Another difficult week, weather wise. It has certainly been a difficult spring, with little warm weather. Again this weekend we awoke to snow on the ground and cold temperatures close to freezing. May arrived with driving snow, a lot of cold wind and generally inhospitable conditions. The weather forecast is for the next ten days of relatively mild to warm days with a little cloud and little chance of rain or snow. We shall see.
The snow over the last month has built up the snow pack and the cold weather has maintained it. Consequently the bureau has pushed the releases up to 353cfs and on all indications will keep them there. This means that in the narrower section of the Pan lower down, it will be difficult wading, but not too difficult higher where it widens out.
The near freezing temperatures of the past few days has slowed down the run-off and allowed the rivers to clear a little. The Fork cleared quite well all the way down and even the Colorado has cleared enough to be a proposition. Here is a picture taken on the Fork on Saturday above the lower woody creek bridge. Winter certainly returned.
These conditions will persist until the weather warms up again. So given the forecast, this might only before a few days. In the meantime the conditions are great if you can be here over the next short period.
Current Flow: below the Dam 353cfs. (if you want more uptodate figures check out current readings on our "Links" page)
Another hard week. With cold and rain/snow dominating for much of the week, the Bureau put the flows up again to 353cfs. This is far above the median of 153cfs for this time of year. The jump is due to the amount of snow which has fallen over the past month and built up the snow pack. The Bureau needs to get ahead of the potential runoff to be able to control the flow when the melt starts at higher altitudes. As an indication of how much the snowpack has built up, the current snow/water equivalent is 160% of the daily average at Ivanhoe lake.
So for now, one expects the flows to remain at a manageable 350cfs in the Pan. The water condition is excellent with great visibility. The flows in the narrower sections of the Pan close to Basalt won't be fishable. But higher as the river widens out it will be fine. It will be a matter of fishing the edges where the flows are not as intense. The fish will be seeking slower water to feed while the predominant source at the moment is midges and BWO's.
Recommended Flies:There is good fishing now on both midges and BWO's. The principal hatches are midges, but the BWO's are building in intensity.
When the flows picked up in the Pan many of the fishermen moved to the Fork above Basalt and enjoyed some excellent fishing during the week. Higher up with the flows lower, the river was accessible and fished well both nymphing and on dries when the BWO's came off in afternoon during the snow.
Around Basalt there were good reports of fish on stonefly nymphs, attractors and worms in addition to midge larva and baetis nymphs.
The conditions have improved sufficiently for the Fork to have cleared nicely all the way to Glenwood. This will persist until the warm weather returns and the melt picks up pace. From the weather forecast, overnight temperatures will move back above freezing by midweek, so if you are coming up next weekend, call the shop and check on the extent to which the flows have picked up. Alternatively just check the flows and that will give some insight as well.
Recommended Flies: The best results now are nymphing deep with eggs, attractors such a princes and hare's ears, worms, stoneflies and small baetis nymphs.
For the moment the freezing conditions slowed down the melt and improved the water condition in the Colorado. So for the short period before the weather warms again, there is an opportunity to fish the Colorado with midges, baetis nymphs, stonefly nymphs, attractors and dries when a BWO hatch comes off. However it will only be a matter of a few days of warm weather to put paid to that, so check with us if the weather clears and warms up.