Offseason? What offseason? |

Offseason? What offseason?

Kirk Webb
Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

As of late, anglers have been few and far between on the normally bustling Fryingpan River. Believe it or not, May is the second slowest month of the year in terms of fishing pressure.

As hard as it to believe, there are more fishermen spread out along the river in December and January than there are in May. Don’t let this fact fool you, though, as the fishing is pretty incredible right now, as I can personally attest to.

While driving along the 14-mile length of river between downtown Basalt and Ruedi Reservoir, I counted only 10 anglers, and half were strung out in the Toilet Bowl.

With water flows hovering around 100 cubic feet per second, this provides superb fishing opportunities for anglers. Wading is easy and safe at these levels, and the dry fly fishing has been sensational.

Good midge and blue wing olive hatches are the norm along the river from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Generally speaking, look for fish to focus on midges during the front half of that time frame, while the back half of that time is more blue wing olive-oriented.

With the low and clear water, dry fly fishers will still want to utilize light tippets of 7x fluorocarbon. Even when nymph fishing, I still prefer to use 6x tippets to attach my first fly to and 7x tippets to connect my dropper or second fly onto.

When dry fly fishing on the Fryingpan, you’ll want to cast downstream to the rising fish. This will allow the fish to see your fly first, instead of fly line, leader, tippet and then your fly.

This trick especially comes into play when working over smart or pressured fish. The heaviest hatches have been taking place along the middle and upper river, from mile markers eight to 12.

The beauty of fishing the river at these flows and, at this time of year, is the abundance of insects, the lack of other anglers, and the low flows that provide amazing sight fishing opportunities.

Even though the month of May is called offseason by the locals, the fishing is far from off. In fact, this is the single best time of year to experience the quality fishing with a minimum of crowds.

Get outside and wade into our Gold Medal waters for the fishing experience of a lifetime.

This report is provided every week by Taylor Creek Fly Shops in Aspen and Basalt. Taylor Creek can be reached at (970) 927-4374 or

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