The Roaring fork is a true "freestone" stream from its headwaters along Independence, to its confluence with the Colorado River near Glenwood Springs, CO. The upper stretches of The Roaring Fork are tight with a steep gradient, offering pocket water fishing for Brook and Rainbow Trout. Between the towns of Basalt and Glenwood Springs the Roaring Fork is wider with less gradient, which produces great trout holding water. Access is avaible in this stretch for both the wade, and float fisherman.
Nymphs To Try: Pheasant Tails size 12-20 both bead head and natural, Tungsten Physco Baetis black size 18-20, Mayhem BWO size 18-20, The Ninja size 18-20, RS2 in black or grey with sparkle wing, UV Midge brown and black size 20-22, Disco Midge red 20-24, pegged eggs, Biot Golden Stone size 10-16, Pat's Rubber legs size
Dries To Try: Parachute Adams 18-22, Parachute Extended Body Blue Wing Olive, Brook Sprout Midge various colors size 20-24, CDC Morgan's Midge, Griffins Gnat size 18-22
Streamers To Try: Boogie Man in olive, Meat Whistle in black or brown, Sculpzilla olive, Wooly Bugger small sizes in white or black, egg sucking leeches.
The Roaring Fork is currently high and dirty with the start of full on run-off form the high alpine peaks. If you do fish the Fork consider using streamers, and large or bright attractor style nymphs.
The Roaring Fork is following the same trend as most other freestone rivers in the general area. Colder weather is producing a slow decrease in CFS, while water clarity is getting slightly better. Midges are the best hatch on the Fork at the moment with Baetis in a close second. Try fishing a deep nymph rig if there is not much surface activity to be seen. However a good midge, or blue wing hatch will have trout feeding closer to the surface. In this case dry flies or a light dry dropper rig fished tight to the banks can be effective. If fishing with insect imitations seems to be slow consider trying out some streamer patterns fished very deep, or tight to the banks.
The Roaring Fork is fishing well, and will be similair to other freestone rivers in the area such as the Colorado or the Arkansas. Water temps are slowly climbing, whcich means more aquatic insects will start to hatch. Now we are seeing strong midge hatches and some decent Blue Wing Olive hatches which should start to pick up in intensity. Stonefllies, eggs, worms, and baitfish are other food sources to consider at this time. The Fork beelow the confluence withthe crystal River has been slightly off color, larger attractor nymphs have been working well in this stretch.