Fishing All the Seasons in Colorado

Fishing All the Seasons in Colorado

Seasoned anglers know that the Colorado fishing season is year-round.  In the first half of 2020 alone, Colorado issued 710,000 fishing licenses and the sport continues to grow.

Fly fishing in Colorado is one of the most popular ways to enjoy the sport, and there are plenty of places to go.

Home to over 300 miles of Gold Medal water, this is truly a place for everyone to take a crack at trout fishing in Colorado.

Finding the perfect fly fishing outfitter can be somewhat of a chore, but if you’re looking to get the best results, you should consider a well-established local company.

If you’d like to learn more about where to go, what to do, and whom to call, read on to find out.

Is Colorado Fishing Season Truly All Year?

The short answer is yes. There are so many places to find great fly fishing spots in Colorado regardless of the time of year that it is more than safe to say that there is no true Colorado fishing “season.”

The best time for trout fishing in Colorado, for instance, is always any time you can, but a lot of anglers enjoy the spring.  With the weather heating up for the anglers, and water temperature and flows increasing for the aquatic insects, spring can be an outstanding time.

Hatches of blue-winged olives and caddis bring on the potential for epic days, and rainbow trout spawn offering the opportunity for concentrated and colorful fish. Ice-off on stillwaters can also lead to tired nets and amazing experiences.  Additionally, Colorado Parks and Wildlife begin stocking waterways in March with catchable trout that are 10 inches or greater!

Summer, on the other hand, is the time to bring out the dry flies. Following runoff when river flows start to drop can be outstanding for watching a trout take your fly.

With warmer weather, you might see more anglers on the water, but you will also enjoy longer days and the ability to wet wade on most waters.  Generally, all aquatic insects can be a food source during the summer, so a hatch chart and learning the optimal water temperatures for varying insects can prove vital.

A guide service can be huge regarding helping you land fish rather than practicing your casting.

So That Covers Spring and Summer, What About Autumn and Winter?

While one might think that rivers and streams are nowhere near as teeming with activity in the colder seasons as they are in the summer, the trout would disagree and banner days can be had in autumn and winter.

It can be more challenging to approach fish because the water is lower, clearer, and slower, but it’s an outstanding opportunity to work on your technique and presentation.

Autumn fly fishing on Colorado’s rivers is very similar to spring fishing with a few exceptions; the weather is usually a bit more predictable, brown trout spawn instead of rainbows, and one doesn’t have to deal with runoff.  The scenery is top-notch with changing leaves as well.

Winter fishing in Colorado is one of the state’s best-kept secrets for those who love fly fishing. The waters are least crowded, the days are the shortest leaving time for other activities in the evening, and lower water means it is easier to understand where fish are concentrated.

Selecting flies is also significantly easier because the water temperature is usually best suited for midges, tricos, and blue-winged olives.  A couple of small midge patterns can usually be fished throughout the day as the presentation will win out over the fly selection. 

Winter fishing in Colorado can be a bit daunting or intimidating to try to tackle on your own if you are a beginner, however. It’s a wise idea to seek out a proven outfitter with guides that can make sure that you not only have the best time possible but that you stay safe and comfortable while doing so.

What Trout Species are in Colorado?

There are more than a handful of trout that can be found in Colorado, all of which are a blast to try and hook. They include:

  • Brown Trout
  • Rainbow Trout
  • Brook Trout
  • Cutthroat Trout
  • Cutbow Trout
  • Golden Trout
  • Lake Trout
  • Tiger Trout

Do I Need a Guide Service For Fly Fishing in Colorado?

Not necessarily, but if you’re new or you like success, your best bet is to hire a local guide service to show you the ropes. Often, you’ll find that it made the excursion so much more enjoyable that you’ll be a return customer.

Fly fishing is one of those activities that can be as deep and technical or as simple as someone wishes.  Hiring a guide service is a great way to understand the fundamental necessities in getting started regarding technique and how a trout behaves.

For an experienced angler, a guided trip is the perfect answer to have immediate success on new water or take their skills to the next level.

I’ve Never Been Fly Fishing In My Life

There is no better time to start and that’s why you hire a guide service like us. We can get you set up with the right gear, show you the proper technique, and put you on fish so that you have a great chance of landing trout all day, regardless of your previous skill level.

We can accelerate your learning curve from months on your own to a couple of hours with the proper instruction.

Hire an Experienced Guide Service For the Best Experience

Because Colorado waters can be fished pretty much all year, having the expertise of a trained guide will go a very long way in helping you understand what you’re doing and providing the best experience possible.

If you have questions in terms of what to bring, when to book, or to set up your guided fly fishing trip, please feel free to contact us and we will get you all set up with the basics and have you one step closer to the fishing experience of a lifetime – regardless of the season.

It’s time to nail down your 2024 fly fishing trip with Minturn Anglers.

About the Author

Tyler Banker

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