We expected the weather to warm up more than it did this past week. The colder overnight temperatures ensured that the quality of the water in the Fork remained better than anticipated into the weekend. In fact the flow remained in the mid to higher 400cfs during most of the week. But hot weather on Sunday and the promise of high winds over the next day or so should hasten the rate of melting over the next day or so. The forecast for the middle and later in the week is for more warm to hot weather with the possibility of some rain or thundershowers. So one would expect that in a few days the clear water in the Fork will disappear and cloud up with the run-off picking up pace again.
So the expectation if that the quality of the Fork will remain good for only a day or so and then it will be a matter of traveling up high past Basalt or fishing on the Frying Pan. But watch the temperatures. If the overnight temperatures drop below freezing again for a few more nights, the water will remain relatively clear.
There was an article this Tuesday in the Glenwood Post Independent which indicated that the expectation for run-off in the Colorado is considerably below normal. However the Frying Pan and the Roaring Fork are closer to normal.
A couple of bighorn sheep visited us at the cabins this week. We have a couple of photos in the photos section to record the event.
Current Flow: below the Dam 113cfs. (if you want more uptodate figures check out current readings on our "Links" page)
The change threatening to blow in over the weekend tended to drive the fish lower despite some nice BWO and midge hatches. Mother's day meant that few fishermen were out on the river, consequently it was quite quiet fishing on the river on Sunday.
The forecast is for higher temperatures, perhaps some rain and thunderstorms and some wind. Consequently the benefit of the lower overnight temperatures over the past week should dissipate and recommence the thaw bringing more color from the tributaries along the lower pan. A few warm days and some rain should bring on some nice BWO hatches as well as some good midge hatches. The promised cloud cover should bring some great fishing in the coming week if thge weatherman is accurate.
There are mostly midge hatches but a few BWO's are starting to come off. The fish will take tiny baetis nymphs like tiny pheasant tails if they see them enough. So try small black and olive patterns #24 and #26 as well as brassies to get them down. The fish are also taking BWO emergers now, so use the FPA baetis emergers, the sparkle baetis, rs2's and other small emerger patterns. In addition the fish have taken a few BWO dries so try olive bodied patterns #18 -#22 as well as Adams.
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.
Despite the fact that the weather improved last week, the colder overnight temperatures held the thaw in check and resulted in the Fork actually running lower now than it was a week ago. However with the forecast for temperatures to pick up and for overnight temperatures to remain in the 40's one would expect the melt to re-commence apace in a day or so. The high winds over the next few days will assist the rate of thawing as well.There have been some great caddis hatches down near Glenwood over the past week and the clearer waters have afforded a grand opportunity to enjoy them before the waters color up again. So over the next day or so, the fishing should be good but as the flow picks up it will begin to color up again so check with the shop if you are coming up to get the latest reports on the quality of the water.
Recommended Flies: The midges are getting more prolific and larger as we approach spring. In addition to midges, the stone fly nymphs are starting to move about in the water. Baetis are also moving about as well and coming off intermittently.
The caddis are now coming off near Glenwood, and the fish have been taking them nicely. As the water colors up, though it will be a matter of finding some quiet eddies where the fish can see the flies.
The most reliable results now will be nymphing with eggs, princes, midge emergers, baetis nymphs and emergers, 20 inchers and other attractor patterns. In addition as the water colors up use bigger more visible flies.
The Colorado has not benefitted particularly from the overnight colder temperatures and one would expect that with the anticipated warmer days in the offing, soon any semblance of visibility will be a memory. So if you are coming up, plan to fish on the Fork or the Pan. Check with the Shop and check Cameron's reports on Facebook for the water quality of the Colorado later in the week.
Recommended Flies: eggs, attractors, stonefly nymphs, baetis nymphs, caddis and midges.