Colorado Fly fishing

Fryingpan River Report

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September 26, 2016

FLOW: 298 cfs

WATER CLARITY: Clear with stable water levels. Higher flows this summer have pushed the hatches back - We are currently seeing our heaviest green drake hatches right now along the upper river. Believe that!

OVERALL RATING: 9 out of 10! Crowds are slowly receeding now that schools are back in session and summer is winding down. Still fairly busy midweek with slightly less pressure on the weekends (especially Sundays). Crazy good dry fly fishing!

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Green Drakes, BWOs, PMDs, Midges, Caddis, Ants

THE SHORT AND SWEET: Plenty of rising fish and good hatches. If there's a tough part to this river right now, its the fact that all hatches are taking place at the same time frame from 11am-4pm. Keep your eyes peeled midday if the fish are feeding on drakes, PMDs or BWOs. We typically see less anglers at this time of year but better anglers who take advantage of the plethora of hatches without summer crowds. The dry fly fishing has been kick butt!!!

IN DEPTH REVIEW: Welcome back to early Fall! The weather has been amazing and the dry fly fishing is seriously kicking some butt! Both yellow and Fryingpan pink PMDs have been seen in good numbers midday from 11am-4pm. In addition to PMDs, fairly strong numbers of BWOs are also present, especially along the upper half of the river. The mysis shrimp fishing has picked back up a bit with the increase in water flows. Midges are key in the morning hours prior to the mayfly hatches coming off. Don't overlook the evening hours either. This is when the angling crowds have gone home for dinner just as the trout begin theirs. The rusty spinner fall has been very reliable most any evening. The biggest key here is to fish the soft (if not flat) sections of river. Last but not least, green drakes are hatching in the heaviest numbers that we've seen all summer and are in fact the main event right now. Ah, September!!! When nymphing, focus predominately on BWO imitations for the best success.


DRIES: HD Para CO Drake 12, Cripple Drake 12, Flag Dun Adams 12-14, AKs Flav 14, Sparkledun TC Drake 12-14, Sparkledun PMD 16-18, Sparkle Stacker PMD Pink 16-18, PMD Cripple 16, TC Fryingpan Emerger 20-22, TC Para Quill BWO 20-22, No Hackle BWO 20-22, CDC Transitional Midge 20-22, Bills Midge Emerger 20-22, CDC Rusty Spinner 16-18, Polywing Rusty Spinner 16-18, Little Yellow Caddis 16-18

NYMPHS: BTS Baetis 20-22, Tung Hoover Baetis 20-22, Chocolate Thunder 20-22, RS2's 20-22,Splitcase PMD 16-18, Pandemic PMD 18, Halfback PMD 16-18, PTs 16-22, Biot Midge Emerger 20-22, Wills Epoxy Mysis 18, Tims Mysis 18

STREAMERS: Slumpies, Clousers, Sliders, TC Autumn Splendors, Sculpzilla

HINTS: Stay out of the river altogether when possible to increase your stealth factor.


WATER CONDITIONS: Clear, cold and perfect.

PMDs, BWOs, Caddis, Midges, Serratellas

OVERALL RATING: 7 out of 10

THE SHORT AND SWEET: Same conditions as stated above. Nymph fishers can often times get away with 5X and 6X tippets down here. Dry fly anglers should still be using the requisite 6X and 7X. Slightly lighter pressure compared to the upper river. Not as many drakes here but still yielding solid fishing.

IN DEPTH REVIEW: Same as above. Don't get sucked into the line of thinking that all the fish live right below the dam. For most of us, this is the sweet-spot along the river; great fishing and hatches coupled with less pressure. Like the upper river, hatches are consisting of mostly PMDs, BWOs and drakes, all of which are hatching midday. The Rusty Spinner fall has been pretty amazing nightly. Big Hat, Eagle Pool, Folkstad and Rosie's are all great options in terms of access. The infamous Fryingpan serratella mayfly has been hatching in decent to good numbers from mile markers 4-8. If you want to test your skills against what many consider "the toughest hatch" in trout fishing, give late afternoons a try during this challenging yet ultra-rewarding hatch.


DRIES: Same as the upper river - add in: Roy's Serratella 18, Para Emerger BWO 20,

NYMPHS: Same as the upper river - Poxybiot Baetis 22, Biot Baetis 18-20, Soft Hackle Baetis 20

STREAMERS: Same as upper river

HINTS: Skitter your serratella dries as they come into the fishes feeding window!


WATER CONDITIONS: Same as above, low and clear.

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: PMDs, Baetis, Flavs, Caddis, Ants

OVERALL RATING: 5 out of 10 - Despite the 5 rating, the fishing has been pretty darn good. Simply put, there's just more bugs hatching along the middle and upper stretches of water compared to down here BUT the catching has been nearly equally as good.

THE SHORT AND SWEET: If solitude outweighs big fish and high fish counts for you - this is your spot!

IN DEPTH REVIEW: If you're like us and enjoy fishing dries on flat water slicks to notoriously picky fish, you'll be right at home here. If that's not in your bag, the dry/dropper fishing in the pockets has been awfully good too. Nymphing the deep slots, seams and pools are often best during high, bright sun.


DRIES: Same as above - add in: Flying Ant 18, Fur Ant 18, Chubby Chernobyl 12, Daves Hopper 12, AKs Flav 14

NYMPHS: Same as above - add in: 20 Inchers 14-16, Z-Wing Caddis 16-18, Copper John red 16-20, Prince 16-20, Dandelion Drake Emerger 12

STREAMERS: Slumpies, Spendors, Clousers, Sculpzillas

HINTS: Fish down here!!! The results will more than likely surprise you.... A LOT!

Link to the USGS Real Time Flow Chart for the Frying Pan River



Taylor Creek Flyshop | 183 Basalt Center Cir. | Basalt, CO 81621 | | 970-927-4374|