Black Bullhead – Coot Pond
Sauger – Pelican Pond
Common Carp – Mallard, Sandpiper, Killdeer, Coot, & Pintail Ponds
Grass Carp (Sterile) – Pelican & Bald Eagle Ponds
White Sucker – Coot & Pintail Ponds
Gizzard Shad – Pintail, Coot, & Bald Eagle Ponds
Which Pond is Which?
It’s important to know which pond you’re fishing at – not only so you catch the right fish, but so you know you’re fishing legally too!
Click here for a map of the park
Beginning where you turn off Highway 119 onto County Road 7, you’ll see the new Blue Heron Reservoir on the right, and a handful of other ponds on the left. This entire area is currently closed to the public, for the safety of both visitors and wildlife. Parking is not allowed on the side of the road anywhere within park boundaries, beginning just off Highway 119.
Then you’ll bear right onto County Road 24 ½, which divides the park into northern and southern halves. The big pond on the north side of the road is Sandpiper Pond, with little Killdeer and Avocet Ponds at the west end. Mallard Pond is right behind the Camper Services Building, and huge Pelican Pond spans the whole northeastern corner of the park.
On the south side of County Road 24 ½, the first big pond you’ll see is Bald Eagle Pond. Bald Eagle has a large skeletal cottonwood tree on an island in the middle of the pond, which makes it easy to remember. Bald Eagle Pond has two special fishing regulations – you can only fish with artificial flies and lures (no bait of any kind!) and if you catch a bass, you cannot keep it and must return it to the water immediately.
The smaller pond south of Bald Eagle Pond and the campground road is Red Tail Pond. Further west (behind Coot Camp Loop) is Coot Pond, with little Yellow Legs Pond to the southwest and Pintail Pond to the northwest.
For descriptions of each individual pond, see the last section of this page.
Most of the ponds at St. Vrain follow the standard Colorado fishing regulations, including:
See the 2012 Colorado Fishing Regulations for more details. You can also get your own copy of these regulations from the park entrance station or from any fishing license sales agent.
Two bodies of water at St. Vrain also have specific, more restrictive fishing regulations. These can also be found in the regulations booklet, and on signs posted around the border of the ponds. However, in case you miss the signs...
Bald Eagle Pond:
Blue Heron Reservoir: (not yet open to the public)
Fishing with Children
Children under 16 years of age are not required to have a fishing license. However, all other fishing regulations - including the second rod stamp and bag/possession limits - still apply.
Parents or other adults who do not have a fishing license are permitted to assist children to fish, such as putting bait on a hook, helping a small child hold the pole, and helping the child cast out. Children must be actively fishing and attentively monitoring thier own fishing pole. If the adult is the only person holding the pole, casting the pole, or watching the pole, then this is illegally fishing without a license or fishing with too many poles, not "assisting" a child.
Please ask a ranger if you have any questions about the fishing regulations.
What Kind of Bait Should I Use?
Trout: When recently stocked, trout will bite on almost anything: flies, spoons, spinner, crank baits, worms, power bait - even chicken liver. If it has been a while since the last stocking, it's best to take one of two approaches:
Panfish (Bluegill, Redear, Perch, Crappie, Green Sunfish): Similar tactics to trout, but even smaller. Tiny jigs tipped with worm or wax worms under a bobber are the best bet, but flies, small spoons and spinners will also catch gills when the trout leave them alone long enough. Small minnows can also be productive when searching for larger sunfish.
Large and Smallmouth Bass: Spinnerbaits, plastics and crankbaits tend to be the go-to lures for bass, but don't be afraid to try a top water, fly, or even worms for bass.
Catfish (Channel and Bullhead): - Bait on the bottom is your best bet. Worms are a favorite, but stink baits, liver and corn all work well.
Carp: Most carp are taken incidentally by bait fisherman or by bow fisherman. Some people do bait fish with carp baits sold in stores or corn with some success.
Saugeye/Sauger: Most are taken incidentally by bait fisherman by fisherman using jigs, crankbaits, spoons or spinners.
Protect Our Ponds!
Only hand-propelled craft, sailboats and boats with electric motors are permitted on the park's publicly-accessible ponds. Many fishermen also use waders or belly boats to get out into the water. But did you know these accessories can spread aquatic nuisance species?
Eurasian watermilfoil is an invasive plant that can quickly spread and choke out the aquatic life in a pond. This plant has been found in Mallard Pond, and we need your help to prevent its spread!
It only takes a single piece of a milfoil plant to snag on your boots, get dropped into another pond, then grow and reproduce. Before you take watercraft or equipment into a pond, check it thoroughly for mud and plant particles that could introduce new unwanted species into our ponds. Then, after you remove equipment from the water, check it again and clean off any plant debris to be certain you don’t carry anything to your next fishing location.
There are native milfoil plants found in several of the ponds in St. Vrain, which look very similar to Eurasian watermilfoil. The safest measure is to make sure you never carry any plant material between any bodies of water.
Handicap-Accessible Fishing Piers
St. Vrain State Park offers a number of handicap-accessible fishing piers around Sandpiper, Mallard, and Pelican Ponds. These fishing piers are available for all visitors to use, but please be courteous to your fellow fishermen and allow space for those with disabilities or limited mobility.
Sandpiper Pond has two concrete piers, on the southern and western shorelines. Both are located near parking spaces, and are connected to the parking area by a paved footpath. The southern pier has a restroom close by, but the western pier does not.
Mallard Pond has a concrete boardwalk with a safety rail circling the back side of the Barbour Ponds Camper Services Building. Parking and restrooms are available close by.
Pelican Pond has three handicap-accessible fishing piers. One is located in Pelican Camp Loop, across from Sites 12 and 13, with its own parking spaces and a restroom nearby. Two more fishing piers are located off the Pelican Pond Trail - one is just a few hundred feet up the trail from the eastern trailhead, while the other is about a quarter-mile in along the northeastern corner of Pelican Pond.
Fishing Conditions, Stocking Reports, & Biologists’ Fish Survey
The ponds are typically stocked in late fall (before ice-over), and in early spring (after ice-melt). The most up-to-date stocking information can be found on the park's Conditions page, or on the division's Stocking Report page
The annual Fish Survey is performed by fishery biologists who use a variety of methods like gill-netting and electroshocking to sample the number, size, and health of the species of fish in a given pond. The Fish Survey is analyzed for future use in stocking and maintaing the fishery, and it is published for the public to see.
Click here for more details about how and why a fish survey is performed.
Click here for the most current Fish Survey.
Fish of the Month
9-inch caught in Killdeer Pond by Braden Blochowitz in late June 2013
30 to 32-inch Tiger Muskie caught in Bald Eagle Pond by Erin Mauch on June 15th, 2013
23-inch 4lb Channel Catfish caught in late June 2013
Very nice largemouth bass caught in mid-June 2013
19-inch 4-pound Largemouth Bass caught in late June 2013
This impressive catfish was caught in Mallard Pond on 5-27-13 by Mike Pugh
Bass from Bald Eagle Pond - Remember, bass from that pond must be returned immediately!