This year there is a new rule for Ice Fishing on Eagle Nest Lake that we are very excited about. In the past years the rule stated that the lake would be closed to ice fishing if the ice were under 9 inches, with our new rule we will be allowed to fish when the ice reaches 5 inches deep! This means more ice fishing! We're pumped and we hope you are too! If you have never ice fished before we recommend giving it a try! We have all the equipment for rent as well as guided trips! On our trip we will provide a insulated, heated ice fishing tent for comfort in all weather conditions, gas powered auger, lures, and rods reels and snacks! We can show you a good time on a guided trip without you having to break the bank to buy equipment to ice fish! During the winter these fish are swimming around looking for any opportunity to feed in the cold water, leaving the fisherman with the best chances to land a trophy sized fish that Eagle Nest Lake is known for! With all of that being said I am going to lead into the current water conditions for the fishing in the area!
Eagle Nest lake is begging to build ice on the edges of the lake and we are hoping to have a solid freeze soon to get the ice fishing season off to a good start. The month of November was slow and steady for Salmon Snagging and seems to continue so better get out and snag them before the lake freezes! Trout fishing has been awesome in the lake for the last few weeks and seems to be picking up a bit making the anticipation of ice fishing build even more! Perch are biting as well. I have spotted a few pike in the past weeks following my fly to the edge of the shoreline but I haven't seen anyone catching them.
The dropping temperatures in the Cimorron Canyon are causing the river to freeze over but right now some open water can be found on the river but with every night a little more freezes over. As you move downriver away from the dam chances of finding open moving water increases. Gravel pit lakes are about 90 percent frozen leaving best spots in the river. Find a large open hole or short stretch of moving water but be as sneaky as possible. Low water conditions has these fish spook at the first shadow they think they see.
The Red River has been fishing very well. The upper section of the river is about all frozen or covered in snow leaving the best fishing to be found near and down river from Questa, NM. The section near the hatchery has been fishing good but there is a lot of snow so watch for slippery areas. The confluence of the Red River & Rio Grande has been fishing good, the hike will definitely warm you up! Take a thermos with soup!
The Rio Grande has been fishing great. The Pilar area has been fishing well for pike and for trout, with the flow holding around 700 cfs. If you're targeting bigger pike, size up to a 1/0 or 2/0 fly for best results. Smaller streamers will still get you results and also get opportunities at trout and small mouth bass. Nymphs are working well for trout. There are still a few good hatches in the warmest part of the day. If you would like to order any flies or up to date info please call The Shack 505-974-9168.
I will post again soon about our upcoming Ice Fishing Tournament which will be held on the last Saturday in January! I'll also post again as soon as the lake is open to ice fishing.