Published by: Harlan Kimball
Pike can be one of the most entertaining fish to catch on a fly rod. While they have a reputation as an aggressive predator, Colorado pike can be a frustrating fish to target. Timing and location are some of the most important factors when it comes to having a successful day on the water. Luckily, the stars aligned on this particular pike mission and fish were seen, caught and released. Check out the photos from our day below...
The day started on the docks questioning what the pike might be intersted in. Kokanee streamers? Crawfish streamers? Brown trout streamers? Hares Ears? Wives tales and educated guesses were thrown around but the truth was out there somewhere, we just had to go figure it out.
Bass boat captain Ben (AKA: Captain Ron) took his position and started the process. Cast, cast, cast...
The Howler Bros Lightning Quilted Jacket keeping Ron both warm and confident. Look good, feel good, fish good..
Set, set, set and a different looking trout on the line..
With heavy line and a heavier rod, you can really put the wood to the fish. A quicker fight is always better for the fish, especially with Lake Trout. These fish can often live to over 25 years and will fight to complete exhaustion.
Captain Ron with a warm up Lake Trout. These trout will begin to show up in the shallows in early September and present a unique opportunity on the fly..
Not seeing any pike at the first spot made us rethink our plan and motor to the next location. Sometimes lake fishing can be tough on the mind and a location change helps reset and remotivate..
It was time for me to take a few swings. Sight fishing pike is exciting, stressful, and just plain confusing. At this point, fish were all around us cruising the shallows, we just had to find one willing enough to take a bite.
A few moments later the fly landed and before I could say, I suck, chaos ensued. A heavy fish on the line...
Exactly what we were searching for, a big angry predator.
A second looksy...
- Be patient and don't give up. Pike in Colorado can be moody and fishing can turn on/off with the flick of a switch.
- Using wire tippet might save you from breaking off "the big one" but pike will sometimes shy away from a fly with a big piece of wire attached to it.
- Experiment with different flies (not just pike flies). A pike's diet is expansive. Kokanee, rainbow trout, brown trout, leeches, crawdads and suckerfish are all on the menu for these predators.
- Don't stay in one place for too long. If you don't have any action within the first 100 casts it would be in your best interest to move spots and find some different water. Drop offs, weed beds, flats and inlets are all places where pike reside.
Good luck out there,