High Country Fly Fishing Report

~ by Bob Volpe ~

Spring fishing is now in full swing. The rainbow spawn is on the wane and water temps are beginning to rise. Bugs are hatching and the prognosis for fishing is good. This following report is compiled, courtesy of Blue Quill Anglers.

Cheesman Canyon —  Cheesman Canyon is fishing fair to good right now. Denver Water continues to hold back water in an effort to fill

Cheesman Reservoir —  Look for flows to remain between 100-50 cfs for
another couple weeks.  Currently the lake is still 4,000 acre feet from the top (about 95% full).  My guess is Cheesman Dam will spill normally during the first part of May. For the meantime, my recomendation is to concentrate your efforts in the transitional zones that drop off into the deeper runs. Look for a nice blue-winged olive hatch each afternoon between 1 and 3 p.m. Overcast days provide the best dry fly fishing. Regardless of the conditions, sub-surface fishing in the afternoon is good with an assortment of Baetis nymphs.

Decker Like —  Cheesman Canyon, Deckers is fishing well. A size 18 Bead Head Black Beauty or Medallion Midge is the perfect imposter for these large midges. Don’t forget about the small midges…they are still
extremely important too!  In the a.m., concentrate your efforts in the deeper runs and slower pools where you’ll find the highest concentrations of fish.  Your best bet is dead drifting midge pupa mid-column. Look for a nice blue-winged olive hatch each afternoon between 1 and 3 p.m. Overcast days provide the best dry fly fishing.
Regardless of the conditions, sub-surface fishing in the afternoon is good with an assortment of Baetis nymphs.

Dream Stream  —  Anglers willing to work hard and cover water however  are catching a decent number 8-16 inch rainbows, cut-bows, and the occasional brown.  There are a still plenty of lake-run fish in the
system. Make sure you pinch your barbs and watch your step in the shallow riffles to avoid stepping on redds. Crowds are extremely heavy, so plan accordingly. There are plenty of opportunities to catch
trout with surface offerings in the slower pools and tailouts. It’s hard to go wrong with a size 24-26 Matt’s Midge or Parachute Adams to fool these “risers”.

Recommended patterns for all of the above:
 #22-24 Top Secret Midge, #24 Black Beauty, #24 Minute Midge, #18 Hot Tail Flash Egg, #20-24 Chocolate Foam Wing Emerger, #20-22 Jujubaetis, #22 Stalcup’s Baetis, #20-22 Mercury Midge, #20-22 Mercury Flashback
RS II, #20-22 Sparkle Wing RS 2, #22 Sparkle Dun, #22-24 Cannon’s Snowshoe Dun, #22-24 Barr’s Visa Dun (BW0) and #24 Parashute Adams.