Roaring Fork River Report 9-14-20

Posted on 14 September 2020

September 14, 2020 

FLOW: 130 cfs below Maroon Creek

WATER CLARITY: Clear and low 

OVERALL RATING: 6 out of 10 

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT:  Caddis, Blue Winged Olives, Pale Morning Duns, Yellow Sallies 14-16, Midges, golden stonefly nymphs, sculpins

THE LOW DOWN: The upper Fork above Basalt has been remaining low and clear but is much cooler than the lower river these days. Green drakes are done, but there are probably a few fish still on the lookout for these big bugs.

In a nutshell we are fishing the upper river like it's fall already- as in small flies and fine tippets. Except for twilight, the dry fly action has slowed down significantly and the nymphing has gotten very good as long as you are fishing small bugs. 

Small flies like RS2s and Pheasant Tails have been productive, and skittering a caddis around at twilight has been pretty fun, too. You'll see some late afternoon PMD action on calm and cloudy days also.

HATCHES: Midges 20-24, BWOs 18-22, Yellow Sallies 14-18, PMDs 14-18, Caddis 14-18

DRIES: Pearl and Elk Caddis 14-18, Ethawing Caddis 16-18, Perfect PMD 16-18, Melon Quill 16-18, Chubby Chernobyl 10-12, Garcia's Mini Hot Yellow Sally 16, Perfect Baetis 20-22, No Hackle BWO 20-22, Morgan's Para 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: BLM 18-20, Tungsten Bead Baetis 20, 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, Spanflex Stone 10-12, Tungsten Split Case PMD 16-18, PMD Halfback Emerger 14-18

STREAMERS: Autumn Splendor 6, Zuddler 6, Slumpies 6-8 

HINTS: Skip the blah water and focus on the deeper open runs and pools.


FLOW:  490 cfs in Basalt


OVERALL RATING:  7 out of 10

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: Midges, Blue Winged Olives, Pale Morning Duns, Caddis, Yellow Sallies, sculpins

THE LOW DOWN: Basalt down to Carbondale has been fishing pretty well, and essentially we are fishing it like we are the upper- with small BWO nymphs and some dry fly action in the late afternoon. 

Floating this section is preferred due to the lack of public access, but local spots like behind Crown Mountain Park and Catherine's Store are good for the wading angler. Keep an eye on water temperatures, but the middle river is much cooler than the lower these days.

HATCHES: Blue Winged Olives 18-20, Caddis 14-18,  Pale Morning Duns 14-18, Yellow Sallies 14-16, Midges 20-24

NYMPHS: BLMs 18-20, Prince Nymphs 18-20, Pheasant Tails 18-24, Freestone Emerger 20, BH Polywing Emerger 18-20, Biot Baetis 18-20, Sparklewing RS2 20-22, Tailwater Assassin 20-22, Imposter 20-22, Lil Foamy 18-20, Neon Nightmare 20-22, Cat Poop 8-12, 20 Incher 10-14

DRIES: EC Caddis 16-18, Elk Hair Caddis 14-18, Melon Quill 16-18, Sparkledun PMD 14-18, Hairy Sally 16, Perfect Baetis 20-22, No Hackle BWO 20-22, Bill's Midge Emerger 20-22, HOH CDC Midge Adult 24, Hatching Midge 20-22, Morgan's Para Midge 20-22

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


FLOW: 700 in Glenwood Springs


OVERALL RATING:  7 out of 10 

FOOD SOURCES PRESENT: BWOs, Midges, PMDs, caddis, sculpins

THE LOW DOWN: It's finally starting to cool off! We are seeing a few caddis and PMDs out there, but primarily nymphing and streamer chucking has been the most productive. Look for a wave of BWOs soon!

Like the upper and middle river we are essentially fishing the lower river like it's fall already- tiny and shiny BWO nymphs on finer tippet than you might expect. Plenty of caddis and PMDs are being seen.

HATCHES: Caddis 16-18, Blue Winged Olives 18-20, PMDs 14-18, Yellow Sallies 14-16, Midges 18-26

NYMPHS: 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, Cat Poop 8-12, San Juan Worm 10, Twenty Incher 10-14, Jerome PMD 16-18, Prince Nymph 8-14

DRIES: Perfect Baetis 20-22, No Hackle Baetis 20-22, Melon Quill 16-18, Sparkledun PMD 14-18, Garcia's Mini Hot Sally 16, Ethawing Caddis 14-16, Pearl and Elk Caddis 14-18, Roy's Special Fryingpan Emerger 20-22, CDC Comparadun 18-20, Hatching Midge 20-22, HOH CDC Spent Midge 22-24, HOH CDC Midge Adult 24, Morgans Midge 18-20, Sprout Midge 18-20, Skittering Zelon Midge 20-22, Griffiths Gnat 20

HINTS: Watch out for some pretty good hatches, especially when warm and cloudy.

Upper Roaring Fork,00060

Middle Roaring Fork:

Lower Roaring Fork:

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