Jicarilla Fishing Blog

September 25th 2014

Jicarilla Hunt - Thursday, September 25, 2014

25 September 2014

Fish Fans,

With hunting season in full swing here on the Jicarilla things have been a bit on the busy side. As a few of you know I was out of the office the last couple of days on personal stream research days, fish were caught and dirt roads driven. I believe I have responded to all e-mails and voice-mails, If you have pressing questions e-mail is usually the best, as this time of year I’m in the field quite a bit. I respond as quickly as I can to voice mails.

Many folks are still reporting excellent warm water fishing at Mundo Lake with wooly buggers catching all species except tiger musky.  The lake has been light on anglers and I even managed a day of fishing in the canoe all by myself until late in the afternoon when two float tubers arrived.  Though the bass bite was a bit slower than I would have liked (of course if my arm isn’t sore, I like all other anglers think it could have been better) I did manage a few in the 2lbs range as well as four or five more in the 1lbs range. All my bass were caught on large baitfish imitations in bluegill-ish colorations.

Stone Lake had its first anglers of the fall and they reported a skunk, though high summer like temperatures and clear skies with bright direct sunlight did little to help their chances. I have been meaning to make the trip out to Stone, but have not been able to fit it in. I’m just waiting for the perfect rainy overcast day to do it now…

The Navajo river is running low and clear, this of course can change with rain, but today it looks awesome. Some anglers last week reported catching many small browns in the 10-12” range and one larger specimen that spit the hook after a long downstream run. October last year, when sampling many large fish were captured that were in the process of or just completed spawning, so the next month and a half should provide excellent streamer or Rapala fishing. I have had good luck with rainbow trout colored countdown style Rapalas as well as sculpin and clouser minnow imitations.

 

As always hopefully your fishing proves successful,

 

Jacob

9 September 2014

Jicarilla Hunt - Tuesday, September 09, 2014

9 September 2014

Howdy folks,

I guess the hunting bug has once again swept the Northern New Mexico contingent into the woods and off my favorite fishing holes. Fishing reports have slowed to a tepid pace and most people I have spoken with end their reasoning for not fishing with “ As soon as I bag this bull, I’ll try and get out there…”.

Obviously many sportsmen and women sometimes spilt their free time between two passions, but missing out on fall fishing is just not an option in my eyes.  For those of you who are dedicated anglers you will find the honey holes on the Navajo River, Stone Lake, & Mundo Lake free of all but the most serious anglers for the next few months.

Since I do not have much to report from anglers, I’d like to take this time to give an update on some of the fish crew’s projects and upcoming events.

-          Two weeks ago the fish crew started a new aquatic vegetation control program in Mundo Lake. If this project is successful we hope to move it to Stone Lake in the spring of 2015.

-          The Fish crew along with Jicarilla Construction Department are currently building a new picnic area at Mundo Lake which should provide an excellent location for picnics and large group BBQ’s just 25 yards south of the spillway parking area. Expected completion of the picnic pavilion is mid-October 2014.

-          This week the fish crew is setting fyke nets in Mundo Lake to survey fish abundance and health. These nets will also allow the crew to reduce numbers of over populated channel catfish; the goal is to keep the population in check since there is limited take from anglers currently. Please do not disturb nets.

-          Obviously we have the 9th annual ice fishing derby coming up this winter. There will be some new prize categories, changes in some rules and protocols, and most likely a ton of fun as per usual. If you or your organization would like to donate to this year’s event please call or me send an e-mail at your earliest convenience.  The fish crew has started gathering prizes and planning this upcoming event and hope to have a flier out and it posted on the website as soon as possible.

-          The fish crew is preparing to stock the Jicarilla Lakes this fall with its normal sub-catchable rainbow trout as well as ample loads of catchable-plus (12”-20”) sized rainbow trout which we are able to purchase with the new fish funds which were incorporated into permit sales in 2014.  I will keep you all aware of these stockings as they come up. The fish crew is currently awaiting perfect water conditions as well as scheduling deliveries etc. I would anticipate late October or early November these stockings will start.

