Trouts Journal

Trouts Frisco Forecast | March 2023 Edition

Zeke Hersh / Mar 20, 2023

Welcome to the Trouts Monthly Frisco/Mountain Forecast!

It’s hard to believe the first day of spring is today. As I am writing this, the weather is sunny and warm outside and it is seriously making me look forward to some warmer spring weather. That being said, it looks like another week of snow is to come and I am sure this trend will continue for the months to come. If we're only getting a couple of nice days a week, I will take it, for the full rivers and hatches to come in the summer months.

Here are some sections I will be looking to fish in the weeks to come.


The Blue River below Dillon Reservoir and north of Silverthorne:

With many of the streams shedding their ice from the winter the Blue River (north of Silverthorne) is one of these streams to check out. Look for fish moving up out of Green Mountain reservoir - giving you a chance for some large trout to be had. If you want to stay closer to home, check out the section below the dam in Silverthorne. The fishing has been quite good in this section for the past few weeks with higher flows and actively feeding fish.

The South Platte above Eleven Mile Reservoir:

Speaking of fish moving out of reservoirs... This is the time of year to look for fish coming up out of Eleven Mile Reservoir for the spring spawning season. Please be sensitive to spawning fish and fish on beds. There will be plenty of fresh fish to catch as they move up the river. Look for large brown trout to be looking to capitalize on the bounty that the rainbow and cutthroat spawn brings.

Arkansas River - Granite to Salida:

I was just down on the Arkansas last weekend and the river looks quite spectacular. While I saw some open water in the Hayden Meadows area, the best opportunities were below Twin Lakes. Fish are starting to move out of their winter-holding water. With that, you should be able to start using a wider variety of patterns as the bug activity picks up. Look for blue-winged olive hatches on cloudy days and for caddis and stonefly nymphs to become more and more active every day.

The Eagle River below Edwards:

The Eagle River is a great springtime destination. There is plenty of open water below the town of Eagle and then some spotty sections with some lingering snow and ice from Avon down to Eagle. One thing to look out for is the potential for increasingly muddy conditions from some of the small tributaries that can be bringing off-color snow melt to the river. Try to fish early on the warm days or look for the cooler days that will have less of a chance of getting affected by this snowmelt.

The Roaring Fork below Carbondale:

The Roaring Fork is a favorite destination when searching for some good spring dry fly fishing conditions. This river has some amazing bug life that supports a large amount of fish. This combination gives you a chance of a sizable one on any section of the river. If you have the inclination to head the Roaring Fork, you could have a good chance of running into a blue-winged olive hatch this time of year.


Umpqua Thorax Baetis

This pattern has been a favorite for many years. With ample amounts of hackle, this fly floats and skates well, the wing material looks so good it makes it hard to tell it from the naturals and the durability of this fly is unmatched in the blue-winged olive world. I carry this pattern in a good range of sizes from 16-22.

Umpqua Hot Belly Pheasant Tail

With caddis being the next hatch to look forward to as we move through spring, I will start to fish caddis patterns or attractor patterns that can look like the various stages of the hatch. The hot belly pheasant tail can look like many different insects, but I do like to fish it in the green version and a cased caddis. In the next few months, this pattern can be key to some success on the river.

Umpqua Mighty Midge

The Mighty Midge is a favorite midge in the spring months to come. I carry both colors and will often fish both at once to see which color is preferred. What I really like about this fly is the color offset from the body and the head of the pattern. This makes this pattern very realistic and adds some extra intrigue to this pattern.

Umpqua Meat Whistle

This is my “go-to” streamer in my fly box. There are many reasons why I love this pattern. I just love how easily this fly casts. The Meat Whistle swims with tons of life for such a sparse tie. The upturned hook just hooks up and its durability this fly is hard to beat. There have been many days where I have managed to just use one streamer for the day.



The weather in the high country will continue the trend of four or five stormy days followed by a few nice ones and vice versa. I am inclined to think we will see this trend continue for the next month but we will see daytime temperatures start to trend upwards.

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

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