COLORADO FISHING REPORT
The most current, accurate Colorado fishing reports and information are key to a good day on the water. To see a detailed fishing report for a specific river simply click on a river from the list below. Looking for general Colorado fly fishing and lake information? Visit our General River Information
You gotta love the Blue River in the spring
Our spring 2017 guide school is now full. We will hold another school in the fall. Dates are yet to be determined for our fall offering but the 7 day school typically begins on the last Sunday in September. For more info about our school, give us a call at 970-262-2878 or drop us an email at email@example.com.
***Winter Hours: 9am-5pm Daily***
Water We Guide On: 3/12/17
It's a cold one today with this morning's low temperature reaching near zero. With today's abundant sunshine it should warm up enough to fish somewhat comfortably by noon. The early part of this week looks to be on the cooler side of things with warmer weather returning by Friday or Saturday. Even though the weather has been uneven, the fishing on the Blue River in town has remained fairly steady. It's not on fire but fish are being caught at a decent rate.
The nymph fishing has been fair to good under a small, neutral colored indicator. Flies that are working include: size 20-22 black or red Pure Midges, size 20-22 natural Pheasant Tails, size 20-22 red Tailwater Tiny's, size 20-22 cream or black Bling Midges, size 20-22 Juju Zebra Midges, size 20-22 Parachute Adams and size 20-24 Morgan Midges.
Mysis Shrimp are still on the menu, especially in the morning and the evening. But flies imitating tiny midges and small mayflies have generally been more productive.
We haven't seen many fish feeding on the surface. Most of the action has been subsurface. As a general rule-of-thumb, the late afternoons and the overcast days hold the greatest possibility of finding fish willing to eat on the surface. But don't expect to find "lights-out" dry fly fishing on the Blue River in Silverthorne on a consistent basis.
We suggest using the smallest, neutral colored indicator that you can still see. Brightly colored indicators often alert the trout of your presence and they will either spook or just refuse to eat your fly. White or black yarn indicators, small sized white or "glow-in-the-dark" Thingamabobbers are always good choices when fishing the Blue River in Silverthorne. Fishing without an indicator, although tricky, can be deadly as well.
If you don't use streamers on the Blue River, you should consider doing so. This is especially true during the fall into the early winter. Streamer fishing is, at times, a very effective strategy and is an underused technique by most anglers fishing the Blue River in Silverthorne. Don't be afraid of using the big, articulated patterns available these days. Trailing a black or olive Houdini behind a black or white Dungeon is often a winning strategy.
Streamers to try: Sex Dungeons, Barely Legals, Home Invaders, Houdini, Thin Mints, Super Buggers and all sizes and colors of the standard "Woolly Bugger."
Question: What's going on with the Gold Medal status of the Blue River?
Answer: The Blue River between Silverthorne and Green Mountain Reservoir has been delisted from Colorado's Gold Medal list. The Blue within the city limits of Silverthorne is still listed as Gold Medal water. There are still great fish to be caught on the Blue north of Silverthorne. If you check in with us regularly, you have seen hundreds of photos of fish that were caught in this stretch over the years. And we try to post current pics regularly. It's true; you won't find the numbers of fish that you will see in Silverthorne. But you will find fewer anglers and less selective fish!
Here's a Blue River access map for Silverthorne (courtesy of the Town of Silverthorne):
We'll make it easy. Click here to order a selection of guide tested flies that kill it on the Blue River in Silverthorne.
Need a Blue River map?
The Blue River below Dillon Reservoir is running at 76 cfs today. This flow is a very angler friendly level as the river is accessible bank to bank. We are seeing only sparse midge hatches from Silverthorne to Green Mountain Reservoir.
Patterns for this stretch:
Nymphs: #18 Tungsten Yellow Sallies, # 18-#22 Standard Pheasant Tails, #16-#18 Bit Hookers, #12-#24 Black Beauties, #20-#22 Miracle Midges. #20-#24 olive or black WD-40's, and #20-#24 gray or olive RS-2's.
Dries: #18-#22 Parachute Adams and #20-#22 black or gray Brook's Sprout Midges.
The action on the Blue River north of Silverthorne is currently fair, with some anglers having success and others not so much. This often has more to do with the fish than it does the angler. The trout in the Blue can be finicky and reluctant to eat even your best presented offerings.
The determined wade angler will find trout spread out in the best feeding lies. Don't expect to find fish stacked up like you will see in Silverthorne. The farther one gets away for Lake Dillon, the more the Blue River fishes like a freestone river. Moreover, you'll need to work a bit harder to successfully fish the Blue north of town; the fish population is smaller in the northern reaches of the river than it is in Silverthorne. The concentration of fish improves, however, in the mile or so above where the Blue River enters Green Mountain Reservoir (i.e. the inlet area). Trout that live north of Silverthorne will often take a variety of fly patterns and are, generally, less selective than the trout residing just below the Lake Dillon Dam. When fishing this stretch, covering more ground often equates to more hook-ups. 5x fluorocarbon tippet is recommended.
Keep in mind that the Blue north of Silverthorne can fish much better on the surface than under it, especially once the bugs awaken from their winter slumber. There's no explaining this phenomenon but after years of guiding this water it has proven to be the case more often than not. Dropping a bead head nymph from a medium to large dry fly is often the best technique when you find traditional nymphing to be unproductive. The inlet area to Green Mountain Reservoir is fishing fair. This is usually a go to location at this time of year. The fact that the inlet isn't "on" right now is most likely due to the fact that Green Mountain Reservoir hasn't been stocked this year in an attempt to rid the Kokanee Salmon in the reservoir of gill lice. There are no plans to stock Green Mountain Reservoir this year at all. Current plans also call for no stocking of Green Mountain Reservoir next year.
FYI: The Blue River between Silverthorne and Green Mountain Reservoir has been delisted from the Gold Medal list. The Blue within the city limits of Silverthorne is still listed as Gold Medal water. There are still great fish to be caught on the Blue north of Silverthorne. If you check in with us regularly, you have seen hundreds of photos of fish that were caught in this stretch over the years. And we try to post current pics regularly. It's true, you won't find the numbers of fish that you will see in Silverthorne. But you will find fewer anglers and less selective fish!
We'll make it easy. Click here to order a selection of hand picked flies that consistently catch fish on the Blue River North of Silverthorne.
Need a Blue River map?
The Colorado near Parshall is fairly free of bank ice and slushl. Watch out for overnight temps in the single-digits or below and you should have a good fishing experience. The trout have moved into their "winter water." So look to find fish in the deeper, slower pools.
The fishing has been a day-to-day affair and often very fly specific. Don't be afraid to change flies often if you aren't hooking up and be sure to move up or down the river if you aren't having any success. Sometimes, just traveling a mile can make a huge difference in finding trout with better attitudes.
Midges are the insects of importance right now. Egg patterns are still playing a small roll as well. The best nymphs have been #20-#22 red or black Pure Midges, #16-#18 CDC Tungsten Hare's Ears, #18-#20 Miracle Nymphs, #20-#22 foam wing emergers in chocolate, gray and olive, #18-#22 natural Pheasant Tails, #20-#24 black or gray RS-2's or WD-40's, and egg patterns in peach, green or muted orange.
Dry flies have been effective from time to time. Best patterns have been:#20-#24 Morgan Midges, #22 Matthews Sparkle Dun BWO's, and #18-#24 Parachute Adams.
Try changing (primarily adding) weight before changing flies. If your flies aren't occasionally ticking the bottom, and you aren't hooking up, add some weight (or heavier flies) until you occasionally get hung up. The opposite, of course, can also be true--it is just less common! If you are constantly cleaning your flies, or hanging up, take off a bit of weight. Our guides have been using 4x-5x fluorocarbon tippet depending on the amount of water clarity on any given day.
Don't forget to try a streamer. Larger patterns often work best as they move a ton of water and create a larger vibration in the water. Trailing a smaller streamer behind the larger streamer can crush fish some days. Common set-ups include: Sex Dungeon (any color) trailing a Wounded Sculpin, Sparkle Minnow trailing a Houdini or a Home Invader (black, white or tan) trailing a Slump Buster (rust, black or olive).
Here are some thoughts to keep in mind when fishing the upper Colorado River near Parshall: In the winter, the water temperature on the Colorado River below the Williams Fork confluence will generally be warmer than the temperature of the Colorado above the confluence. In summer, the opposite is typically true; the water temp is colder on the Colorado River below the Williams Fork confluence and warmer above the confluence. This difference in water temperature will often trigger different insect hatches. For example, you might find Blue Wing Olives hatching below the Williams Fork confluence but not hatching above the confluence (and vice versa). It is not unusual to find better (or poorer) Fishing on the Colorado River near Parshall simply by moving a few miles upstream or downstream.
We'll make it easy. Click here to order a selection of hand picked flies that trout love to eat on the upper Colorado River.
Need a Colorado River map?
The Colorado River is currently floatable from Pumphouse to Dotsero. The river is low and bony so pay attention if you are going to float it. A small raft is the call at these flows but drift boats, in the right hands, will work.
While unlikely, another round of serious winter weather could lock up the river again. So do some homework before jumping into a potentially hazardous situation.