 That’s a brief overview of some of the news and projects here on the Jicarilla. As always send me an e-mail with questions etc. jicarillafishqs@gmail.com .

Happy Hunting, I’ll be fishing (when I can…)

-Jacob

 

26 August 2014

Jicarilla Hunt - Tuesday, August 26, 2014

26 August 2014

 

Howdy Fish Fans,

The Mundo Madness fishing derby was held this weekend, and I personally feel it was a success. I do wish a few more people targeted catfish, but that’s okay.

Adult:

1st Place Audie Reval- 17 channel catfish weighing 23lbs 0 oz. (300.00 cash prize)

2nd Place Shawn Jones- Mixed bag of Catfish/Bass/Bluegill weighing 15lbs 0.5oz. (200.00 cash prize)

3rd Place Patrick Lamb- Mixed bag of Bass/bluegill weighing 9lbs. 1.5oz (100.00 cash prize)

The one disappointing part of the derby was how few youth entries we had; all of the youth who participated got prizes regardless of weight caught. It is the firm belief of the Jicarilla Game & Fish Department that youth involvement with the outdoors is paramount to the success of natural resource management in the future. Please take a kid or five fishing!  Next year I would like to see the little ones in equal number to the adults!

A big thanks to everyone who came out and fished the derby as well as the volunteers and my fellow fish crew member Rosenburg Tafoya for always bringing the positive vibes. The Wildhorse Casino & Inn sponsored this event and donated the cash prizes, which I’m sure the top three anglers appreciate greatly.

Mundo: You should be able to limit out on catfish with decent bait from the east shoreline or from fishing in a boat on the south bay.  The top prize winning angler caught the majority of his fish in the last hour of the derby on the east shore line. I can only imagine night fishing there to wear out ones elbow quickly.

Bluegill have taken the hint about the changing weather patterns and headed into a little deeper water. Small beadhead nymphs are just as good as anything else for catching them, but small hooks a piece of worm and a bobber will get it done as well.

Tiger Musky are targeting bluegill right now, so a bluegill colored swim bait would probably get some action if you can place it in front of a player.

Stone: No reports, I’m a little disappointed in the anglers who call and write, there seems to be a lot of interest but no one is willing to give it ago.

Navajo River: Is clearing up and flowing consistently, it is still a hair early for fall fishing, but it is scouting season for me, and who knows you might luck out on an early pre-spawn brown trout… Catch and release of native fish is required, catch and keep is preferred for trout.

Jacob.

22 August 2014

Jicarilla Hunt - Tuesday, August 26, 2014

22 August 2014

Folks,

Things have been very busy with this weekend’s derby, I had totally forgotten about the fishing report.

The Navajo river is shaping up beautifully for some awesome brown trout fishing this fall. Water is clearing up and it is becoming more and more readable by the day. Of course heavy rains can crush this sense of knowledge; it will soon be streamer time for me. One local angler managed two 16” browns last weekend using small rainbow trout colored spinners.

Mundo Lake temperatures are starting to drop with the rainy overcast weather the last few days and trout should start being a little more willing to come out of the depths for spinners, spoons, and of course the favorite powerbait flavor.  Tiger musky fishing has been heating up for a couple of the local anglers using purple plugs. 

I know many of you who read these posts are highly competent anglers, but I would like to take this moment to remind that the musky are not going to bite you. Do not gill finger and hang them vertical, do not rip plugs out of there grills or gills, be very nice to them they are sterile so what we have now is all we have. Catch and release practices for large toothy fish are well developed if you have questions about proper handling please do some youtube research or call me at the office. Do not be afraid to ask, tiger musky are very valuable management fish that the Jicarilla has devoted a large amount of energy intogrowing. Currently the musky are approximately 30” and are very willing to bite a well presented lure or fly.

