Ed'd Fly Fishing Report for Thursday August 28, 2010
It's that time of year again. Time for brown trout to spawn and make more fish! Please be ethical and leave the spawners alone. Often they'll be found over their redd, paired up and doing the deed. These fish are absolutely off limits! Some of the fish that aren't actively spawning are found close by and are still eating, These fish are OK to target, but please limit your wading and never wade through a redd. A redd is a circular area of clean gravel usually found in the tailout of pools and runs. Enjoy the fall fishing, just do it in a manner that you'll be able to sleep at night.
San Juan River 481 cfs below Navajo Dam; Very Good
It looks like the release is at it's winter level. From Texas Hole up to the Cable, fishing is very good in the mornings on #24-26 dark colored midge pupa and larva, Some fish are eating cream colored ones also. Afternoons below Texas Hole have been best gray or olive baetis emergers like a #22-24 foam wing, RS2, or johnny flash. The baetis are active from 11:00 am to about 5:00 pm. It's back to brown or black midge pupa/larva after 6:00. 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 53 cfs below Terrero; Good:
The river did see a little bump in flows but the water is somewhat clear and fishing well. The extra water makes the fish less skittish. Once the water goes back down, think about approaching the river with some stealth. A longer cast, a longer leader, and finer tippets are in order as well as using size #16 and smaller flies. The blue winged olives have been keeping the fish's interest. Nymph fishing is better than dry flies, so take your San Juan box when you go. Remember, the first public access is at Dalton Day Use. Fly choices would be RS2's, wonder baetis, batwing emergers, and CDC biot coparaduns. The fall fishing program at Pecos National Historical Park started on Thursday September 2nd and runs through October 25th. To get a fishing day on Pecos NHP, see their website at http://www.nps.gov/peco/planyourvisit/fishing.htm or call 505-757-7272. Don't be a poacher! Please respect all of the landowners along the Pecos and stay out of all posted private waters. Please report anyone over harvesting fish or poaching to New Mexico Game and Fish at 1-800-432-4263.
Rio Grande 97 cfs at Cerro; Fair: 262 cfs at Pilar; Fair for pike, Fair to Good for trout, Slow to Fair for smallmouth bass
The Rio did get murky with the rain we've received but it is clearing and still fishing fair. Use a little larger fly with some flash or sparkle until things clear up. Smallmouth fishing has slowed but they can still be caught on small streamers and crayfish patterns in some of the slower runs and eddies. If you're going to go for trout, try a crane fly larvae or stonefly nymphs with a trailing caddis pupa or flashback pheasant tail. I've already had several reliable pike reports!
Jemez Mountain Streams 24 cfs above Jemez Pueblo; Good
The rain has brought up the flows here as well, but that is a good thing as the fish were very spooky. Fish are taking small dries and small nymphs presented on a dry dropper rig. As far as flies go, beetles still have game, small neversink caddis, or parachute adams and blue wingeed olives in the afternoons. Keep the droppers on the small side like #16-18. The Valles Caldera has extended the Fall fishing season until December 10th. See the Caldera's website at http://www.vallescaldera.gov/ for more details.
Cimarron River 20 cfs below Eagle Nest Dam; Good: 24 cfs at Cimarron
I can't believe that we still have this much water flowing out of the dam. Get it while it's good, and it has been good. Like the Costilla, the flow will be reduced to near ZERO below Eagle Nest Dam and the days of decent flows and fishing are numbered here. Tricos, blue winged olives, scuds, and small caddis round out the current fare. The Red River around the corner is also fishing well on pretty much the same flies as the Pecos.
