August 25th 2018
Temperatures this week have dropped into the mid 70's during the day & mid 30's and 40's depending what elevation your at in the Gunnison Valley. With the dropping temperatures trout are feeding more aggressively and the streamer bit has turned on. Still small Caddis and BWO hatches during the day, PMD's & Rusty Duns higher up on the Taylor. Small Pheasant Tails, zebra midges and small Baetis patterns as well as streamers are producing well. Flows out of Taylor Reservoir will drop September 1 from 200 cfs to 150, this will make floating the Taylor & Gunnison very difficult for all but the smallest rafts and kick boats. Kokanee Salmon made a big move up the Gunnison & into the East River putting a good number of fish in the usual holes.
This beautiful Cut-bow was fooled yesterday on my lower Gunnison trip.
Great fishing this week on the Gunnison even though flows are at very low levels. Mornings have been best while afternoons can be slow on hot days when water temperatures start hitting mid to upper 60's.
The bear visited our trip outside the fly shop on the East River Yesterday.
June 6th 2018
As predicted it's Game on! Low flows, warm water & weather are making for some of the best June fishing in years. Caddis, Stoneflies & Streamers are feeding lots of hungry trout all day long. PMD's and Green Drakes will be kicking in any day now. Our fly bins are full, we still have some guides available in June & July.
Hope you can get here soon!
May 18th 2018
Gunnison River peak runoff very soon, weeks early and low!
Find 1,500 CFS on the 100 year peak chart and you will understand that June and July could be fantastic fishing. Usually June & early July can be tricky wading and fishing, while the Gunnison can be closed to boating for several weeks because of low bridges. Many of our dry fly hatches happen during high runoff drowning the dries making us nymph fish or throw streamers at slower pocket water. Look for great hatches of Caddis, PMD's and Green Drakes soon. For now Pat's Rubber legs, streamers and worms til the flows drop a little. Cloudy and cooler weather this weekend may temporarily drop flows on the Gunnison and East Rivers next week.
Spring 2018 Fishing Report
Spring fly fishing has come early! We are now open for guided trips & fly fishing lessons.
March 7th, 2018
Another great day on the Gunnison. All Brown Trout today.
March 4th, 2018
With temperatures pushing 50 degrees the last few days it feels more like May fishing. The Gunnison and East Rivers are ice free and boats are starting to float the town stretch. Water temps have been in the high 30's to low 40's with great big black midge hatches noon til 4. Zebra midges size 18, Rainbow Warriors 18, San Juan Worms 14, small stone fly nymphs and egg patterns are on the menu. Mid day - late afternoons has been the best fishing with most trout holding in the deeper holes.
February 15, 2018
Extra warm temperatures and lack of snow has made for some excellent fishing this winter! Flows out of Taylor Dam are 100 CFS as of January 6th. The winter flows range between 75-100 CFS some winters as low as 50. Flows on the East River are usually 50-80 CFS. Flows on the Gunnison The 1st week of 2018 averaged 250 CFS. Because of very warm days and cold nights flows where as high as 300 and as low as 200 CFS. Rising afternoon flows and temeratures have made for some very good fishing! Winters have been mild the last few years leaving much of the Gunnison open year-round for fishing. During colder years the river freezes over solid in many places or shelves of ice extending off the bank for 2 to ten feet or more making wading or landing a fish very difficult if not dangerous (fish with a friend or guide). During extreme winters anchor ice scours the river bottom some days & ice blocks the size of small houses form in the river above Blue Mesa. Try fishing during the heat of the day fishing one of these small nymphs with a larger stone fly or egg pattern in front to get the trout's attention. Winter fish are especially spooky & leader shy, the usual winter tailwater stuff with a little finer leader or fluorocarbon helps. GUNNISON RIVER Trout have still been rising to small midges and parachute Adams sizes 18-24. Winter flies are mostly nymphs including: Pheasant tails 14-20, prince nymphs 14-18, baetis & callibaetis nymphs 16-22, brassies 16-22, midge larva black, olive, cream 18-22, copper johns black, green, copper, red 18-22, midge & midge emergers black, Baetis & callibaetis nymphs 18-24, Barr’s Wet Emergers PMD & BWO 18-22 (also Barr’s Flashback & bead head), Rojo Midges Black, Olive, Red, Purple 18-22 (I like the glass bead with the tungsten bead that gets it down quick in the short drifts), Pheasant Tail Nymphs 18-24, Tungsten Zebra Two-Tone (black/red, purple/red), Juju