Ed's Fly Fishing Report for Saturday May 11, 2013
San Juan River 291 cfs below Navajo Dam; Good
Higher flows on the Animas River downstream of Navajo Dam means a lower release out of Navajo Dam. There won't be a typical spring flush this year as the lake level is low and won't be replenished by spring runoff. Midges have been hatching late morning with stronger baetis hatches from noon or so, then back to midges late afternons. For the morning, try drifting a pupa in the middle of the water column, This has been good pretty much from Texas Hole up to the cable. Baetis start becoming more active from noon on. Good dry fly action, especially on cloudy days from 1:00 to 5:00 in the afternoons. Size #20-22 gray, olive, or chocolate baetis emergers and dries in the afternoons will pick up fish. The hatches are better below Texas Hole. Midges will again, become more relevant in late afternoons into the evening. Make sure to clean off any moss that accumulates on your rig. The Special Trout Water section is all catch and release and has a two fly only rule. If you see someone in violation, turn them into Game and Fish at 1-800-432-4263. Officers have been checking people for licenses, barbless flies, and the number of flies on your rig! File those barbs or go barbless, as the fines are steep!
Pecos River 60 cfs near Pecos; Good
Fishing is good on the Pecos. Runoff is over way early this year. The water is clear and the wading is easy. Best when the sun is on the water from 10:00 am until 4:30-5:00 There is warmer water and better fishing in the lower public accesses than there is above Terrerro first thing in the morning. A dry dropper will work at these flows with a long dropper, otherwise go with a nymph rig. Stonefly nymphs and baetis nymphs have been the best producers. Hatches of blue winged olives are bringing fish up to the surface mid afternoon. Please respect the landowners along the Pecos and don't trespass. The Pecos National Historical Park's Spring Fishing season will resume in late June. To check for the dates or to make a reservation for their summer season, see the Park's website at: http://www.nps.gov/peco/planyourvisit/fishing.htm for more info.
Rio Grande 189 cfs at Cerro; Good: 428 cfs at Pilar; Slow for pike, Good for trout, Fair for smallmouth bass
The caddis hatch is done for this year. Collder water temps have kept the hatch from really happening. We may see some later emergence with warmer water temps. Blue winged olives have been the best hatch this spring. The Rio has murked up a little most likely from irrigation return. Think big and flashy flies with the change in clarity. Nymphing with big stonefly nymphs or crane fly larvae with a trailing caddis larvae or baetis nymph will pick up trout sub surface. Fish the faster riffled water with blue winged olives emergers or dries late afternoons. Dry flies like a caddis drifted along the banks in the last hour of daylight will also pick up fish. Pike fishing is slow. Large streamers that move water will still get a pike's attention. Vary your retrieves and change up the color of your flies to see which ones trigger a bite.
Jemez Mountain Streams 27 cfs above Jemez Pueblo; Good
The Jemez streams are low and clear and have been fishing well lately. The fish in the headwater streams are a little slow in the mornings but will pick up later in the day. The lower sections offer deeper water and less skittish fish. A dry fly dropper rig will pick up most fish. Most attractor dries size #14 and smaller are also working. No reports of stoneflies on the lower Jemez or Guadalupe. They'll usually emerge the second to the last week in May. The spring Fishing Program on the Valles Caldera National Preserve begins on Wednesday May 15th. See their website for available dates at http://www.vallescaldera.gov/comevisit/fish/index.aspx
Cimarron River 26 cfs below Eagle Nest Dam; Good
Good stable releases out of Eagle Nest Dam have made for good fishing. The water is fairly clear as the tribs are pretty well done with runoff. The only relevant hatch is blue winged olives. Baetis nymphs, grey and olive scuds, and small golden stone nymphs are the best producers.
Chama River above the village of Chama; Poor: 539 cfs below the town of Tierrra Amarilla; Slow: 837 cfs below El Vado Dam; Slow: and 813 cfs below Abiquiu Dam; Poor
The Chama in the Sargent Wildlife Area is too high and cold. The Chama flowing into El Vado Reservoir is fast and murky, but fishable on the edges in the deeper runs and pools. The water is cold and has to be covered thoroughly to catch fish. Bigger stonefly nymphs with a trailing baetis nymph is the way to go. The water clarity below Abiquiu is poor but may get better as the flows stabilize or come down. Bigger flashier nymphs or streamers would be the way to go. The release below El Vado is also up making the river murky and not really wadeable. The Chama River above El Vado and below Abiquiu are Special Trout Waters with reduced bag limits. The density of fish is very low there and is not stocked. Please report anyone over harvesting here to New Mexico Game and Fish at 1-800-432-4263.
In Southern Colorado:
Animas River 648 cfs at Durango; Slow to Fair
The Animas is fishing fair especially on the lower river around Durango. Bank fishing on the deeper runs and pools with big stonefly nymphs and streamers are getting some fish. Fishing upriver is slower with colder water being the main factor.
Arkansas River 218 cfs at Granite; Good: 311 cfs at Salida; Good
The fishing here is fair on the upper river at Hayden Meadows. The water is cfairly clear but cold especially in the mornings. The middle river from Buena Vista on down to Salida is fishing better. From Salida downstream the are more caddis. The mornings are a little slow, but things pick up in the afternoons. Blue-winged olives and dark bodied midges are the name of the game. Trail them behind caddis nymphs, or golden stones. Some hatches of blue winged olives are still happening.
Conejos River 52 cfs below Platoro Reservoir; Fair to Good: 269 cfs at Mogote; Good
Nymph fishing on the Conejos has been very good lately. Wading can be tricky from the fly water down to Mogote Campground. A little less water from Elk Creek to Trail Creek makes the fishing easier. The lower release out of Platoro actually makes fishing the meadows more difficult and the fish move with the dropping flows. Stonefly nymphs, baetis nymphs and PMD nymphs are what's for dinner. Some short lived localized hatches of blue winged olives are bring some fish to the surface in the faster water.
Rio Grande 132 cfs at Thirty Mile Bridge above Creede; Fair to Good: 604 cfs below Wagon Wheel Gap; Fair to Good
The Rio as a whole is a fishing slow in the mornings until the sun has a chance to heat things up. No emergence of stoneflies yet depite the lack of any real heavy runoff. The lower river is floatable and will probaly be the best way to fish it. The upper river around Creede is fishing well on stonefly nymphs and baetis patterns.
San Juan River 394 at Pagosa Springs; Slow: the Piedrea River 525 cfs at Arboles; Slow
The Pagosa are streams are high with snowmelt and are not fishing well. The only fishing top be had would be the upper forks to the Piedra or Williams Creek from it's confluence of the Piedra to the dam. Like every other stream locally, big stonefly nymphs and a trailing baetis nymph would be the way to go.
It's spring in New Mexico and water and fishing condtitions can change with the weather! Please CALL the fly shop for the latest in stream flows and water conditions.
For the most current stream flows, see our links page and click on New Mexico Stream Flows.
Please see our announcements page for more news and upcoming events!
Call us at the shop for conditions on waters not listed here. 888-988-7688 out of Santa Fe or 988-7688 in Santa Fe.
Click on Public Lands Information Center from our links page for a full list of fire restrictions and closures.