Water district draining Harvey Gap for dam inspection
Harvey Gap Reservoir, a popular fishing destination north of Silt, is in the process of being drained, Colorado Parks and Wildlife announced Wednesday.
The decision was made by the Silt Water Conservancy District, which needs to inspect a dam outlet structure, according to a news release. The reservoir will remain largely empty until a thorough inspection is completed.
An emergency fish salvage was authorized by CPW in order to remove as many fish as possible. The salvage, which is now in effect, removes bag limits and allows anglers with a valid Colorado fishing license to catch, using legal tackle only, and keep as many fish as they can.
Illegal tactics — such as explosives, firearms, archery, electricity, toxicants, gigs, jugs and trotlines — remain prohibited.
Nighttime fishing restrictions also are now lifted, although overnight camping and pets remain prohibited.
CPW intends to restock the reservoir with popular fish and approved species once Harvey Gap is fully refilled. The media release notes that a timeline for restocking the reservoir is undetermined.
According to the release, the gap currently offers tiger muskie, northern pike, channel catfish, black crappie, trout, yellow perch, bluegill, and largemouth and smallmouth bass.
CPW urges caution due to the deep mud that will be present while the reservoir is drained, and anglers planning to launch a boat should call 970-625-1607 to get the latest conditions.
A valid park pass is still required for Harvey Gap State Park. Passes are available at self service stations at the park, as well as at the visitor center at nearby Rifle Gap State Park.