Month: December 2011

The BLM Considers a Proposal to Expand the Rocky Mountain Pumice Mine

The proposed project is located about 5.5 miles west of Española along Forest Road 144 and would involve development of pumice on about 380 more acres than are presently being mined on lands owned by CR Minerals.  The existing mine has been in operation since the early 1960’s and was purchased by CR Minerals in 1998. 

While the project involves the phased migration of mining onto adjacent public lands, the current levels of operation and productivity are not expected to change, except for typical, market-driven fluctuations.  The project also includes interim reclamation of mined-out areas not needed for stockpiling.  If approved, operation of the mine could potentially be extended for over 30 years.

The EA is available for review online at  Copies are also available for viewing at the Taos Field Office on 226 Cruz Alta Road.

Mail comments to Brad Higdon, BLM Taos Field Office, 226 Cruz Alta Road, Taos, NM 87571 or by e-mail to  For more information, call (575) 758-8851.

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December 2011 New Mexico Fishing Report



Animas RiverThe flow is 240 cfs. No report due to weather.
Chama River – No read on flow due to ice on the upper stretches. Below El Vado Lake, the flow is 382 cfs and the flow below Abiquiu Lake is 388 cfs. The Chama below El Vado Dam has the most consistent good fishing on the Chama. The stretch  downstream of the village of Chama into El Vado reservoir is slowing down. The release out of El Vado is murky but fishable. The stretch below Abiquiu Dam is fishing good and the water clarity is getting better.
San Juan River

– Upper section – Catch and Release flow is 493 cfs. The habitat improvements and silt remediation project on the San Juan was completed last week. The work in “The Braids,” has been very productive as fish have moved into this new habitat where they previously weren’t. Good midge fishing and midge hatches during the mornings and good blue winged olive hatches in the afternoons. In the mornings, use a red midge larva as your point fly and trail a size 24-26 black or gray midge pupa. As the afternoon progresses, change your flies to baetis, such as a gray or chocolate RS2 or foam wing emerger.
Abiquiu Lake – Fishing is slow for all species.  
El Vado Lake – No report due to weather and a lack of anglers. Ice is forming around the edges of the lake.
Heron Lake No report due to weather and a lack of anglers. Ice is forming around the edges of the lake.
Jackson Lake Trout fishing is reported as fair using Power Bait, salmon eggs and worms from shore.
Lake FarmingtonTrout fishing is reported as fair using Power Bait, salmon eggs and worms. Best success is reported close to the dam.
Morgan Lake – No report
Navajo Lake – Trout fishing is reported as fair to good from the dam using spinners and streamers.




Cimarron River – No read on flows due to ice. The Cimarron is done until spring.
Costilla Creek – The flow is 61 cfs near the town of Costilla. Fishing is reported as slow below the Valle Vidal boundary, water levels are very low and there is snow and ice.
Red River – No read on flow due to ice at Questa and 38 cfs below the hatchery. Fishing for trout is reported as fair with better fishing on the lower stretches. Fish are being caught and all methods working. Please respect spawning fish and leave them alone while on their beds.
Rio Grande – No read on flow due to ice at Cerro. Flow is 446 cfs below the Taos Junction Bridge. Water levels are high and fishing is reported as slow to fair. Trout still seem to prefer the faster aerated water. Nymph the pocket water or strip streamers for the browns. Pike fishing is starting to get going. Best bet is to use large red and white lures or flies.
Rio Hondo – No read on flow due to ice. Trout fishing is reported as slow with snow and ice. Best bet is to fish at the confluence with the Rio Grande.
Rio Pueblo No read on flow due to ice. No report.
Charette Lakes – The lake has closed for the season and will reopen next spring.
Clayton Lake – The lake has closed for the season and will reopen next spring.
Eagle Nest Lake – The lake is closed to fishing until the ice is thick enough to allow it. The lake is also closed to boats for the winter. The New Mexico Game Commission will consider allowing unlimited take of northern pike from Eagle Nest Lake to address the aggressive species’ threat to the lake’s trout and salmon fishery at its meeting Thursday, Dec. 15, in Albuquerque.
Lake Alice and Lake Maloya– No report
Maxwell Lakes – The lake has closed for the season and will reopen next spring.
Shuree Ponds – No report.
Springer Lakes – No report. Closed to ice fishing.


