Stream Report for Tuesday October 23, 2007
WE ARE MOVING, AGAIN! This time we'll be a lot easier to find as we are only moving next door in the space formerly occupied by Wild Mountain Outfitters. We are gaining a bigger and brighter space with better visibility on Cerrillos Road. To facilitate the move, we will be closing Sunday October 28th and reopening in the new space on Wednesday October 31st. Come see our new home and celebrate our move on Friday November 23rd.
Please be aware that New Mexico's most abundant wild trout, brown trout, are into their spawn on many rivers and streams throughout the state. Wade carefully, don't cast at spawning fish and look out for their spawning beds known as redds. A redd is a circular area of clean gravel usually found at the tail of a pool. Sometimes the spawning pair can be seen over their redd. Do not wade through or over a redd and please leave these fish alone as the clearly have something very important to do.
San Juan River 723 cfs below Navajo Dam; Good
Releases out of Navajo Dam went down on the 11th and back up yesterday. The San Juan is quite clear and fishing is very good. Expect less fish in the flats and more in the channels with the lower flows. There have been some very good midge hatches, although fall is baetis time on the Juan. Typically they emerge around 1 in the afternoon and are most abundant below Texas Hole. Flies for the San Juan include red disco midges, olive johnny flash, olive RS2's, UV flash midge emergers, hatching midges, griffith's gnats, dead chickens, parachute baetis, CDC BWO comparaduns, and black or olive bunny leeches.
Rio Grande 434 cfs at Pilar; Fair for pike, Fair for trout, Fair for smallmouth bass
The Rio Grande got murked up again. Recent heavy rains in Colorado have made their way into New Mexico. Typically, better trout fishing in the gorge upstream of the Red River confluence, but Pilar was fishing fair before the increse in flows. Other flies for the Rio Grande are parachute baetis, CDC blue winged olive comparadun, olive RS2's, softhackle pheasant tail, black, brown or olive woolly buggers, autumn splendors, zoo cougars, conehead madonna’s, double hackle peacocks, poundmeisters, and caddis nymphs. I've got a few reliable reports now of people catching pike on the Rio.
Pecos River 34 cfs below Terrero; Good
The Pecos is fishing well. Dry fly dropper rigs are the most productive in the mornings but, dry fly fishing in the evenings has been good. The water is clear and low making the fish quite spooky. Use longer leaders, finer tippets, and make longer casts to fool these fish that have seen everything. The stocked rainbows are less selective. Egg patterns, red or green copper higgins, and prince nymphs generally work on them. Flies for the Pecos include baetis emergers, small stimulators, Barr's PMD emerger, fluttering caddis, spent partridge caddis, and adams. The fall colors are near their peak along the Pecos.The river adjacent to Monastery Lake and all the way up to and behind the fish hatchery is private. Please respect all of the landowners along the Pecos and stay out of all posted private waters. The FIRST PUBLIC access is Dalton Day Use. Dalton is approximately 6 miles upstream of the village of Pecos. Please report anyone over harvesting fish or poaching to New Mexico Game and Fish at 1-800-432-4263.
Rio del Pueblo and Rio Santa Barbara are both fishing well. The better fishing is during daylight hours on the Pueblo and afternoons the Santa Barbara. Dry fly dropper rigs work best on the Pueblo and high riding easy to see dry flies are the way to go for the Santa Barbara. The better fishing on the Pueblo tends to be the areas between the campgrounds. Lots of wild browns, stocked rainbows and the occasional cutthroat make this river one of the places you can catch a grand slam. The Santa Barbara also has good numbers of wild browns and lots of stocked rainbows up to the campgrounds. Early morning fishing is a little slow on the Santa Barbara because of the gradients, abundant stream cover, and northerly aspect. The unfortunate thing is that you have to hike a ways above Santa Barbara campground to find cutthroats, but the fall colors are awesome.
Cimarron River 42 cfs at Cimarron; Good
The Cimarron River is dam controlled for the most part by Eagle Nest dam. Releases out of the dam are near 40 cfs. Another area water, the Red River has had a fish kill below Fawn Lakes campground after two landslides dumped debris in the river several weeks ago. Please consider another fishery besides the Lower Red River. The lower Red is an important spawning tributary to the Rio Grande. Brown trout are nearing their spawn and would be a lot more successful if left alone! The Red River above Fawn Lakes to it's headwaters is fishing well. Flies for the Cimarron and Red are yellow stimulators, little yellow sallies, parachute adams, copper higgins, pheasant tails, and HDA favorites.
