Eagle River Winter Fishing Report
Fly Fishing has been great on the Eagle River but expect a slow down over the next few days. We got some much needed snowfall over the weekend now colder temperatures are forecasted to settle in through the week. This is great news for our snowpack but it will effect fishing conditions on the Eagle River.
When our overnight lows are in the single digits a lot of anchor ice is formed which creates slush during the day. Can you still fish? sure but getting your nymphs below the surface can be very challenging. Our advice is to find areas below water treatment plants (Avon, Edwards, Gypsum) and fish these areas. There still might be some slush to contend with but it will be significantly less in these areas. Wait until 11 or 12 to get on the water and hope for the best. Fish will be holding deep in slower water so focus your fishing efforts in these spots.
Red, Black, Cream and Olive Midges have been working well even in slushy conditions. Adding a larger prospecting nymph like a bead head Pheasant Tail is a good way to add weight to your nymph rig. Surprisingly enough a pink squirmy worm has also been getting a lot of attention under the surface. As we creep closer towards the end of the week temps should be back in the high 30s-40s.
We have a couple spots on the Eagle River on our Private Water that stays open and is fishing great. If you wish to fish this water give us a call and we’ll get you out.
970.368.5959 book your winter fly fishing trip today.
Happy New Year. We have been on the water everyday this year and the fly fishing on the Eagle River is rock solid right now. In fact yesterday we were catching trout on dry flies. It was crazy.
Jett showing off an Eagle River Rainbow Trout
Andrew spent the afternoon finding colored up Rainbow Trout in pocket water.
Midges are the main item on the menu right now but we are also presenting small BWO Nymphs, Pheasant Tails, Eggs, Caddis and
Worms which are also getting attention. The majority of fish are in the slower deeper pools and pockets so be sure to focus the majority of time in these areas. We are also finding a few fish in shallower riffles so be sure to run a few drifts through water that is about 2 -3 feet deep. Olive, Cream, Black, Red & Purples colored midge imitations are the most productive fly patterns. Midge hatches have been sporadically coming off in the afternoon between 1 and 3pm. if you see a few fish poking their noses out try and lighten up your rig. Often times you will be fishing too deep during the midge hatch. In the right areas you will see enough fish rising to make the switch to dry flies but it is often short lived.
90% of our Private Water on the Eagle River is open and all of our trips have been doing great on these sections. We have been getting on the water around 10:30-11am and fishing until the sun creeps below the mountains. Fishing has been good right out of the gate and staying consistent throughout the afternoon.
Last fish of the day ate a dry fly.
Our weather is what has allowed us such incredible winter fishing and while we are enjoying the fly fishing opportunities we need the snow more than ever. We are currently under a winter weather advisory (YAY) with cooler temps following the snow. We are taking reservations for guided fly fishing trips as well as our spring fly fishing schools & classes. Give us a call to book a trip and last minute fishing reports. 970-368-5959.
Winter Fly Fishing: Eagle River
Chilly nights and shorter days have the majority of the Eagle River buttoned up with ice. There are many fishable portions of the Eagle River during the winter and they are all below water treatment facilities. If you are up here for the Holidays or make the drive up and realize that the skiing is terrible you can still find some spots to fish.
While there are plenty of pockets and runs to fish in Avon, CO your better options are down valley. Gypsum is a good place to start looking for more water to sink your flies. Slightly warmer temps as well as a water treatment plant keep this section of the Eagle River open most of the winter. Midges and Eggs are still doing the trick below the bobber and when the temps are right we are seeing a decent midge hatch. A few fish are rising during the hatch but not enough to change up the nymph rig. Red, Purple, Cream, Black & Olive Midges are all working well anywhere you can find the right speed and depth. Do not be afraid to fish shallower water either. We are hooking a lot of fish in water about 3-4 feet deep especially during the warmest parts of the day.
Finn Found this Eagle River Rainbow Trout on our private water last week.
We have some open water on our private lease in between Edwards and Wolcott. It has been fishing incredible and worth trying if you are in town. We are still offering discounted rod fees through the winter. Hope to see you on the water. Happy Holidays.
Our warm weather has finally come to an end and it is actually starting to feel like winter. Flows on the Eagle are hovering around 60 CFS in Avon which is very low making the trout easy to find. There are not a lot of hiding spots at this level. Fish have moved to there winter lies and are not moving very far to take a fly. Earlier in the week we saw a few rising fish but for the most part you are going to be staring at a Bobber to catch fish. Deeper slower pools is where you are going to find the majority of Trout. My Nymph Rig has been an egg and midge which I will not change until march. The egg has not been getting a ton of attention but I feel that the trout see it which leads their eyes to the trailing midge. That may or may not be true but it makes me feel better when fishing. Add weight if you are not hitting bottom, the fish have been deep and you might have to hit them in the nose on certain days.
