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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
This thread will be a continuous one involving metro Denver fishing. I hope to cover all lakes as we hit them up as well as different sections of the Platte. I will cover fish types, water types, tackle, and all kinds of fun stuff. Enjoy, and feel free to jump in.

Location reports so far:

1) South Platte (Athmar Park area)-----------p.3
2) Garfield Lake -----------------------------p.2
3) ***** lake #1 ---------------------------p.1, p.2, p.5, p.6, p.7
4) Grandview ponds -------------------------p.2
5) Elaine Valente Open Space ----------------p.2
6) ***** lake #2 ---------------------------p.3
7) South Platte (north of Alameda) -----------p.3
8) Overland Park Pond -----------------------p.5
9) ***** lake #3 ---------------------------p.7

********************************************



I have been doing some significant research on urban fishing areas the past few days... My son, uncle Lance, and I will be primarily targeting cat and carp...

Seems there are some very productive locations north of Denver and a few south...

I have done some pretty extensive reading on fishing the South Platte for carp and have learned quite a bit... One snag, however... I don't fly fish (yet)... Seems all the info I'm getting on hitting up the South Platte for carp involves fly fishing. A few questions for anyone willing to divulge information without giving up specifics....

1) Can carp be had on the Platte using more conventional carp baits (non-fly)

2) Having read "Fishing close to home," it has become apparent that there are a TON of catfishing holes in and around Denver... If someone would be so kind as to send me a PM to help me narrow down the selection, it would be much appreciated. (We will not keep anything over 5lbs, and we will only keep one fish a piece, if we get into them)

Thanks in advance for any help you might be able to offer... We're really looking forward to our trip... Saturday at 6:00 PM we hit the water and hope to fish well into the night. A few of the places we intend to fish are closed to night fishing, but we will probably fish those while there is still some daylight and then move to less-regulated waters after that. Much obliged.


Owen
 

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You can lay waste to carp on marabou jigs. 1/64th - 1/8th oz. Black, brown and olive being the three primary colors.

Just look for fish that are ACTUALLY FEEDING. Seeing a couple carp swimming around is no guarantee they will bite. Find the ones rooting and snorting on the bottom, and target those.

Tabor lake has hella catfish.

SS
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the suggestions guys...

Yes... we will eat what cats we keep. Living in Tennessee the last few years, I came to LOVE catfishing ... Coming back home to Colorado has been amazing for catching brookies and browns, and trout has always been my first love, but I am getting the itch to hook into some catfish and carp again.

We aren't looking to fish out a spot, mostly C&R, but we hope to bring a couple home to eat.... I'm hoping we don't get blanked.... I'm really hoping my buddy catches one... he has been trout fishing with me a couple times, and he hasn't caught a thing.. amazing that a 27 year old dude has never hooked a sport fish in his life!!!

Tabor is one of the promising spots I had been contemplating. That's on the docket for sure.

Owen
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well, about 10 hours and we'll be heading out... My uncle, my buddy Marcus, and myself... I have had a couple suggestions on location for cat, and we will probably hit up at least two in out quest this evening.

I'm assuming catfish are catfish.... in other words, the kitties we slammed in Tennessee will be attracted to similar rigging and baits that would be successful here?

In TN, we used a drop shot rig... 2 ozs of lead on bottom, two hooks on the line, one about a foot above the weight and the other about 6-8 inches from the first hook... Tangle night crawlers between the two hooks or pack some stanky stuff on both hooks (if not using worms).... We're taking corn, grandma's dough bait, crawlers, and chk livers, pre-rigging a few for each of us. Feeling a bit like a kid again here--- been over a year since I locked up with a catfish and just can't wait to get some night fishing done. =)

The two locations we are fishing tonight are well known catfish spots... I'm hoping they're not fished out... When fishing for cat in the past, we would never go to the "hot catfish spot"... Always had little farm ponds or hidden coves in the river with deep channels that were hush hush. I guess you've got to start somewhere here in Denver, and hopefully I'll learn a few nice hush hush spots going forward. =)


Owen
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Big goose egg so far... nothing even biting on crawlers or livers... about to switch to dough and corn. Full report tomorrow......

