Fryingpan River Report 4-16-20

Posted on 16 April 2020

April 16, 2020

UPPER FRYINGPAN (Mile Marker 8 to Ruedi Reservoir)

FLOW: 160 CFS 

WATER CLARITY: Low and clear

OVERALL RATING: 7 out of 10

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Blue Winged Olives, Mysis shrimp, midges

THE LOW-DOWN : COVID-19 Update: The health and well-being of our guests and employees is of utmost importance. We will be closed beginning 3/15 until further notice. We will use that time to reassess future opening dates. Please keep an eye on our social accounts for updates. 

Fishing is still allowed in Colorado, but here are some suggested guidelines:

  • Anglers are encouraged not to travel far to fish, try to stay close to home.
  • Travel by yourself, and meet your friends on the river
  • Floating is discouraged right now in regards to Covid guidelines
  • Maintain social distancing guidelines on the river

Spring conditions are on our doorstep here in the Roaring Fork Valley. Evening temperatures are warming up, which tends to affect our rivers more than daytime temps.

Locals are now seeing the first waves of BWOs, but the fish are still more focused on midges at this point. BWO nymphs are working well, in addition to variations of midge larva, pupa and adults. Really warm days offer up early midge hatches, cooler ones see midges hatching around noontime for a few hours. Mysis patterns are a daily food source up below the dam, give Will's or Tim's a try!

Tailwaters like the Fryingpan require stealth and perfect presentation, so we strongly suggest light tippet, small bugs, and soft presentations. Short and sweet drifts always trump hero-casting!

The flipside to small flies and tippets is the streamer action, which can actually be quite good on overcast days. Keep your streamers on the small side and cover a lot of water- trout tend to eat the streamer the first time they see it, not the tenth.

HATCHES: Blue Winged Olives 20-22, Midges 20-26


DRIES: No Hackle BWO 20-22, Befus' Para Emerger 20-22, Perfect Baetis 20-22, 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, Tungsten Hoover 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)


FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Blue Winged Olives, Midges

OVERALL RATING: 7 out of 10

THE LOW DOWN: The middle Pan is your answer to the crowded river blues. As of late, there has not been another fisherman in sight. 

Midges and baetis are the main food source to be found. With lower flows, no need for a larger attractor fly, two flies in #18-22 range seems to be the ticket.

No need to rush to the upper, there is plenty of good fishing in this section..

HATCHES: Blue Winged Olives 20-22, Midges 20-26


DRIES: Collett'e's Para BWO 18-22, CDC Winged Baetis 20-22, 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, 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

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) 


FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Blue Winged Olives, caddis, Midges.

OVERALL RATING: 6 out of 10

THE LOWDOWN: The lower river is fishing pretty well right now and has a bit more diversity in hatches, due to lower elevation. It can feel like winter up under the dam and like summer down close to town lately.

HATCHES: BWOs 18-22, Caddis 16-18, Midges 20-26


DRIES:  Befus' Para Emerger BWO 20-22, Perfect Baetis 20-22, Pearl and Elk Caddis 14-18, Elk Hair Caddis 14-18, Morgans Midge 18-22, Perfect Baetis 20-22, Collett's BWO 20-22, Hatching Midge 20-22, Sprout Midge 22-24, HOH CDC Spent Midge 22-24, HOH CDC Midge Adult 24

NYMPHS:  Spanflex Stone 8-10, Cat Poop Stone 4-6, 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, Cat Poop Stone 6-10

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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