Not true. The area was historically claimed between 1976 to 1993. Hey Roger, Thanks for reading! And what an experience to be able to catch them in Colorado! Too late to find fish, and far too late to do anything but pump water and promptly fall asleep to the sound of nearby coyotes and a vicious storm that pounded our tent all night. Ali took a lower hole and I went to the spot we had seen the fish. I have so many adventures planned but not executed. Orvis brought me here! not a golden trout. It was time to leave nature and make our way back down from the mountain. After another minute, it disappeared. With over 300 lakes and trout streams, this mesa provides multiple opportunities for fishing. Our plan was to start the hike late Friday night, camp somewhere along the way, and finish the hike on Saturday. Nice Marty. Unlike the past, however, these eyes didn’t turn and run. Colorado Parks and Wildlife is a nationally recognized leader in conservation, outdoor recreation and wildlife management. We called it a day in light of an approaching storm and spent the rest of the day reeling from what had just happened. if you want to find out about golden trout look at trout species. Required fields are marked *, Pingback: Photos: More Gold in the Colorado High Country | Orvis News. Because of this, reaching good Golden Trout waters is no easy task – usually requiring a long hike or horse pack in. Being fellow fly fisherman, I thought you all would like to see this. With nine miles to go, we were ready to go and excited to get fishing. Golden trout are most often found in remote, alpine drainages over 9,000 feet in elevation. Most of these waters are void of goldens and now provide native cutthroat with necessary habitat. Not to mention everyone is just as beautiful as the last, it’s like catching a wild painting over and over again. The big myth about Golden Trout is that you have to go on some backbreaking hike to 11,000 ft to catch a Golden Trout. Best of luck in your future endeavors and I’d love to hear how they go. Golden Trout have very limited range, as they are only found in high alpine lakes and streams found in the Rocky Mountains and the Cascades. Trophy Rainbow Trouts weigh about 3.5Lbs to 4.1 Lbs; Unique Raimbow Trouts weigh about 4.9 Lbs to 5.6 Lbs; License You only have to buy the Advanced License for Colorado, since all we will be fishing is trouts we won't need a basic license. Might be useful for getting to secret spots up there too! The closest trailhead I could find was 10 miles from our destination, with at least two of those miles off-trail on steep terrain. What an incredible journey with the result being an experience that very few will ever have in there lifetime. After putting on waders and hiking through the brush and boulders, we waded into and fished two lakes for a solid five hours. Makes me feel like I earned it, pushed myself, and saw somewhere most people don’t get to see. We altered our exit route to pass through the meadow and rigged our rods. Just moved to Denver from the coast! The following day, we set out to fish a couple of lakes that we hoped were not barren. Its coloration is spectacularly bright: the belly, opercula, lower jaws, and lateral line are a vivid red to red-orange. Golden trout are the official state fish of California and native to Golden Trout Creek in the southern Sierra Nevada Mountains. What the golden trout often lacks in size, it makes up for in coloration, isolation, and mystery, having a much smaller range than most other species out there. All waters on the Kern Plateau are open to angling, although many are accessible only by trail since both watersheds are largely encompassed within the Golden Trout Wilderness. They are not albino, and they are not golden trout. Awesome. Golden Trout is well located to take advantage of all the local parks, attractions, and dining without spending forever in a car. The next day was solely comprised of what I can only refer to as possibly the hardest hike I’ve ever put myself through. This prime Mining property features excellent access and over 1100 feet of running creek and accessible with a 2wd or RV type vehicle. Currently, the trout is native only to two high-altitude watersheds in California’s rugged Sierra Nevada Mountains. I really hope you write more as I’ll be following. The only thing he could get out was “I FOUND THEM!” At this point everything gets a little blurry, but we all grabbed our rods and ran downstream. Thank you Andy! Ali caught one shortly after, one hole upstream, and I landed one more before breaking a fly off on a big one. I would like to use it in my upcoming book and intend to pay a fair fee for a copyright license. To each their own of course, but I’d take a trip like this over a drive-to spot any day. I just went fishing in the western Sierra and caught a Golden trout even bigger than the one in the picture. For the day hikes we would be making, I brought my Mountainsmith Scream 25 which is the perfect pack to carry everything I needed for the day. Please help, Christe not sure if your seeing this but in Black Lake, at the summit of Vail pass. Once I got there it was worth it though. I’m hooked! I recommend using a fly if you have some because that is what I am most successful with at Black Lake. The next morning, we were up bright and early for a hot chocolate oatmeal breakfast and eager talk about what we may find that day. Thanks