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Wolford Ice Fishing: Catching brown trout on a bluebird day

Fishermen and women peeled off layers in the Saturday sun — not a typical action in mid-February atop a frozen reservoir near Kremmling.

The bright sky and dazzling snow made for a bluebird day on Wolford Mountain Reservoir. While the fish bites were scarce for some, the anglers on the ice were happy to be out enjoying the 23rd annual Wolford Ice Fishing Competition.

Gary Romo hadn’t caught anything a few hours into the tournament, but he said that might be because he was fishing somewhere different. From Thornton, this was Romo’s fifth year at the tournament. In previous years he typically fished in a spot a few hundred yards away, but found that it gets too crowded.



“That happened to us last year, we had it all to ourselves on Friday, but come tournament day we were surrounded,” he said.

The Wolford Tournament is a favorite tradition of Romo’s that he shares with his friends and children. This year, Romo and his group chose to fish where it was a bit more open, which he said may not do as well but at least allows better space.



“This place has always provided us some good fishing,” he said.

Classic rock played from tents on the lake and the scent of gasoline from ATVS and snowmobiles mingled with the fresh air. Romo recalled a former tournament when cars were allowed on the reservoir, but only ATVs and snowmobiles were permitted on the 15 inches of ice this year.

Doug Miskol, from Denver, also hadn’t caught any fish by about 9:30 that morning.

“But you know what, there’s still a lot of time left,” he said with a smile.

The tournament took place from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday with hourly prizes for the biggest fish. Over 500 anglers participated in the tournament.

This year was Miskol’s first at Wolford. He came up with his friend, also from Denver, who has a place in Grand Lake. While the weather was great, he was hopeful for some catches before the day was over.

“It’s nice to have a nice day today,” Miskol said. “Get a bite and we’ll be doing better.”


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