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Big Thompson River

Report Date: 06/20/2013
  • Reporter: Trout's Staff

    Flow Conditions:

    Water Clarity: Clear

    Current Fishing Conditions:

    June Fishing Report

    The Big Thompson offered some great relief during this year's brief runoff season, and has been fishing very consistantly ever since.  The biggest change has been the productivity of dry flies as of late, so be sure to have a good selection of general attractor patterns, terrestrials, caddis and PMD's.  The entire river will be fishable now, but be sure to keep your eye on the weather as any significant rainstorm will have the potential of blowing the river out.  We are approaching "summer fishing hours", so remember that the most productive times to fish will be early in the morning (sunrise to 11am) and later afternoon (3pm to sunset).

    6/20/13 Update:  Fishing has remained very productive on the Big Thompson, with a lot of great reports coming from our customers.  Standard attractor patterns, terrestrial, PMD's and Caddis imitations have been producing great results. 

    Insect and Natural Food Sources

    Small Stones, Caddis, PMD's and Terrestrials will be the primary food source for June.

    Recommended Flies

    Barrs Emergers sz. 18-22, Copper Johns sz. 16-20, Wired Stone 14-18, 20-Incher 14-18, Beaded Little Mayfly (BLM) sz. 18-20, Eggs (trout beads) sz. 6mm - 8mm, Pheasant Tails sz. 16-22, Barrs Graphic Caddis 16-18, PrimeTime Pupa 14-16, Z-Wing Caddis 14-18, Parachute Adams 14-18, Purple Haze 14-18, Extended Body PMD 14-18, Stimulators 12-16, Royal Wulff 12-16, Hippy Stomper 14-16, Amy's Ant 12-16.

    River Description

    Originating in Rocky Mountain National Park, the Big Thompson offers anglers a wide variety of angling options.  From high country, to tailwater, to a traditional western freestone riverm the Big T is an amazing angling destination along the Front Range.  There are 3 different sections of this river, in Rocky Mountain National Park (high country), below Lake Estes (tailwater), and below the town of Drake (freestone).  Each of these sections is going to offer different angling opportunities and challenges, so be sure to check back to make sure the area you are looking to fish has optimal current conditions.  

    Seasonal Overview:


    The flows on the Big T have bumped up a bit since our last report, but your fly selection wont really change. Midges and Baetis (BWO's) are your main hatches, but during the morning and middle of the day you will most likely be nymphing the main runs and deep pockets. However you can also pick some fish up on dries close to the banks and being "stealthy" is key. Scuds are a year round food source as you get closer to the dam. The fish are going to see you beofre you see them, so remeber again "stealth" is key.


    Dries: Parachute Adams 18-22, Pablos Cripple Baetis 18-20, Morgan's Midge 18-20, Adult Midge 20, Matts Midge 18-24, Quigley's Hackle Stacker 18-22

    Nymphs: Barrs Emerger BWO 18-22, Soft Hackle PT 18-22, Copper Johns 18-22, Juju Baetis 18-22, Morrish's Dirty Bird, Rojo Midge 18-22RS2 18-24

    Streamers: Slump Buster, Belly Ache Minnow, Sculpzilla, Wooleys


    Current Hatches: Midges, BWO

    Recommended Flies

    Dries: Parachute Adams 18-22, Pablos Cripple 18-20, Morgan's Midge 18-20, Adult Midge 20 Nymphs: Barrs Emerger BWO 18-22, Soft Hackle PT 18-22, Copper Johns 18-22, Juju Baetis 18-22, Eggs #16-18, Rojo Midge 18-22 Streamers: Wooly Buggers, Slump Busters, Thin Mints, Sculpzilla's, Gold Bead Buface #6-12

    Recommended Products: