Runoff has begun on lower altitude streams. Most of the larger rivers like the Colorado, Yampa, Arkansas and Roaring Fork have doubled or even tripled in the past week. Tailwaters, other than the Frying Pan, the Dream Stream and Eleven Mile Canyon are flowing much higher as water managers spill waters from reservoirs in anticipation of high runoff. One exception is the tailwater section of the Big Thompson below lake Estes, which is still flowing under 30 cfs. There are open water stretches throughout the upper canyon. Hardly a day goes by here at the shop that we hear reports of how good the fishing is n the T right now, with plenty of pictures to back up the claims. All roads to Estes Park are open, including US 36, US 34 and CO 7, though there may be construction delays, especially on US 36. Lower Glacier Creek and the lower stretches of the Big T in RMNP are open and fishing pretty well. We'll continue to monitor the Park in the coming weeks. If you want to go fishing, head for the tailwaters around the state- the Frying Pan, the Taylor, Eleven Mile Canyon and others. Snowpack in the Northern mountains is in great shape, so this should be a great year.
The Buttonrock Preserve section of the N St Vrain will not be open in 2015. The South St Vrain outside of Lyons should be fishable as soon as it gets warmer, but it's anybody's guess what the fishing will be like. The St Vrain within the Lyons Town Limits is closed to public access while cleanup and restoration continue. The town is working hard to reopen Meadow Park before summer, so it may be possible to fish there before we thought.
As low water continues on freestones, and as always in crystal clear tailwaters, It pays to use smaller fluorocarbon tippets (6x-7x) and small flies during low water conditions for nymphing. Stick with mono for dry flies.
Give us a call before heading out as we may have some info based on what we have heard from customers and our own trips.
Current streamflow conditions are available for these and other streams at the
Colorado Department of Natural Resources.
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|River and Conditions||Hatches/Activity||Comments||Go To Flies|
|26 cfs below Lake Estes
||Midges, very prolific most days with rising fish.||Fishing very well. Dry fly fishing to midge hatches has been excellent.
Nymphing is also good. Double nymph rigs productive (eg, Flashy, PT or CJ trailing a Zebra Midge, Deep Blue Poison Tung, Barr Emerger or pink SJW). Midge dries/emergers.
|Dries: Griffith's Gnat, Para Adams (#20-26), RS-2. Nymphs: Purple or pink SJW, Prince Nymphs, Hot Wire Prince and stonefly nymphs, Deep Blue Poison Tung, Ray Charles, red, black or olive midge larvae, PT, CJ, Hare's Ear, Tarheel Caddis Larva, Mike's Improved Bling Midge.|
|Rocky Mountain National Park|
|33 cfs in Moraine Park
||Moraine Park and above on the Big T fishing well, as is lower Glacier Creek.||Same as the the Big T above.|
|101 cfs In Lyons
||Buttonrock Road (CR80) closed. No public access in Lyons. S St Vrain along Hwy 7 has some open water.||Same as the the Big T above.|
|Cache La Poudre|
|416 cfs at canyon mouth and through Ft Collins. Fishing well in spots. Open water stretches in the lower canyon.
||Midges, stonefly nymphs.||Fishing well in spots. Open water stretches in the lower canyon up to Gateway, but ice is melting higher up as well. Nymphing is your best bet, but watch for trout rising to midge hatches.||Dries: Midges, eg., Griffith's Gnat. Nymphs: Tak's Go2 Prince,Hot Wire Prince, PT, SJW, midge larvae/pupae patterns, Ray Charles, Poison Tung, large stone flies such as 20 inchers, Prince Nymph, Golden Stones. Pink or red SJW, Psycho Prince, Tarheel Caddis Larva, Mike's Improved Bling Midge. Streamers: Buggers in black, olive or orange, leech patterns.|
|495 cfs below Dillon Res.
