CURRENT FLY FISHING METHODS / PATTERNS IN SOUTH PARK
Flowing waters: Eleven Mile Canyon, Dream Stream, Abell River Ranch, Happy Meadows and downstream on through Cheeseman to Denver.
We have a daily midge hatch and BWO are starting. That means the midge pupae are active and in the water column every day. Emerger patterns are the way to go. During spawn, leeches are out and Browns feed on the leeches, the eggs, and
1) Zebra Midge City all day everyday: tiny (#20,22,24). Dark. Common types of zebra midge patterns are Black Beauty, Miracle Midge (white), brassies, Phil Iwane's No Mercy Midge. Manhattan Midge.
2) Emerging adult patterns (#18-24): Dorsey's Top Secret Midge, Chocolate Thunder, RS2, Craven's Mole Fly, Pennington's Holofly (variation on WD40 w glass bead head). A Griffith's gnat will emulate a clump of midge on the surface, this makes a great point fly, then add emerger as a dropper.
3) Callibaetis and caddis: The pupae of callibaetis have the wings, legs, thorax and tail developed in its pupae casing already. So, a pattern with wing casing and tail will emulate a callibaetis pupa underwater. There are many pop-art patterns, i.e., Juju Baetis, Darth Baetis, etc. A simple pheasant tail will also emulate a baetis pupae. The caddis pupae in our district are lime green, dark brown, and make casing out of wood and little rocks. Swinging a caddis pupa pattern in the current is very succesful.
4) Sometimes, larger stuff (#16-18): Landon Mayer's Mysis Shrimp, Ray Charles Scud, caddis pupae are active from time to time, especially when the dam lets water out. Juan Ramirez' Kryptonite Caddis, wet flies, Copper Johns (to emulate stoneflies - not big, about #16-18). Lake Chironomids also get washed into the tailwaters below the dams.
Thursday, March 26, 2020. Gonna be warm and windy. Everything is melted except in the shade of trees (north side of ridges.)
BWO and midge all day.
Rainbows are spawning. Avoid crossing or standing in shallow, knee deep water where there is sand and flat cobbles. The Rainbow lay their eggs there. Instead, fish for browns in deep pockets, at the drops below shallow water, and in deep, slow channels. Cross the river in muddy places. BIG BROWNS in deep channels eating emergers, leeches and eggs.
DREAM STREAM- Flowing nicely at 130 CFS.
ABELL RIVER RANCH -Wide Open. CFS 140. Rainbows are spawning. Fish the deeper water.
ELEVEN MILE CANYON - CFS 140. Flowing nicely. Big brown action on streamers - natural colors, like olive and brown. Rainbows are colored up and spawning. Therefore, leave them alone. Your best bet is streamer fishing for browns, or use emerging adult patterns - foam wing pad. WD40's submerged will also work. Eleven Mile Canyon is a great place to use Phil Iwane's No Mercy Midge, and Pat Dorsey's Top Secret Midge Tiny zebra midge (#22,24,26!) are always effective, especially if you drop them about a foot behind a Griffith's Gnat (cluster of midge on the surface) Use your RS2s, Mayer's Tube midge, callibaetis or leech patterns anywhere in the river. Up by the spillway, you can use one of Jesse Gardziel scuds or his chironomid. Our guides, (George Mingus, Cole Gray, and Jesse Gardziel) tie custom flies for the Canyon and Dream Stream. We have this selection in the shop.
HAPPY MEADOWS: Open and easy to catch a brown with a green streamer or a cuttbow on the surface with a loopwing emerger.
(the following charts maybe slow to load...)
Eleven Mile Canyon and Happy Meadows