Miramonte Reservoir boat ramps to close next week

Due to the low water level at Miramonte Reservoir, both boat ramps at the lake will be closed the week of July 8.

Lake users, however, can continue to use hand-launched craft such as canoes, sea kayaks and row boats. Float tubes can also be used.

The level of the reservoir is being drawn down by Colorado Parks and Wildlife in preparation for an operation to remove all fish. The water will be treated with Rotenone, an organic pesticide that breaks down quickly in the environment and poses no danger to other animals or plant life. The treatment will ensure that smallmouth bass are eliminated from the reservoir. The warm-water species was stocked illegally before 2011. Biologists are confident that a smallmouth bass fishery cannot be sustained in the long term.

Licensed anglers can continue unlimited harvest of fish until the reservoir closes for the treatment, said Eric Gardunio, aquatic biologist for Colorado Parks and Wildlife in Montrose. For the rest of the summer fishing will be best for bass, he said. Anglers have harvested a lot of trout during the last few months and those remaining are likely in deeper, cooler waters.

After the treatment in September, Parks and Wildlife will stock trout fingerlings and catchables and soon as water conditions allow.

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