Fishing Report for the Arkansas River

 

 

Arkansas River Fishing Report

 

 

IMPORTANT UPDATE: The Colorado statewide stay at home order has expired. The Guide Service is now fully operational and the Flyshop is OPEN to in-store shopping. Our in-store shopping hours are as follows: Mon-Sat (8am-5PM), Sun (8am-12 NOON). In addition we will continue curbside deliveries and FREE local delivery...and as always, our entire Flyshop is available online with FREE shipping at $50 or more. Our Flyshop staff and guide staff will be following a strict protocol to keep everyone safe and healthy, however we’re open for business and we’re here to help you get outdoors! Please obey the social distancing guidelines...but the outdoors are OPEN and available for your use! Please note that the entire flyshop is available on our online flyshop (flies, tackle, sportwear, gear, EVERYTHING). We are offering FREE SHIPPING over $50 with 2 Day Priority Delivery, as well as curbside pickup during regular business hours...and FREE local delivery (within 5 miles of the Flyshop).

 

 

ALL NEW Video Report (Summer Update)

 

 

July 6th, 2020

 

Arkansas River (Lower Freestone Basin)

 

General Overview

The river is in phenomenal condition and fish are hungry...enough said. Snowpack dwindled quickly and flows are currently about half of what they usually are during this timeframe along with exceptional clarity. Flows being in the 700cfs range has opened the entire river up to both strong float and wade options. While native flows will continue to fall, we will see an increase in project water release to keep flows above 700cfs, so conditions will remain strong for wade or float until August 15th. While the bigger dry fly game has become more difficult with gin clear water and lower flows, fish are still very opportunistic on medium sized attractor dry/ dropper rigs, streamers...and there are a considerable amount of bugs hatching. Alot of fish are on the edges still, that being said, with dropping flows and awesome clarity fish will begin to spread out to find oxygenated water and cover. Its Summer Primetime...get some days planned for the Arkansas!

 

For guided trip bookings on the Arkansas Freestone/ Tailwater, other drainages and our private ranches..... Call Us Toll Free (888) 994-6743 or CLICK HERE for more information.

 

Stream Conditions

Wellsville Flowrate: 730 CFS

Canon City Flowrate: 677 CFS

Clarity: Clear

 

Flows are reducing steadily. Both release and native flows will continue to fall now that the meat of runoff seems to be over. Edges will clear first leaving a greenish or more turbid tint in the center water column, and then the entire river will clear as things progress.  

 

Suggested Methods

With a dramatic drop in flows and exceptional clarity, fish have really began to spread out. The bugs on the menu include a few lingering Golden Stoneflies, Yellow Sallies, Pale Morning Duns, various Caddis, Hoppers and Ants. Fish will also respond to annelids (worms, etc). You'll see great productivity on the edges in the mornings and evenings with Stonefly or Hopper Dries. As the sun gets high, its always best to transition to Dry/ Dropper rigs or Nymph Rigs. Be sure to be prepared with full lifecycles on your Stones, PMDs, Yellow Sallies and Caddis...those will be your go to patterns for droppers as well. Don't forget streamers also, great to work into the mix whether your wading or floating this time of year. 

Royal Gorge Anglers operates the oldest fly fishing guide service and full service flyshop on the Arkansas River Freestone and Arkansas River Tailwater. Our guide service also offers various guided fly fishing experiences on the South Platte River, Gunnison River, Stillwater, Private Ranches, Backcountry and more. CLICK HERE to Learn more about our Guided Trip Options or Call us (888) 994-6743 ext 2 to talk to us directly...

 

Interactive Arkansas River Map

 

 

 

Arkansas River (Upper Freestone Basin)

 

General Overview

*Note: Please CLICK HERE for Chaffee County’s current restrictions and guidance for recreation.

Water is getting low fast on the Upper Basin. As of the first week of July, flows are already in the 600cfs range in Salida and obviously lower as you move towards the headwater. The big positive is there is alot of project water in storage so we should see flows hold near 700cfs at the Wellsville gauge until August 15th, which will be solid for float or wade. Hatch activity is similar to the lower basin...Sallies, PMDs, Caddis, Stoneflies and a few early Tricos and Drakes.

 

Stream Conditions

Leadville Flowrate: 112 CFS

Granite Flowrate: 600 CFS

Salida Flowrate: 612 CFS

Clarity: Clear

 

Suggested Methods

With a dramatic drop in flows and exceptional clarity, fish have really began to spread out. The bugs on the menu include a few lingering Golden Stoneflies, Yellow Sallies, Pale Morning Duns, various Caddis, Hoppers and Ants. Fish will also respond to annelids (worms, etc). You'll see great productivity on the edges in the mornings and evenings with Stonefly or Hopper Dries. As the sun gets high, its always best to transition to Dry/ Dropper rigs or Nymph Rigs. Be sure to be prepared with full lifecycles on your Stones, PMDs, Yellow Sallies and Caddis...those will be your go to patterns for droppers as well. Don't forget streamers also, great to work into the mix whether your wading or floating this time of year. 

 

Royal Gorge Anglers operates the oldest fly fishing guide service and full service flyshop on the Arkansas River Freestone and Arkansas River Tailwater. Our guide service also offers various guided fly fishing experiences on the South Platte River, Gunnison River, Stillwater, Private Ranches, Backcountry and more. CLICK HERE to Learn more about our Guided Trip Options or Call us (888) 994-6743 ext 2 to talk to us directly...

 

Interactive Arkansas River Map