Owen
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
After a long night of getting skunked, I got a few hours of sleep and went back out, this time with my son and a half a bag of 89 cent white bread. After geting depths set by trial and error, we proceeded to start the carp Marathon... 3 hours, 8 landed fish and 5 lost ones later, we ran out of bread. My son caught 2... including the biggest one of the day at 23 inches. Full report and pictures and videos forthcoming when I can get to a computer. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Went back out to the same spot on the same pond after lunch.... Landed 4 more and lost a rig on a monster... my reel is set up with 6 lb monofilament for creek trout... i didnt stand a chance against this guy. It ran my line across the pond and when I tightened the drag 2 clicks, he snapped the line... hope that hook doesn't hurt that fish... I want another go at him... after I upgrade my tackle, that is. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Okay guys... as promised.


***** Lake.

We hit the lake a little before 7:00. I was tired from a night of getting my a** handed to me in getting blanked by the elusive catfish. Woke up about 6:30, woke up my son and we grabbed a half a bag of white bread and hit the lake.

After a few casts of completely weed-covered rigs, we adjusted our lines and started to get hits immediately. "Hits" is a relative term... these guys would do the slightest of tugs and if you didn't set the hook, you wouldn't get em. Here's the first one I landed of the day. (That's my ugly mug behind the fish). 15 incher, very good fight!




We landed a ton, lost a few, and I had a big honker snap my line... He took my line across the pond, and when I tried to set my drag for a fight, it snapped. Pretty sad.

My son did very well, pulling in 3 carp including the biggest of the day at 23 inches. Here's a video of that battle.

Click >>HERE<< to watch it the video.


Here's a pic of another middle-range carp as well. My son caught this one too. I didn't measure this one, but I'd put it between 15-18 inches.




In all, an awesome day. My son had a blast and we now have us a fishing spot 10 blocks from our house!!!!



***We were using a Modified Drop shot rig and balls of bread***

*1 to 2 ozs of lead at the bottom of the line

*8-12 inches up from that, attach a hook (treble or snelled) on a 2-4 inch leader, coming off the main line. (you can use a 3 way swivel if you choose).

*6-8 inches above that, attach a second hook (treble or snelled) on a much shorter leader (or NO leader)

*Bait hooks with corn/bread ball

*Tight lines!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks. =)

We will be going out there again Wednesday, after we upgrade our tackle a bit. My big big weights are gone now... between me losing one rig to that pond-monster and my son losing a rig in the cat tails, I'm in desperate need of some big weights again. I like the 1/2oz tear drop bass casting weights from Eagle Claw... use two of those suckers, you can cast all the way across Green Mountain Res while sitting down!

***That's an exaggeration... but it really helps to have that weight at the bottom of the line throwing out to the middle of a lake... Just don't have any burs in your guides or you're losing your whole rig....
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Finally re-tooled my rig. I've got 20 lb test monofilament line on my "warm-water" spool. I am using 2 3-way swivels on the rig, the first connects to the main line, allowing a 4 inch leader to a size 6 hook, the other side is a foot of line leading to my second 3 way swivel. That one shoots off to a 5-6 inch leader and another hook and the final offshoot has 4 lb test line leading to my sinker.

Rigged it up last night and I will be heading out after work tonight to the local pond for some carp action. If I can land a couple, ill be making up my cut bait for Sunday's Platte river Kitty hunt.

The rig is a bit goofy looking, but man, is it solid!! That 20 lb test line is no joke...
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Here's a pic of the rig... the angle is deceiving, but I can promise you the leader closest to the weight is the longer of the two. In this pic it doesn't look so.




I'm freakin' loaded for bear now, boys... no more of this line snapping sh**.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
My boy came home early from his visit with his aunt and great grandmother. He had a great time, but complained that he did not want to miss fishing with daddy Sunday morning. Soooooo......

