Blue River - Silverthorne

Weekly Overview:

February 24, 2020: 

  • Technicality: 3/5

  • Stable flows and consistent air/water temps have made for fairly predictable fishing in recent weeks. Trout here are generally very picky and stubborn when it comes to your flies. Day after day, these trout see every tailwater fly pattern imaginable and can spot a fake from a mile away. With this in mind, we like to keep it simple. Nymphing will undoubtedly be the most productive mode of fishing. However, you will likely see some midge hatches and the occasional risers, particularly in areas with cover like bridges. With high air pressure this week you are going to want to lead your nymph rigs with something flashy like a Rainbow Warrior, Mysis Shrimp, scud or red Copper John. Trail any of these patterns with one or more smaller midge patterns like a Tube Midge, Thread Midge or Black Beauty. If you are fishing in the morning, target the slack water near the banks ensuring you keep a low profile when you approach the water and cast. As the day goes on, shift your attention to the slow runs and deep pools ensuring plenty of weight. If you’ve never given sight fishing a shot, it doesn’t get much easier than at the Blue. Do your best to locate holding trout and adjust fly depth accordingly. 

  • Ideal Days:  Monday, Saturday & Sunday

  • Go to flies:

    • Sub-Surface Flies: Tube Midge (#22-24),Money Midge (#22-24), Zebra Midges (#22-24), Black Beauties (#22-24), Top Secret Midges (#22-24), Mercury Midge (#22-24), WD 40's (#20-22), Sparkle Wing RS2's (#20-22), olive RS2s (#20-22), JuJu Baetis (#20-22), Sparkle Pupa (#16-18), Chocolate Foamback Emerger (#22-24), Mysis Shrimp, SJ Worms.

    • Surface Flies: Parachute Adams (#20-22), Griffiths Gnat (#22-24), Elk Hair Caddis (#16-18), Amy's Ant (#12-14). 

Credit: U.S. Geological Survey 
Department of the Interior/USGS

Detailed River Info:


Below Dillon Dam is a prized section of the Blue River that runs 19 miles until it meets the Green Mountain Reservoir. The stretch of river that runs through the town of Silverthorne is one of the most sought after tail waters in Colorado. Dillon Reservoir is one of the few Colorado reservoirs that was stocked with Mysis Shrimp and as a result, when water is released from the dam, shrimp trickle into the river. This calorie-rich meal is the trout equivalent to a body builders training supplement and results in some beefy fish! This section of the Blue is unique in that it runs through the tourist heavy town of Silverthorne. Therefore, if you are looking for a fishing experience full of spectators touting Tommy Hilfiger bags with a shot at landing a trophy trout, the section through Silverthorne is for you. If you are seeking more solitude and less materialism, head north down Highway 9 and pull off at one of the designated parking areas for fishing access.


The Silverthorne stretch of the Blue is a pocket water paradise. Anglers can leave their “A River Run’s Through It” casts at home and instead focus on short and tactical casts. Anglers can expect to find Rainbow, Brown and Brooke trout along this stretch with the highest concentration of trophy Rainbows being located below the dam. With the exception of Mysis Shrimp, the fly selection for the Blue is relatively consistent with the other popular Colorado tail waters. Size 18 – 24 Midge and Baetis nymphs produce year round. In the warmer months, this stretch of the Blue experiences quality Green Drake and BWO hatches. The Blue River is an accessible year round fishery and can easily be coupled with a half ski, half fish day or a family trip to the outlet malls where you drop the family and you seek much needed alone time on the water. 


River Access:

The tail water section of the Blue River below Dillon Reservoir has several miles of public water access between the town of Silverthorne and Green Mountain Reservoir. The most popular section runs behind the Silverthorne Outlets and can be accessed very easily. If you're looking for more solitude, wander north on Highway 9 towards Green Mountain Reservoir. While there is sporadic stretches of private water, the public water sections can be easily identified by parking and Department of Wildlife signage. 

© 2019

Get Social

  • Instagram Social Icon
  • Facebook Social Icon