We finally made time for a day in the woods on Tuesday June 26, and hiked up to the Loch. We tried to make an early start so that we could drive all the way to Bear Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park and find a parking place. The road closes to private cars at 9AM due to road construction. Wanting to fish until almost dark, we didn’t want to have to rely on making the last shuttle run. However, we found ourselves in a long line of cars at 8AM and crossed our fingers that the parking lot at Bear Lake wouldn’t be full. Luck was with us and the parking lot filled up right after we found a spot.
The hike up to the Loch was beautiful with clear skies and a slightly cool breeze. It was pleasant to be away from the smoky hot air for the day! Before reaching the lake the wind really started to blow hard and at the lake it was blowing right down the lake making it hard to cast and control the fly. We decided to try crossing the major inlet on the west end of the lake and fish the shallow southern shore where we would be out of the wind. It surprised us to see many giant spruce trees toppled over, roots and all, throughout the forest. We had heard that there was a major wind storm this last winter that closed such trails as the one to Black Lake, with downed timber. A recent downed tree did help in crossing the inlet though!
The fishing was great! We were able to sight fish shore cruising trout and Les and I each caught and released about 25-30 fish. We lost track! We did pull out our spinning rods with the fly and bubble rig and caught a few further from shore, but the majority of fish were caught with the fly rods. These beautiful hybrid cutthroat trout were hitting on small black ants, beetles and a few were caught on Elk Hair Caddis and Stillwater Caddis.
The Loch has always been our favorite lake to fish in Rocky Mountain National Park and this day rewarded us again with beautiful scenery and a plentiful catch of the most gorgeous hybrid trout!
I will be visiting the park in early July, and I am looking for advice on which uncrowded lakes and streams hold large populations of easy to catch greenbacks. I am not looking for huge fish. I have heard about spruce and lawn lake. Are there any others and could you provide me with any info on spruce? I also heard about the loch, but the fish there are cuttbows, not greenbacks correct?