Let’s Get Reelin’

Great family fishing spots for you and the little ones.

Two kids fishing on a lake next to trees.
Courtesy iStockPhoto

Fishing is a great family activity. It’s not hard to learn, and even if the fish are taking their sweet time to bite, kids can take in Colorado’s scenic views while learning the value of patience (something smartphones just can’t teach). Spring fishing in Colorado is some of the best of the year. The ice is melting, water is warming, and fish are looking to bite, so get out there and cast your line at these fun family fishing spots.

Staunton State Park

At Colorado’s newest state park ($7 day fee), 40 miles southwest of Denver in Pine, Davis Ponds are stocked with rainbow trout and can be accessed from the main parking area.

Lily Pond

This one-acre pond in Washington Park is for kids 16 and under. The park also has two larger bodies of water to fish in, Smith Lake and Grasmere Lake, in case adults want to join in.

Eaglewatch Lake

Part of the South Platte Park Ponds in Littleton, this is a great local fishing spot for families. It’s stocked with rainbow trout and has a variety of other fish looking to bite. If visiting on a weekend, get there early as the parking lot fills up quickly.

Two kids looking at a fish in a net.
Courtesy iStockPhoto

Evert Pierson Kids’ Fishing Pond

This pond, along the Boulder Creek Path, was transformed from a CU gravel pit into a kids’ fishing pond in 1949 and is the perfect place to take reelers 12 and under. It’s stocked several times a year with trout (both big and small), ensuring that kids never leave disappointed. Rod rentals are $1 per child, and fish cost $1.25/inch; you can take them home for dinner after having them cleaned and prepped.

Izaak Walton Pond

This 15.7-acre pond in Longmont is for anglers 15 and younger, though adults can help. There’s an array of fish swimming around, including rainbow trout stocked in the spring and catfish stocked in the early summer.

Hayden Meadows Reservoir

If you’re looking to get out of town with the kids and fish while taking in some scenic views, this intimate pond in Leadville is the place. It also has trails to hike on and a concrete walkway that allows those with limited mobility to get close enough to the water to cast their lines.

More Things to Know

  • A closed-face spincast rod and reel are perfect for kids.
  • Cast into the wind on a windy day so the lure moves with the other food in the water.
  • The best time to fish in the spring is late mornings, when the sun isn’t too bright but has still had a chance to warm the shallow waters. Fish are also known to bite on cloudy days.
  • Kids 16 and younger can fish for free in Colorado; adults 16 and older must buy a one-day, five day, or annual fishing license, in addition to a $10 habitat stamp for the first purchase of each year. Licenses can be bought online, by phone (at 1-800-244-5613), or at any of the more than 700 License Agent locations throughout the state.