"Artificial Fly and Lure Only" Fishing Regulations

Colorado has many fishing areas that have special regulations on the kinds of methods you may use to fish.  One such regulation is that of "Artificial Flies and Lures Only."  In 2014, Colorado Parks and Wildlife Officers gave out nearly 100 tickets for "Fishing With Bait in Fly/Lure Only Water."  If you are cited for fishing with an unlawful bait your first call should be to your attorney for a free consultation on your rights and defenses.  However, let's look a little closer at what exactly this rule means to help avoid this problem in the first place.

Click here for the 2016 Colorado Fishing Regulations Brochure

Click here for the 2016 Colorado Fishing Regulations Brochure

Bait is defined in the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Regulations as: "any hand-moldable material designed to attract fish by the sense of taste or smell; those devices to which scents or smell attractants have been added or externally applied (regardless if the scent is added in the manufacturing process or applied afterward); scented manufactured fish eggs and traditional organic baits, including but not limited to worms, grubs, crickets, leeches, dough baits or stink baits, insects, crayfish, human food, fish, fish parts or fish eggs."  The definition is unsurprising to most anglers, save for the portion regarding spray attractants.  The trouble here is, for most spray attractants that would be applied to otherwise legal flies or lures would leave very little in the way of identifiable scent for a human (CPW officer) to detect.  You could just receive the ticket based on having the spray attractant visible in your tackle box even if you're not actually using it.  

Artificial flies and lures are defined as: "devices made entirely of, or a combination of, natural or synthetic non-edible, non-scented (regardless if the scent is added in the manufacturing process or applied afterward), materials such as wood, plastic, silicone, rubber, epoxy, glass, hair, metal, feathers, or fiber, designed to attract fish."  Again, the definition is not surprising to most anglers but does give a very bright line rule for fishermen and women to consult and follow.  

If you do receive a ticket for fishing with bait in fly or lure only water, you need to call The Law Office of Nathaniel Gilbert for a 100% free consultation regarding your rights, defenses, and any repercussions that could come from pleading guilty and paying the fine.  Finding out too late that your fishing violation compromised your once in a lifetime elk hunt this fall could be devastating.