||Midges, Mysis shrimp.||Greatly increased flow make this difficult to wade and fish. The usual tailwater nymphs and midges. Mysis patterns below the dam. North of town, fish BWO nymphs trailing a San Juan Worm or midge larva- dries during hatches. Dry/dropper rigs with a fly you can see with a midge dropper are most effective. If you use an indicator. go SMALL.||Dries: Adams/Parachute Adams #16-26, Griffiths Gnat. Nymphs: Barr's Pure Midge, black or gray RS2, Miracle, JuJuBee, Black Beauty, red midge patterns, Mercury Midge, PT, CJ. Hare's Ear, etc.|
|718 cfs below Green Mtn Res.||Midges.||Midge dries/larva/pupae.||Same as Silverthorne except Mysis.|
|406 cfs at Avon
599 cfs at Gypsum.
|Midges, BWOs, Eggs||Mostly ice free. Nymphing is the best producer. Attractor nymphs trailed by an RS2, midge or mayfly nymph are good combos. Midge and BWO dries will produce during hatches.||Dries: Parachute Adams, BWO and BWO emergers, RS-2. Midge dries like a Griffith's Gnat, BWO, Barr Emerger. Nymphs: Eggs,PT, Micromay, Prince, CJ, etc. Tarheel Caddis Larva. Streamers: Black or olive Slumpbusters, black or olive Buggers, etc.|
|222 cfs below Reudi Reservoir.||Midges, a few BWOs. Mysis below the dam.||Fishing very well right now. This is a great flow for fishing the flats as well as the middle and lower river. Nymphing morning and late afternoons, dries/emergers during midday to afternoon hatches.||Dries: Midge patterns, Stuck in the Shuck midge emergers, #20-24 BWO Sparkle Duns and Comparaduns, #22-26 Para Adams, Barr Emerger, Jujubaetis, RS-2, grey or black midge dries down to size 30 or 32. Nymphs: PT, Midge pupae and larvae, eggs, Rainbow Warrior, Zebra/Black Beauty midges (black or red), Brassies, Eggs, Mysis, pink San Juan Worm, Tabou Caddis Emerger. Streamers: Use smaller sizes: Black or olive Slumpbusters, black or olive Buggers, etc.|
|Basalt to Carbondale: 584 cfs above FP confluence near Basalt.||Stonefly nymphs, midges, eggs, BWOs.||Trail a midge larva or BWO nymph behind a big stone nymph. Otherwise, double nymph rigs or driy/emerger combos (during hatches with surface feeding activity) are the order of the day.||Dries: Same as the Pan. Nymphs: stonefly, caddis and mayfly nymphs, Pat's Rubber Legs, PT, eggs, SJW. Streamers: Autumn Splendor, Black Bugger, Northern Lights, White Clouser.|
|Carbondale to Glenwood Springs: 1260 cfs at Glenwood Springs.||Stonefly nymphs, midges, eggs, BWOs.||Same as above.||Same as above|
|Parshall: N/A cfs
Pumphouse: 2010 cfs
Glenwood Spgs: 5290 cfs.
|Midges||Pumphouse mostly open and fishing well. Nymphing best, but you may get some dry fly activity during hatches.
Frozen above Williams Fork confluence. Nymphing has been effective at the Breeze Unit.
|Dries: Small midge dries, Griffith's Gnat, size 20-26 Para Adams. Nymphs: Pat's Rubberlegs, midge larvae/pupae in red or black, small (18-20) PT and Hare's Ear, RS-II. Streamers: Buggers, Slumpbuster, Double Bunny, Bunny Leech, Girdle Bugs.|
|98 cfs below Stagecoach.
1470 cfs at Steamboat Spgs.
|Stagecoach: Midges, scuds, worms.
