By GEORGE MORSE
Sports and Outdoors
Los Alamos Daily Post
Editor’s note: Lake and park schedules are changing often during the COVID-19 pandemic so call ahead for the latest information.
The fishing opportunities for New Mexico anglers continue to expand after more State Parks are opened up for day use only.
Nine more State Parks opened May 30 for day use only this weekend. Five more State Parks will open for day use today, June 1 to bring the total number of State Parks reopened to 31 since being closed March 13 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
There is still no overnight camping allowed at State Parks.
All developed campgrounds in Carson National Forest and Santa Fe National Forest are still closed. There is dispersed camping along Forest Service roads that are open. Restrooms and trash cans are locked, so please pack out your waste and trash. If you bring it in, pack it out. There have been numerous reports of garbage left behind at popular parking areas and fishing locations.
Anglers should be aware that most State Parks are open only during specific hours, with most being closed by 5 p.m. Face coverings are required when in public and anglers should practice social distancing.
Fenton Lake State Park in the Jemez Mountains still remains closed.
Anglers are urged to checkout specific State Parks on the State Parks website: emnrd.state.nm.us
The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish has resumed publishing its weekly stocking report informing anglers where catchable-size rainbow trout have been stocked within the past week. The winter stocking of trout in Southern New Mexico has been halted due to hot weather and trout will be stocked only in waters that remain cool enough to sustain them during the summer.
The summer stocking of channel catfish has begun but the Department is not yet releasing where they have been stocked to avoid overcrowding by anglers.
Among the more popular areas now open to anglers are Heron Lake State Park and El Vado Lake State Park near Tierra Amarilla. Both Parks are open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Both should offer good bank fishing for rainbow trout. El Vado Lake also has brown trout, smallmouth bass and perch. Heron Lake has kokanee salmon and some lake trout.
The Chama River has seen good fishing recently with streamflows above El Vado Lake running well-below normal for this time of year, making for excellent fly-fishing conditions. The streamflow below El Vado Dam was 605 cubic-feet-per-second. The fishing has been fair-to-good for stocked rainbow trout and wild brown trout.
Laguna del Campo near Los Ojos remains closed to anglers.
The Trout Lakes near Cebolla were stocked May 27 with 879 rainbow trout. The fishing should be good.
The Canjilon Lakes near Canjilon were stocked May 27 with 879 rainbow trout and some brook trout are also being caught in the Upper Lake. The fishing has been fair-to-good. The campground is closed.
The gate to Hopewell Lake between Tierra Amarilla and Tres Piedras is locked. Anglers may park and walk in to the lake. The fishing should be good for wild brook trout and holdover rainbow trout.
The Department’s Wildlife Area on the Rio de los Pinos near the Colorado border is closed.
Abiquiu Lake is open and the boat ramp is accessible. Bank fishing has been fair for walleye and smallmouth bass, with some rainbow trout being caught.
The streamflow in the Chama River below Abiquiu Dam was 718 cubic-feet-per second. Access from Abiquiu Dam is now open. Call 505.685.4371 for access information.
In the Jemez Mountains, San Gregorio Lake was stocked three times last week with a total of 5,868 rainbow trout. The fishing should be good. Streams in the Jemez Mountains are already running low for this time of year. If you can find where the fish are concentrated, the fishing could be good. The Seven Springs Fish Hatchery is closed to the public.
Santa Cruz Lake near Chimayo is completely closed according to the Taos Office of the Bureau of Land Management website. There are reports of anglers walking in to the lake, but officially it is closed.
The streamflow in the Rio Grande is well-below normal for this time of year and the river is in excellent condition for fly fishing. The Rio Grande was stocked in the Pilar area May 27 with 2,000 rainbow trout. The fishing has been good.
The Rio Pueblo near Penasco was stocked May 28 with 1,200 rainbow trout. The streamflow is very low for this time of year and the fishing should be good. The pond at Sipapu was stocked May 28 with 166 rainbow trout.
There is a good streamflow in the Red River. The Red River above Questa was stocked May 27 with 2,903 rainbow trout. The fishing has been good. The fishing should be good below Questa and in the town of Red River. The Red River Fish Hatchery is closed to the public.
Eagle Rock Lake near Questa was stocked May 29 with 1,000 catchable-size rainbow trout and with 54 rainbow trout averaging 14.4 inches in size. The fishing should be good.