West-Central, including the Jemez Mountains


Jemez River, East Fork, Guadalupe and San AntonioFlow on the Jemez River is 20 cfs. The lower Guadalupe can be accessed below Gilman tunnels and is fishing fair in the warmer part of the day. The lower Jemez was stocked Nov. 11 and may be worth fishing for rainbows. The Valles Caldera National Preserve has closed the fishing program until next spring.  
Metro DrainagesThe fishing is reported as fair with most methods catching fish. The drainages were stocked last week: Albuquerque with 300 triploid rainbow trout; Belen with 200; Bernalillo with 80; Corrales with 121; and Peralta with 250.
Bluewater Lake –  Fishing for trout is reported as slow due to ice on the lake.
Cochiti Lake – No report. The lake is closed for the season along the Tetilla Peak side. The upper lake is also closed above Tetilla due to a log boom in place on the lake.
Fenton Lake – The lake has iced over and is closed to ice fishing because of dangerous ice conditions.
Tingley Beach Trout fishing has been good. Best reports are from anglers using salmon eggs and Pistol Petes. The ponds were stocked with 2,538 triploid rainbow trout. Reports from fly-rod anglers at the South/Catch and Release Pond have been hit and miss when using bunny leeches and black beetles.


East–Central, including the Pecos River


Coyote CreekClosed for the season.
Pecos River – No read on flow due to ice. The upper river is under ice, especially in shaded stretches. Fish the afternoon hours while the sun is on the water.
Conchas Lake – No report.
Morphy Lake – Closed for the season.
Santa Rosa Lake – No report.
Storrie Lake – Fishing is slow to fair for trout due to light traffic and cold weather.
Sumner Lake –Walleye are reported as fair. Fish are being caught in shallow water and off points and structure. The fish range from 14 to 20 inches and are hitting white shad lures. No reports for the trout stocked below the dam.
Ute Lake – No report.




Gila River – The flow is 66 cfs and fishing is slow with the best success in the upper reaches of the river on the West, East and Middle forks.
Rio Grande – No report.
Bill Evans Lake – Fishing for trout is reported as fair with most methods working. The lake was stocked with 937 triploid rainbow trout last week.
Caballo Lake – Fishing is slow and water levels are very low. Best bet is below the spillway on the Rio Grande at Percha State Park. Fishermen are catching a few white bass and black bass on the river; most walleye are too small to keep (less than 14 inches.
Elephant Butte Lake – No report due to light traffic and weather. The Rio Grande between Elephant Butte and Caballo was stocked with 1,700 triploid rainbow trout.
Glenwood Ponds – Fishing is slow for trout. The ponds were stocked with 199 triploid rainbow trout.
Lake Roberts – Trout fishing is reported as slow with worms and Power Bait.
Quemado Lake – No report.




Rio Ruidoso – Flow is 0.28 cfs in town and 6.6 cfs at Hollywood. Fishing is reported as slow on the lower stretches of the river where the flows are a bit higher.
Bonito Lake – Closed for the season.
Bottomless Lakes: No report.
Brantley Reservoir – There has been light pressure and no current report. A mandatory catch and release is in place at Brantley Lake because pesticides have been found in the fish. Do not keep or eat them.
Grindstone Reservoir – Fishing is fair for trout using worms, Power Bait and Pistol Petes. Best times to fish are reported from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

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Northern pike were illegally stocked in Eagle Nest Lake. Recent surveys have indicated populations of the predatory fish have increased substantially and include four-year age classes with fish ranging in size from 12 to 30 inches. Northern pike have been known to destroy salmonid fisheries throughout North America. Proposed regulations would remove daily harvest and possession limits for pike, make it unlawful to release a live pike back into the lake, and remove northern pike from the waste-of-game fish protection.

Thursday’s meeting will be from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Room C of the University of New Mexico Continuing Education Conference Center, 1634 University Blvd. NE, in Albuquerque. The full agenda, detailed agenda-item briefings and other information are available on the Department of Game and Fish website,, or by calling (505) 476-8008. Details of proposed rules and opportunities to comment about them also are available on the website.

Other agenda items include:

  • Discussion of proposed agreements with private landowners that would give public hunters access to private land to hunt bighorn sheep in the Fra Cristobal and Culebras mountains in 2012. The agreements would allow the Department of Game and Fish to offer the first public hunting opportunities for bighorn sheep on private land. The agreements would give landowners reciprocal hunting opportunities.


  • Proposed amendments to elk hunting rules that would modify eligibility requirements for the Youth Encouragement Elk Hunts and increase hunting opportunities.
  • Discussion of options for future allocations of Habitat Stamp Program funds that provide for wildlife habitat improvements on U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management lands.

The State Game Commission is composed of seven members who represent the state’s diverse interests in wildlife-associated recreation and conservation. Members are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the state Senate. Current members are Chairman Jim McClintic, Vice-chairman Thomas “Dick” Salopek, Tom Arvas, Bill Montoya, Scott Bidegain, Robert Hoffman and Robert Espinoza Sr.
If you are an individual with a disability who is in need of a reader, amplifier, qualified sign language interpreter, or any other form of auxiliary aid or service to attend or participate in the meeting, please contact Sonya Quintana, (505) 476-8030. Public documents, including the agenda and minutes, can be provided in various accessible forms.

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