Early March

March 6, 2017

"History doesn't repeat itself but it often rhymes." Mark Twain is often given credit for that tidbit of conventional wisdom, although it's true source is in dispute. Regardless of its origination, there's a lot of accuracy in its meaning. For those who have fished the San Juan for any number of years, there's always that inevitable rhyme each year with the dreaded cyclical phenomenon we refer to as lake turnover— when the end result is murky water in the river. Generally, it varies in intensity and duration at the whim of Mother Nature lasting anywhere from a few weeks to several months, with the visibility falling somewhere on the scale from pea soup to slightly used dishwater. Unfortunately, the end result— depending on the severity— is also directly correlated with the quality experience of the fishing. So far this year we've gone back and forth a few times on the visibility scale from a few feet to our present situation of a few inches. When you're used to fishing it for the larger part of the year in its usual gin-clear state it can often be a bitter pill to have to swallow and the waiting for it to clear part can occasionally feel like a lifetime. Nonetheless, if you gotta fish, you're left with few options outside of driving somewhere north of here and risking frostbite, so you make the most of it. It's about as tough as it gets as far as the fishing seasons go here.
 
         That said, you can still catch fish here, just probably not as many of them as you would if the water were clearer. The good news is that it will get better—eventually; although I wouldn't venture to say when, but it always does. In the meantime, here's a few tips I can offer to hopefully make your experience a bit more productive. Go a little bigger and a little brighter with your fly choices. Lead flies like size 18 and 22 Red Lava, OJs, Princess Nymphs, and Desert Storms with midge droppers like size 24 Bling, Zebra, and Crystal Flash are good choices. Dead-drifting Buggers and Leeches (olive, black, and white) under an indicator with one of those above mentioned lead flies as a dropper can also be effective. And then there's the old tried and true method of swinging some real meat down deep like big, articulated, ugly, weighted streamers on a sinking line that can often produce some big fish this time of year. As far as the dry fly fishing goes, there's not a lot of help I can offer in that department right now, as the hatches of both midges and baetis are sparse to nonexistent on most days. That for me is the hardest part of all this to take as a I am partial to the dry fly. I'm not sure when that dynamic will change, but my guess would be it will come about when we see a consistent change to warmer weather. That doesn't look like it will start trending in the right direction until sometime the following week when we are likely to see some back to back days with the highs in the 60s. One can only hope, as my last few weeks looking for rising fish have been about as productive as searching for Bigfoot or the elusive Pink Unicorn.
 
          Overall, it is what it is right now and no amount of wishful thinking is going to change the conditions, at least, anytime soon. My advice is that if you want to fish, make the most of it and get out. It may not be epic, but you are going to catch some fish and all things considered—especially where the weather is concerned—you'd still be hard pressed to beat the San Juan versus anywhere else right now. February is almost over and we've made it through the worst part of winter, spring is getting closer and things are only going to get better—there is hope in that. If you would like to book a guided trip or need more information, 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