Tomorrow we hit up another local lake/pond in search for the elusive Colorado cat. 5:00 am, local pond #2... if we blank, we will hit up local pond #1 (old faithful... for carp/smallies anyway)... if we STILL are catless by noon or so, we will head up to Lowell east #1. My son is fixated on getting a cat and it has rubbed off on me. :) he saw a video of s kid catching a big flathead about 3 weeks ago and since then he has wanted to catch one. It has been infectious, as I am consumed with finding one too. :)

Anyway, 5 hours from now, it's water time! Wish us luck!
 

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rad! I use a setup similar when I'm fishing for cats in oklahoma. saves you alot of time of re-rigging when you snag on the bottom.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
That rig saved my ass at least once today. Sinker hung up on a tree root or something. Pulled damn hard and it snapped the thin 4 lb test line connecting the final swivel to the sinker. Simple matter of adding another 12" stretch of thin trout test line and another sinker and I'm back on the bottom.

Fishing report forthcoming tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Had quite a day yesterday... we went all over the city, hitting up 5 different ponds/lakes in the metro area. My son and I hit the first two and then we went up and grabbed my uncle Lance (on his birthday) and decided to try to get him a metro fish.... Things didn't go exactly as planned...

6:00 AM Garfield lake park:

We got up early and hit the pond with our rigs set up, plenty of bait, and a fierce desire to catch a catfish. There was nobody at the lake, and we had a nice still surface to observe the marine life. Snag, snag, weeds, weeds, muddy, goose crap, weeds, miserable........



An hour and a half later, we split out of there, having lost one small fish in the weeds. Went to our old faithful spot and threw in at our normal location. Water was very still and pleasant there as well, only THIS time, there was plenty of fish action! On my two-hook rig, I was using some catfish stink bait (lower hook) and bread balls (upper hook) trying to find a happy medium. Over and over and over, the bread was hit and the catfish bait was left alone. We caught 7 carp on that bread, one of which was a trophy for my son, as it was his first fish over 5 pounds!!!


One of my smaller ones.




Another of my meager catches




And my son's trophy. Man, he loved catching this guy.....





So anyway, we ran out of bread and still no catfish after 2 locations. Decided to go home and have some lunch around noon. At home, I received a phone call that my uncle and his family were planning on celebrating his birthday with lasagna and cake... Naturally, we decided it would be a good day to go up to north east Thornton in order to eat some cake and take my uncle on a surprise Urban fishing trip!


**Afternoon fishing locations

We started at a lake we had seen for years but never fished... Elaine T. Valente Open Space out on 104th past Riverdale. There were 30 people fishing by the fishing tables and so we headed around to a quieter spot on the lake.... But no luck. Well, I cannot say NO luck, I DID catch 6 crawdads on bread and corn... Not what I was after, but hey....




Spent an hour and half there getting skunked, and decided to try another spot. My uncle was having fun, even though we weren't catching anything. The next spot, a "can't miss" from my childhood... Grandview Ponds, also off 104th. We went straight to the best pond of the 4, all the way in the back and where no people were fishing. And it was dead... I don't just mean the fish weren't biting, I mean the pond smelled and looked completely dead... We tried everything under the stars, but couldn't even entice a rise. On the spillway for that pond we saw old dead crawdad carcasses, but nothing else... It was very depressing to see that place killed off like that.




The other two Grandview ponds were full of people with their worms and power bait and spoons... We just walked on, as it was getting late and we had lasagna waiting at home for us. We could not get my uncle a Thornton fish on his birthday.

But on the way out to the parking lot, my son got him a giant frog, and insisted I snap this photo. =)

 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Just spoke with a neighbor about Garfield... He said that one side of the lake is shallow and full of crap, the other side is deeper and much more accessible for humans and fish alike. Looks like I can't write that one off just yet. =)

He recommended cut bait soaked in red koolaid for the kitties in there.
 

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Grand view used to be really good.. Those ponds take a beating from the catch n kill em all crowd and it seems to get worse every year.

I hate putting metro spots on blast (I was a huge offender of this until i seen what my reports have done to my spots by my house) but if you're gonna try a cat spot I suggest going upstream on the south platte to the fairgrounds.
 
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