Baetis 18-22, STD Baetis Dark & pheasant 18-20, 18-20 brassies 16-22, midge larva black, olive, cream 18-22, RS-2's gray, olive, tan 18¬24, WD-40's gray & flash back 18-22, glass bead WD-40's black, gray & brown 18-22, miracle nymphs 18-22, olive, cream 18-24, streamers & wolly buggers 6-10. TAYLOR RIVER Winter flows out of Taylor Dam are between 75-100cfs. At the Fly Shop in Almont where the Taylor meets the East & forms the Gunnison, flows are 100-160cfs. In the winter Taylor canyon doesn't get much sun & the edges of the banks freeze up in many places. There are 14 miles of public water between Almont & the Reservoir but much of the Canyon is unfishable or dangerous once the snow falls. Big Horn sheep have perished in the Taylor breaking through the ice. Winter driving in the canyon is much different than the drive from Gunnison to Crested Butte & for the experienced winter driver. Most of the road (21 miles from Almont to the Reservoir) winds along the river in a canyon with very little sun in the winter. Snow slides temporarily cover parts of the road in big winters so carry emergency winter gear and a full tank of gas. Fly patterns are similar to the Gunnison in the winter. TAYLOR TAILWATER (aka HOG TROUGH) Travel time: from the fly shop 21 miles to the dam 1 hour + or -. From Gunnison 1 hour 20 min. + or -. From Crested Butte 1 hour 45 min + or-. The 4/10ths of a mile of catch & release water below the damn sees little pressure compared to the rest of the year & it never freezes over. Wind can blow up canyon and freeze your rod guides, fingers & toes (Taylor Park has recorded temperatures of 70 degrees below zero without wind chill). Or you may get a banana belt day with temperatures in the 30’s! Fish during the heat of the day and bring all of your winter clothes; ski hat (no cowboy hats), fishing gloves slit finger, palm over finger (no ski gloves), hand warmers, and an extra set in case of accidental dunking. Most of the fishing is done standing on the snow banks not in the water, but waders should be large enough to wear extra layers while still leaving lots of air space, especially inside your boots! Boots with rubber soles don’t get as much snow build up on the bottom as the felt do. Wear your best winter camouflage to blend in with the snow banks! A thermos of your favorite hot beverage or soup is nice when you’re warming your fingers in the truck after landing that 28” Bow. Fluorocarbon tippet & leaders do seem to land more fish in these tail waters! Dinsmore split shot is in a camo green & comes in many sizes helping with your stealth. A line anti-freeze like “Loon’s Stanley Ice Off Paste” helps to keep your guides from freezing up every cast. Glass bead, black bead, dull finish beads or no beads at all on nymphs turns more fish than too much flash. These state record trout get this big because of the mysis shrimp that come out of the Reservoir. So needless to say you shouldn’t be without a handful. Mysis are size 14-22 and white with a small hint of pink or red when they are freshly dead from being shot out the dam tubes. Our favorite patterns are; Stalcup’s extended body, Sand’s Epoxy, Reid’s Ultra, BTS, Palm’s, Pacific Fly Mysis & Solitude Mysis Shrimp. Other winter tail water flies include lots of midges (30 degree water just doesn’t grow big bugs). Baetis & callibaetis nymphs 16-22, Barr’s Wet Emergers PMD & BWO’s 18-22(also Barr’s Flashback & bead head), Rojo Midges Black, Olive, Red, Purple 18-22 (I like the glass bead with the tungsten bead that gets it down quick in the short drifts), Pheasant Tail Nymphs 18-24, Tungsten Zebra Two-Tone (black/red, purple/red), Juju Baetis 18-22, STD Baetis Dark & pheasant 18-20, 18-20 brassies 16-22, midge larva black, olive, cream 18-22, RS-2's gray, olive, tan 18¬24, WD-40's gray & flash back 18-22, glass bead WD-40's black, gray & brown 18-22, miracle nymphs 18-22. "Remember these flies imitate the bugs that the fish see more of, don't be afraid to try anything else in your box!" EAST RIVER The East River between Gunnison & Crested Butte is a quick easy fish if you don’t have all day (4 mile north of the fly shop). The hatchery ponds are a great place to wet a line or learn to cast in the winter because they are warm spring fed & don't usually ice up, although it is a 1/4 mile walk from the parking lot to the ponds when the road closes due to muddy road conditions or big snow. Great eagle watching! Approximately 2 miles of river along the hatchery offers good winter fishing unless the banks ice up a lot. Try little little stuff, small red & black midge larva and midge emergers in the ponds. Flies on the river are similar to the Gunnison & Taylor, maybe a few more eggs and flesh flies because of the end salmon run. Please call 970-641-7404 Thanks, Mark