East Fork San Juan River Fishing Report near Pagosa Springs, Colorado

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July fly fishing on the San Juan River.

on July 25th

The fishing continues to be very good. There have been a few days where some of the local waters were muddy, but we still found clear water on some of the different drainages that we are permitted in. Going up Trukey Creek tomorrow. Turkey was just re-opened by the forest service, now that the fires are under control. Remember the local charters are booking flats fishing trips in Oct. and Nov. in the Everglades. The main targets in the fall are Redfish & Snook.

Brown Trout caught fishing East Fork San Juan River by Tight Lines

Location Details
Species Caught: Brown Trout

Trout

on July 24th

The San Juan is fishing well right now. With the flows over a 1000 cfs, the fish are able to spread out and can be found bank to bank. We had good action on a chocolate and gray foamback emerger sz. 20- 22. Also the San Juan worm orange sz 16, Juju bee midge, red larva, cream larva sz. 20-24. Don't hesitate to throw big hoppers and streamers on the lower river quality waters, big fish are eating!!


Fall Fishing in Pagosa Springs, CO

on October 6th

The seasons are changing! Snow in the high country (7 inches at Wolf Creek Ski Area), yellow aspens, red and orange oak brush. This is a great time to be in Pagosa Springs. The day time highs have been in the mid 70’s with temps around 38 a night, making for some great sleeping weather. That is good news for the trout. The water temperature has dropped considerably from the highs around 72 degrees only 3 – 4 weeks ago, to between 50 – 60 degrees (depending on elevation). This has made the trout much more active, and the recent rains and dusting of snow has increased flows to keep the streams healthy. The flows below the dam are still great at 800 cfs. October and November is the best time of the year to catch an awesome BWO hatch. Some of the “blanket hatches” (so many bugs you can’t see your fly) are the best I have seen on any river I have fished. If you are in the area, and are interested in late season dry fly action, the Juan is the place. If you want smaller stream action, the high country is still fishing great. With some of the higher flows after some of the rains and snow, we are back to fishing with dropper rigs, this brings us to my high country tip for fall fishing. Fishing dropper rigs on high country streams! I often see anglers using their dropper rigs, without changing anything. They make their set up and leave it. They might change the dropper, but that’s it. As a guide fishing on public waters, I often have to fish behind other fisherman, or let them fish through a hole. If I get to a nice hole more than 3 feet deep, I will change my point fly’s location. I will move it up, and increase the dropper length. Sometimes, I will have a 4 foot dropper, with only a 9 foot overall length. Don’t make the mistake of just adding a 4 foot piece of leader, and having an overall length of 13 –14 feet. You do not want to sacrifice a sloppy cast. Doing this I often get into fish that other fisherman have just fished for, without any success. When I move to a new stretch, I will switch back to my standard set up. Point fly at 71/2 or 9 feet, and dropper 15” to 24”s behind that. So don’t be lazy! Scott Taylor from http://highcountrycharters.com

Rainbow Trout caught fishing East Fork San Juan River by Tight Lines

Location Details
Species Caught: Rainbow Trout

August Fly Fishing Report for Pagosa Springs, CO

on August 13th

It has been a very busy July and first part of August, after August 19th town will start to slow down with a lot of schools starting back up. Then there will be another bump with the start of hunting season in late August. The fishing continues to be good with water levels staying fishable and afternoon showers keeping the water temperatures down. A few streams in the area are affected more than others. Most of the best fishing in the Pagosa area has been on streams around 9,000 feet or higher. The fish are still eating dry flies. Caddis, humpy’s, and all the terrestrials will take fish. In the deeper holes, add a dropper. Pop’s doggystyle, hare & copper, and the fox squirrel caddis pattern all with beads are great dropper fly’s. Below the dam the fishing has been very consistent. The flows got bumped up a few days ago to 925 cfs, the water has cleared and the river is in good shape. Grey midge patterns, and grey foam backs have been some of the top producers. Above the T hole I have been doing very well on a 28 or 26 tan midge pupa with a black head trailed behind a red big mac in the morning. After lunch we would mix up a few different patterns, but always had on a grey foam wing. There are still some PMD’s on the lower river, some of the fish are getting tricky, but you can still fool them. I like fishing a compara dun then trail a HCPT or hares ear in the surface film. Scott Taylor of http://highcountrycharters.com, or by phone at 970-946-5229.

