Williams Fork River
Rob Herrmann Photography

Williams Fork River

Difficulty Intermediate/Advanced
Ideal Days To Fish 7/21, 7/23 & 7/24

Weekly Report

Report DateJuly 22, 2021

Flows on the Williams Fork saw a minor bump on Tues (7/20), but the fundamentals remain unchanged. Trout here are spreading out throughout the day, but are favoring the deep and slow water most of the day. Nymphing will garner the best results, but surface action has been decent as well with a variety of hatches taking place throughout the day. When nymphing, lead with comparatively bigger searchers/attractor patterns like a Golden Stone, Flashback PT, Guide’s Choice Hare’s Ear or Frenchie followed by one or more smaller imitative midge, baetis or caddis emergers. In the early hours, focus on the soft water like the slow runs and deep pools. As the day progresses, give the riffles, outer seams and tailouts some attention as trout will migrate to faster moving water where bugs are emerging to feed. As far as surface action goes, midges, PMDs and caddis are all making regular appearances. If you see trout actively rising, don’t hesitate to rig up some dries. Otherwise, hopper droppers are a great option as terrestrials are becoming increasingly prominent.

Recommended Flies

River Flow

Flow Region

Detailed River Info


The Williams Fork River a.k.a Willy's Fork, is a two mile tail water below the Williams Fork Reservoir that feeds into the upper Colorado River. The most common access point to the river requires a 20 minute walk but trust us, the serenity and beauty is well worth the hike. The Willy's Fork provides a more peaceful outing compared to the other tail water options in Colorado.The Cotton Wood Tree lined river consists of deep runs, pools and pocket water. If you're looking to spend some time on the river make sure to bring plenty of water, sunscreen and beer. 


Let us start off by saying this is hands down one of the most beautiful rivers that we've ever fished. A bad day on this river (which isn't likely), is still an amazing day because of the scenery. The Willy's Fork provides anglers with a wide variety of fishing options due to its abundance of deep runs and pools as well as pocket water and undercut grass banks. If you're fishing for numbers, targeting the banks will be your best bet. If you're searching for the 20 - 24 in. trout, add some weight and get down deep in the pools and runs. Besides the typical Caddis and Mayfly hatches, the Willy's Fork experiences a solid Stonefly hatch similar to the Colorado River. The most common trout found in this stretch are Browns and Rainbows. 

River Access

The tailwater section of the Williams Fork is located in the town of Parshall, CO. Anglers can access the river from two locations. You can park at the Williams Fork Division of Wildlife parking lot located at the intersection of county road 3 and county road 36. Parking at this location will require a 20 minute hike to the water. If you're looking to fish from the confluence, park in the town of Parshall off of Highway 40 and wade across the Colorado River.