COLORADO FISHING REPORT
The most current, accurate Colorado fishing reports and information are key to a good day on the water. In addition to providing quality Colorado fishing reports, we also supply real-time streamflow data. To see a detailed fishing report for a specific river, and view it's real-time streamflow, simply click on a river from the lists below. Looking for general Colorado fly fishing and lake information? Visit our General River Information
You will find good fishing on the Blue River right behind our fly shop
Our Spring 2016 guide school will be held from Sunday, April 24th through Saturday, April 30th. 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: 11/26/15
The current flow on the Blue River below Dillon Reservoir is 107 cfs. This is slightly above the average, historical flow for mid October. We haven't heard the flow management plan for the Blue River below Dillon Reservoir. History suggests that flows will drop over the next few weeks. But for now, we still have 100+ cfs in the Blue. As always, give us a call at the shop (970-262-2878) for the latest info.
It seems that the fishing has slowed down a bit over the past week as the action has just been fair. Nymph fishing with the usual tailwater flies (see a very detailed fly list at the very bottom of the page) is producing most of the action. Dry fly action is still a possibility, especially on the overcast days, but we aren't seeing as many fish rise as we did a week or so ago. A size 20-24 Parachute Adams (and 6x fluorocarbon) will usually get the job done on the surface.Size 22 CDC Blue Winged Olive patterns and Sparkle Duns have also been fooling rising fish on the Blue River in Silverthorne.
Assorted Mysis Shrimp, midge larvae, and midge emerger patterns in sizes 18-26 (black, gray or red) are among the best producing flies when nymph fishing. It's hard to beat a size 20 or 22 Black Beauty. Purple Juju's and red tungsten Baetis are good choices. Other flies to try include: pink rubber worms, Chamois worms in tan or cream, egg patterns (pegged eggs are often best).
We advise using the smallest, least conspicuous indicator you can see, especially if you are fishing to the trout that are hanging on the bank. 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.
Unless you catch a BWO hatch, your dry fly opportunities will be mostly in the early morning and in the twilight hours. That said, a large dry fly might trigger a strike or draw fish nearer your smaller, more realistic dry offering. Look to find fish feeding on top in the soft areas of the river. Size 18-24 patterns will imitate the Midges and BWO's that often hatch on the Blue River in the fall. A size 18 Stimulator or size 14-18 Elk Hair Caddis will get some attention. Also try: Matthew's Sparkle Dun, Midge Clusters, extended body BWO's, and classics like the Adams (both the Standard and Parachute versions). A Royal Wulff or Chubby Chernobyl often brings surprising results when fished on the Blue River. A size 10-14 Chubby Chernobyl makes a great strike indicator as well.
Today's Tip: Try fishing a size 18-22 Griffith's Gnat under the water like a nymph. This tip comes from one of our customers. Thank You!!
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.
Nymph Patterns to try: Egg Patterns, Mysis Patterns: #16-#22, Black, Pearl or Red Rainbow Warriors: #18-#22, Top Secret Midges: #20-#24, Smith's Tidbit Midge: #20-#24, Red Rojo Midges: #20-#22, Black Beauties and Mercury Black Beauties: #20-#24, Pearl or Red Disco Midges: #20-#24, Miracle Nymphs: #20-#22, Mercury Blood Midges: #20-#22, Dailey's Tailwater Assassin in Red or Black: #22-#24, UV Midges: #20-#26, Black and Pale Olive Pure Midges: #18-#22, JuJu Midges in Zebra, Red or Olive: #20-#24, RS-2's in Gray or Black: #22-#26, WD-40's in Black, Gray or Olive : #20-#24, Barr's BWO Emerger: #20-#24, Standard Pheasant Tails: #18-24.
Streamers to try: Sex Dungeons, Barely Legals, Home Invaders, Houdini, Thin Mints, Super Buggers and all sizes and colors of the standard "Woolly Bugger."
Dries to try: #18-#26 Parachute Adams, #20-#24 Brook's Sprouts, #18-#22 Griffith's Gnats, #20-#22 Matthew's Sparkle Duns and #20-#24 Morgan's Midges.
Need a Blue River map?
The current 106 cfs on the Blue River is an average flow for this time of year. The Blue Wing Olive (BWO) hatch is on the serious wane. We are still seeing a few though. Egg patterns, Pat's Rubberlegs, small BWO nymphs, Caddis larvae and Midge larvae are good fly choices. Streamers are right up there though. The brown trout are essentially finished with their spawn.
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 lighter 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 (please see below) and are, generally, less selective than the trout residing just below the Lake Dillon Dam. Again, when fishing this stretch, covering more ground often equates to more hook-ups. 5x fluorocarbon tippet is recommended.
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.
