The Stream Doctor

July 4th, 2005

Email YOUR Questions directly to the Stream Doctor. This is your opportunity to get an experts professional opinion on anything stream related.

Q. Hello, my name is Erik and I have a question about my stream. Let me give you some info on it that might help you answer my question. The river I have a question about is the Fraser River in Grand County, Colorado. It is the first main stream that flows into the Colorado River. Every summer the fishing is great; then around late October, it's like all the fish disappear and it stays like this until late spring. Where do the fish go and what happens to them?

A. I know the Fraser; I live in Estes Park and spent three summers working in the Grand Lake area. I suspect, but can't prove, that part of what you are experiencing is the fact that many trout slow down their metabolic activities, including feeding activity, as water temperatures cool down. They also usually seek deeper pools at this time to avoid getting caught in shallow water that might freeze. Another possibility might be related to whether you are observing natural or stocked fish, although I don't know anything about current trout populations in terms of wild fish numbers vs. stocked fish numbers. If it is heavily stocked and natural reproduction is low or nonexistent, then you might just be observing the removal of planted fish as the season progresses. Your local DOW fish biologist is more familiar with the situation than I. ~ Bert

If you have a question, please feel free to contact me.
~ C. E. (Bert) Cushing, aka Streamdoctor
105 W. Cherokee Dr.
Estes Park, CO 80517
Phone: 970-577-1584

The 'Stream Doctor' is a retired professional stream ecologist and author, now living in the West and spending way too much time fly-fishing. You are invited to submit questions relating to anything stream related directly to him for use in this Q & A Feature at

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