Mr. Moorman found a few big ones before the snow came in.
Good flies to have for winter fly fishing on the Eagle River are; Eggs (Chartreuse, Oregon Cheese, White), Midges (Black, Red, Creme, Olive), Buckskin Caddis, BWO emergers, Jig hook comp flies.
The jig hook comp flies are a great way to add weight to your rig with out pinching on additional sinkers. Try running an egg as your lead fly trailed by a #18 comp fly (black), from the eye of the jig hook tie and additional 12 ” of tippet and attach a midge pattern of your choice. This will allow you to effectively cover deeper water columns. It will also give you one more fly to get tangled on.
Keep in mind that winter fishing can be very slow and we often only have short windows of opportunity. Those opportunities are going to be during the warmest part of the day. There is no need to be on the water early and no reason to stay late. Be persistent and you will be successful.
The Eagle River has been fishing great, in fact I cannot think of a month that is hasn’t been fishing great..yet. The warmer weather has been bringing a lot of fish to the surface during the warmest parts of the day. Mostly midges on the menu and a variety of adult midge patterns are hooking fish up top. If the wind is blowing and the fish are not showing their beaks a shallow nymph rig is finding fish in their usual haunts. Eggs, Baetis and Midges are all putting a bend in the stick. The streamer bite has tapered off a bit but if you are willing to put in the time you will find some trout to chase. Smaller Slump Busters have been my favorite, especially natural.
Nymphing with eggs and baetis patterns has been a good way to find trout in deeper water.
There is no need to be on the river early. Sleep in and enjoy your coffee. I have been getting on the river around 10:30 -11 am and staying on the water until 3ish. Fish have been starting to rise around 1pm and will stay up as long as the wind isn’t too strong. The extended weather forecast looks pleasant with more sunny days on the horizon. We are still offering 2 for one specials on our Vail Rod & Gun Club water so take advantage and get up here before its too cold. Happy Thanksgiving.
The dry fly fishing on the Eagle River has been excellent this whole month. The bugs keep getting a little smaller but the fish keep rising. “There is no need to stare at a bobber when you can watch fish eat your dry.” The magic hour for dry fly activity has been around 1pm until 4pm. Midges are dominating the scene with the occasional Blue Wing popping off. The hot bugs have been a mixed bag of small midge patterns in gray, black and rust colors. We have been using a larger Adams as our lead fly then trailing smaller midge patterns behind. Occasionally the fish are taking the Adams but for the most part it is acting as our visual target. Griffith’s Gnats and Renegades are also good & easy to see patterns to be drifting down the river. If you must get on the river before noon try moving streamers. Olive and Natural Colored Slump Busters have been all you need. The streamer bite has been hot and cold but when its on the fish have been hitting it as soon as it lands. We are finding some healthy rainbows in shallow water. It has been awesome. As the cooler weather starts to move in expect your dry fly window to get smaller and smaller. Until then take advantage of the great fishing on the Eagle River right now.
An absolute stunning Rainbow Trout from the Eagle River.
Every once and a while we are bumping into some of those giant Rainbow Trout that were stocked before the World Fly Fishing Championship. These fish are certainly out of place in the Eagle River but are a wild battle on light tippet in skinny water. We found one last weekend and it put on quite a display for our guest Cody Burgdorff.
We are still doing guided trips and offering 2 for 1 rod fees on our Vail Rod & Gun Club Lease. If you have never fished this section of the Eagle River now is an excellent time to see it shine. Give us a call to book your trip and for last minute fishing reports. 970.368.5959.
Flies to have in your box – foam back RS2 (black, grey), Chocolate Thunder, Zebra Midge, Mayhem Midge, Adams, Griffiths Gnat, Renegade, Roy Palm Emerger, Flash Bang Midge, Slump Buster (Olive, Natural)
Fall fishing has been excellent no matter where you go. We have been spending time on the Colorado and Eagle Rivers and both are fishing great. We are seeing a lot of big fish on both rivers eating dries and streamers. This is a great time to visit the vail valley. The colors are beautiful, there are discounts at most of the restaurants and the fishing is outstanding. We are still offering our 2 for 1 private water rod fees and are also offering free lodging for those who book 3 or more guided days. Take advantage of these shoulder season rates.
With the recent rain/snow fall the Eagle River has bumped up significantly and turned the lower river very off color. Expect the Eagle to level out over the next couple days and fishing to pick back up. Until the recent cold front the Eagle was fishing off the charts. Midges, BWO’s and Tricos were bringing fish to the surface throughout the day. The streamer bite was also keeping the net wet with a lot of aggressive brown trout eager to chase down streamer patters. I would expect the fishing to continue to be great later this week once the water cleans up. The weather is forecasted to warm up tomorrow and be nice for the remainder of the week. Give us a call, lets go fishing.