Brown Trout caught fishing East Fork San Juan River by Tight Lines

Location Details
Species Caught: Brown Trout

Rains and Cooler Temps = BETTER FISHING

on July 10th

Two weeks ago, we were wondering if the rivers were going to dry up! Now after 5 days of much needed rain, conditions are looking good for the rest of the summer. We are in the start of the monsoon season, which gives us good chances of afternoon rains in the high country and even showers in town. The San Juan in Pagosa went from 50 cfs 2 weeks ago to 140 cfs today, and because of improved conditions the lower San Juan was lowered 200 cfs to 825 cfs. Fishing conditions after some of the big storms will leave several of the drainages muddy, most of the time we drive around and find clear water on the N side of 160, and sometimes it is on the S side. It all depends on where the big storm cells were. It is very rare that all the streams in our area are blown out. If they are, we can always go down to the lower San Juan and fish the tailwater. By the way the ants fell last week, and there are still fish looking up for them. At Sunset Ranch the fishing has been great in between blown out days. Last week Jeff and I had a family out there with visibility in the 8 – 10 inch range. That can scare some anglers away, but we got into a bunch of fish. We were throwing some of Pop’s special San Juan worms, egg patterns, and the copper and hare. A lot of the fish were hooked one rod length away. Normally the ranch fish will not let you get anywhere near that close. Often times in dirty stained water we will catch more fish with beginners than when the water is gin clear. The clearer it is the spookier they are, and that means your presentation is more important. Scott Taylor http://highcountrycharters.com 970-946-5229 While you are in town make sure that you visit the following businesses! Need Fly Fishing gear? See Pop's Let it Fly Located on Put hill, just West of Downtown Pagosa Springs. 970-264-3189 http://www.flyfishpagosa.com Hungry for Adventure? Pagosa Outside Adventures - Rafting, Biking, Kayaking, Tubing Downtown Pagosa Springs 970-264-4202 http://www.pagosaoutside.com

Brown Trout caught fishing East Fork San Juan River by Scott T

Location Details
Species Caught: Brown Trout

Summer time fishing in the Colorado Rockies

on June 20th

The fishing has been very good on all of the local waters and on the Lower San Juan. The Private Property trip on Sunset Ranch has been fishing extremely well. The fish have been hungry and aggressive to rise for a well-placed fly. Best patterns on the Ranch have been a Slow Water CDC Caddis (a pattern I found in the UK), Pop’s Hare & Copper Caddis Larva, and my HCPT (High Country Pheasant Tail). For the HCPT recipe go to my January blog, http://highcountrycharters.blogspot.com/2012/01/hcpt.html. Some of the best fishing has been mid-day, with adult caddis activity around the overhanging bushes. As the water continues to drop, conditions will change as the water temperature goes up. The fishing should remain consistent until at least the 1st week of July. By then we will hopefully have some rain to help the San Juan River drainage and give some relief to the hundreds of fire fighters in SW Colorado and New Mexico. The Blanco, Turkey Creek, and numerous other small streams all have fish that want to eat dry flies. The fish have not been very selective; they just want a good drag free float. Hoppers, ants, caddis, and grasshopper patterns all have been effective at making the fish look up. We haven’t noticed any big hatches on the small streams lately, just enough activity to keep the fish feeding throughout the day. Scott Taylor

Rainbow Trout caught fishing East Fork San Juan River by Tight Lines

Location Details
Species Caught: Rainbow Trout

Runoff is over, time to fish the San Juan Mountains.

