Voluntary fishing closure sought at ‘Toilet Bowl’ below Ruedi dam

Staff Report
The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation is performing maintenance on Ruedi Reservoir dam, stressing fish in an isolated pool downstream. This view shows how water releases typically keep the pool full of water.
Aspen Times file photo |

Colorado Parks and Wildlife is asking anglers to honor a voluntary closure of a popular spot on the Fryingpan River just below Ruedi Reservoir dam.

“The fishing spot — known locally as the ‘toilet bowl’ — will experience significantly reduced flow as water that normally feeds the pool will be rerouted to facilitate required dam maintenance,” a statement from parks and wildlife said.

Work by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation is tentatively scheduled to continue until Nov. 10, but the deadline could be extended.

Signs advising people of the conditions will be posted in the area. If the voluntary closure is ignored, a more stringent emergency closure that is enforceable could be enacted.

The fishing community responded well to a voluntary closure last year, according to wildlife officials. The low water takes the sport out of fishing the toilet bowl.

“The situation will leave the fish in the pool isolated, stressed and very easy to catch,” said CPW Area Aquatic Biologist Kendall Bakich in a statement. “It would not be very sporting to fish in this area until after conditions improve.”

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