I still have not received any reports from Stone Lake. The last few overcast days I think probably could have been the best days of the summer on Stone, sadly for me I was at work.  I will be targeting these days as my Stone Lake fishing days this fall and hopefully will be able to catch a couple or three.

Hope to see you all out there for this weekend’s derby and good luck in your next fishing adventure.

 

Jacob

August 11 2014

Jicarilla Hunt - Monday, August 11, 2014

August 11th 2014

Howdy Fish Fans,

What a busy couple of weeks here for the fish crew. We were all out of the office last week presenting at the Native American Fish & Wildlife Society Meeting, which very nice was a hair on the stressful side of things.

When we were gone monsoon rains hammered the Northern Portion of the Jicarilla, really causing a mess on the river road (J-2) and J-9. The Road has been graded now, so it is ready for late summer fall fishing. Turbidity is on the down swing and clearing up, though I’m not sure the monsoon pattern has subsided for the year (which is great news).

Though Mundo Lake has had a couple anglers on it the last week, I have not received any significant reports. One angler took his two boys out and caught dinner of 40 bluegill last week, all of healthy size.  A couple nice rainbows in the 16-18” range were taken home, The significant  rainfall has dropped temperatures allowing for better trout fishing conditions. As always the cat fishing should be excellent.

No reports from Stone Lake have been received by the Fish Crew. The water level has come up a bit after some inflow bulldozer work done by the Fish Crew’s heavy machinery division. Though this work is just a small piece of the puzzle, but the more water the better. Personally I cannot wait to launch the canoe for some awesome fall fishing.

I will be out of the office this week (Aug11-Aug15) but will be back in action on Aug 18th. But please continue to e-mail reports and questions to jicarillafishqs@gmail.com, I will respond as soon as I’m back in the office.

Jacob

Mundo Madness

Jicarilla Hunt - Monday, July 28, 2014

28 July 2014

 

Howdy Fish Fans,

Last week’s report is a little late due to the annual summer Navajo River Sampling trip that kept the fisheries crew in there waders, not in the office all last week. Sampling the river is always exciting as you never know what you’re going to find.

Saturday August 23rd is the Mundo Madness Bass, Bluegill, and Catfish Derby. Derby hours are from 11:00am to 6:00pm and entry fee is only Five Dollars per person.  Registration will occur at the MUNDO LAKE SPILLWAY PARKING AREA from 10:00am-11:00am. Weigh in will occur at the MUNDO LAKE SPILLWAY PARKING AREA from 6:00-6:30. Prize Ceremony will occur at the WILDHORSE CASINO & INN at approximately 7:30pm. To collect prize monies the individual must be at least 18 years of age or have a parent or guardian collect prizes.

1st Prize $300.00 Cash

2nd Prize $200.00 Cash

3rd Prize $100.00 Cash

As well as children’s prizes to be determined.

Prizes will be awarded based on total weight of fish. Trout ARE NOT eligible for weigh in!

A complete list of rules and regulations will be available for each contestant at sign it. The Fish Crew will also be posting a flyer on JicarillaHunt.com main page ASAP.

 

Hope to see a good turnout of friends and family from the Jicarilla community as well as regional anglers.

 

Jacob

17 July 2014

Jicarilla Hunt - Thursday, July 17, 2014

17 July 2014

Howdy Fish Fans,

Yesterday the Fisheries Crew stocked Mundo, Enbom, and Stone Lake with approximately 21,500 brown trout. Sadly the water quality at Horse and Dulce is still too impaired due to drought conditions to stock. Good news is that does mean more fish for the other lakes.  The Department continues to monitor water quality at all the lakes to ensure when acceptable values are found to be consistent fish will be stocked immediately.

