The Ramblings of a Fly Fisherman

The Big Thompson

Alyssa, Matt and I visited the Big Thompson in order to take advantage of a great flow rate and excellent fishing report.  This area proved to be a solid producer and yielded 16 nice trout ranging from 8 to 13 inches.  I started using a wide range of midge and nymph patterns, but finally settled on a pheasant tail and zebra midge as these seemed to provide the best results.  I also caught a few on a Charlie Boy Hopper, but given the time of year and high temperatures near Estes Park, this wasn’t really too big of a surprise.  Much of the fishing was strictly pocket water, but there were some deeper runs that provided access to a number of hungry browns.  I recommend starting around 9:30am and fishing until 2:00pm as this time frame seemed to be the most active of the day.
Nice Brown, Nice Corner Mouth Hook-Set!

The Caddis Fly

This has to be one of my favorite patterns to fish.  I have used it in nearly all of the rivers here in Colorado as well as locations in Georgia, North Carolina, Arizona, and Idaho.  I would consider this a staple for any fly fisherman because it's an extremely effective pattern that can mimic both adult caddis and stone flies.  In general, I like to vary the color on this pattern in a consistent way.  In early spring, colors should stay in the light yellow and orange range in order to mimic emerging stone flies in the area, but as late summer begins to approach, I move toward darker colors like auburn, brown, and even black.  I like to tie this one with a slightly thicker wing than you traditionally see as this will allow the fly to float on the surface effectively even when in rougher water. 
The Caddis Fly

Another 11 Mile Canyon Trip

We visited 11 Mile Canyon this weekend with the hopes of catching some large trout and enjoying a nice day in the great outdoors. As always, the area did not disappoint us. There wasn’t one cloud in the sky, the fishing was moderate, but fun, and the canyon was somewhat vacant due to the fact that most campers started to head home Monday morning. I did find it strange that I managed to hook a white sucker fish in the river, as this is the first time that I have done that in all my trips to 11 Mile. What makes it even stranger is that I did it twice and with a caddis larva pattern fishing rougher water… Overall, we caught about 12 fish. Nymphing typically is the best method to fish this river, but with the later season and the increased vegetation, I actually recommend running a dry-dropper configuration. This will allow you to run a sub-surface pattern, but without the constant need to clean your flies as you will certainly experience if attempting to nymph in most parts of the river. I ran a Charlie Boy Hopper and a pheasant tail most of the day and found it to be very successful.

An Overview of 11 Mile Canyon

White Sucker Fish

Heading to 11 Mile Canyon

Alyssa and I are heading off to 11 Mile Canyon Monday morning. Conditions are ideal for various terrestrial patterns and the latest fishing reports are quite promising. If anyone is intending on fishing that area over the next few weeks, I recommend hoppers of any sort, pheasant tails, and a wide assortment of emergers. If you are there early enough, don’t forget about rusty spinners…

This Weekend's 11 Mile Line-Up

Knot of the Month - The Trilene Knot

The Trilene knot is something that I do not use too often in fly fishing, but it can certainly add a bit of safety when fishing larger patterns in areas that are known for supporting trout above 20 inches. Basically, it is a clinch knot with two rolls of line through the hook eye instead of just one. It adds strength to a setup and could be the determining factor when fighting that big fish to your net. Link to Video