One of the attractions to fishing Colorado is the abundance of small creeks that feed into the bigger, more well-known rivers. These small waters provide anglers with the opportunity to explore water that is far less pressured and often times far more spectacular in terms of scenery and isolation. While the fish in these streams rarely get large, they are generally eager to eat a dry fly and there are usually plenty of them. There is no magic to finding these spots. Get out a map and trace the blue lines away from the major rivers. Sometimes they are a bust, sometimes they are gems, but they always provide the angler with an adventure that reminds us of why fishing is always a treasure hunt.
Our Takes: Big, bushy dry flies and (maybe) small bead-head nymphs in a dry-dropper rig will be the ticket. Always take precautions in the backcountry: File a “flight plan” with somebody; pack plenty of water and some food; bring a rain jacket; never hike alone; be aware of wildlife and weather; error on the side of caution.
Nymphs: beadhead flashback pheasant tails, rs2, barr’s emerger, Cheesman emerger, juju baetis (16-20); graphic caddis, any caddis pupa pattern (16-18); any slender midge imitation in red and black (20-24).
Dries: parachute adams, purple haze, royal wulff, stimulator, elk hair caddis, X-caddis (10-16) Fish 4x mono with dries and 4x-5x fluoro with nymphs. 2 to 4 weight rod.