At the end of last week, flows on the Blue increased by about 25 cfs, or a little less than 30%. While productivity suffered momentarily, it has improved more recently and trout are feeding at normal levels. Regardless, presentation and stealth are crucial to success as water clarity remains on the higher end. Angler pressure is dying down as fall progresses and temperatures drop. However, trout remain skittish and selective. A cold front will move in starting on Thurs (10/14) and will bring a good chance of snow in the afternoon. Don’t shy away from this! We’ve had some highly productive days here during these conditions. Starting on Sat (10/16), the weather will clear out and air temps will moderate. Regardless of when you fish, small and imitative midge and baetis nymph rigs will produce the best results. However, you’ll want to keep an eye out for surface action as we’re seeing consistent midge and BWO hatch activity. Look for trout to feed on the surface along the brush covered banks and beneath the bridges as this is where they are offered the most protection. Otherwise, keep it simple when nymphing. Rainbow Warriors, Perdigons, red Copper Johns, Mini Leeches and Pat’s will all make for great lead flies. However, you can’t go wrong with smaller midge or baetis larva at the lead followed by one or more emergers. Focus on the slack water along the banks in the early hours and as the day progresses, move on to the deeper pools and slower runs.
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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.
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.