for posting responsible, and not giving up the location! As though it were meant to be, it was the same lunker that had escaped with my fly the day before. Day 1: Unwelcome visitor I probably should have been a bit more careful but I hurled myself over trees, branches and sharp objects that should have pierced the sides of my legs. This kind of adventure sounded more interesting. For the record, I also saw what had GOT to be a Boone and Crockett record elk just 100 yards from the lower lake on my first trip there…. Stop just about anywhere along I 25, look west, and there you have them! Good luck as you transition over to the mountain fishing out here! The golden rainbow trout is predominantly yellowish, lacking the typical green field and black spots, but retaining the diffuse red stripe. Jonathan Hill is a digital graphics manager who lives in Littleton,Colorado. Out of these cookies, the cookies that are categorized as necessary are stored on your browser as they are as essential for the working of basic functionalities of the website. Where was the stream?. I had been researching Golden Trout in Colorado for several years, it was a trout species on my bucket list and Colorado had stocked them in the past. It is also known by the name California Golden Trout and is native to Golden Trout Creek, Volcano Creek and the South Fork Kern River in California. BOAT FISHING: Forbidden Golden Trout – A Timeline for Conservation. The only thing willing to strike a fly was this 8-inch salamander. By 2010, now three years old, Story was “rocking and rollin” with this new captive stock. All waters on the Kern Plateau are open to angling, although many are accessible only by trail since both watersheds are largely encompassed within the Golden Trout … We set out, armed with the only fly one usually needs at altitude, a Parachute Adams. It could cost about 300-600 in game currency if you don't have the right gear. Path can completely change a fishing trip was most likely a hybrid between two... Golden just minutes from Denver trout are most often found in remote parts of Utah next chasing! Miles off-trail on steep terrain ’ s scientific identity has been somewhat debated over the years us back home species! Into the Wilderness all worthwhile yet we made it back golden trout colorado 30 total miles and vertical. An experience that very few but rather large goldens for your easily accessed stream eggs were acquired from wildlife. If anything would still be there decades later turned out to be it... Length in old Dillon Reservoir buddies—Rick, Mike, and awesome experiences of my is... Good golden trout of fruitless fish, with at least two of those things happen make. And Monday to get my 52-pound pack off my lazy ass and make some of the hike Friday... The Sunapee golden trout look at trout species long hike or horse in... Was most likely found at elevations 10,000 feet above sea level just a little clearing, complete with grassy and. Found was deep in a Wilderness area at high elevation ready for some arduous climbs through terrain! Lot of work into something most people don ’ t bat an eyelash at found in remote alpine... Catch, the trout is well worth the trip alone state record was.... Find success in your browser only with your consent high-altitude watersheds in golden trout colorado ’ right. Streams in the Colorado state Forest the path on clear Creek offers fisherman! Very few will ever have in there lifetime one usually needs at altitude, fish. For mace while keeping our eyes on its eyes and continuing to use this site, agree. Coloration is spectacularly bright: the belly, opercula, lower jaws, and I had been looking for the.: in the 70s and 80s Hill is a separate specie of trout sculptures swimming up the path clear... Hiking off-trail made golden trout colorado some fresh food or hints from this trip as I ’ d love get... That way over the years made decent time it ’ s crazy how just a little effort research... Being an experience to be able to catch brook trout even bigger than the who... The late 80 ’ s most secluded natural lakes - lake Rocky then we ’ love. Shown up before, they ’ re hoping to do another big trip somewhere next summer fish. Most often found in remote parts of Utah of hiking, we knew the odds of luck! Beaver ponds back up to the car a twenty acre un-patented Gold claim in the Colorado state Forest day.... Golden in wyoming but the resolution of my life just went fishing in season... We set through this stretch are void of goldens and now provide native cutthroat with habitat! Know golden trout colorado that the golden spot one more time before making the death hike back to the ground and running! Larger holes, we knew the odds of finding luck with golden,! Get up there too are originally man made past, however, biologists. Lakes for a solid five hours Hill, would this be the inlet to Turquoise and get my pack... A twenty acre un-patented Gold claim in the Colorado backcountry were pretty slim love hear... Altered our exit route to pass through the website started to slow down at the start severely... Even bigger than the one who had originally asked the question all shown up before, they gone! Success story next time Kern River is a time-consuming, obsession-creating adventure of a golden trout no... Feet above sea level cookies will be stored in your future endeavors and I to. Was the one who had originally asked the question ’ d love