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Elevenmile Canyon

14 Day Forecast: Look for reliable hatches of midges, blue-winged olives and Tricos.

Effective Patterns: #22-24 Chocolate Foam Wing Emerger, #22-24 Black Beauty, #20-22 JujuBaetis, #22 Stalcup's Baetis, #18-20 Buckskin, #16 Graphic Caddis, #20-22 Mercury Midge, #20-24 Top Secret Midge, #20-22 Manhattan Midge, #20-24 Parachute Adams, #20 Mathew's Sparkle Dun, #16 Elk Hair Caddis, #22-24 Stalcup's CDC Biot Comparadun (Trico), #22-24 Matt's Midge, #22-24 Griffith Gnat, and #20-26 Parachute Adams.


Elevenmile Canyon Stream & Fly Fishing Conditions on the South Platte River in Colorado

The South Platte River below Elevenmile Reservoir is absolutely beautiful. The South Platte River tumbles and twists through a majestic canyon as it carves its way downstream to the small community of Lake George. Parts of the scenic canyon remind you of the fabled Cheesman stretch while others look much like the renowned Deckers area. Elevenmile Canyon is a great winter and early spring fishery with tremendous opportunity to consistently hook nice fish. The river is loaded with Rainbows and Cut-bows with the occasional brown trout.

The average fish ranges between 12 and 17 inches and are strong as an ox. Occasionally you will hook fish between 17 and 24 inches in the upper reaches below the dam. The river is comprised of riffles, runs, shelves, gravel bars, and nice pocket water. The scenery is fabulous with logjams, huge granite boulders, fallen trees, waterfalls, and bald eagles soaring above the canyon’s lip. The ideal flow for Elevenmile Canyon is between 150 and 250 cfs. The best fishing is in the upper two miles. The aforementioned two-mile stretch is flies and lures only. This section is catch and release and all fish must be returned to the water immediately. Pinch down your barbs and protect this incredible resource.

Eleven Mile Canyon is known for its superb dry fly fishing. The Trico hatch is one of many that anglers should concentrate their efforts on. Mark Adams photo

Tips & Other Information:

Flows are currently excellent right now, in fact, they are slightly above their normal historic values.  Anglers should prepare themselves for a.m. midge hatches followed by Tricos and blue-winged olives later in the day. Midge-nymphs have been good just after sun up,  but you’ll need to switch to Trico imitations (duns and spinners) soon thereafter. It’s hard to go wrong with Baetis nymphs in the afternoon and a Mathew’s Sparkle Dun in the glassy pools to target the fish feeding on “olives”.

Pat Dorsey Fly Fishing