on June 6th

I just got back from 6 weeks in the FL Everglades, fishing every day except for 4 days. One day was to pick up my wife, one day engine repair and oil change, and 2 days for nasty weather. Our phone and internet service was horrible, I wasn’t able to post reports and most of the time had to drive outside of town to get my hot spot! It was so much easier when you could just check the answering machine. Besides the technological glitches (we were in the Everglades after all), this was our best FL trip since I was running charters here in 2002. The guides were fishing lots more water during May, than a typical year. Low snowfall and an early melt, means that run off is over. While this may be good for fishing in May and early June, let’s hope for a wet summer to keep the water levels in check come October, and not let Navajo Lake run too low. Looking at the summer forecast we are on the border of a Hot and Dry cycle, and the typical Mid – Late summer thunderstorms cycle. Let’s hope for the thunderstorms. The fishing below the dam, on the Tailwater section of the San Juan River is very good. The river is in great shape. The flows were just lowered from 5,000 cfs to about 500 and the river bed is looking clean. After the river has been blown out, we often have some of the best fishing with very hungry fish. Midges up high, and bigger dry’s in the back channels, and hopefully soon we will see the ant fall if we get some rain. The Blanco, Turkey, Piedra, and our Private property on the San Juan are all fishing very well. Most of the other streams on our permit need the water to drop just a bit. They will all be fishing fine in another week or two. Pop’s at Let it Fly, reported that the Stonefly’s and Caddis are going good, and both Jeff and Steve have already been doing well on grasshoppers. Now I have to go to the river and re-learn how to tie knots with 6x, after spending a month tying 60lb shock to Tarpon fly’s. I hope I have that problem again next year...

Location Details
Species Caught: Brown Trout

Fishing in Pagosa and getting ready for Florida

on April 12th

Today we went to Navajo Reservoir. It was snowing and blowing up to 20 mph at 8:00 am, but we had a plan, and stuck to it. Even with the tough weather, one of our main goals was to see how some of our new Tarpon flies were swimming. We also wanted to try some on the new 9 inch Hogy soft plastic lures, with several different riggings. Next week, Steve and I head to the Florida Everglades to chase Tarpon for 6 weeks. We had a few flies that we want to tweak a bit, but over all they looked great in the water. The 9 inch Hogy looks amazing, incredible action. I was hoping for a better day on the water to try them on some Pike. I am sure they will work. The evidence of their success is this nice, chunky small mouth bass that slammed a 9 inch lure! Last week Steve fished with Josh on the Lower San Juan. They fished the wade area and got into a bunch of fish. They spent a good deal of the day working fish on the dry fly. Josh was throwing a size 24 grizzly fore aft in the morning. In the afternoon, they switched to baetis patterns, the grey fluffy baetis in size 24 ended up being the preferred pattern. Craig Taylor, from Pagosa went out on a float the last week of March, and got into a few rainbows and one brown trout on a quick afternoon float. The day before it was snowing in Pagosa, and the next day Craig was in short sleeves floating on the San Juan River. Got to love that! While Steve and I are Tarpon fishing in FL, Jeff while be taking care of the bookings in May. I will still be checking emails, and taking phone calls. Jeff will also be checking voice mails. We will keep you updated on our Florida adventure through our blog - http://highcountrycharters.blogspot.com/. If you are planning on a guided trip this summer give us a call and we will help you plan a great fishing trip. Our trips range from fishing the high country streams for cutthroats, private property trips on the San Juan River, Floats & Wade trips on the Lower San Juan River, and Lake trips on Navajo Lake. Tight lines, Scott Taylor http://highcountrycharters.com 970-946-5229 While you are in town make sure that you visit the following businesses! Need Fly Fishing gear? See Pop's Let it Fly Located on Put hill, just West of Downtown Pagosa Springs. 970-264-3189 http://www.flyfishpagosa.com Hungry for Adventure? Pagosa Outside Adventures - Rafting, Biking, Kayaking, Tubing Downtown Pagosa Springs 970-264-4202 http://www.pagosaoutside.com Need Ski Rentals? Pagosa Ski Rental (PSR) Downtown Pagosa Springs 970-264-2866 http://www.skipagosa.com

