The lake is “coming back,” according to the CPW officer we spoke to on the shore of Echo Canyon Reservoir in Pagosa Springs, Colorado. We have to admit the fishing was excellent this June (2021) and surprisingly very fishable from shore. The water was low, clear, and the fish were hungry.
We arrived in early June for 4 days to fish the Pagosa Springs area. We fished a couple new spots including Million Lake and Albert Park Reservoir. Our favorite go to place is Echo Canyon Reservoir located about 4 miles south of town. We love this place because of the wide variety of fish you can catch here and ease of fishing from shore. We caught, green sunfish, rainbow trout, largemouth bass, yellow perch, catfish, and black crappie.
This lake is family friendly with plenty of shore to fish from. It also has a boat ramp for kayaks and boats. In fact, we took our nephew, Dalton, who is 14, with us this year who has not fished much prior to this trip. He had a fun time catching fish and, in fact, he is applying for the Master Angler certificate with one of the bass he caught. There are restrooms in the parking area. We always park in the parking lot by the dam. The area by the dam fills up quickly with eager anglers due to the accessibility and grassy areas to put lawn chairs and coolers for a fun day of fishing.
We go mobile with backpacks packed with our gear and lunch. We walked across the dam around the lake past the two fence lines. As we walked around the lake we could see fish staring up at the shore and swimming by. There were several sizable bass that swam by us.
We had the opportunity to fish the lake all 4 days we were there. There was not a single day of disappointment. The biggest bass caught was 19″. A couple 20″ and a 24″ catfish were caught. We used nightcrawlers for bait on size 6 hooks the entire trip. Worms seemed to work on all species including the rainbow trout. The rainbow trout were at least 15″ and feisty.
You will need a fishing license to fish at Echo Canyon Reservoir. There is no entry or parking fee for day use. There is no camping available. You are allowed to keep fish from this lake. Largemouth bass 12-15″ must be returned to the water immediately.
Have a great time and don’t forget to pack out your trash. Please refer to the Colorado fishing regulations and sign at the lake for “keeper” information.