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Estes Park Fishing Report May/June 2024


Estes Park Fishing Report
Our guide, Rod, and a thrilled client celebrate a perfect day on the water with a stunning rainbow trout.

Estes Park Fishing Report - May/June 2024


General Overview


Fishing in Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park is excellent this time of year. The weather has been favorable, leading to optimal conditions for both fly and bait fishing. Here's a detailed look at the current fishing conditions:


Big Thompson River

  • Water Flow: The Big Thompson River is experiencing moderate to high flow due to snowmelt from higher elevations. This results in a strong current, making some areas challenging to fish.

  • Fish Activity: The river is teeming with rainbow and brown trout, which are actively feeding.

  • Best Baits and Lures:

  • Dry Flies: Blue Winged Olive (BWO) patterns and Pale Morning Duns (PMD) are effective.

  • Nymphs: Stonefly and Caddis larvae patterns are working well. Worms And eggs with the high water dominate our catches.

  • Streamers: Woolly Buggers and Sculpins are attracting larger trout in deeper pools.

  • Fishing Tips: Focus on slower-moving sections of the river and eddies where fish tend to gather. Mornings and late afternoons are proving to be the most productive times.


Lake Estes

  • Water Flow: The lake is at a high level due to recent rains and snowmelt, with water clarity being relatively clear.

  • Fish Activity: Lake Estes is well-stocked with rainbow trout, brown trout, and even some tiger muskie.

  • Best Baits and Lures:

  • Spinners and Spoons: Mepps and Rooster Tails in silver and gold.

  • Bait: PowerBait, nightcrawlers, and salmon eggs are very effective.

  • Fly Fishing: Chironomids and Leeches are catching fish near the inlets and outlets.

  • Fishing Tips: Fishing from the shore near the power plant outlet or from a boat near the deeper channels can yield good results. Evening fishing has been particularly fruitful. If the lake is low try either side of the sandbar visible toward the upper half of the lake.


High Alpine Lakes

  • Water Flow: The lakes are still partially covered with ice, but edges are starting to open up, creating pockets of open water.

  • Fish Activity: Cutthroat trout are becoming more active as the ice recedes.

  • Best Baits and Lures:

  • Dry Flies: Griffith's Gnat and Parachute Adams are effective for surface feeders.

  • Nymphs: Pheasant Tail and Hare's Ear are good choices for subsurface. Small midge patterns in the size of 24 and 26 under a dry will catch you plenty.

  • Small Spinners: Panther Martins in bright colors.

  • Fishing Tips: Focus on the shallow areas where fish are feeding as the ice melts. Early morning and mid-day, when the sun is highest, are the best times to fish.


Creeks and Streams

  • Water Flow: Creeks and streams are running high and fast due to the snowmelt. Water clarity can be slightly murky.

  • Fish Activity: Brook trout and smaller rainbow trout are active in these waters.

  • Best Baits and Lures:

  • Dry Flies: Elk Hair Caddis and Royal Wulff are effective.

  • Nymphs: Copper John and Prince Nymph are working well. Worms and RS2 as well.

  • Terrestrials: Ants and Beetles along the banks.

  • Fishing Tips: Look for slower-moving pockets and behind boulders where fish can hold and feed without expending too much energy. Mid-day fishing is ideal as water temperatures rise.


General Recommendations

  • Gear: Lightweight rods (3-5 weight) are ideal for most areas. Waders are essential for river and stream fishing given the higher flows.

  • Safety: Be cautious of fast-flowing waters, especially in creeks and streams. Use appropriate footwear to avoid slipping on wet rocks.

  • Weather: Check local forecasts before heading out, as weather conditions can change rapidly in the mountains.


Enjoy your fishing trip in Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park! Whether you're casting a line in a river, lake, or stream, you're sure to have an unforgettable experience in this beautiful region.

 

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