Rob Herrmann Photography

South Platte River: Dream Stream

Difficulty Advanced
Ideal Days To Fish 3/3, 3/5 & 3/7

Weekly Report

Report DateMarch 6, 2021
Flows dropped below 50 cfs last week but to our surprise, flows jumped back up to 85 cfs before the weekend. While the sharp increase had a negative impact on water clarity and productivity, we should see conditions and productivity improve Sunday or Monday. A combination of elevated flows and mild weather will allow trout to spread out from the deep pools and runs. While you should still spend a good amount of time picking apart those sections, actively feeding trout will slide out towards the outer seams, transitions, tailouts and soft riffles. Nymphing is still the most consistent approach but if you’re on the river during a mild afternoon, don’t rule out a dry fly setup. Midge activity has been more consistent lately, so keep some Griffiths Gnats and/or Parachute Adams on hand. If you don’t see rising trout, midge pupa will get the job done in the trailer position. Top Secret’s, Jujubee Midges, Mercury Black Beauties, Chocolate Foam Backs and RS2s are all solid options. For your lead pattern, we recommend going with a Pheasant Tail, JuJu Baetis, Guide Choice Hares Ear, Mini Leech or egg.

Recommended Flies

River Flow

Flow Region

Detailed River Info


The Charlie Meyers State Wildlife Area, A.K.A “Dream Stream” is a tailwater section of the South Platte River situated between Spinney Reservoir and Eleven Mile Reservoir. The Dream Stream is highly sought after due to its trophy worthy trout, serene views and easy walk-in access. While the cold winter months deter a number of anglers, this stretch receives heavy angling pressure year-round. Fishing during the week or hitting the river early is typically the best way to find serenity. The Dream Stream is known for its healthy population of rainbow and brown trout. During the fall, kokanee salmon run out of Eleven Mile Reservoir and spawn in the Dream Stream, which is unique to only a few rivers in Colorado. During the spring and fall, lake run rainbow and brown trout all make their way into the system and provide anglers the opportunity to land 20 – 30 inch trout.


The Dream Stream is a great river to land your personal best trout, but be prepared to work for it. Similar to other tailwaters in Colorado, these trout are incredibly smart and aren’t fooled easily. Clean drifts and presentations are critical and if you’re fishing when flows are low, stealthy fishing becomes much more important. During the warm months, nymph rigs, dry flies, hopper droppers and streamers are all fair game. Slapping hoppers against undercut grass banks is one of our favorite tactics during the summer and early fall. Streamers are a great way to attract large and aggressive trout. During the winter, micro nymph rigs and streamers are the best approach.

River Access

There are a number of ways to get to the Dream Stream. However, If you are coming from Denver, the most efficient route will be to take Highway 285 through Fairplay and continue onto CO-9 South.  Once you have reached Hartsel go east (left) on US-24 E then right on San Juan St., left on CO-RD 59 and finally, right onto Thirty nine mile Road. If you continue on to CO-9 (foregoing US-24 E), there are several parking lots that are visible from the road to the left.