Bear Creek

Weekly Overview:

December 16, 2019

  • Technicality: 2/5

  • Bear Creek is starting to freeze up, resulting in less fishable water for anglers. If you’re looking to fish Bear Creek, avoid the tight canyon stretches and any other stretch that doesn’t receive ample sunlight. Fishing strategy right now is pretty simple. Focus on the deep, slow pools/runs. Trout are stacked up in these sections to conserve energy but continue to feed on midges, baetis and various attractor patterns. Dry droppers are a decent option when there is cloud cover but if you’re fishing a blue bird day, switch to a nymph rig or a dry dropper with two nymphs. Go-to nymphs right now are Rainbow Warriors, red Copper Johns, Mercury Pheasant Tails, red/black Zebras and WD40s. If you see action on your dry fly, switch to a small Parachute Adams or Griffiths Gnat.  

  • Ideal Days to Fish: Thursday, Saturday & Sunday

  • Suggested Flies: 

    • Subsurface - Sparkle Wing RS2 (#20-22), JuJu Baetis (#20-22), Prince Nymph (#18-20), Psycho Prince (#18-20), Pheasant Tail (#18-20), Rainbow Warrior (#20), Zebra Midge (black/red), Mercury Midge (#20-22), San Juan Worm.

    • Surface - Elk Hair Caddis (#16-18), Parachute Adams (#22-24), Griffiths Gnat (#22-24), Amy's Ant (#10).

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Credit: Colorado Division of Water Resources

Detailed River Info:


Bear Creek is a small creek that starts in the Mount Evans Wilderness area and eventually feeds into the South Platte in Englewood. Bear Creek flows through the town of Evergreen, Kittredge and Morrison before it dumps into Bear Creek Lake. Only 30 minutes from Denver, Bear Creek is a solid option for anglers looking for a quick trip to scratch the fly fishing itch. While there are many access points, Lair O’ the Bear Park  is one of the most popular access points. With that said, there are numerous parks between Lair O’ the Bear and Evergreen that provide easy access and great fishing. Anglers can expect to catch Brown and Rainbow Trout in the 6” – 12” range. If you’re looking for Brook Trout, the Mount Evans Wilderness area will be your best bet. Bear Creek is a freestone creek and therefore is best fished during the summer and fall.



If you’re looking for a true mountain creek fishing experience, Bear Creek is a great option for anglers of all experience levels. 3 weight – 5 weight rods will be all that you need and our go-to rig is leading with an Amy’s Ant followed by a size #18 - #22 Prince Nymph, Pheasant Tail or SJ Worm. These trout are eager but can be easy to miss so be ready to set the hook with each cast. Fish the obvious pools and runs but don’t rule out the pocket water. Some of our most productive days come from quickly moving upstream and making 1 – 2 casts to small pockets. 

River Access:

Bear Creek runs alongside Highway 74 providing for easy access throughout. From Denver, Take Highway 6 or I-70 to C-470. Take the Morrison Exit near Bandimere Speedway. Take Highway 74 west towards Evergreen and stay on this road for roughly 6 miles until you see Lair O’ the Bear Park on your left. Once you park, it’s a short walk to the creek.

© 2019

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