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Trouts Journal

Trouts Frisco Forecast | February 2023 Edition

Zeke Hersh / Feb 17, 2023

Welcome to the Trouts Monthly Frisco/Mountain Forecast!

As we enter the middle of February and the beginning of March inches closer, the excitement of spring is starting to enter my mind. Through the remainder of this month and into the next, I will be looking for some exciting opportunities to break out of our winter pattern.

Blue-winged olive hatches, the first float trip, and rivers breaking free of their ice for the season will start to become a reality. Sure, we still have plenty of winter weather left, but spring warming trends will be a common theme in our forecasts for the weeks to come.

Here are some sections I will be looking to fish this time of year.


RIVERS TO WATCH

The Blue River below Dillon Reservoir and north of Silverthorne:

The tailwater section below Dillon Reservoir has been fishing quite well for the past few months. This is largely due to the higher flows being released from the reservoir. This also means that the river north of town should be clearing of ice if it hasn't already. Ain't nothing wrong with some new water to fish as we plug through the final months of winter.

The Williams Fork below Williams Fork Reservoir:

As we start to talk about spring and some warming temperatures, another favorite river to fish this time of year is the Williams Fork. With warming temperatures trickling into our forecasts, look for blue-winged olives and midges to start to become active. Along with this bug activity, look for Rainbows to start moving for their spring spawn.

Arkansas River - Granite to Salida:

As advertised, I have been making some trips to fish the Arkansas River. The river is open and flows are good downstream of Twin Lakes. The fish are mostly in the deeper holding water but I would expect them to start moving out as we have some warmer days and the blue-winged olives and midges start to move around.

The Colorado below Glenwood Springs:

Another great river to fish in the weeks to come is the Roaring Fork. Float fishing and wade fishing can be quite good. Look for fish to still be in their holding water. But, as we see warmer temperatures creeping in, look for these fish to start to spread out a little more. This can be a lights-out dry fly fishing opportunity, if the conditions are right.


ZEKE'S FLIES

Umpqua Duracell Bomb

This jigged nymph just looks buggy. All the colors are great, but brown is a favorite and with the CDC collar and a touch of flash built into the body, this fly just attracts attention. Tied on a jigged hook with a silver bead, this fly gets down to the fish quickly.

Umpqua Flashtail Mini Egg

With the rainbow trout on the move and other species looking for good sources of protein. Egg patterns are a go-to for the next few months to come. I prefer pink in the spring but usually have yellow, chartreuse, orange, and peach in the fly box as well.

Umpqua Tungsten Rainbow Warrior

As we move out of the dead of winter, the Rainbow Warrior is an easy pick as one of my nymphs. The flashy tie gets the fish's attention and the tungsten bead gets the fly down. I fish this pattern in sizes from 14 to 22 and every size is used frequently.

Umpqua Radiation Baetis

This is a favorite pattern in my fly box. This time of year I am reaching for the smaller sizes, but as we get later into the spring, summer, and fall the larger sizes become the go-to. The curved nymph hook keeps those fish buttoned up and the flash and collar attract the fish’s attention.

Umpqua Swim Coach

This fly is one of my favorite streamer patterns for many reasons. It is tied as an articulated pattern but is not tied too heavily for casting all day long. Surprisingly with this castability, this fly still sinks with just the right amount for our Colorado rivers. I like the black and purple and brown and yellow colors and these color combinations tend to do well in all the lighting conditions.


FLOWS | RIVER GAUGES TO WATCH

WEATHER OUTLOOK

We will be seeing some warmer days in the next few weeks, but the winter storms aren't over - or at least they shouldn't be (fingers crossed). Look for cold temperatures as the storms move through but then followed by warming trends until the next storm system. I love to see warmer temperatures, but I am happy to see the storm systems add to our snowpack.

Stop by our Denver or Frisco locations to see what locations and flies are fishing best!

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