Wade fishing has been improving and we now consider it to be fair, with an occasional day that rates as "good." The float fishing on 2/21/17 from Rancho to State Bridge was decent. We saw many more rainbows than browns though. Best flies were #6 and #8 black Pat's Rubberlegs and pink, round rubber worms. Black Pure Midges and #20 Gray RS-2's accounted for a couple of fish each. As always, call us (970-262-2878) for the most current report.
Dry flies to use: There hasn't been much surface activity lately with all this cold weather. But expect that to change if we can get back into the upper 40's and lower 50's for daytime highs. Small Parachute Adams and Griffiths Gnats should do the trick if you're lucky enough to run into rising fish.
The streamer bite has been decent some days and non-existent on others. The best streamers have been: Bread and Butters, white Buggers, Tan and Yellow Baby Gongas, Slump Busters in black or rust, Super Buggers in black or rust, and Houdini's in Black or olive. You never know for sure what streamer will be magic so come to the party with a good selection of patterns in different sizes and colors. With the trout's metabolism just coming off their lowest levels for the year, smaller streamers can often be your ticket to winter streamer success.
Finding the "pattern" to the trout's feeding lies on any given day can make the difference between catching a couple of fish or hooking up many fish. Pay attention to where you are catching fish and look to find similar water elsewhere on the river. If your "pattern" begins to let you down look to change up what you are doing in hopes of finding another "pattern" to the trout's feeding. Here's what most guides do: Change flies, change where in the river they are fishing them and play around with how deep they are fishing them.
As always, call the shop for the latest info: 970-262-2878.
We'll make it easy. Click here to order a selection of custom flies that crush on the Colorado River near Pumphouse.
Need a Colorado River map?
The fishing is tough on the upper Arkansas. Colder weather and the end of the brown trout spawn are the culprits. We suggest fishing lower on the river (near Salida or below Salida). If that's too far, the following nymphs will get you a fish or two.
Nymphs to try: Standard or Black Pheasant Tails (#18-#22), Midge Patterns in red, gray or olive (#18-#22), CDC Tungsten Pheasant Tails (#18-#20) and Sparkle wing RS-2's in Olive or gray (#18-#22).
Dries to try: Parachute Adams (#18-#22) and Sparkle Baetis (#22).
We'll make it easy. Click here to order a selection of guide selected flies that will humiliate the trout on the upper Arkansas River.
Need an Arkansas River map?
The action on the Arkansas River near Salida is picking up. This is in large part due to the warm weather having a positive effect on the water temps. There are still decent hatches of midges most days and a few molting stoneflies beginning to show up. Especially in the morning, work the slower, deeper pools and be sure to use plenty of weight if you aren't hooking up. Also, since the fish are generally locating in the slower sections of the river, they get a better look at your fly. So downsize your tippet and think about using bead-less flies.
If the day turns into a warm one, look for some fish to move into slightly faster water, and the head of the pools, to take advantage of hatching midges and, possibly, drifting Blue Wing Olive nymphs and/or stones.
Best nymphs have been: #22 red or black Rojo Midges, #20-#22 black Pure Midges, #18-#22 Black Beauties, #10-#16 Tungsten Yellow Sallies, #10-#16 biot style Golden Stone Nymph, #16-#18 black or natural Pheasant Tails, #16-#18 chartreuse Copper Johns or Hot Wire Prince nymphs.
We'll make it easy. Click here to order a selection of proven flies that the fish can't resist on the Arkansas River near Salida.
Need an Arkansas River map?
The nymphing action on the Roaring Fork River and the Colorado River below Glenwood is heating up. Our Roaring Fork float from West Bank to 2 Rivers Park a few days ago was very productive. In addition to a decent midge hatch we saw a decent number of Blue Winged Olives. It's definitely worth the drive from Silverthorne and/or Denver, especially on the 50+ degree days.
The Roaring Fork river is low and bony so pay attention if you are trying to float it. A small raft is the call at these flows. The Colorado has enough water for a hard boat but you will still need to pay attention.
Most days, nymphing has been better than either dry flies or streamers but the streamer has its days (or periods throughout the day). Think Midge patterns, BWO nymphs and dries, Stonefly nymphs, eggs and, maybe, streamers.
Need a Roaring Fork River map?
Midges are the insects of most importance. Egg patterns and streamers have been catching good numbers of trout as well. Some big trout are still in the system but many of the big fish have returned to Elevenmile Reservoir.
Night fishing has produced the biggest trout lately. There are still a few Kokanee Salmon in the river as well. Fishing has been fair to very good depending on the day........and the wind.
Last thought: Streamers and eggs seem to be most effective early and late in the day.
We'll make it easy. Click here to order a selection of flies chosen to consistently produce trout on the Dream Stream.
Need a South Platte River map?
Muddy creek is flowing at 20 cfs and is fishing fair at best. We are seeing some big browns caught on streamers, red Copper Johns and various egg patterns.