The fly fishing on the Eagle River has been outstanding. Water levels are very low due to lack of rain but our cooler nights are keeping water temps chilly until early afternoon. Dry dropper has been an excellent technique for fishing faster shallow riffles. My go to set up has been Chubby Chernobyl with a grey RS2 and Black Rainbow Warrior dropped off the bend. While the majority of fish have been keying in on the droppers we are still getting them to eat the Hopper.
Fish are starting to rise around 11 am and are keyed in on small BWO’s. Shallow slicks are a good place to find fish sipping on small dries. The crowds have died down opening up some of the public access on the Eagle River. Red Canyon has been a fun spot to fish with a lot of fast oxygenated water holding plenty big trout. If you are not getting much action on the above mentioned set-up try lengthening your dropper depth and switching out the RS2 for a Chocolate Thunder.
When this fish ate a hopper off the surface our Jaws Dropped.
For those of you who would like to fish on our Vail Rod & Gun Club lease we are now offering 2 for 1 rod fees. This is a significant savings and gets you on the best private water on the Eagle River. We strategically rest this water to ensure excellent fly fishing on all beats. Last week one of our guests, Noah, got the Eagle River slam on our private water. He successfully landed a Rainbow, Brown and Cutthroat Trout all on dry flies. It was a great day. Best times to be on the Eagle River have been between 9am and 2 pm. Fishing should remain on fire until the colder weather starts to creep in. Then it will just be good… 🙂 Give us a call and book your fall fly fishing trip on the Eagle River. 970-368-5959. See you on the water.
The end of August has been hot and dry. Despite the high temps the fly fishing has been good most of the day. The Eagle River has dropped into excellent wading condition allowing anglers to access most of the river by foot. The clarity is also great forcing us to use 6x on occasion. Especially for rising fish. We are still seeing some Caddis coming off sporadically throughout the day but the fish are keyed in on smaller Midges and Baetis imitations above and below the surface. Although the smaller fare seem to be getting the most attention trout will still take a large hopper imitation off the surface. With the lower water and higher temps we are finding the majority of fish in the faster riffles about 2-4 feet deep. For this reason a dry dropper set-up has been a great way to hook fish without staring at a bobber. Rainbow Warriors, Chocolate thunder, RS2’s and more of the like have all been working well under a Chubby Chernobyl. We have been fishing a lot of jig hook patterns which seem to reduce the amount of snags when fishing shallower water. Be sure to cover a run thoroughly before moving on. You will be surprised on where you will find the fish. Some of the fastest water is holding feeding trout. As we move into September expect to see more Blue Wing Olives and October Caddis.
Most of the summer crowds have left town and it is a great time to be on the river. The Brown trout will start to get a little more feisty as the days begin getting shorter and the water gets cooler. Once this happens the streamer bite will pick up and you can find big aggressive fish willing to hunt down your fly. Don’t miss fall fly fishing in Colorado. We are taking bookings into October and look forward to fishing with you.
Until recently our annual runoff brought the Eagle River up over 1300 cfs and quite off color. With the cooler weather levels have dropped/ cleared and this morning the gauge read 800 cfs in Avon. This is an excellent flow for floating. We have seined the river in front of the cabin and are seeing quiet a variety of bugs in the free flow. Mostly BWO’s, Midges as well as a few Caddis and Stones. The water temp is right around 40 degrees which has dropped significantly so don’t be surprised if you find the fishing to be a little slower than it has been. If you pan on fishing the Eagle River over the next couple days plan for a later start. There is no need to be on the water early. We are hoping for a good BWO hatch during overcast days, if you find rising fish Adams, Adult Midges and BWO Cripples should do the trick. A double dry fly rig with a Caddis imitation up front trailed by a smaller BWO is a good way to go. Slower slicks and bends are where you will find the majority of rising trout. If you are nymphing do not be afraid to go big. Pats Rubber Leg, Pink Squirmy Worm and Caddis Larvae are excellent lead flies. Trail smaller BWO patterns like, Barrs, JUJU Baetis and Sparkle Wing RS2’s behind your lead flies. Our last float streamers were hot in the afternoon. Black Sex Dungeons, Olive Slump Busters and Tequeely’s got a lot of attention in the shallow riffles and pocket water. Once this weather system moves out expect water to be back on the rise. We may have an early peak this year so if you want to float the Eagle before it gets too skinny be sure to book your trip sooner than later. As soon as water levels stabilize we are going to have an incredible Caddis Hatch on the Eagle River. Give us a call to reserve a beat on our new private water lease.