Fishing rivers in fall is second only to catching them just before spring runoff. Angler pressure is low, and the fish begin feeding heavily before winter. Plus, brown trout are getting increasingly aggressive with spawning just around the corner.
The Eagle River is running clear and fishing well. Morning has been best for dry fly action. Blue winged olives, midges and caddis are good choices, but don’t overlook ants when there’s a mild breeze. Streamers and egg patterns will become increasingly effective the next few weeks.
Below Dillon Reservoir, the Blue River has been fishing well with mysis shrimp patterns, thanks to the heavier releases of late. It’s a good idea to run a midge dropper, also. Fishing farther downstream is a good idea right now, as you’ll encounter fewer anglers.
Even though the lower Colorado River has been running a bit colored, it has been fishing well. Many favor the hopper/dropper setup. Good droppers include pheasant tails, copper johns and blue winged olive nymphs. There are lots of variations of these basic patterns, so experiment.
Wolford Mountain Reservoir is cooling down into the low 60s. We’re seeing a pickup in kokanee action, though most are still holding deep, 10 to 30 feet. Trolling with small spoons using either a lead core line or a downrigger are good options. Pink continues to produce well.
Sylvan Lake is a great fall option, especially as it has been recently stocked. No need to worry about what to use, as most everything is working to some degree.
South Park waters remain popular. Eleven Mile Reservoir has been producing a few fish; mornings appear to be the best time to try your luck.
If the action there is slow, consider trying nearby Tarryall Reservoir, where the action has been good, even though the average fish size is substantially smaller. Spinners have been working well for some and will pick up an occasional small pike.
Dave Coulson is the Colorado state editor for www.fishexplorer.com. He contributes a weekly fishing report to the Summit Daily.