Eagle Nest Lake State Park will open for day use 6 a.m. 9 5 p.m. daily. No overnight camping. The fishing should be good for rainbow trout, northern pike and yellow perch.
The Cimarron River in Cimarron Canyon State Park is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. The fishing should be good for stocked rainbow trout and wild brown trout. If the Gravel Pit Lakes at Maverick Campground have been stocked they should be good for rainbow trout. No overnight camping.
Stubblefield Lake should be good for walleye, largemouth bass and catfish. Maxwell Lake 13 on the Maxwell Lakes National Wildlife Refuge should be fair for holdover rainbow trout.
Sugarite Canyon State Park near Raton is now open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Lake Maloya was stocked May 29 with 2,600 catchable-size rainbow trout and with 400 rainbow trout averaging 14.4 inches in size. Lake Alice was stocked May 29 with 499 rainbow trout.
Clayton Lake State Park is open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday-Sunday. The fishing should be fair for stocked rainbow trout and it has some big walleyes.
The Charette Lakes between Wagon Mound and Springer should be worth trying for holdover rainbow trout and yellow perch.
Coyote Creek State Park near Guadalupita is now open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday-Sunday. It was stocked May 26 with 801 rainbow trout. The Coyote Creek Pond was stocked with 599 rainbow trout. The fishing has been good.
Storrie Lake State Park near Las Vegas is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday-Sunday. This lake is better after stockings of rainbow trout and it was not stocked last week. There are also some big catfish in this lake.
The Gallinas River near Las Vegas is running low. It was stocked May 26 with 1,000 rainbow trout and has some wild brown trout. The Gallinas Ice Pond was stocked with 200 rainbow trout.
The Pecos Canyon State Park between the towns of Pecos and Cowles is now open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday-Sunday. The Pecos River was stocked four times last week with a total of 3,000 catchable-size rainbow trout and 280 rainbow trout averaging 16.7 inches in size. The streamflow is somewhat below normal but still good. The fishing has been good.
Conchas Lake State Park is now open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday-Sunday. The fishing has been good for walleye, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass and catfish. The Cannon Cove area, which is privately owned, has been closed to the public.
Santa Rosa Lake State Park is now open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday-Sunday. The fishing should be good for walleye, smallmouth bass and crappie.
Over in the Four Corners area, Navajo Lake State Park is now open 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. The fishing for smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, northern pike and crappie should be good. The trout fishing should be fair. No reports on kokanee salmon.
The San Juan River below Navajo Dam has been running low for this time of year at 515 cubic-feet-per-second. The fishing in the Quality Water has been good with a variety of fly patterns. The fishing in the Bait Water has been good with flies, bait and lures. The Bait Water was stocked May 26 with 4,620 rainbow trout.
Tingley Beach in Albuquerque is still closed and rainbow trout are not being stocked now. The drainage ditches in the Albuquerque area are not being stocked. The fishing in the drainage ditches has been fair for catfish, carp and some largemouth bass. The streamflow in the Rio Grande in the Albuquerque area is well-below normal and the fishing has been fair for catfish and carp.
Elephant Butte Lake State Park near Truth or Consequences is now open 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. The Park will be allowed to operate at 25 percent of capacity. The fishing should be good for white bass and catfish. Largemouth bass, smallmouth bass and walleye are also available at the Butte.
The streamflow in the Rio Grande below Elephant Butte Dam is heavy at over 2,000 cubic-feet-per-second. The fishing should be at least fair for catfish, white bass and walleye.
Caballo Lake State Park is open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday-Sunday. The fishing should be fair for walleye, white bass and catfish.
In the Ruidoso area, the fishing for rainbow trout has been good at Alto Lake and at Grindstone Reservoir. The fishing for bluegill has been good at Grindstone Lake. Both Lakes also have catfish and bass.
In the Silver City area, Lake Roberts is open and the fishing has been fair for rainbow trout and some Gila trout. Lake Roberts is a trophy-bass lake with a limit of two largemouth bass per-day with a size limit of 18 inches. There also are catfish and bluegill here. It was stocked twice with a total of 5,418 rainbow trout last week.
Bear Canyon Lake is closed, as is Bill Evans Lake Wildlife Management Area.
The streamflow in the Gila River is good. They have been catching some big flathead catfish in the lower Gila River. There are also smallmouth bass and channel catfish here. In its upper reaches and forks of the Gila there are rainbow trout, brown trout and Gila trout.
The trout fishing has been very good at Quemado Lake. It was stocked May 29 with 2,700 rainbow trout.