Roaring Fork River Report 7-11-18

Posted on 11 July 2018


July 11, 2018

FLOW: 270 cfs below Maroon Creek (Woody Creek Canyon) 

WATER CLARITY: The Upper Fork is low and clear.

OVERALL RATING: 7 out of 10

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT:  Green Drake adults, BWO adults, cranefly adults, PMD adults, BWO, PMD and green drake nymphs, golden stonefly nymphs, caddis adults, emergers and larva, cranefly larva, midges, sculpins

THE LOW DOWN: Water is clear and fishing well!  Fires are down by Basalt and are not affecting the Roaring Fork.

We are seeing green drakes, yellow sallies, PMDs, BWOs and caddis taking flight lately.  Due to lower and warmer flows, most summer insects are hatching now.  You name a bug, it's hatching on the Roaring Fork already!

We tend to nymph this section of the Fork like the upper Fryingpan, so remember your slim and quiet bugs versus the fat and flashy ones.  The opposite can be true if you find some deep and oxygenated areas where golden stoneflies thrive.  

Miles of water can be found in Jaffe Park, and spend some time this summer with your map in your lap figuring out all of those other public access points!

Keep in mind there is a fire ban here if camping!

HATCHES: Green Drakes 10-12, Yellow Sallies 16-18, Caddis 12-18, Golden Stones 6-8, Midges 22-24, PMDs 16-18, BWOs 18-22


DRIES:  Sparkledun Green Drake 10-12, Umpqua Green Drake 10, Ethawing Caddis 14-16, Pearl and Elk Caddis 12-18, Peacock Caddis 14-18, Hairy Sally 16, CDC Para Pink Cahill 16, CDC Sparkledun 16-18, CDC Comparadun BWO 18-22, Befus' BWO 20-22

NYMPHS: BLMs 18-20, Tungsten Bead Baetis 20, BTS Baetis 20-22, Sparklewing RS2 20-22, Cat Poop Stone 8-10, Swiss Straw Emerger 16-18, Split Case PMD 16-18, Freestone Emerger 20, BH Polywing Emerger 20, Biot Baetis 20-22, Prince 18-20, Bling Midge 20-22, Kingery's Cap'n Hook 20-22

STREAMERS: Weir's Sculpin 6, Autumn Splendor 6, Zuddler 6, Slumpies 6-8 

HINTS: This is the least crowded time of year and the upper Fork is fishing better in the afternoons.


FLOW: 437 cfs in Basalt 

WATER CONDITIONS: Low and clear, fires have not affected the Roaring Fork, or any river here in the Valley.

OVERALL RATING:  7 out of 10

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Green Drake adults, Caddis adults, BWO adults, PMD adults, midges, Golden stone adults, BWO, PMD and green drake nymphs, golden stonefly nymphs, caddis larva (cased and free-swimming), cranefly larva, sculpins

THE LOW DOWN: Conditions are low and clear considering the date.  Hatches are running the gamut from green drakes, PMDs, caddis, sedges, yellow sallies and BWOs.

Twilight fishing has been excellent around and above Basalt this week.  Considering the lower flows we have, we are seeing some early and odd-ball hatches for sure.  

Check out the public accesses around old town Basalt, behind Crown Mountain Park or near Catherine's Store for some terrific fishing.

As you'll read below, there are voluntary fishing closures in effect from Carbondale and downstream after 2 pm to protect the fish.

HATCHES: Green Drakes 10-12, BWOs 18-20, caddis 14-20, Sedges 12-14, PMDs 14-16, golden stones 6-10


NYMPHS: BLMs 18-20, Princes 16-20, PTs 16-20, Tung Teasers 16-18 Freestone Emerger 20, BH Polywing Emerger 18-20, Biot Baetis 18-20, Sparklewing RS2 20-22, Tailwater Assassin 20-22, Imposter 20-22, Epoxyback Golden Stone 8-10, San Juan Worm 10

DRIES: Sparkledun Green Drake 10-12, Befus Para Emerger 20-22, Roy Palm's Special Fryingpan Emerger 20-22, Tan or Black Elk Hair Caddis 14-18, Flag Dun PMD 16-18, Garcia's Mini Hot Yellow Sally 16

HINTS: Keep downsizing your presentations if you are in the struggle box, or focus on completely different water types.


FLOW: 694 cfs in Glenwood Springs


WATER CONDITIONS: Low and clear, see detailed information below concerning Hot Spots for Trout below Carbondale. Fires have not affected any river in the Valley.

OVERALL RATING: 5 out of 10 

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: PMD adults, BWO adults, caddis adults, yellow sallies 14-16, midge adults, BWO, PMD nymphs, caddis (cased and free swimming) larva, sculpins, cranefly larva, golden stone adults and nymphs

THE LOW DOWN: Every outfitter in the Roaring Fork Valley has agreed, with input from the Roaring Fork Fishing Guide Alliance, Roaring Fork Conservancy and Colorado Parks and Wildlife to cease fishing below Carbondale down to Rifle after 2pm due to warm water conditions. Let's leave the streamers in their boxes for a while!

Get yourself a thermometer and keep an eye on those temps, 68 degrees and warmer is considered the danger zone to trout.  Kindly inform those you might encounter out there what is happening, they will likely be glad you told them!

Lots on the menu! Caddis, BWOs, Sallies, and PMDs have been seen hatching throughout the day. The green drake hatch has moved up into Basalt at this point.

HATCHES:  Pale Morning Duns 14-18, Rusty PMD Spinners 14-18, Yellow Sallies 16, Blue winged olives 18-20, caddis 14-18, midges 18-22


NYMPHS: Tung PT 18-20, BLMs 18-20, Freestone Emerger 20, RS2s 20-22, Polywing Emerger 18-20, Biot Baetis 18-20, Thread Body Baetis 18-20, Soft Hackle BWO 20-22, Imposters 20-22, Tan Cat Poop 8-10

DRIES: Flag Dun Emerger PMD 16-18, Hackle Dun PMD 16-18, Sparkledun PMD 14-18, CDC Rusty Spinner 14-18, Collett's Parachute BWO 20-22, No Hackle BWO 20-22, Chuck's Variant Ginger Caddis 16-18, Pearl and Elk Caddis 14-18, Morgans Midge 18-20, Sprout Midge 18-20, Skittering Zelon Midge 20-22, Griffiths Gnat 20

HINTS: Give those caddis some movement! Skating caddis might be the ticket for getting picky trout to rise.

Real Time Flows

Upper Roaring Fork:

Middle Roaring Fork:

Lower Roaring Fork:


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