Steamboat area: Midges, BWOs
|Nymphing deeper runs and holes. Dries may work during hatches, which are usually pretty sporadic.||Dries: Midge dries, Griffiths Gnat, RS-2. Nymphs: Tabou Caddis Emerger, Rainbow Warrior, midge larvae/pupae in black or red, typical tailwater nymphs, scuds in olive, rust orange, cream or tan, red or pink SJWs, Hare's Ear and Chamois Leeches, Miracle Nymph.|
|Leadville to Buena Vista: 530 cfs at Granite.||Midges||Starting to open up in Hayden Meadows. Use a bead head nymph trailing a midge pupa/larva.||Same as BV-Salida below.|
|Buena Vista to Salida: 733 cfs at Salida.||Stonefly nymphs, caddis larvae, midges.||Brown's Canyon to Salida is a good choice|
|Salida to Canon City: 754 cfs at Canon City.||Stonefly nymphs, caddis larvae, midges.||Fishing is good. Double nymph rigs with a stonefly nymph trailing a midge larva/pupa. Streamers. Some success reported with Stimis!||Dries: Stimis, Humpies and other attractors. #22-26 Para Adams, Griffith's Gnat. Nymphs: Prince, 20 Incher, midge larvae and pupae, BH PT, Hare's Ear, chartreuse caddis larva, golden stones, CJ- black, red, chartreuse, Two-Bit Hooker. Streamers: Autumn Splendor, buggers.|
|Below Pueblo Res: 209 cfs.
||BWOs, Midges.||Double nymph rigs with a beadhead/attractor nymph (esp a big stonefly) trailing a midge larva pattern or SJW. Dry/dropper rigs.||Dries: BWO, BWO emergers, Parachute Adams, RS-2, Griffith's Gnat. Nymphs: Prince, Copper John, Juju Baetis, Pheasant Tail, Brassie, eggs, San Juan Worm (orange, pink or red), typical tailwater midge patterns. Streamers: Buggers, Near Nuff Crayfish|
|243 cfs at Deckers.||Midges, a few .||Midge behind a beadhead nymph. Dries for rising fish.||Dries: Griffiths Gnat and other midge dries, Para Adams- all very small- #20 and smaller, RS-2, WD-40, Barr Emergers. Nymphs: Very small PTs, Hare's Ears, Mercury Midge, Zebra Midge, Rainbow Warrior, eggs, Top Secret Midge. Medallion Midge.|
|244 cfs below Cheesman.||Midges, a few BWOs.||Pretty much the same as the Dream Stream. Fishing is tough.||Dries: Griffiths Gnat and other midges, Para Adams- all very small- #20 and smaller, RS-2, WD-40, Barr Emergers, Elk Hair and other Caddis, Tricos (spinners and sunken). Nymphs: Tan Graphic Caddis, Juju Baetis, very small PTs, Mercury Midge, Zebra Midge, Rainbow Warrior, brown body midge larva, midge pupa patterns,Top Secret Midge. Medallion Midge.|
|86 cfs in Elevenmile Canyon.||Midges.||Pretty much the same as the Dream Stream. Fishing is tough.||Dries: BWO and BWO emergers. Griffiths Gnat and other midges, Para Adams- all very small- #20 and smaller, RS-2, WD-40, Barr Emergers, Nymphs: Very small PTs, Mercury Midge, Zebra Midge, Rainbow Warrior, SJW, Top Secret Midge. Medallion Midge.|
|86 cfs at Charlie Meyers State Wildlife Area (Dream Stream).||Midges.||Tough fishing right now, but rainbows should start moving up from Eleven Mile in the next couple of weeks. Use double nymph rigs or a #24-26 Para Adams to rising fish.||Dries: RS-2, WD-40, Para Adams, midges, Griffith's Gnat, small BWO patterns and BWO emergers (ie, Barr Emerger). Nymphs: Red, pink or brown SJW, Chamois Leech, Rojo Midge, Mercury Black Beauty, Brassie, Red PT, Rainbow Warrior, Flashback PT, midge larvae/pupae patterns, Pure Midge, olive scuds or egg patterns, Top Secret Midge, Medallion Midge. Streamers: Try Autumn Splendors, Woolly Buggers (olive, black, brown), Girdle Bugs in mottled colors.|
|Grey Reef: 500 cfs.
Miracle Mile: 525 cfs
|Midges, cranefly larva. orange scuds, black Zebra Midge.||We've had some reports of big fish being caught, and fishing is good. Nymphing almost exclusively||Nymphs: Scuds, Red SJW, Chamois Leech, Hot Wire Prince, Cranefly Larvae. Midges: PAL, Bionic Black/Silver, Bionic Brown, Split Back Trico, Split Foam Back Baetis Red Rock Worm. Other: Vanilla Buggers, Primrose and Black, Blue Poison Tung, Gray RS2, Eggs|