Stream Report for Monday May 21, 2007
All anglers are reminded that the new fishing license year began April 1, 2007. We are an official New Mexico hunting and fishing license vendor and have the new licenses available for sale now.
Stone Lake on the Jicarilla Nation is currently fishing fair. Bank fishing has slowed some and float tubes or other small watercraft is the best way to fish Stone Lake. Flies for Stone Lake are egg sucking leeches, woolly buggers, damsel nymphs, and egg patterns. Places like these are somewhere you can fish while everything else is in runoff. Remember to get your new New Mexico fishing license or Jicarilla Nation permit as both seasons started April 1st. The High Desert Angler is an official New Mexico license vendor and we also sell Jicarilla Nation fishing permits.
San Juan River 3000 cfs below Navajo Dam; Fair
The San Juan is quite clear for the releases having gone up to 5000 cfs a few weeks ago. According to the Bureau of Reclamation, this release rate will remain at 5,000 cfs through Wednesday, May 16th. Then on Thursday, May 17th, the release will begin to be gradually decreased until it reaches 500 cfs on May 23rd. Wading is definitely tough in the main channels but boat fishing is good. Usually high water does push more fish into the flats and beaver ponds on the south side of the river which won't require dangerous wading. Flies for the San Juan include chamois leeches, red disco midges, red desert storms, red or orange San Juan worms, and black or olive bunny leeches.
Rio Grande 1170 cfs at Pilar; Slow for pike, Slow for trout
The Rio Grande is murky and the flows have come back up with the warmer weather over last week. This could mean the end of fishing the Rio Grande until spring runoff is over, usually in late June or early July. There are still reports of caddis throughout the lower box up past John Dunn Bridge. Flies for the Rio Grande are elk hair caddis, emergent sparkle pupa, submarine softhackle, black, brown or olive woolly buggers, autumn splendors, zoo cougars, conehead madonna’s, double hackle peacocks, poundmeisters, and caddis nymphs. No recent reports of people catching pike on the Rio.
Pecos River 469 cfs below Terrero; Poor
The Pecos River is flowing a lot higher with the warmer weather we have had. Fishing will be tough until runoff is over later this month. The good news is that when runoff ends it usually means the start of the giant stonefly hatch. Nymphing will be the most productive during high water. The Pecos and it's tributaries were stocked a week ago. Big stone fly nymphs, prince nymphs, and copper johns were working for several anglers. Brightly colored flies like red, chartreuse, and blue copper higgins, and purple prince nymphs usually work on the stockers. Please report anyone over harvesting fish to New Mexico Game and Fish at 1-800-432-4263.
Cimarron River 68 cfs at Cimarron; Good
The Cimarron River is dam controlled for the most part by Eagle Nest dam. Flows out of the dam are less than 7 cfs. The remaining water comes from a few small tributaries with biggest being Clear Creek at the eastern end of the State Park. The best fishing is now upstream of Clear Creek towards Tolby Creek. Flies for the Cimarron are yellow stimulators, bwo's, parachute adams, tungsten copper johns, copper higgins, pheasant tails, and orange scuds should the release out of the dam come up.
Jemez Mountain Streams 330 cfs on main stem Jemez above Jemez Pueblo; Fair
Most of the Jemez streams are clearing and done with runoff. The increase in flows is from the last of the snowpack melting in the extensive Rio de Las Vacas watershed and the precipitation we seem to keep getting on a regular basis. The main stem Jemez, Guadalupe, and Rio de Las Vacas are still high and off color. The Jemez Mountain streams were stocked last week. The best reports have been from headwater streams like the East Fork, San Antonio and the Cebolla. There have been a few stoneflies sotted on the Sana Antonio. Dry fly dropper rigs over the shallower runs or dead drifting big nymphs in the deeper pools will pick up a few fish.
The Chama River 1120 cfs below El Vado Dam; Poor and 1430 cfs below Abiquiu Dam; Poor
The fishing is probably done until the flows come back down below 400 cfs below El Vado. The Chama River flowing into El Vado lake is in runoff. Releases out of Abiquiu Dam went up also and fishing is going to be tough here until flows come back down. Streamers are the general fly choices for below both dams. The areas below Abiquiu Dam and above El Vado Lake are Special Trout Waters with reduced bag limits. The density of fish is very low here and is not stocked. Please report anyone over harvesting here to New Mexico Game and Fish at 1-800-432-4263.
McAllister Lake is reportedly fishing fair and was heavily stocked again. Please use caution on any lake as the spring winds can make float tubing difficult or dangerous. Woolly Buggers, leeches, midges, and aquatic snails, and damsel flies should be the best producers.
Santa Fe River 16 cfs through Santa Fe; Fair
The Santa Fe River was stocked on May 18th. Game and Fish will stock the Santa Fe River any time there is sufficient water to do so. So, no joke, you can catch fish out of this often dry river, at least for the time being. Any location east of downtown Santa Fe is generally preferred for it's access and ambience. With the talk of the Santa Fe River having a year round flow, it could be a good thing to show the demand for a nearby fishery by actually fishing the Santa Fe River. If any one goes, please e-mail me a report.
In Southern Colorado:
The Conejos River 923 cfs at Magote; Slow to Fair
The Conejos River had also been fishing well most of April but, warmer temps has started spring runoff here. The releases out of Platoro Resevoir down recently reportedly to do some repairs on some of the diversions and are expected to be back up mid-week. The road above Elk Creek Campground is open all the way to the Pinnacles. The Conejos below Platoro and some of the tributaries and beaver ponds may still be fishable. At a few hours drive from Santa Fe, it's within the same driving distance to the San Juan and should be as great of a summer fishery as it was last year.
Arkansas River; Slow
The Arkansas River has come up with the melting snowpack and releases out of Twin Lakes as well. The river above Lake Creek to Hayden Meadows is not experiencing high water and is fishable. The Ark is about four hours from Santa Fe and another river worth exploring, especially if you are one of the many to miss out on the caddis hatch on the Rio Grande.
Rio Grande 2780 cfs at Wagon Wheel Gap; Poor
The upper Rio Grande is obviously in runoff. High water will continue for at least a few weeks. Look for hatching stoneflies as the water recedes in early June.
The San Juan River 1560 cfs at Pagosa Springs; Poor
The upper San Juan and Piedra rivers are in runoff as well. The only fishable water in this area is Williams Creek below the dam. Runoff will last a few weeks to a month here, but should give way to some awsome summer fishing within a few hours drive of Santa Fe.
Water and fishing condtitions are changing daily! Please CALL the fly shop for the latest in stream flows and water conditions.
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.
For the latest in stream flows, see our links page and click on New Mexico Stream Flows.