Ed's Fly Fishing Report for Wednesday October 20, 2010
The Rio Costilla .85 cfs below Costilla Reservoir; Poor
Time ran out on the Costilla. The water managers have shut the dam OFF, and very little water is flowing downstream. Put this place on next year's to fish list as it's a scenic gem for New Mexico. It's loaded with elk, bison, and turkey, but it usually draws people for the fishing. The Rio Costilla is one place you can reliably catch a Rio Grande Cutthroat and Shuree Ponds are known for it's large rainbows. The stream is dry fly fishing at it's best. Shuree Ponds are known for it's lunker rainbows.
San Juan River 585 cfs below Navajo Dam; Good
From Texas Hole up to the Cable, fishing is good on #18-22 red larvae and #22-26 gray, black, or brown midge pupa and larva in the morning and up towards the dam all day. Afternoons below Texas Hole have been best with chocolate or gray baetis emergers like a #22-24 foam wing, RS2, or WD40. The baetis are active from 11:00 am to about 5:00 pm. It's back to the olive, brown, or black midge pupa/larva after 5. There is a two fly only rule for the quality waters of the San Juan. Also, the Special Trout Water section is all catch and release. 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 36 cfs below Terrero; Good:
The river is low and clear. If you can avoid spooking fish, they will eat for you! 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. There are some egg laying caddis and some terrestrials bring fish up to the surface, but it's really the blue winged olives that 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, neversink caddis, 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 66 cfs at Cerro; Fair: 233 cfs at Pilar; Slow for pike, Fair to Good for trout, Slow to Fair for smallmouth bass
The Rio is a little murky with about two to three feet of visbility. Trout fishing at Pilar is fair early or late in the day or better most of the day up in the gorge where there is more spring inflow and cooler water. 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 17 cfs above Jemez Pueblo; Good
Long casts and long leaders with small tippets and flies are the tactics for the upper streams like the East Fork, the San Antonio, and the Cebolla. 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, headlight sallies, 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 33 cfs below Eagle Nest Dam; Good: 36 cfs at Cimarron
The release is down slightly but still in the good range. 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: 29 cfs below the town of Tierrra Amarilla; Fair: 280 cfs below El Vado Dam; Fair to Good: and 428 cfs below Abiquiu Dam; Slow to Fair
The best fishing on the Chama is the stretch above the town of Chama. Access can be had through the Sargent Wildlife Area. Good dry fly fishing on caddis, blue winged olives, and grasshoppers. The river flowing into El Vado is fishing fair. Cooler days and the recent rains may have helped out this stretch above Heron Dam. 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 although water calls downstream may increase the release, we will probably see flows below 300 cfs here for the rest of the year. 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: 47 cfs at Mogote; Good
October 5, 2010. "Good Morning fellow anglers. Fall is officially here and with it has been some crazy fishing. Fish have been eating attractors, mayflies, streamers, nymphs, etc. Crazy. Troy and Josh both have had 50 fish mornings. I have had a chance to fish some and same thing. Fished with Josh in the middle of Mogote C.G. yesterday for a couple of hours before a guide trip and it was really good even in the middle of a CG that had been pounded with who knows what the hole summer. The egg has been a big deal as well as some midge patterns for nymphing. If you get a chance to fish these low flows it has been incredible. There are 4 guides going out today to guide the upper river and we will have another post then. Yesterday I guided a woman who had never held a fly rod and she hooked about 30 fish on a half day guide. The fish just started to crush an egg pattern. Very fun to watch. I hope you get a chance to come. On another note the work on the hidden mile is completed. I have not had a chance to see the finish work on the lower end but the work on the top looked good when we get a chance we will walk it and take a good look." Jon Harp of Conejos River Anglers provided the preceeding report.
Rio Grande 67 cfs below Thirty Mile Bridge; Fair: 272 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 143 cfs at Arboles; Good: San Juan at Pagosa 87 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 150 cfs at Granite; Very Good: 304 cfs at Salida; Very Good
Good stable flows and fairly warm weather has brough some excellent and consisent fishing on the Ark. The river around Buena Vista still has fish eating sonefly nymphs and midges and baetis in the deeper runs on the seam lines. A double nymph rig with a stonefly and a trailing midge in the morning and substitute the midge for a baetis in the afternoon. At Hayden Meadows, try hoppers, yellow sallies, and blue winged olives. The water is low and clear so use some stealth. Around Salida, look for fish in the faster water right in the riffles. Beatis nymphs are into their drift from noon or so until early evening. They've moved off the edges and are taking up feeding stations where there is more current.
Animas River 255 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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