Have a look at the reservoir releases before heading to the Muddy, or any tailwater for that matter. It might make or break your day. Here's a must have link to the state's Colorado Streamflow page.
The flow has been steady at 75 CFS for a while now. There are still decent numbers of browns in the river at this time. The brown trout spawn is over but please be respectful and avoid walking on the "bright, clean spots" on the river bottom. These clean spots are where the brown eggs are deposited and walking on these "redds" literally kills future generations of trout.
Best flies have been Pheasant Tails, gray or olive RS-2's, #20 Miracle Midges,and midges in black or olive. Keep your hook sizes between 18 and 22. Fishing isn't off the hook but it is worth the mile (ish) walk into the river from the parking lot. The streamer action has dropped way off, as has the action on egg patterns.
Whether you prefer the 12 oz., or you are all in for the "40," this creek is always flowing cold and foamy. Use limes and salt as needed. Longnecks are the preferred choice, but almost any variety will catch you a buzz.
The Middle Fork of the South Platte above Spinney Mountain Reservoir is now down to fall flows (i.e. low). Ice is beginning to form on the river. We suggest trying on the tailwater section of the South PLatte below Spinney Mountain Reservoir.
We'll make it easy. Click here to order an array of angler tested flies that the trout like to eat on the Middle and South Forks of the South Platte River.
Need a South Platte River map?
Other Local Water
Because we do not guide on the following rivers, we cannot give the same detailed information that you find for the Water We Guide On. However, the streamflows are continuously updated, and we've done our best to give you a general idea of what to expect on these waters for this time of year.
There is no commercial guiding (wade or float) allowed on this stretch of the Blue but most of the shop guys love to fish it when they get a chance. The current flow of 250 cfs is a very good level for wade fishing but not high enough for float fishing. The latest guidance from the Bureau of Reclamation is that "flows in the Blue River will fluctuate between 200 and 250 cfs for the foreseeable future."
The nymph fishing in the public stretch just below Green Mountain Dam has been good to very good now that the water has dropped to a level suitable for wade fishing. The best nymphs have been: #18 Tungsten Yellow Sallies, #16-#18 Hare's Ears, #20 Juju Emergers, #14-#16 TDJ Golden Stones, #20-#22 black Pure Midges, and #18-#24 natural Pheasant Tails.
Best Dries have been: #22-24 Winger Emerger Baetis, #20-#26 Parachute Adams, #22 Matthew's Sparkle Dun, #22 Extended Body BWO's.
Streamers are a good option right now on the Blue River below Green Mountain Reservoir. We love using large, articulated streamers but don't forget to try the more traditional, smaller streamers. You might be surprised how well the "oldies" produce!
Please remember that wade fishing is only allowed in the public stretches of the Blue River below Green Mountain Reservoir. This primarily consists of the approximately 1.5 miles or so of river bank located just below the reservoir. The public water ends at the private land/no trespassing postings. Float fishing is allowed below the reservoir but wade fishing on private property is trespassing, as is anchoring a boat on private land. For those of you that are new to Colorado's stream laws, the landowner does not own the water passing through private land but the landowner does own the stream bottom. Colorado's stream laws are not the same as the stream laws in Montana (Montana law allows an angler to stand on private property up to the "High-Water" mark).
Please keep in mind that Mountain Lions call this area home throughout the year. Please consider leaving your dog at home and keep a watchful eye when hiking/fishing.
No report from Delany at this time.
We are seeing more 3 star days than 2 star days right now so we moved the rating up a star.Most of the browns are in the river's slow, deep pools and buckets. You will still find some nice rainbows hanging out near the bottom of runs that have some depth.
Eagle River trout will eat attractor flies like Pat's Rubberlegs, Prince Nymphs and CDC Pheasant Tails. They will also eat more realistic offerings like Pure Midges, Juju BWO's and Midges, and standard pheasant Tails.
Need an Eagle River map?
With this warm spell, Gore Creek now has several fishable sections.
Ten Mile is beginning to have fishable, unfrozen zones of water to fish.
Clear Creek beginning to thaw. You will find fishable sections from Georgetown to Golden. In the canyon sections, look to fish the sunnier sections as the river will have less ice and a slightly warmer water temperature. Standard attractors under an indicator will get the job done. One of our springtime favorite flies is a #14-#18 red Copper John.
The Snake is, surprisingly, ice-free. A few fish are being caught in the deeper water. This type of water is often called "winter water" for trout. Trout live comfortably in this slower water. In addition to providing protection from strong river currents, winter water also provides protection from predators.
Fishing is fair to good. The fishing pressure has been more than normal for this time of year due to the poor snow conditions. But now that it's finally snowing expect to find less anglers and fish willing to eat Mysis Shrimp and small midge larvae patterns.
Need a Frying Pan River map?