Patterns for this stretch:
Nymphs: #16-#18 Tungsten Yellow Sallies, Prince Nymphs: #10-16, Standard Pheasant Tails and Tungsten CDC Pheasant Tails/Hare's Ears: #10-16, JuJu Baetis (standard and purple), #16-#18 2-Bit Hookers, #18-#20 Split-Back BWO Nymphs, #18-#20 Buckskins and #18-#20 gray RS-2's.
Dries: $16-#22 Parachute Adams, #18-#20 Gulper Specials, #14-#16 Chubby Chernobyls and #14-#16 yellow or orange Stimulators, #14-#18 Elk Hair Caddis in tan or brown, #14-#16 Royal Wulffs.
Need a Blue River map?
The fishing has been good at times but it has been a bit inconsistent. That being said, it's definitely worth your time, especially on the sunny days; the sun warms the water (and the angler), which often encourages a midge hatch and/or increases the willingness of the fish to feed. There are plenty of fish to be caught in this stretch. You just need to be patient and be willing to move around until you find the active fish. The Colorado River near Parshall currently has up to 3 feet of visibility. Water temps are in the low 40's.
Egg patterns are still effective, but less so than they were a few weeks ago. Please be mindful of walking through the clean, shiny gravel spots in the river. Those clean, "bright" spots are spawning beds. Walking on these areas has a similar effect on a fishery as practicing "catch and kill" instead of "catch and release."
If no surface feeding is evident, look to find good numbers of fish holding in the slower, deeper pools (i.e. "winter water"). You will still find a few fish holding in some current but, as the water temperatures drop, an increasing number of trout will move to ther winter homes.
Nymphing fishing has been the way to go most days, especially if you are looking to put numbers in the bucket. The best flies have been orange/champagne/light green egg patterns, size 18-22 Pheasant Tails, size 18-22 gray or olive RS-2's, size 18-22 Juju Baetis or Barr's BWO emergers and size 18-22 Split Cased BWO's.
Most of the surface action has been on #18-#22 Griffiths Gnats and #18-#22 Parachute Adams
Weight is key as well. 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 star rating is a bit tricky right now on the Colorado below Pumphouse as it has been a bit day-to-day with many days rating 4 stars and others only 2 stars. That said, a 2 star day on the Colorado River would bring a smile to most any angler's face. The brown trout, which make up the majority of the trout in the Colorado River, are, for the most part, finished with their spawning season. The water temperatures have dropped into the lower 40's and, as you might have expected, the fishing has slowed noticeably.
At its current flow of 516 cfs, the Colorado River is now very manageable for both the wade angler and the float angler. There is snow in the forecast into the foreseeable future so check in with us at the shop for a river clarity report.
Midge hatches are occuring most days. Some trout are still seeking out trout eggs but many have moved on to eating insects, mostly midges.
Most of the guides have been cycling through these fly patterns under a medium sized indicator: Egg Patterns (including pegged eggs), #18-#20 Black Beauties, #18-#22 black Copper Johns, #18-#20 Psycho Baetis, #18-#20 RS-2's, #18 Tungsten CDC Hare's Ears, #14-#16 olive bead head Caddis Emergers, #8-#10 black, coffee or olive Pat's Rubberlegs, #16-#20 standard Pheasant Tails and #12-#18 TDJ CDC Golden Stones.
Dries to try: #18-#26 Parachute Adams, #20-#24 Brook's Sprouts, #18-#22 Griffith's Gnats, #20-#22 Matthew's Sparkle Duns and #20-#24 Morgan's Midges.
The wade angler is back in the game with the drop in flow on the Colorado near Pumphouse. There are a few areas where the river may be crossed on foot and the number of good wade fishing spots has increased significantly. Please be very careful when crossing; not every angler will be strong enough, or tall enough, to make the bank-to- bank journey,
Our guides have been mostly wade fishing this stretch but we are still taking a few float trips when the air temperatures allow. The river traffic is currently very light. There are still a few boats and wade anglers on the river but you feel like you have the Colorado River near Pumphouse to yourself.
Most of the fish have moved to their winter water. Expect to find trout concentrated in the slower, deeper pools. The fish don't have to work hard to live in this water and the depth offers them protection from predators. Should you catch a very warm, sunny day you might see a few trout move to water with a bit of current.
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.
Streamers should be among your tactics to consider. This is the time of year that we see some of the biggest fish of the year eat a streamer. The streamer action can be day-to-day, and even hour-to-hour. While all sizes and colors of streamers will work, we are partial to the large dark colored, 2 hook, articulated varieties. Be sure to try all depths of the water column and not just focus on the bank. Sometimes fish will be lying up to 10 feet off the bank. Some days, your style of retrieve can be more important than your streamer selection. If the action is slow, and before you give up, make sure you try fast/slow retrieves and jerky/smooth retrieves. If you don't get any interest after doing all that, give the streamers a break for a while and try them again in an hour or so. Try: Sex Dungeons (in black, olive, white and rust), Barely Legals, Slump Busters, Houdini's, Super Buggers and standard Woolly Buggers (in all sizes and colors).
