Although we were promised a weather change during the week, it did not live up to expectations. Denver had the worst of it with snow and temperatures below 20 degrees. By contrast we were relatively unscathed with just a touch of colder weather, a little wind and a little rain. The coming week is predicted to warm up nicely with temperatures getting over 60 later in the week.
There is a possiblity of some rain mid-week but that is expected to be short-lived.
The windy conditions over the weekend made fishing on the more open sections of the Pan a little testing but nothing more than that. It didn’t stop the fish feeding nicely and the clouds brought on some nice bwo hatches.
There were quite a few fishermen along the river today, mostly in the more sheltered areas. Just below the dam the wind and cold kept the numbers well down so that later in the day there was practically no one there.
Although there were a few visitors about on the weekend, the week finds the rivers generally untroubled leaving great opportunities to wade fish both the Fork and the Pan. On the bright clear days with the last of the colors spread along the river banks we are reminded why we live here and try and get out as much as possible.
We are now doing inventories in the shop and making up fly orders for next year. We will be adding a lot of patterns in the coming year so that will take us well over 4500 patterns and sizes. We have worked out where they can go so all things being equal next year you will have a lot more to look at on your next visit here.
We are now posting photos separately to make the loading of the report easier for your computer. You can see the latest photos: Fly Fishing Photos.
Current Flow: below the Dam 113cfs. (if you want more uptodate figures check out current readings on our "Links" page)
The cool change over the past weekend slowed down the hatches a little but when the sun came out the midges were in abundance. The fish took dries nicely off the surface but predominantly success was had nymphing with baetis and midges.
With the water continuing to flow at 113cfs the fish are concentrated in the flows when feeding and in the deeper sections for protection. The wind during the week put a lot of leaves into the river and with the trees continuing to turn, there will still be a lot of leaves in the coming week.
During the week the fish took smaller patterns be predominantly olive bodied bwos when fishing dries. For nymphing they took small black and gray midge emergers as well as rs2 and the FPA emerging baetis. In the afternoon, the fish were inspecting the dries closely and taking only lighter bodied olive patterns #24 - #26.
The weatherman is generally predicting the days to warm up with the temperatures in the 60’s by next weekend. Although there were quite a few fishermen on the river this weekend, during the week it is decidedly empty with plenty of great uninterrupted fishing.
If you have one more trip to this area in mind, with the warmer weather anticipated next weekend it should be an excellent time for a visit.
Recommended Flies: The PMD's are slowing down although there are still a few coming off intermittently. For the PMD's try Lawson's no-hackles #14 - #16 gray/yellow and also the pink no-hackles #14 - 16. Try comparadun patterns #16 and #18 as well as Barr's emergers and the FPA special PMD emerger.
For baetis try the FPA sparkle baetis #20-#22, FPA emerging baetis #22 - #26 and small pheasant tails #20 - #24. When they start to emerge try loopwing emergers, rs2's, and gray and olive biot patterns. When they get up on to the surface use Parachute Adams, gray special emergers, olive body dries such as the matthews sparkle dun olive #18 - #22, the cdc comparadun, parachute blue duns and gulper specials.
The midges will come off during the day, particularly if it is sunny. So try WD-40's #20, red and black chironocones #20, brassies #18 - #22, midge larva patterns #18 - #22, copper johns #18 - #22, black polywings #18 - #22 and garcia's rojo midges # 18 - #22. Mike reported great success this week on smaller black midges such as the miracle midge.
As they come off try the gray loopwing emergers #20 - #22, the FPA special emergers, biot emergers both with and without the trailing shuck and gray RS2's #18 - #22. In addition try dry patterns such as the z-wing real midge, suspended midge and any similar dry black and gray patterns in sizes from #20 through to #26, loopwing emergers #20 - #22 and FPA special emergers #20 - #26.
The little rain and snow at the higher elevations melted a little during the week keeping the flows in the Fork around 330cfs. Now the Fork is low and practically unfished above Basalt except on bright warm user friendly days, there is ample opportunity to get out on to the river and explore a lot of the untrafficked areas the Fork has to offer. Floating below Carbondale is still an option.
The big browns are now starting to respond to streamers so try patterns like the autumn splendor, the yellow Madonna, woolly buggers. If the fish are short striking, use patterns with stinger hooks.
Recommended Flies: The bwos also come off, particularly when it is cloudy so try baetis nymphs and emergers such as rs2's , FPA sparkle baetis #20 - #22 and the FPA emerging baetis #22 - #24. In addition try the matthews, adams and parachute adams.
PMD's are practically done but if there are a few, try Barr's emergers #16-#20, the FPA biot PMD shuck trailer emerger #16 - #18, the Bubbleback and dries such as the comparadun, Lawson's no-hackle gray/yellow and pink as well as sulphurs in the evening.
The midge hatches remain strong in the mornings and the evenings so look at our Pan recommendations for some midges to try.
The browns are getting ready to spawn now so if the fishing is slow try egg patterns, and attractors such as princes and worm patterns. Its basic but it works.
For streamers try the Autumn Splendor, the Yellow Madonnas and the olive woolly buggers. Try streamers with stinger hooks. This will help solve the short striking problem of big browns.
The Colorado proved excellent again this week with streamers working as well as smaller patterns nymphed down deep. Try BWO emergers and nymphs such as pheasant tails and attractors like the prince. As the browns move onto the redds, eggs will be in order.
Recommended Flies: At the moment the best results are from nymphing deep down with stonefly, baetis and PMD nymph patterns. Streamers are also working well right against the banks. With the cooler weather the fish will start to come to the surface taking dries into the evenings. Use streamers such as the autumn splendor, the yellow madonna and woolly buggers.