Roaring Fork River Report 7-20-22

Posted on 20 July 2022

July 20, 2022



WATER CLARITY: Clean and low

OVERALL RATING: 6 out of 10

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT:  Green Drakes 10-12, Midges, Caddis, PMDs, Golden Stonelfies, Craneflies, BWOs, Sculpins

THE LOWDOWN:  Green Drakes are all the way up to Aspen as of now, and don't be surprised if you see them hatching mid-day. Caddis, PMDs, craneflies and Yellow Sallies are now abundant.

We can still get away with large stonefly nymphs and bright worms for another week or two, and then we'll be back to small and technical nymphs.

HATCHES: Green Drakes 10-12, Midges 18-24, Caddis 14-18, Pale Morning Duns 14-18, Golden Stoneflies 4-10, BWOs 18-22, Craneflies 10-16

DRIES:  HOH Hackled Green Drake 12, Stott's KGB Green Drake 12, TC Custom Sparkledun PMD 16-18, Hackle Dun PMD 16-18, Perfect PMD 16-18, Rogue Foam Golden Stone 4-8, Egg Layer Golden Stone sz 4, CDC Comparadun BWO 18-22, TC Sparkledun BWO 18-22, Mole Midge 20-22, HOH Hanging Midge 20-22, HOH CDC Midge Adult 24, HOH CDC Spent Midge 22-24, Sprout Midge 20-24, Skittering Z-Lon Midge 20-22

NYMPHS: Cat Poop Stonelfy 4-10, San Juan Worm 10, BH Twenty Incher Nymph 12-16, BTS Baetis 20-22, Sparklewing RS2 20-22, Freestone Emerger 20, BH Polywing Emerger 20, Kingrey's Cap'n Hook 20-22, Bead Wing Midge 20-22, Rojo Midge 20-22

STREAMERS: Autumn Splendor 6, Carlton Banks sz 4, Cousin It Sculpin sz 6, Grease Monkey sz 4, Beldar Lemon Drop sz 8

HINTS: Fish the soft water where your flies have time to get down in front  of the fish.


FLOW: 492 CFS in Basalt

WATER CONDITIONS: Dropping quickly!

OVERALL RATING:  6 out of 10

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

THE LOWDOWN: The Green Drake Hatch has been all over the place this year, currently we are seeing them pretty much everywhere on the Fork at once. The fish are eating muted and natural imitations better than the high-vis ones we usually fish. We're not seeing huge numbers at twilight, but the fish are looking for them. 

As a general rule, the water will be more off-color in the morning and clear up substantially by late afternoon. Don't be afraid to seriously beef up your tippet and fly size when fishing the Fork.  Fish will tend to look for pockets of slower water to conserve energy so focus your efforts on these areas.

Expect to have the best clarity on days following cooler nights. 

HATCHES: Green Drakes 10-12, Pale Morning Duns 14-18, Caddis 14-18, Blue Winged Olives 18-22, Midges 18-24, Golden Stoneflies 4-10, Craneflies 10

NYMPHS: Cat Poop Stonefly 4-10, Zirdle Bug 6-8, Twenty Incher Nymph 12-16, Freestone Emerger 20, BH Polywing Emerger 18-20, Biot Baetis 18-20, Sparklewing RS2 20-22, Imposter 20-22, Lil Foamy 18-20, Neon Nightmare 20-22 

DRIES: HOH Hackled Green Drake 12, Last Chance Green Drake Cripple 12, High Profile Green Drake 12, Hairwing Drake 12, Cloud Nine Golden Stonelfy 4-8, Chubby Chernobyl 6-12, TC Custom Sparkledun PMD 16-18, Hackle Dun PMD 16-18, Perfect PMD 16-18, Harrop's CDC Biot Dun BWO 20-22, TC Sparkledun BWO 18-22, Harrop's CDC Thorax BWO 20-22, Missing Link Caddis 16-18, Olive Elk Hair Caddis 14-18, Bill's Midge Emerger 20-22, HOH CDC Midge Adult 24, Hatching Midge 20-22, Morgan's Para Midge 20-22

STREAMERS: Tungsten Double Mint sz 4-8, Hansen's Meal Ticket sz 4, Baby Gonga Black sz 8, Home Invader sz 2

HINTS: Find some deep water where you can and keep an eye out for risers too


FLOW: 872 CFS in Glenwood Springs 

WATER CONDITIONS: The river is getting too warm in the afternoons, please keep an eye on temperatures and we expect noon-ish closures in the coming days.

OVERALL RATING: 4 out of 10

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Green Drakes, Caddis, Pale Morning Duns, Yellow Sallies, BWOs, Golden Stoneflies, Midges, Sculpins

THE LOW DOWN: As stated above, we are beginning to see concerning temperatures on the lower river. Usually the water is much colder above Carbondale, and gets exponentially colder the higher up the valley you go.

The Green Drake hatch is sort of sporadic this year, we are seeing these twilight bugs from the confluence of the Colorado all the way up to Carbondale now. We aren't seeing blizzard hatches yet, but the fish are looking for them!

An interesting development this go-round is that the fish seem to be more interested in muted and natural green drake dry flies versus the usual high-vis H&L or Royal Wulff offerings. This may change.

We are seeing consistent hatches of caddis, BWOs and midges. Pale Morning Duns and Yellow Sallies are now hatching sporadically and will only increase in the coming days. Golden Stones are flapping around here and there as well!

HATCHES: Green Drakes 10-12, Yellow Sallies 16, Pale Morning Duns 14-18, Golden Stoneflies 4-10, Caddis 14-18, Blue Winged Olives 18-22, Craneflies 10, Midges 18-26

NYMPHS: Spanflex Stonefly 6-8, Twenty Incher Nymph 12-16, Prince Nymph 10-16, Tung Torin's Soft Hackle 16-18, Copper John 14-16, BLMs 18-20, Freestone Emerger 22, RS2s 20-22, Polywing Emerger 18-20, Biot Baetis 18-20, Soft Hackle BWO 20-22, Imposters 20-22, TC Poxy Biot Baetis 22, Jerome Baetis 20-22, RIP Midge 22

DRIES: Hairwing Drake 12, TC Sparkledun Green Drake 12-14, HOH CDC Thorax Green Drake 12, Stott's KGB Green Drake 12, Hackled Green Drake 12, Hairy Sallie 16, Barr's Vis-a-dun PMD 16-18, Hackle Dun PMD 16-18, Reed's Rogue Golden Stone 4-8, Chubby Chernobyl 6-10, Pearl and Elk Caddis 14-18, Tan Elk Hair Caddis 14-18, Lawson's No Hackle BWO 20-22, Befus Para Emerger BWO 20-22, Hackle Dun Baetis 20-22, Roy's Special Fryingpan Emerger 20-22, Hatching Midge 20-22, HOH CDC Spent Midge 22-24, HOH CDC Midge Adult 24, Morgans Midge 18-20, Sprout Midge 18-20, Griffiths Gnat 20

STREAMERS: Double Dirty Hippy sz 2, Beldar Lemon Drop sz 2, Grease Monkey sz 4, Galloup's Dungeon sz 2

HINTS: Generally, cloudy days tend to produce the best mayfly action, hot and bright days make the caddis happy.

Upper Roaring Fork,00060

Middle Roaring Fork:

Lower Roaring Fork:

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