The monsoons have dropped significant rains here in Dulce which is very good news for the lakes and the wildlife on the reservation.  Though the lightning and rains have made fishing the evening bite very difficult as well as blown out the river. Please use extreme caution navigating any off pavement road after the rains, as most washes have been running like flooded rivers and mud is thick in certain areas.  I know a lot of fishermen have awesome big tough trucks, but all these trucks seem to do is tear up a perfectly good road before getting stuck. Lightning is as I have mentioned before, No Joking Matter, please exercise all do caution.

Cat fishing at Mundo has been exceptional with many fish caught in the 18”-20” range. I know for a fact that much larger channel cats roam the deep. Please take these fish home and eat them, we currently have an over abundance of channel cat fish and the trout will thank you every time you throw one in the fryer.

I am quite excited for what these rains and fish mean for the fall fishing here on the Jicarilla. I personally find fall to be the best time to fish as it is my favorite time of the year and the fishing is usually excellent. 

Summer is obviously warm water fishing, and with that a recent sample of Tiger musky showed excellent growth and above average condition factors.  Most of the tigers are 25-30” and should continue to grow for a few more months this year. I have received a lot of concern over the tiger musky eating trout, they do in fact eat trout but there numbers are so low that they should have no serious impact on trout population numbers. What does have a serious impact on trout numbers are channel catfish, come eat them.

Little Beaver weekend is quite a show around these parts with the pow wow, rodeo, carnival and festivities. If the weather pushing you off the lake, come enjoy a roasted corn and fry bread here in Dulce. Festivities start Friday.

 Adios,

Jacob

9 July 2014

Jicarilla Hunt - Wednesday, July 09, 2014

09 July 2014

Howdy Fish Fans,

The Monsoon season appears to have started which is a blessing and a curse. The river has been fluctuating in flow and turbidity after rain events increases as one would expect. Worms and grasshoppers have been keeping the few anglers who fish the river regularly hooked into mostly 12-16 inch brown trout with the occasional rainbow. In the higher turbidity larger spinners have also been effective.

 A family of Anglers who regularly fish Mundo lake have been landing 16”+ trout from the dock using powerbait and water bobbers filled with spilt shot, I have never seen this method but it seems to work very well for them. With the shot filled bobber they are able to cast incredible distance and access deeper water off the dock.

Stone Lake to my knowledge has had no angling pressure in quite a few weeks, though with the incredibly warm summer temperatures this is probably a blessing for our prized 20+” trout.

As it is apparent to anyone in Northern New Mexico or Southern Colorado this drought has been detrimental to most fisheries in the area in some way or another. So these monsoon rains are a blessing though they do make fishing the afternoon bite a little more difficult, or dangerous. Please use all safety precautions when the lighting comes in and enjoy the rain from the truck.

Yesterday the Fisheries Division with ample help from the youth workers installed log steps from the boat launch area (spill way @ Mundo) up to the vault toilet. This should make answering the call of the wild a little easier. The steps should be completed in the next day with a layer of gravel and a little fine tuning.

 

Jacob

June 30th 2014

Jicarilla Hunt - Monday, June 30, 2014

30 June 2014

Howdy Fish Fans,

Just a reminder Dulce Lake, Embom Lake, and Horse Lake were not stocked this year and are all assumed to be fishless. Mundo and Stone Lake were both stocked in April. 

Important Update: Fire danger on the reservation has been upgraded to extreme. With this upgrade has come fire restrictions to campers, NO fires are allowed even if in a fire ring. Charcoal and Gas Grills are allowed.  For more information regarding fire restrictions call Bureau of Indian Affairs Jicarilla Agency Forestry (575) 759-3963.

The Navajo River has been coming down and turbidity is as low as is anticipated, of course rains can change this very quickly. Anglers using “sculpzillas” have been catching brown trout in the 11-14” range and one fish that got away was reported to be of large proportions.  Local anglers have had good results on worms. If using bait on the river please be attentive, as the protected native fish species (roundtail chub, flannelmouth sucker, and bluehead sucker) are highly attracted to worms and the like. Grasshopper patterns drowned are a very good way to tempt brown trout from the depths. As one angler found out the hard way last week always check your knots and spiltshot connections as a broken tippet may cost you the fish of the season, or lifetime.

