Fishing report: Waking rivers |

Fishing report: Waking rivers

Will Sands
Special to The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

BASALT – You can’t ski in the summer, but you can fly fish all year.

Yes, it surprises many to find out you can fish here in the Roaring Fork Valley all winter. This week in particular, with the warm evening temperatures and the recently warm days, the bite has been very good! Overall, March and April present some of the best fishing of the year.

The Fryingpan has produced some very good dry-fly fishing this week. The midge hatch will continue to intensify throughout the month. The hot patterns currently are stillborn adult midges, Befus para-emerger and Morgan’s Parachute emerger. Look for hatches to begin around noon and they have been lasting about two to three hours. Before and after these hatches, anglers should focus on getting their flies down deep through the main runs and pools. RS-2s, Johnny Flashes and Desert Storms have been strong subsurface patterns. Remember, there is no need to get out early; the best fishing will be between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., although good fishing can be had earlier and later some days.

Anglers wishing to fish the Roaring Fork should expect very good conditions this week. With the longer days and especially the warmer evenings, the Roaring Fork is awakening from its winter slumber. More and more anglers are beginning to get their drift boats out of hibernation and float fishing right now can be exceptional.

Whether one decides to wade or float, anglers should focus on the deep runs and pools. The most successful anglers know to use enough split shot to get their flies down deep to the fish. The deeper holes are where the water is warmest and that is where trout will congregate. Once you locate a few fish, you should find many more!

Hot flies this week include 20 inchers, black or blue Ice Princes, Rainbow Warriors and Jujubaetis. Hook up with a local guide or shop – even if you have never fly fished, this is a great time of the year to try.

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