Fryingpan River Report 12-14-20

Posted on 14 December 2020

December 14, 2020

UPPER FRYINGPAN (Mile Marker 8 to Ruedi Reservoir)


WATER CLARITY: Cold and clear about a mile downstream from the dam, pretty off-color in the top mile

OVERALL RATING: 6 out of 10

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Mysis shrimp, midges

THE LOW-DOWN : As we creep in to winter mode, the Fryingpan has still been fishing pretty well. As you see, the flows are on the low side and will probably stay that way while we keep dealing with drought conditions here.

The upside is that the dry fly fishing on the Pan has been top-notch for a few hours, midday usually. There's midges hatching, and the streamer fishing has been productive.

The upper mile is still running off-color, but the clarity improves dramatically downstream a mile or so.

The best hatch times have trended towards midday, and it has slowed down a bit after 3 or 4, depending on the day. As always, give those redds a wide berth and politely educate anglers you may encounter walking on or fishing over these crucial reproduction areas.

Crowds are still slightly thick for this time of year, but plenty of spots can be found if you move around. It's match the hatch time, so pay attention to the waves of different sizes of bugs and transition accordingly.

HATCHES: Midges 20-26


DRIES: Bill's Midge Emerger 20-22, Skittering Z-Lon Midge 20-22, Biot Wing Midge 20,22, HOH CDC Midge Adult 22-24, CDC Transitional Midge 22, HOH CDC Spent Midge 22-24, Hatching Midge 20-22, Morgan's Para Midge 20-22

NYMPHS:  Split Case BWO 20-22, Epoxyback Baetis 20-22, Maggot Midge 20-22, Rojo Midge 20-22, Neon Nightmare 20-22, Lil Foamy 18-20, Bling Midge 20-22, Flashdance Midge 20-22, TC Candy Cane Midge 18-22, Money Midge 20-22, T Midge 20-22, Medallion Midge 20-22, Tim's Mysis 16-18, Will's Epoxy Mysis 16-20

STREAMERS:  Slumpbuster 6-8, The One Sculpin 4-6, Tim's Autumn Splendor 4-6

HINTS: Hatches are thick in one spot and "not so much" in others, move around until you find 'em!

MIDDLE FRYINGPAN (Mile Markers 4 to 8)



OVERALL RATING: 6 out of 10


The middle Fryingpan is fishing pretty darn well. Good midday hatches can be found and the fish receive less pressure than their cousins upstream.  

If you fish a whole mile of river, you'll be fishing many different water types, too.

HATCHES: Midges 20-26


DRIES: Skittering Zelon Midge 20-22, Bill’s Midge Emerger 20-22, Brooks Sprout Midge 20-22, HOH CDC Spent Midge 22-24, HOH CDC Midge Adult 24, Hatching Midge 20-22, Morgan's Para Midge 20-22

NYMPHS: Red or Lime Copper John 14-18, Flashwing Black (or gray) RS2 20-22, Jerome PMD Nymph 16-18, Zebra Midge Red 18-20, Black Beauty 20-22, Maggot Midge 20-22, Kingrey's Cap'n Hook 20-22, Medallion Midge 20-22, Bead Wing Midge 20-22, Rojo Midge 20-22, Cat Poop Stone 8-12

STREAMERS:  Skully Bugger Rust/White 4, Bonefish Deep Minnow 6-8, Bread n Butter Bugger 6-8

HINTS: Fish a whole mile of river, you'll fish many different water types and get shots at a lot of fish!

LOWER FRYINGPAN (Basalt to Mile Marker 4) 



OVERALL RATING: 4 out of 10

THE LOWDOWN: The lower river is beginning to ice up, better conditions will be found upstream where the water is warmer.

The fish in the lower Fryingpan are not as paranoid as their cousins up under the dam- this makes for terrific beginner water where the fish will still eat bigger flies with not-so-perfect drifts.

HATCHES: Midges 20-26


DRIES: Morgans Midge 18-22, Hatching Midge 20-22, Sprout Midge 22-24, HOH CDC Spent Midge 22-24, HOH CDC Midge Adult 24

NYMPHS:  Red or Lime Copper John 14-18, Jerome Baetis 20-22, RIP Midge 20-22, Medallion Midge 20-22, Ultra Bling RS2 Gray 18-20, Desert Storm Midge 20-22, San Juan Worm 10

STREAMERS:  Slumpbuster Black 6-8, Wooly Bugger Olive 4-8, Autumn Splendor 4-8

HINTS: Great section to work small streamers, just keep moving!

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