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?
At 50 cfs today (which is a bit of a guess as the river gauge for this area is non-operational), the Arkansas River below Leadville is running about average for this time of year. Visibility is good to very good. The action has been slow but that is typical for the upper Arkansas in late November.
Most days, the fish will eat an egg patterns, attractor style nymphs, or flies that imitate Midge Larvae or BWO nymphs.
We have been fishing mostly indicator set-ups. Best flies have been orange eggs, #16-#18 CDC Pheasant Tails, #16-#18 2-Bit Hookers in brown, black or red, #20 black Zebra Midges and #18-#20 Split-Cased BWO Nymphs.
Adult Midge imitations like the standard Parachute Adams or a Gulper Special will take fish on the surface. You will also take fish on streamers. Size 6-10 streamers are working best right now. Don't be afraid to throw them in tandem with a smaller streamer trailing a slightly larger streamer.
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.
Nymphs to try: Egg Patterns, Standard or Black Pheasant Tails (#18-#22), Juju Midges or Black Pure Midges (#20-#24), Pat's Rubberlegs in olive or black (#8-#12), CDC Tungsten Pheasant Tails and Hare's Ears (#16-#18)
Dries to try:: Parachute Adams (#18-#22) and Griffiths Gnats (#18-#22).
Need an Arkansas River map?
As of today, the 526 cfs flowing in the Ark is more than sufficient for a successful float. Here are a few tips to help you find success when float fishing the Arkansas at this level. Be careful not to follow too closely behind another boat as Arkansas trout can be finicky about boat traffic at these flows. Also, the angler in the back of the boat will often have less action than the angler in the front of the boat simply due to the boat putting down the fish as you float through their world.
The action on the Aransas has slowed down some, but it is still fishing quite well. The fish just aren't in that "eat everything that is presented" mode. To be successful in this lower water environment, you will need to downsize your tippet to 5X or 6X and choose smaller, more realistic fly patterns.
The dry fly action has turned very spotty. So if you see some rising fish work them hard. You might not see fish rise the rest of the day.
As you might expect with the cooler weather and the onset of fall, streamers have been very effective lately as well. As a general rule, Arkansas river trout like a size 6-12 streamer in black, purple or olive. But there are days when the fish can't resist a #2 Sex Dungeon or a Home Invader.
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 water clarity is very good right now on the Fork. The fishing has been good and we expect it to stay that way through most of November. Fishing from a boat has been better than the wade fishing. That said, the wade fishing has been pretty good!
On most rivers, the dry fly action is almost always best on the cloudy days and the Roaring Fork is no exception. If the fish aren't eating the dry fly, they will often eat a bead head fly dropped 1-4 feet below the dry. Some days you will do well fishing the fast shallow water very close to the bank. But you may have to focus on the banks, and sections of the banks that are deeper. If that is the case, use a 3-4 feet (deep) dry dropper or indicator rig. If that fails to produce, deep nymph the deeper water (i.e. 5-7 feet deep) well off the bank. All these strategies will catch fish. Your challenge will be to find the best strategy for the day. Oh yeah, the Roaring Fork can be an amazing streamer river!
Nymphs to try: Egg Patterns (yellow is often the ticket in the fall), TDJ's Golden Stone (#14-#16), Psycho Baetis (#18-#20), Split Cased BWO's (#18-#22), Barr's Emerger BWO's (#12-#16), CDC Hare's Ears and Pheasant Tails (#14-#18), Psycho Prince in yellow/orange (#16-#18), Barr's Graphic Caddis (#14-#18) and Pat's Rubberlegs in black, olive/brown or tan (#6-#12).
Dries to try: Gulper Specials (#18-#20), Matthew's Sparkle Dun (#18-#22), Chubby Chernobyls (#10-#18), Stimulators (#12-#18), Elk Hair Caddis (#12-#18) and Peacock Caddis (#14-#18).
Need a Roaring Fork River map?
Winter conditions are taking hold of this fishery. The water is low and clear (65 cfs). Most of the brown trout spawning activity has been completed. Look to find fish in the deeper, slower water. While there isn't a ton of that kind of water available to the trout at these low flows, it does exist and that's where you'll find the most numbers of trout.
Here's the lowdown on the bug life right now on the Dream. The Tricos are finished and the Blue Wing Olives are almost a non-event. Light olive scuds and orange scuds are in the system, as are small midges. The best fishing has been sub-surface but there have been some opportunities to fish small midge dries, and the occasional Blue Wing Olive dry pattern, on the surface.
Most of the big browns have finished spawning but there are a few "bigins" around. If hooking a a real pig is your goal, you should consider breaking out your headlamps for a bit of night streamer fishing. Big, articulated streamers are the flies of choice for the night sessions.
