Fryingpan River Report 7-29-23

Posted on 29 July 2023

July 29, 2023

UPPER FRYINGPAN (Mile Marker 8 upstream to Ruedi Reservoir)

FLOW: 115 CFS 

WATER CLARITY: Clean and cold

OVERALL RATING: 7 out of 10 for nymphing, 5 out of 10 for dry flies

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Blue Winged Olives, Pale Morning Duns, Craneflies, Mysis shrimp, Midges, Sculpins

THE LOW-DOWN : Hatches are on the light side so far due to bright sun, but the nymphing has been quite productive. Monsoonal cloud cover is starting to form, so we expect stronger hatches in the near future. Some days you have to move around to find a hatch, other days you don't have to move at all.

The hatches are midges, BWOs, caddis, craneflies and PMDs. Green drakes get going on the Fryingpan in August, and become thick in September and October. Usually we see a few hours of dry fly action between noon and 3pm. Fishing in the shade tends to be better than sunny spots.

Fishing on the Pan from 7 until dark can be quite productive, oftentimes we see another midge hatch near dusk.

Accessibility is easy, the flows are still quite reasonable, and crowds will be less the further downstream you get from the dam.

Mysis shrimp are a year-round food factor, and don't forget your box full of streamers for low-light periods or any time it's breezy or snowy. 

HATCHES: BWOs 20-22, Midges 18-26, Caddis 18-20, Pale Morning Duns 14-18, Craneflies 10-16


DRIES: Barr's Vis-a-dun PMD 16-18, Harrop's CDC Thorax Pink Albert 16-18, Harrop's Captive Dun PMD 16-18, Fryingpan PMD Cripple 16-18, Melon Quill PMD 16-18, Perfect Baetis 20-22, TC Sparkledun BWO 20-22, No Hackle BWO 20-22, HOH Hanging Midge Grey/Black sz 20-22, Mole Midge 20-22, Roy Palm's Special Frying Pan Emerger 20-22, Bill's Midge Emerger 20-22, HOH CDC Midge Adult 22-24, HOH CDC Spent Midge 22-24, Hatching Midge 20-22, Morgan's Para Midge 20-22

NYMPHS: Tungsten Split Case PMD 16-18, Jerome PMD Nymph 16-18, BH Swiss Straw PMD Emerger 16-18, Epoxyback PMD Emerger 16-18, CDC RS2 Grey/Black sz 20-22, BMW Foam Top RS2 Grey/ Black 20-22, Killer Mayfly Olive/ Brown 22, Jigged JJ Nymph BWO 18-20, Rojo Midge 20-22, Neon Nightmare 20-22, Bling Midge 20-22, Flashdance Midge 20-22, TC Candy Cane Midge 18-22, Money Midge 20-22, T Midge 20-22, Tim's Mysis 16-18, Will's Epoxy Mysis 16-20

STREAMERS: Cousin It Sculpin sz 6, Baby Gonga Tan/Yellow sz 8, Autumn Splendor sz 8, Carlton Banks White/Olive sz 4

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

MIDDLE FRYINGPAN (Mile Marker 4 upstream to Mile Marker 8)


FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Blue Winged Olives, Midges, Caddis, PMDs, Sculpins

OVERALL RATING: 7 out of 10 

THE LOW DOWN: Here's a hint- "new" hatches begin first in the middle and lower river, and we have seen more caddis and even a few random PMDs in these sections! For those who get bummed out seeing other anglers, here's a hint: the middle river has the same hatches without the crowds! Another benefit of fishing the middle river is the plethora of public access. What is private is clearly marked, and the rest is there for you to explore.

HATCHES: Midges 20-26, BWOs 20-22, Caddis 14-18, PMDs 16-18, Craneflies 10-16


DRIES: Fryingpan Red Quill 16, CDC PMD Comparadun 16-18, AK's Para Red Quill 16, Morris May PMD Emerger 16-18, Missing Link Caddis 16-18, Pearl and Elk Caddis 16-18, Melon Quill 16-18, TC Custom Pink Sparkledun 14-18, Hackle Stacker PMD 16-18, Harrop's CDC Biot Dun BWO 20-22, Harrop's CDC Thorax BWO 20-22, Mole Midge 20-22, HOH Hanging Midge 20-22, Roy's Special Fryingpan Emerger 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: Halfback PMD Emerger 14-18, Jerome PMD Nymph 16-18, Stalcup's BTS PMD Nymph 16-18, Red Copper John 16-18, Z Wing Caddis 16-18, Pearl Perdigon 16-18, Jigged Tungsten TNT PMD 16-18, 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, Bead Wing Midge 20-22, Rojo Midge 20-22, 

STREAMERS:  Tungsten Double Mint sz 8, Beldar Lemon Drop sz 8, White Zuddler sz 8, Hansen's Meal Ticket sz 4

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 upstream to Mile Marker 4) 


FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Green DrakesBlue Winged Olives, Midges, Pale Morning Duns, Caddis, Craneflies, Golden Stoneflies, Sculpins

OVERALL RATING: 6 out of 10 

THE LOWDOWN:  Green drakes are starting their engines on the lower Pan this week! Hopper dropper fishing is already quite productive on the lower Fryingpan, and if Euro or Czech nymphing is your thing, the lower Fryingpan is ideal. 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.  Dry dropper rigs can be deadly in this section of river.

If the crowds of people upstream are thick, come explore some lower Fryingpan access spots!

HATCHES: Green Drakes 10-12, Midges 20-26, Pale Morning Duns 14-18, Caddis 12-18, Craneflies 10-16, Golden Stones 8-12


DRIES: TC Custom Sparkledun Green Drake 12-14, BDE Green Drake 10-12, TC Custom Pink Sparkledun 14-18, Quigley's Sparkle Flag PMD 16-18, Uber-Realistic PMD Adult 16-18, Barr-Craven Hopper 6-8, Gold Chubby Chernobyl 6-8, CDC Comparadun BWO 20-22, HOH CDC Biot Dun, HOH Biot Emerger, Pearl and Elk Caddis 16-18, Lawson's EZ Caddis 16-18, Missing Link Caddis 16-18, Harrop's CDC Biot Dun BWO 20-22, CDC Comparadun BWO 20-22, Morgans Midge 18-22, Hatching Midge 20-22, Sprout Midge 22-24, HOH CDC Spent Midge 22-24, HOH CDC Midge Adult 24 Sparkle Flag PMD 16-18, Morris May PMD 16-18 

NYMPHS: Mercer's Jigster Baetis 16-18, Tungsten Jigged Faucii Nymph 16-18, Jigged Tungsten Blowtorch 16, Jigged JJ Nymph 18-20, Tungsten Git-er-Down PMD Nymph 16-18, Jigged Iron Lotus 16-18, Purple Perdigon 16-18, 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

STREAMERS:  Home Invader sz 2, Grease Monkey Natural sz 4, Double Dirty Hippy sz 4

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

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