On the Fly column: Sunny days are here again
On the Fly
As the Roaring Fork Valley gears up for another summer, we are all getting excited for the insect hatches to come. The Sunday Farmers Market in Basalt and the Aspen Ideas Festival are back again, as well as itinerant guides settling back in after off-season exploits in warmer climes. Runoff conditions are persistently hanging on for another week or so, but most anglers know and appreciate this transitional time in the fly-fisher’s year. Big water lets the insects and anglers alike know that changes are afoot, and soon the widely popular freestone river caddis, pale morning dun and green drake hatches will be on our doorstep.
The Fryingpan has maintained a low and clear flow compared to the big water on the local freestones, and the first pale morning dun hatches of 2021 have already begun. Hatches have been slightly more consistent up below the dam, but on the flipside, you might see just about anything (golden stones, caddis, craneflies) hatch on the lower river closer to Basalt.
Another noteworthy development is the opening of high country lakes throughout the valley. High elevation spots will stay iced up for a while longer, but keep in mind anything that is getting full sun and is below 10,000 feet in elevation is pretty much good to go. High country fishing trails will be muddy and snowy for another week, but you might be the first angler to cast over those brookies and cutthroat after a long and cold winter season.
Look for the Roaring Fork, Crystal and Colorado rivers to remain “high” for a little bit longer, but you will notice plenty of anglers already plying these waters in the afternoons as they clear somewhat. Get ready for another summer, everyone; sunny days are here again, and it’s happening now.
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 TaylorCreek.com.
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Late July and August in the Roaring Fork Valley conjure up images of juicy size 10 and 12 green drakes on the Fryingpan, blanket PMD hatches on the Roaring Fork and prolific swarms of caddis…