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Elevenmile Canyon

Man and his dog fly fishing in Elevenmile Canyon with a rock wall in the background

14 Day Forecast: Look for reliable hatches of caddis, yellow sallies, and pale morning duns. Mark Adams photo

Effective Patterns: #20-22 Chocolate Foam Wing Emerger, #20 JujuBaetis, #22 Stalcup's Baetis, #20 Mitchell's Split Case PMD, #20 Mercury Flashback PT, #20 Sparkle Wing RS 2, #16 Barr's Graphic Caddis, #18 Buckskin, #16 Elk Hair Caddis, #16 Puterbaugh Caddis, #20 Mathew's Sparkle Dun, #16 PMD, #14 Yellow Stimulator, and #20-24 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:

Eleven Mile Canyon is a great option right now. Eleven Mile Reservoir is 103% full and slowly rising. Inflows are nearly 300 cfs, so look for the outflows to steadily rise. Anglers should prepare themselves for hatches of midges, PMD’s, yellow sallies, and caddis. Nymphing has been productive in the riffles with PMD nymphs, Caddis larvae and pupae, and the dry fly fishing has been good in the slower pools and tailouts. Dry fly anglers need to pick and choose their spots wisely however….

Pat Dorsey Fly Fishing