We'll make it easy. Click here to order a selection of flies chosen to consistently produce trout on the Dream Stream.
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Water levels in Muddy Creek are near the 23 cfs mark. Visibility is good. The deer flies and the mosquitos are an unpleasant memory
At this flow, Muddy Creek is not our #1 choice. The flow of 35 cfs is a bit low flow; there isn't much current to float your flies. All that said, stripping Wooly Buggers has produced sme large fish this fall. There are also a few rainbows looking to eat dry flies, but there aren't that many rainbows in the system.
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.
Flies: Egg Patterns, Red Rojo Midge (#18-#22), Brassies in Copper or Red (#18-#22), Black or Red Copper Johns (#16-#20), Pheasant Tails and Morrish's Anato May (#14-#18) and WD-40's (#18-#22)
Antero is now closed for dam repairs. We aren't certain when they will begin draining this beloved fishery, but expect it to begin soon. We will be as excited as everyone else when Antero reopens for fishing business. Until then, Spinney Mountain Reservoir and the Delaney Lakes will be our preferred still water locations.
The Williams Fork is at a nice level for fishing. At 71 cfs, there is enough water for the fish to find shelter from fisherman and predators.
Egg patterns are still producing but the fish are keying more on insects (i.e. Midges) these days.
Flies to try: Egg patterns, standard Pheasant Tails, Black Pheasant Tails, Olive Midges, San Juan Worms, size 18-22 Zebra Midges in olive or black, Pheasant Tails, JuJu Midges in Black, Purple and Red, Miracle Nymphs, RS-2's and WD-40's.
We'll make it easy. Click here to order customized flies that catch fish on the Williams Fork River.
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.
This report includes the “Tomahawk” SWA.
While ice free conditions persisit in this stetch, we recommend fishing the Dream Stream section of the Middle Fork of the South Platte. That said, there is a section near (and below) Hartsel that is still fishing OK.
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.
Please remember that wade fishing is only allowed in the public stretches of the Blue River below Green Mountain Reservoir. This primarily consisits of the first approximately 1.5 miles located just below the reservoir to the private land/no tresspassing 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 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.
We don't guide this water but most of the shop guys love to fish here when they get a chance. The current flow of 385 cfs is almost ideal for wade fishing. Float anglers will still be able to navigate the river, but barely. Larger rafts with full frames are not ideal at these flows and may result in trespass violations. Smaller, 2 person crafts are better suited to floating the river at this level.
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.
Nymphs to try: Egg patterns, #10- #12 Pat's Rubber Legs, size 14-18 Tungsten Yellow Sallies, size 18-22 Olive and Black Zebra Midges, size 18-20 Split Cased BWO's, Standard Pheasant Tails, size 18-22 Gray WD-40's, Black, size 18-22 Olive or gray RS-2's, size 12-16 Charlie's "TDJ" Pheasant Tails and Golden Stones, size 12-18 CDC Hare's Ears and CDC Pheasant Tails.
Dries to Try: #18-#26 Parachute Adams, #18-#22 Matthew's Sparkle Emergers, #20-#24 Brooks' Sprouts and #20-#22 "Stuck in the Shucks."
Streamers are, of course, an excellent 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!
The Delaney Lakes are fishing well. Egg patterns and small olive scuds are taking fish.
The Eagle is clear and running at a friendly flow for wade fishing. While slowing down, expect the Eagle to fish well over the next several weeks. Egg patterns, larval/emerger and adult midge imitations, size 6 coffee Pat's Rubberlegs, and Blue Wing Olive patterns have been the best for us lately.
Need an Eagle River map?
Gore Creek is running a bit low for ideal fly fishing. Fishing has been fair on Gore Creek lately.
Fishing has been tough on Ten Mile lately. Most of the fish are not eating and would rather do something else. In fact, we just received word of a brutal fish kill on Ten Mile. Many browns, including a 30 inch one, have been reported to be dead, or near death, in the Ten Mile.
Fishing has been fair. Currently, the flow is at a good level for fly fishing. Dry dropper is a great strategy right now. Try using small hoppers and dropping a #16-#20 bead head nymph. The fish aren't that big, but they are plentiful.
The Snake River is running just a bit low. It has fair visibility and is very fishable. Be sure to fish any of the deeper troughs and the pocket water with a short nymph rig or streamer dropper rig. Be aware that anywhere the river bottom is not plainly discernable is likely to hold a trout. Streamers, egg patterns, San Juan worms and bead head Hare's Ears have been effective flies of late.
We have been hearing good things about the fishing on the Frying Pan over Basalt way. The crowds have decreased. But if you really want to avoid seeing many other anglers, try fishing the Pan from before daybreak or from late afternoon until dark.
Need a Frying Pan River map?