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Saturday, July 11, 2020

Colorado Fly Fishing Trip ~ 7/11/2020

I'm back home now and what a great trip to Colorado to fish with friends! Typical summer weather in the mountains and hot on the front range. I didn't get to fish a few of my favorite rivers due to them being still high and off color, but I also learned some new spots as well. 

The first couple of days we fished the Yampa River below Stagecoach reservoir in the tail water section. There are so many fish in this stretch! Imagine the Little Truckee with 4 times more fish - Like shooting fish in a barrel. 

Small flies is the name of the game here for both nymphing and dry fly fishing. I tight lined with my 106-3 Wildstream rod and had so much fun! I'm in love with that rod. Look for an upcoming review on it in a week or so on this blog. For dry fly fishing I used the 9' 5wt. Wildstream Horizon. This rod was also a lot of fun to cast small BWO patterns to close range targets. I'll be reviewing this rod as well in a few weeks.

The river was crowded both days. Once we got to a good spot to fish you pretty much had to stay there all day or you would lose it to someone else. I've never seen so many people in such a small section of river. Colorado fly anglers do things differently, like stream etiquette is unheard of, and using barbed hooks is ok. You may land more fish with barbs, but going barbless is better for the fish as they do not get their mouth all ripped up, easier to release, and it's safer if you get a fly stuck in your skin.

On day 2 we caught and released so many nice trout that we lost count. It was that good!

Native grasses and the iconic band of rock

Shasta Daisy

Sunrise on the lower river by Sarvis Creek

My buddy Chris took me to a few unnamed creeks to get away from the masses of anglers that seemed to be everywhere. They were a little on the high side with snow melt but still super fun.

There are so many brown trout in all the rivers, streams, and creeks of Colorado compared to California. If you want your brownie fix - come fish here!

Unnamed confluence

Old railroad bridge

Wildflowers were plentiful everywhere

Quartz Canyon

After releasing so many brown trout I came to the conclusion that they feel so different than our rainbows here in Northern California. They have a softer feel to them and more fish slime too.

Wild Iris

Tight quarters 

The last watershed we fished was the Arkansas River. I use to fish this river quite a bit in the early 90's near the Granite area. It's an awesome place to fish with scenic backdrops all around you, and very hungry brown trout. Both tight line nymphing and dry fly presentations were very effective.

KGB Caddis eater

Elephant Heads

More Brown Trout!

Productive side shelf into a slot

A common sight - Bent rods.

The Arkansas has a very prolific caddis population like the Log Cabin caddis pictured above. On one of our days the caddis hatch was so strong it was easily a blanket hatch, plus there were Green Drakes and PMDs mixed in. It was unreal!

I'll be back for the first two weeks of September for some more hosted trips and more Jonny B. time. Until then I'll be sharing the waters of the Lost Sierra creeks and the North Fork Yuba River with my guests. See you on the water...

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