Jemez Mountain Streams 24 cfs on main stem Jemez above Jemez Pueblo; Good
The Jemez streams are fishing well especially on dry flies in the evenings. Hatches of little yellow sallies, small caddis, and small mayflies have been bring most fish to the surface. Forest Road 376 to the upper San Antonio is still open. Drive 376 at your own risk. It's usually passable in dry weather in a high clearance vehicle like a two wheel drive pickup, but if it rains, a four wheel drive or alternate access is required. Dry flies over the shallower runs or dead drifting a small nymph on a dropper in the deeper pools will pick up most of the fish. Fly choices are yellow stimulators, yellow sallies, adams, spent partridge caddis, red legged hoppers, dennis hoppers, caddis pupa, BLM's, and HDA favorites.
The Chama River above the village of Chama; Good: 40 cfs below the town of Tierrra Amarilla; Fair: 89 cfs below El Vado Dam; Fair: and 52 cfs below Abiquiu Dam; Fair
The fishing is generally fair below El Vado using big nymphs with flash and sparkle or streamers but, make sure to check out the flows as releases out of both dams have been fluctuating every couple of days. The Chama below Abiquiu Dam is aslo likey to be fishing fair as long as the releases keep fluctuating wildly. The Chama flowing into El Vado is fishing slow with high releases out of Heron. The Chama River above the village of Chama has nice water and is fishing well and the fall colors arew coming out. The nearby Brazos River is also fishing very well. Streamers are the general fly choices below both dams. The flies for the upper Chama and Brazos are spent partridge caddis, Furimsky's fluttering foam caddis, adams, and small stimulators. 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.
Stone Lake on the Jicarilla Nation is currently fishing fair. Float tubes or other small watercraft is the best way to fish Stone Lake. Mundo Lake and Enbom are currently fishing the best of all Jicarilla Nation lakes. The fish are smaller at Mundo. Flies for Jicarilla Nation Lakes are hellgramites, woolly buggers, and damsel nymphs. All Jicarilla Nation lakes close October 31st. The High Desert Angler is an official Jicarilla Nation fishing permit vendor.
MacAllister Lake has had a fish kill. Unfortunately all of the trout were affected and the mirror carp remain. Some fly rodders are having fun with the carp. This lake as well as Maxwell and Charrette lakes will close on October 31st. Currently there are no plans to restock the lake till next year.
In Southern Colorado:
The Conejos River 166 cfs at Magote; Good
The Conejos River is fishing very well. The river immediately below Platoro Resevoir is currently flowing at 106 cfs. Releases over 180 cfs make wading the Pinnacles dangerous to downright impossible. Caddis, hoppers and BWO's have been bringing some good fish up to the surface, although nymph fishing on a heavily weighted leader is also very productive. Try dry fly dropper rigs and nymphing the edges. The lower river is currently fishing very well. Stop by Conejos River Anglers on your way to the river and talk to John or Devon for the latest info on the Conejos. At a few hours drive from Santa Fe, it's within the same driving distance to the San Juan. Fall is coming fast to the Conejos so fish it now before it slows way down.
Arkansas River; Good
The Arkansas River is fishing incredibly well especially above Salida and should be at it's best fishing of the season. Releases out of Clear Creek Reservoir and Twin Lakes are done. Nymph fishing between Buena Vista and Granite is on fire at these flows. The river above Lake Creek to Hayden Meadows is clear and the fish are feeding. Flows at Granite are 153 cfs. The Ark is about four hours from Santa Fe and another river worth exploring just over the border.
Rio Grande 134 cfs at Thirty Mile Bridge; Good
The upper Rio Grande is being micro managed with releases coming out of Rio Grande Reservoir. What comes into the reservoirs as surface runoff (rain), is immediately released below the dams. The releases have been fluctuating every few days it seems, fortunately they are at a wadeable level at the moment. Fishing had been good on the upper Rio, just adjust your tactics to the conditions. Nymphing and streamer fishing will be most productive if the river is murky. Consider fishing the South Fork for easier wading or clearer water. There are some hatching blue winged olives and of caddis. Caddis and BWO's, and their nymphs are the flies for the upper Rio.
The San Juan River 117 cfs at Pagosa Springs; Good; Piedra River 90 at Arboles; Good
The east and west forks of the San Juan and Piedra rivers are fishing very well. Some recent rains have raised the rivers, but they are clear and fishing well. The good news is usually only one or two streams get hit hard by rain leaving somewhere to fish like the tributaries to the Piedra or Williams Creek below the dam. Afternoons may offer the best fishing and warmer water. This area provides some awesome fishing within a few hours drive of Santa Fe.
Animas River 489 cfs at Durango; Good
The Animas River near Durango is high from some recent rains that fell in the San Juan Mountains. The river is clearing and fishing well. The Delores River below McPhee Reservoir is flowing at 39 cfs. This is a little low for the Delores. Fishing will be tougher and the fish spookier. The better fishing at the moment is in the Pagosa area.
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.