For the Week ending 8th May 2005
On Monday the releases from Reudi were bumped up by 34cfs. The Pan ran at 129cfs for a day and then dropped back to 109cfs. As a result the water is a little deeper and the fish have begun to spread out more in the areas which were previously too shallow. This will tend to remove some of the sediment on the rocks and render them less slippery. However, old hands always complain that it is never enough and want a serious 250cfs flush! I imagine that when calls start to come on in July that will happen.
The weather in the last week was not as bad as predicted but it did turn messy on Friday. The forecast for next week is also rain and possible snow at night but it is predicted to get a little warmer. It has been cold the last few days. I fished with gloves on in the hail/sleet.
The fishing during the week was excellent on the Fork. Even towards Glenwood the color looked good. The cold weather continues to slow the run-off. The fishing on the Pan went off for 36 hours when the released water from Ruedi colored the water a little but it settled back down again so that by Friday the reports were good again. This latest spate of wet weather is most welcome and the conditions are excellent for baetis hatches which are starting on the Pan.
In these unsettled conditions dress without compromise. The last thing you want is to be fishing a great hatch and your feet get too cold. The hatches come in waves so you will be standing around getting cold waiting for the next hatch to commence if you don't put on that extra layer. Excess clothing can always be removed if necessary. However given the weather of the last few days, you are guaranteed that what you see in the morning will be different by the afternoon. The other tip in this weather is to carry an extra pair of polarized sunglasses with yellow or amber lenses to enhance the light.Many of the locals are still out of town and there are not many fishermen about. So it is a great time to get some parts of the rivers to yourself. The rainbows are still on the redds so steer clear of them as best you can.
Current Flow: below the Dam 107 cfs. (if you want more uptodate figures check out current readings on our "Links" page)
On Monday, there was a nice midge hatch. Later in the afternoon the BWO's came out and the fish were taking notice until the water colored up with the increased release from Ruedi. The Adams parachute worked well. #22 close to the Dam and a little larger mid-river.
The increased flow in the river slowed down the fishing for a day and a half. The water flow dropped after a day so that it is now running at about 110 cfs. From Tuesday mid afternoon on the fishing picked up a little. Midge emergers with a shuck trailer worked most effectively. There was not a great deal of BWO activity on the water. Towards the end of the week the weather changed for the worst with the barometer moving about. Friday was sunny, wet, cold, raining, a thunderstorm with hail. It was all over the place. Saturday was equally unsettled. Mid-river at about 2pm a heavy shower of rain came down and out came the BWO's in force! The water was boiling. I tried a number of different patterns. All the #20 patterns worked. #24 were too small. The faster water flow made mending mandatory as the line tended to drag if one did not take care. It was great fishing. There were good reports all afternoon of great BWO all the way to the dam. Sunday started of wet and cold with snow on the higher elevations. However, in true mountain form by late afternoon it was sunny and pleasant - just great for Mothers Day. There was a modest midday hatch of BWO's but it was patchy. Midges as usual were ubiquitous.Recommended Flies: The unsettled weather has been a little challenging for some, but close examination always produces dividends. The forecast for the next week remains unsettled with rain and snow. The cloudy conditions are great for BWO hatches so be ready. In the mornings, look to see if any midges are hatching. On the brighter days, there are great midge hatches mid-morning. Some of the midges mid-river are a little larger so we suggest trying #18 and smaller. Try parachute midges or adults; put an emerger dropper behind the parachute; also try small emergers; olive biot emergers, size #18 - #22 and black special emergers #18 - #22. Also try #20 and #22 RS2's both gray and sparkle patterns. If the fish are moving without breaking the surface, they will be taking emergers. A #22 parachute Adams, with a #22 black emerger dropper worked well this week. As the day progresses and the BWO's are in evidence, try the sparkle baetis and or the pheasant tails. Also try the Lawson's gray no hackle #20 and #22 or the sparkle comparadun with a dropper. When the flies are in evidence a single dry fly will work fine. #20 worked well on Saturday in the middle of the hail storm. An important tip. As the baetis hatch in waves, don't make the mistake of getting out of the rain or hail. You will miss great fishing. In the bright light try not to let your leader drift in the same line as the fly. The lighter the tippet the better. If there is no surface activity try dark olive and black pheasant tails size #20 and #22; midges, size #20 and smaller both red and black lava and pupa patterns - disco midges red and black sizes #20 - #24.
Current Flow: near Emma - at Basalt 412cfs. (if you want more uptodate figures check out current readings on our "Links" page)
The increased flow from the Crystal has put down the fishing below Carbondale however the cold weather for the last week has slowed down the run-off and cleared the water a little. The water actually looked quite good in Glenwood on Friday. The colder conditions have slowed the water flow near Basalt so that the color is holding nicely. It continues to be great fishing on the Fork closer to Basalt at the moment with both midges and baetis dry fly activity. We are encouraging fishermen to get out onto the river mid-morning and be prepared to fish through the day to catch both the midges in the morning and the BWO's in the afternoon. We also encourage you to rug up and be very warm because it has tended to get colder as the day progresses. Ed advises that the caddis have been excellent below Basalt. He has had great success on both nymphs and dries. From shop we can see the birds in the evening feeding on the BWO's.
Higher up the Roaring Fork, the stonefly nymphs have continued to work well. Merle and Jeremy both reported good fishing with nymphs on Sunday even though there was not much surface activity.
Please note that from 15th March until 15th May fishing is prohibited 50 yards both upstream and downstream from Four Mile Creek and Three Mile Creek while the rainbows are spawning.Recommended Flies: same as the Frying Pan. If there is a hatch, midges in the morning and BWO's in the afternoon. Around Basalt midges size #16 through #22. Lower down the Roaring Fork towards the Colorado use #12 - #16. If the BWO's are coming off try #16 and smaller. If there is not much surface activity, try baetis (#14 - #20 pheasant tails) and/or stone fly nymphs (20 incher stone #10 - #14). In addition try the prince nymph #14 and #16 and #18; carrot nymph #18; red copper john #18 and #20; superfloss olive #20; gold ribbed hare’s ear #16 and #18; egg patterns #10 - #18; streamers #10 (on some days); if it is quiet try caddis nymphs and emergers for a change. There have been reports of good caddis fishing so have both dries and nymphs at the ready; autumn splendor #4 – 8 and bead head pops bugger olive #6.
The Colorado has turned dark. We are not floating it now. During the last week the colder weather would have helped a little but not much. Wait until run-off is done unless you have no choice. You will have to wade and find pools and sections where the flow is a little slower and the water a little clearer. The trout will try for those areas where they are less likely to be getting silt in their gills.
Please note that from 15th March until 15th May fishing is prohibited 50 yards both upstream and downstream from No Name, Grizzly and Canyon Creeks while the rainbows are spawning.
Recommended Flies: Midges, both dries and emergers; Bead head pheasant tails #16, 18; Blue Wing Olives #18,20; Ccaddis, nymphs and emergers; bead head prince nymph red #12 - 16; egg patterns #10 - #18; streamers #6 and #8 and smaller.