Mundo Lake has been keeping the kids happy with bountiful catches of very nice sized bluegill, if you want to keep a future fisher person entertained for hours bring a handful of medium sized beadhead nymphs, and tell them to hold on! These fish are excellent eating and the average size has increased dramatically from previous years, making filleting dinner and easier task.

 I would like to ask anglers to pitch in and help feed your families with channel catfish from Mundo.  Catfish have been an underutilized species in Mundo and I fear an over population of the tasty animals could lead to reduced catches of all species. 

On August 23rd 2014 the Department will be holding a catfish, bluegill, and bass derby on Mundo Lake to help manage the warm water species present in the lake. More information will follow on the Derby in next week’s fishing report.

I have not received any reports from Stone Lake, water temperatures have increased with the warmer weather, it would be best to fish the lake sunup to lunch and late afternoon till sun down. These times of the day seem to be the best time to fish according to the local Stone Guru’s.

As always feel free to e-mail specific questions to jicarillafishqs@gmail.com or call the office and ask for Jacob (575) 759-3255.

 

J.

10 June 2014

Jicarilla Hunt - Tuesday, June 10, 2014

10th June 2014

It is feeling more and more like summer here on the Jicarilla.  The dragon flies and damsel flies are in full “bloom” so to speak and fisherman should be able to take advantage of some awesome hatches on Mundo and Stone.  Though surface action is limited, due in part to a healthy osprey population at both lakes.

Mundo Lake has provided plenty of anglers there limit in the last week or two while other anglers who may not have heeded my advice to try new tactics had a hard time on the standard powerbait and egg sinker.  Of course of the anglers that limited out half of which were using yellow or pink powerbait and an egg sinker, just not right at the boat ramp.

Some anglers with boats have been saying trolling spoons had been slow, but today an angler who has been trolling said if he wasn’t busy wresting his dog and opening a soda for his daughter he could have landed two this morning. The angler indicated that the strikes “ Were not from some dinker, but at least an 18 inch fish” of course fish stories are just that…Right?

The Bluegill have been keeping the children very busy and happy, while providing ample table fare for the family. I get a lot of complaints about these fish from trout anglers, but they have obviously not seen the face of a four year old after he lands his first or his tenth fish of the day. If you would like an awesome meal and failed to connect with a trout, bluegills are there in good skillet size and numbers.

Two local anglers bass fishing Mundo reported 2 tiger musky catches, the anglers reported the fish to be fat and sassy in the high 20” range. Please catch and carefully release these amazing fish, it is the law.

Weed harvesting is still occurring on Mundo, when operations are done there the plan is to move the machine to Stone.

Stone Lake has proven to be a difficult nut to crack for some of New Mexico’s float tubers. With winds making all day fishing hard early in the season and prolific hatches of mayflies, damsel flies, and dragon flies filling trout’s bellies. Two local anglers reported good success on red and white streamers as well as purple and orange egg sucking leeches. Though they were very zipper lipped about where in the lake and the exact quantity landed the term “Banner Day” was used five times that I counted.

The Navajo River has seen what appeared to be its high water season and is coming into its lower turbidity summer flow nicely. Of course monsoon rains will cause havoc, now would be an excellent time to come give the river a shot, It is also just a darn fine place to beat the summer heat wet wading. Crayfish, stonefly, and minnow patterns should provide action if you have the right set of eyes to find the prime holding water.  

No one seems to ask me what I personally fish or how, so I don’t know if I should share. My plans for Jicarilla fishing this year include, top water fly bass at Mundo, a fly caught tiger musky, and more monster trout out of the Navajo. I can usually be found far from the truck wet wading or paddling my canoe on weed lines throughout the summer months.

 

Jacob