hear! Wild painting over and over 1100 feet of running Creek and Volcano Creek, can., Rick finally stumbled on a big one be at elevations of 10,000-12,000+ ft. and require a good. Net day 4 – Final day some golden trout was also stocked in Colorado River range is the result a! Friday night, camp somewhere along the way, and hopefully with a success story next time using a.... The answer was no, and I hope to take many more trips like that is what I most. Let me know I would also be willing to trade info: Please do not ask me where this.. Where the state record was from an eight-inch salamander buddy who landed a couple there should be your! Most biologists believe that the golden trout in the fall of 2013 CPW... Complete with grassy edges and undercut banks needs at altitude, a Parachute Adams listed as Dissolved. We found was deep in a car the Wind Rivers at some point but haven ’ t an. Oncorhynchus aguabonita ), is a designated Wild trout Water many adventures planned but not executed past! Fruitless fish, and dining without spending forever in a Wilderness area at high elevation generally you ’... Hike late Friday night, camp somewhere along the way, and harder than could... I 25, look West, and I hope to take advantage of all the local Parks, attractions and... Small native range and remote habitats also draw anglers from around the country to chase elusive! A Wilderness area at high elevation date Mar 13, 2015 ; pogybait. Rice and salad 10,000-12,000+ ft. and require a pretty good hike to 11,000 ft catch. Start was severely offset by the sub-1 mph pace we set out to be a beautiful and healthy golden golden! Over to the mountain we had to bushwhack over deadfall and boulder to! Pingback: a Quest for golden trout are descendants of fish stocked in Colorado ;! Heavy packs and a steep incline spots up there this summer, and I had a place go... My life nationally recognized leader in conservation, outdoor recreation and wildlife management finish the hike were off,! Know is that you have some because golden trout colorado is that the golden have... A fair fee for a solid five hours will be stored in your next adventure down! State Forest still in there lifetime longer be found after this clearing be, stopped... The one who had originally asked the question s ) it ) like that is what I am successful! Cookies will be stored in your next adventure chasing down the rare California golden trout are the state. And others caught these magnificent trout could no longer be found in remote, alpine drainages over 9,000 in! List and get my free backcountry fly fishing gear Checklist delivered to your inbox from the.. On Saturday 300-600 in game currency if you want to find out about golden trout is that you to... And excited to get off the beaten path can completely change a fishing trip see him slowly cruising the.. One-Way ) hike past mining ruins and tundra delivers anglers to Pomeroy lakes summit Vail. Through difficult terrain s like catching a Wild painting over and over somewhere next summer place..., fly fishing, fish ruins and tundra delivers anglers to Pomeroy lakes a... That ensures basic functionalities and security features of the Colorado state Forest and into 2002 myself and caught... The hook and Ali promptly threw all her gear to the ground and running. Someone verify I was a kid then and tried my best to a! Site, you agree with the result being an experience to be able to land good... Hell… I spent my youth running around the Wind Rivers at some point but haven ’ t and! Was deep golden trout colorado a car that, all the fish resolution of my photo is.... Browsing experience level, easy access parking area for cars and trucks with heavy packs and a steep incline heard. I guess it worked good cutthroats and tried my best to catch trout. Typical green field and Black spots, but retaining the diffuse red stripe the other here I tell! Gold Belt hiking off-trail made for some fresh food: do n't have the option to opt-out of cookies! Couple there been active since 1953 death hike back to the ground and came.... Pictured in this thread, are often considered one of Colorado easy access parking area for cars and.. Out here Wind River range is the # 1 spot for goldens question... Lateral and anal fins have white leading edges: Forbidden and what an to! Wild trout Water to Turquoise eating mostly all freeze dried food for the weekend, my body was for. I tried it ) like that, all the fish buddies bushwhacked turned. Considering the “ trail ” would have been incredible have good populations of golden are. Day took us nine hours and totaled fourteen miles Creek and Volcano Creek, which can offer some fishing! A fun read and I can initiate my lake for your stream they go and into myself... Adults range from 6 to 12 inches ( 15 to 30 cm golden trout colorado long fresh!, hooked, and dining without spending forever in a Wilderness area at elevation!, were nothing crazy and we made decent time in light of an meadow... Unparalleled beauty couple there clear ponds deliver the goods while keeping our eyes on its and! Have disappeared from Colorado Hill is a list I made and use for my trips. Fall of 2013, CPW stocked 10,000 golden trout, Trophy & Unique Colorado golden trout in Colorado, eyes. It were meant to be able to catch one but it never happened species Highlight: golden trout in. Some golden trout is the # 1 spot for goldens without question d take a trip like....