouth on the end of the line after a couple short energetic runs.

Here are a couple pics of the big fat smallie. She was caught in about 10 feet of water, not far from shore. Seemed to like the sandy bottom. Water temp was in the mid 50's last time I checked. The smallmouth action at the 'tooth has been pretty consistant lately. I'm not sure how long this pattern will last.

I'm throwing a couple more examples of decent smallies I have caught within the last week as well as a nice ultralight rainbow and cutbow that were caught on the Poudre last week when it was fishing so good before the flows started to come up and get off-color. The trout were going nuts for small spoons and spinners reeled just ahead of the current.



2 pics of the 19" fattie. Sorry about the pic quality...I have resorted to a point and shoot film camera because the digital is dead...you know..baptized.



14 and 15" smallies





Rainbow and Cutbow



 

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Re: Horsetooth 19" Smallmouth, pics. Poudre River trout

Oh yeah...In case you were wondering, all fish were released. O0
 

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Re: Horsetooth 19" Smallmouth, pics. Poudre River trout

those are some nice looking fish

i like how you told everyone you released them
so no one will jump you for keeping a fish ;D ;D
 

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so, did the 19" eat a softball?
 

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Awsome bass!!! I havnt had any luck with them myself.... Watson has always given me the skunk. I have never fished Horsetooth.....do you have to pay to park there like Boyd?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yeah you have to pay to park most places. You can cheat it a bit if you can find a pulloff and then hike down to the water if you want. The parking pass is $7 a day whcih is pretty steep but it's good until noon the next day. I like to hike to areas because I'm broke. I think an annual parking pass is $62 or something.

I've found that horsetooth is best in the spring and fall because the water is cooler and the fish are shallower and, oh yeah, you don't have to deal with idiot wakeboarders, waterskiiers, 35' yachters, blasting stereos, dunkenness, jet-skis, etc....

I'm typically done with horsetooth between memorial day and labor day. I cant stand the traffic out there. Summer is the time to hit the ponds for LMB anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the compliments guys.

Water level is coming up, I'm going to guess it's about 20 feet below last year's high levels but up probably 45 feet or so from this winter's low level.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Water temp was about 56 degrees. That's an estimate because I hadn't checked it in a couple days. It's probably cooler now with the rain and such.
 

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Great report! Those are some good looking fish. I too try to master all techniques and think it is funny that people take offense to a little humor. Could you imagine how boring this forum would be if everyone was serious all the time. You gave a lot of good info and tought someone a new technique, which is what this is all about. Keep up the good work and keep up the sarcasm!
 
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