Last spring we were in the boats on Lake Granby April 14th. This year I fished on the ice April 28th. What a difference a year makes. Over the next 2 weeks Granby will be losing it's ice. Looking up into Rocky Mountain National Park (above Grand Lake) I see a lot of snow. The snow pack site (snotell) says we are at 103% in the entire upper Colorado river basin. Lake Granby is about 65 ft low but with our snow pack it might not fill but it should get within 20ft. of full.
There is some open water on Lake Granby around Stillwater creek, Arapahoe Creek and the Willow Creek inlet. Northern Colorado water conservancy district is currently pumping water in from the Frazier river (it runs through Winter Park) and Willow creek reservior. This is the only fishable water right now. With the winds coming every day Rainbow bay will be opening up a little more every day. Shadow Mtn reservior has open water from the pump canal to the islands. Grand lake has open water at the east and west ends.
As the ice receeds from the banks I will be fishing new and older water every day. I will start by casting sebile swimbaits and XCaliber crank baits around the ice edge early in the morning, late in the evenings and on cloudy or windy days. The set up I will use for this is a 6'3" MH Fenwick Elite Tech rod teamed with a Wright McGill Sabalos 2500 reel spoled with 14/6 fireline.
When the sun comes out I will switch to 4"power minnows, tube jigs and maribous. I will use the same rod, reel and line combo but I will attach a short leader of 10lb flourocarbon.
Covering ground is key to ice off, keep casting and walking down the bank. If I see a fish or catch one work that area hard then move on.
Ice off is a great time to shake off the winter blues, as I am working down the banks I always keep a grocery bag with me for trash along the banks. The lower elevations are already pumping out some seriously large fish and the mountains are about to join the big spring party.
Please consider releasing any larger fish you catch the future of our grand children depends on it. I still have a few days open this spring, if your interested please drop me an email.