Monday, February 04, 2013

Ed's Fly Fishing Report for Monday February 4, 2013

Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers! Learn more at

San Juan River 250 cfs below Navajo Dam; Good
Good news! The Bureau of Rec will increase the release out of Navajo Dam to 500 cfs tomorrow. Rainbows are spawning, so if you seem them doing the deed, leave them alone!Visisbility is about three feet, with very little moss in the current. Midges have been hatching pretty much all day with the thickest portion of the hatch is 11:00 to 2:00 . Midging, or presenting midge pupa in the middle of the water column, has been good in the late mornings, especially up from Texas Hole. They are small so try size #22-24 gray, olive, cream, brown, and black midge larvae and pupa. A Griffith's Gnat, dead chicken, or single midge dry has been picking up fish mid-day on the surface. 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 ice below Terrero; Slow
Expect some slow fishing on the upper Pecos and it's tributaries.  There has been ice on the river in the morning. The water is cold as far as temps go. Villanueva State Park has received it's regular stocking this winter. No reports, but the stockers typically go for egg patterns, and bright colors like copper johns. Please respect the landowners along the Pecos and don't trespass. The Pecos National Historical Park's Spring Fishing season will begin soon. To check for the dates or to make a reservation for their spring season, see the Park's website at: for more info.

Rio Grande 207 cfs at Cerro; Fair to Good: 382 cfs at Pilar; Slow for pike, Fair to Good for trout, Poor for smallmouth bass
The Rio is a little murky with some of the lower elevation snows that are melting off. Fishing had slowed in January with the colder temps that month, buit fishing should improve as we aee more of these warmer days. With the change in clarity, think big and flashy. Nymphing with big stonefly nymphs or crane fly larvae with a trailing caddis larvae or baetis nymph will pick up trout sub surface. Pike fishing is slow, but will just get better as we move futher into fall. 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 17 cfs above Jemez Pueblo;  Fair to Good
The mainstem Jemez has been stocked recently as a winter trout fishery. The streams of the Jemez Mountains are very low and clear. Stealth has to be practiced for you to catch fish. Long leaders, fine tippets, and smaller flies are in order. Focus on deeper runs and pools. Fishing is a slow early in the morning before the sun has a chance to warm things up. The better runs are below Battleship Rock on down to the Guadalupe confluence. A dry fly dropper rig will present your flies better than fishing under a typical indicator. Keep the dry fly small like a #16 and drop a #18-20 copper john, pheasant tail or caddis nymph off of that. The smaller darker flies are the top producers. The dates for the spring fishing program at the Valles Caldera National Preserve has not been posted on their website yet, but I'll provide the details when they become available.

The Chama River above the village of Chama; Slow: below the town of Tierrra Amarilla; Slow: 151 cfs below El Vado Dam; Fair to Good: and 54 cfs below Abiquiu Dam;  Fair to Good
The Chama in the Sargent Wildlife Area is low and clear and cold. There are better choices for fishing lower down. The Chama flowing into El Vado Reservoir is low and clear. The fishing there is best in the afternoons and the best place is below the Heron Dam spillway. Afternoons are better than the mornings. The release below both dams has just been reduced. The water clarity below Abiquiu is getting better as we move into winter. It's at about two feet of visiblity now. The Abiquiu stretch is getting heavily stocked and the catching is good. The release below El Vado is down and wadeable. The water there is murky. The top fly choices below both dams are bigger flies, especially with flash, like cranefly larvae, #10-12 hares ears, HDA Favorites, with a trailing midge or baetis nymph. Streamers are a good choice. 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 168 at Durango; Fair to Good
The Animas is fishing fair on wamer days. The blue winged olive hatches are getting a little better as are the midge hatches. Nymphing or throwing streamers has been the best tactics. Be ware of spawning browns and give them a wide berth if you happen upon them or their redds. 

Arkansas River 90 cfs at Granite; Good: ice at Salida; Good
The fishing here is remains fair especially on the middle and lower river. The mornings are a little slow, but things pick up in the afternoons.  Hayden Meadows down to Buena Vista has been the slowest section of river due to cooler water temps and low water. Warmer water and better fishing can be had from Salida down into Bighorn Sheep Canyon. Blue-winged olives and midges are the name of the game. Trail them behind caddis nymphs, or golden stones.     

It's winter 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.