The Arkansas River between Buena Vista and Salida offers at least 10 boat ramps for float fishing, and numerous wade fishing access areas. There are some serious class III-IV rapids throughout this zone, so educate yourself before you go. Being a freestone river, the Ark supports diverse bug life, including tons of caddis, Baetis, PMD's, drakes, golden stones, and more.
Sounds like conditions are shaping up inbetween Buena Vista, and Salida on the Arkansas River. We are hearing of water clarity right around the two foot mark, with active Stoneflies, Caddis, and Baetis.
Warmer temps are bringing down spring snowmelt in feeder creeks, and more water is being released from reservoirs throughout the drainage to make room for it. The Arkansas near Salida is high with about a foot of clarity. Look to fish slower pockets of water along the banks with nymphs, or streamers. Streamers in general, and brighter nymphs such as caddis pupa fished on the swing have been especially good. Expect better clarity upstream towards Buena Vista, especially above Chalk Creek.
Nymphs To Try: Size 8-12 Pat’s Rubberlegs, size 12-18 Golden Stone nymphs, chartreuse Nitro Caddis size 14-16, Chronic Caddis 14-16, hot beaded Physco Baetis size 18-20, Double-Down Pheasant Tails,
Dries To Try: Terrestrial or larger golden stone patterns could be an effective tool for drifting nymphs tight to the bank. They Might also produce an eat or two as well.
Streamers To Try: Double Gonga in black or white. Baby Gonga in black, and brown trout color ways. Peanut Envy in black. Sex Dungeon in White, or Black. Home Invader in black.
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