Nothing. Bubkus. Zilch. caught fishing East Fork San Juan River by Scott T


Fly Fishing Pagosa Springs, CO - March Report

on April 1st

Last week’s warm temperatures broke all the ice on the upper San Juan River and the flows went from 150 cfs to 850 cfs this morning. Run – off is starting. As the lakes start to lose their ice, the fishing should be good on them. Most of the high country lakes do not lose their ice until late May or June. With that said the Forest Service roads generally do not open until May 15. If the roads are dry they open them earlier. The best fishing over the next few weeks will be in-between cold fronts that slow the run off, and clear the river. Drifting Pop’s Buggers, caddis patterns, and egg patterns are often my best bets. Look for parts of the river where the fish can get a break from the current. Often you will find fish stacked in one section. If you find one these places, you can be sure there will be more fish holding in similar spots. I will assume that this is a “pattern”. If you think you have the “pattern” figured out, move up or down river looking for similar water. I don’t waste time fishing up to the next spot that might have stacked fish. By the time you get there, the bite could be over! With higher flows, be careful wadding the river. It might be a good idea to wear an inflatable life jacket. Of course the fishing below the dam on the Lower San Juan should remain good with flows around 500 cfs the wadding will be good until the flows get higher after the lake fills up. Last week guide Steve Baird did best on chocolate KF, black UV, and some of his no-name midges. The fishing was best during mid-day for him. Navajo lake is where the pike action is. Reports of good catches started back in Feb. when we still had powder days at Wolf Creek on our minds. As the lake fills and warms up the action should continue. It is also crappie time! My neighbor Jim Mudrock caught 20 last Saturday. If you are planning on a guided trip this summer give us a call and we will help you plan a great fishing trip. Our trips range from fishing the high country streams for cutthroats, private property trips on the San Juan River, Floats & Wade trips on the Lower San Juan River, and Lake trips on Navajo Lake. Tight line, Scott Taylor http://highcountrycharters.com 970-946-5229

Rainbow Trout caught fishing East Fork San Juan River by Scott T

Location Details
Species Caught: Rainbow Trout

Fishing on the San Juan River in Pagosa Springs, Co

on February 9th

Did 3 floats last week on the lower Juan, and fished a few hours on the town stretch. Below the dam the fishing has been very good on the warmer days. If you can hit the river when the temperatures are in the mid – forties and higher the fishing should be good. With that said, currently it is in the 30’s and snowing in Pagosa, I should be fishing instead of writing this report. I think it would be a good BWO afternoon! Speaking of BWO’s, we were still catching fish on top between 1 and 3 pm. The day I took Bill William’s he threw a tandem streamer rig all day with the exception, of casting to rising fish by Duranglers corner. Other than that it has been nymphing. The day I fished with Steve P, I had his fishing buddy Jim rigged with an orange / yellow egg with 1 piece of krystal flash at the eye of the hook, and a red larva all day, I never changed his rig, and he was in fish all day! I kept changing Steve up, looking for a new pattern with the fish (to keep him in fish). I would get into more fish with other patterns, but had to keep changing and the set up went cold. By the end of the day Steve ended up with red back on below a HCPT and landed one last fish at the Last Chance Hole. 95 day till we chase Tarpon in the Everglades!! Scott Taylor http://highcountrycharters.com 970-946-5229 While you are in town make sure that you visit the following businesses! Need Fly Fishing gear? See Pop's Let it Fly Located on Put hill, just West of Downtown Pagosa Springs. 970-264-3189 http://www.flyfishpagosa.com Hungry for Adventure? Pagosa Outside Adventures - Rafting, Biking, Kayaking, Tubing Downtown Pagosa Springs 970-264-4202 http://www.pagosaoutside.com Need Ski Rentals? Pagosa Ski Rental (PSR) Downtown Pagosa Springs 970-264-2866 http://www.skipagosa.com/

Rainbow Trout caught fishing East Fork San Juan River by Scott T

Location Details
Species Caught: Rainbow Trout
Air Temp: 49 °F Water Temp: 42 °F

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