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Four of the Best Fishing Spots on the Western Slope | RMHP Blog

Four of the Best Fishing Spots on the Western Slope | RMHP Blog

By RMHP

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Four of the Best Kid-Friendly Fishing Spots on the Western Slope

Whether you fish with your kids often or you’re preparing for their first trip, you want to choose a location that offers well-stocked lakes and rivers. Of course, catching fish is never a guarantee, but the right spot makes a big difference in how much your children will grow to love fishing.

With that in mind, here are four of the top fishing and fly-fishing spots on the Western Slope for your next family fishing adventure.

1. Bighorn Sheep Canyon

If you want breathtaking scenery to enjoy with your littlest family members, Bighorn Sheep Canyon (which is on the Arkansas River) offers a variety of adventures. There’s even plenty to do beyond fishing, such as whitewater rafting and camping. However, trout fishing (both rainbow and brown) is definitely one of the canyon’s biggest draws.

The canyon is named for the Bighorn Sheep that call this place home, and if you’re lucky, you might see some.

2. Grand Mesa Lakes

The Grand Mesa Lakes have a variety of fish in their waters, making this a popular travel destination for avid anglers. Trout is particularly abundant, though the lakes also boast cutthroat, rainbows, and brooks.

Be sure to double-check regulations before you go, because rainbow trout are catch and release. When fishing with young children, this rule presents a perfect opportunity to teach them about fishing laws and what catch and release means.

3. Crawford Reservoir

Open year-round for anglers, Crawford Reservoir has an impressive range of fish that includes black crappie, catfish, pike, yellow perch, bass, and rainbow trout.

The reservoir is a quick two miles from the town of Crawford, where you’ll have lodging options beyond camping. Experts anticipate that the fish population within the reservoir will grow in 2020, so consider bringing your youngest anglers to this potential hotspot.

4. Animas River

Durango isn’t the only access point for the Animas River, but this particular stretch of the water is a great spot for rainbow and brown trout fishing.

You can go on your own, or book a trip with a local outfitter. You’ll also be spoilt for choice with lodging near the water— there are plenty of accommodation options in Durango, plus countless camping locations.

The Animas has trout that range in size from 10 to 15 inches long. The record for the biggest fish caught in this river currently stands at just over twenty pounds. If your kiddos are up for a challenge, that’s the metric to beat!

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