The Chama River above the village of Chama; Good: 43 cfs below the town of Tierrra Amarilla; Fair: 275 cfs below El Vado Dam; Fair to Good: and 224 cfs below Abiquiu Dam; Slow to Fair
The Chama River above the town of Chama is slowing with some cooler weather. Some angler are finding some nice sized browns, but please consider the spawners off limits if you find them. Access can be had through the Sargent Wildlife Area. The river flowing into El Vado is fishing well. Cooler days and the recent rains may have helped out this stretch above Heron Dam and some trout move up out of El Vado at this time of year. The release out of Heron is zero. Below El Vado, you can use big nymphs with flash and sparkle, but your better off with streamers in the murky water coming out of the dam. Cover the tailouts of pools and hit the obvious seams. The stretch below Abiquiu typically doesn't typically fish well until fall when the release is much lower and the water clearer. Currently the release is down, and is trending that way, so I think we'll see stable flows here through spring. Even though this stretch does have some decent natural reproduction, most of the fish that get caught, get kept. 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:
Conejos River 7.4 cfs below Platoro Reservoir; Fair: 54 cfs at Mogote; Good
October 23, 2010. "Guided the last few days and yesterday was ok but today was just off the hook! I think we had hooked 45 fish by 12:00 and then went home. Fish just hammered the egg and small midge larvae stuff. We also at the end seemed to have fish turn onto baetis nymphs. I think we could have caught fish on dries but we kind of got stuck in our rut. There were a few fish midging in some softer water. Just so all of you know the shop closes regular hours tomorrow, kindoff!!! We will be back guiding on Thursday and we have booked so many guide trips that we will reopen the shop the following weekend Thursday thru Sunday. 8:00 to 4:00 and Sunday 8:00 12:00. Wow if you get a chance and are not a total beginner you could have some incredible fishing. We will be running a lodging/flies/guide special for the first week in November that will make it pretty inexpensive to be here and fish with me, Devan, or Troy. Yesterday Troy guided a young guy that had never held a fly rod and had him into fish within 2 hours so even if you are a beginner the fish are so concentrated that you still have a chance to catch some great fish. This afternoon my wife commented that she wanted to be the one in the photo with a huge fish and so I told her I would get the rods and camera ready so find your waders!!! Well we drove right to where I had seen some of the biggest fish I have seen and she hooked a fish 24' plus and ended up getting schooled under a big root wad. 10 minutes later she fought for several minutes a fish a little smaller and that fish decided to scream downriver after I thought we had her beat but and broke her 4x off in a diamond boulder cluster downriver. Ouch. Wife not happy.....! Anyway it made me realize that picking the right fly making the right cast getting the right drift setting the hook at the right time controlling your emotions that first 10 seconds actively steering a large fish with adrenaline and calmness netting the fish and then getting that perfect pose in the perfect light with a camera that is set up correctly is a little tricky! I think that hit us both! We will try again!" Jon Harp of Conejos River Anglers provided the preceeding report.
Rio Grande 59 cfs below Thirty Mile Bridge; Fair: 263 cfs below Wagon Wheel Gap; Fair to Good
The upper river around Creede is low and very wadeable and very fishable. The release is down and the water is low and clear. Longer casts, long leaders, and fine tippets are necessary. Still some caddis PED's/PMD's and lots of Blue Wings. Below Wagon Wheel Gap, nymphing with stonefly imitations and baetis patterns has been more productive.
Pagosa Area Piedra River 170 cfs at Arboles; Good: San Juan at Pagosa 100 cfs; Good
Like alot of our local waters, flows here are slowly declining and the water is low and clear. Fishing is good just exercise some stealth in your approach and presentation. For the Piedra, dark stonefly nymphs and streamers get the bigger fish although dry dropper rigs and small dries are still producing. Lower water on the San Juan means the best fishing is nymphing during the day or throw trico dries early or blue winged olives late. Williams Creek below the dam, and most of the tribs are best with a dry dropper set up or small dries as well. Caddis, tricos, some PMD's and PED's, but mostly baetis patterns are what they're eating. I've had good reports from the South Fork of the Rio Grande on roughly the same stuff.
Arkansas River 109 cfs at Granite; Good: 345 cfs at Salida; Good
The fish are eating midges and baetis most of the day and a few are stuffing themselves with caddis pupa. The fish that are eating are stationed in a little deeper water off of the gravel bars waiting for their turn to spawn.
Animas River 270 cfs at Durango; Good
The Animas can be fickle, but some of the best fishing is right around the corner as the browns stage for their spawn. As always, consider any paired up trout over a redd off limits. Streamers in the deep and dark as well as dark stone fly nympsh and baetis patterns have been fooling the feeders. Some of caddis around as well increasing amounts of blue winged olives. Best fishing is in the afternoons, especially for dry fly action.
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