On the fly: Any excuse to go fishing… | AspenTimes.com

On the fly: Any excuse to go fishing…

Kirk Webb
Special to The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

BASALT – Variety is the spice of life. With such a varied mix of rivers, creeks and still waters here in the Roaring Fork Valley, there’s always good fishing options to be had on any given day.

I commonly tell people that the fishing on the Fryingpan River right now is similar to the fishing that takes place during the summer months but without all of the summer crowds. The fishing is simply that good. Variety is also the spice of life when it comes to current insect hatches. We’re still seeing leftover summer hatches of green drakes, pale morning duns and rusty spinners in addition to fall hatches of blue-wing olives, midges and caddis. With such profuse and complex hatches being seen, it’s of the utmost importance to pay attention to your surroundings and literally watch which insect the fish are focusing on. This can and will change throughout the course of the day. Generally speaking, we’re fishing the larger insects such as green drakes and PMDs in the faster sections of water where the fish don’t have time to scrutinize your offerings. Look for the fish to key in on the smaller insects such as midges and blue wing olives in the softer and slower sections of river. Light tippets of 6x and 7x are paramount in being successful.

Fishing along the Roaring Fork and Colorado rivers is equally good. With the advent of cooler weather the fish are no longer spread throughout the river. Instead, look for the majority of fish to be feeding in the deeper and slower pools and seams. Get rid of those large summer nymph patterns and instead opt to fish smaller blue-wing olive nymphs and emergers in sizes 18-22. Streamer fishing during the early morning hours and during late evenings has been superb.

The next few weeks will also be ideal to fish the high country before Old Man Winter quickly takes hold. As the fall foliage begins to peak, the fish often mirror their beautiful surroundings. Vibrant shades of yellows, oranges, greens and reds are commonplace. This is the time of year when hopper-dropper rigs shine. The snow will be here before you know it, making any excuse to go fishing a viable one.

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