Gin clear water, bluebird skies, fat, healthy trout

July 18, 2016

Gin clear water, bluebird skies, fat, healthy trout, rising fish, and hatches that last throughout the larger part of the day. If that sounds like the perfect recipe for a fisherman, then the San Juan is the place to be. Currently we are experiencing consistent flows around 800 cfs and with the hot, dry weather, those flows are likely to remain at that level for the near future. If you haven't fished the San Juan recently, you're going to notice a few changes on your next visit. Changes that have made a great river, even better. Those high spring flows have done wonders for the health of these fish—they are noticeably heavier, more muscular, and full of fight when you hook them. And the river itself looks more like the San Juan of old, like back when we had these spring releases on a consistent basis and we had a beautiful cobbled bottom, and all the silt, and didymo weren't around. It's like fishing a whole new river, and I'm loving it. As for the "how's it fishing?" part; well, it's great. I'll begin with saying that when it was between 3,500 to about 2,000 cfs the quality of fishing on big terrestrials like ants and hoppers was off the charts good. That method of fishing; at least for me, has slowed a bit since the drop down to 800 cfs. At those higher levels we weren't seeing the kind of hatches we are seeing now and the fish seemed to be much more aggressive on the big dries. Now, I'm seeing some fish in the earlier part of the day that are willing to play that game up until around 11:30 or 12:00, but when the midges get going, it's all about the small stuff. If you're out there, you're going to start seeing fins rolling around mid-day and that's the time to go to your emerger patterns like ju-jus, crystal flash, and scintilla patterns, and fish the film. A couple hours later, you'll start to see some snouts and you can switch to small midge dries like single, black adult midges, Morgan's midges, and fore and afts in sizes 24 and 26. 6x for the nymphing and 7x for the dries, helps, since the water is crystal clear right now. Later when the hatch intensifies, you can use some cluster patterns like the sprout midge or Griffith's gnats, but the clusters haven't been all that large, so I wouldn't go bigger than a size 22. The earlier part of the day, before  you start to see these fish rolling on emergers, is gonna be the time to fish your pupa patterns like mono midges, blings, and big macs. If you are fishing from Texas Hole and downriver, throw in a few baetis patterns like root beers, RS2s, and foamwings into your mix, since there are some active nymphs in there. There are a few slate colored BWOs coming off in the lower portion of the river, even on these bright sunny days, but it's not a blanket hatch, by any stretch of the imagination, but you can probably get a few fish to eat a comparadun or small Adams, if you start seeing enough adults on the surface. The big deal right now is the midges that are plentiful and hatching from mid-day right up until dark. So there you go, good fishing, great weather, what else could you ask for? If you come you'll want to pack lots of water—it's hot—really hot. And don't forget the bug spray— the mosquitoes are getting fired up, especially in the evening hours. If you would like more info or need to book a guided trip, give us a call at 505-632-2194. 

 

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Jay's Fishing Reports

Books by
Jay Walden
Can be purchased on Amazon or in our fly shop.

Jay's Fishing Report  

To our faithful fishing report readers, 

Here's a way to get your rainbow trout fix 'til you are able to hit the San Juan again-- available online only

Check each style out--there are a variety of colors, fabrics & sizes to enjoy.

Special thanks to designer & artist, Matt Zudweg 

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As a small aside and attempt at shameless self-promotion, there was an article featured  on Flyfisherman Magazine's website written by yours truly about the 60th anniversary of Abe's Fly Shop that can be accessed through the following link: Abe's Anniversary. Hope you can make it out this week. If you would like more information or would like to book a guided trip, give us a call at 505-632-2194. 

Abe's Fly Shop Turns 60 - FlyFisherman.com

Watercolor by Tim Oliver                                          Photos Courtesy of Abe Chavez

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Jay's Past Reports:  

March 22, 2020

Well, now. As of this past Monday, March 16th New Mexico State Parks, closed all parks within the state until April 9th with the caveat that this closure date may be extended. And, yes that includes Navajo Lake State Park. This applies to all campgrounds and day-use areas within the park bound...

March 1, 2020

Don't you find it a bit odd how we, as fishermen, go from wanting to just catch "a" fish, to wanting to catch a lot of fish, to then wanting to catch the biggest fish? The writer Phillip Caputo refers to this as the "Ahab Complex," an obsession to pursue and conquer a monster of the depths reg...

February 23, 2020

Alrighty, then. What are these white flakes falling from the sky outside my window this morning? And who ordered them? Well, at least  it's Sunday and tomorrow we can mark another week of winter off the calendar. Lately, the weather here has been like spinning a roulette wheel, you just never...

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Call us & book at 505. 632. 2194