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Fishing Information

Roaring Fork River - Aspen to Carbondale

COLORADO BASIN Fishing Report
Rating
3/5
Flow
77 cfs
Wind
4 mph
Temperature
36 °F
High/Low
50/32
Weather @COLORADO BASIN - Updated April 03, 2020 - 11:20am

Current River Flow Updates

Latest Update: 4/3/20 -- Flows below Aspen are at 27.1 cfs and 316 at Basalt. This is a great time of year to get on the Roaring Fork. Look for midge and BWO hatches. Look for fish in the deeper pools with warmer days getting fish to move out. Look for midge hatches on warmer days as well. Try: UV Sallies, Tungsten Rubber Leg Sallies, Flash Back Tungstones, Jigged Nymphs, Radiation Baetis, Shot Glass Baetis, Two Bit Hookers, Zebra Midges and more smaller midge and BWO patterns.

River Information

The Roaring Fork is another one of Colorado's most famous freestone rivers. This major tributary of the Colorado River begins near the town of Aspen and runs hard for approximately 70 miles before it reaches the Colorado in Glenwood Springs. Fishing can be outstanding for the entire length of the river, offering anglers the opportunity to fish a variety of conditions as it grows in size heading towards the Colorado. The river is most often fished on foot, however does offer the option to float fish all 12 months of the year, on most years. Most of the floating takes place from Basalt to Glenwood Springs, while most of the wading takes place from Aspen to Basalt. Hatches are abundant on the Roaring Fork and the fish can grow quite large and powerful. This river should definitely be on any angler's list when visiting the areas of Aspen, Basalt, Carbondale or Glenwood Springs.

Seasonal Conditions

The Roaring Fork can be fished year round, however, like many rivers in Colorado, can really shine during the months of March through November. Stoneflies are abundant in the river so fishing some sort of Stonefly nymph (Rubberlegs, Stone Bomb, 20 Incher) followed by a Mayfly or Caddis nymph is usually effective the majority of the year. By summertime, the Mayflies, Stoneflies and Caddis become very active and provide excellent dry fly fishing opportunities as long as you match the hatch. Terrestrial patterns will also take fish during the Summer and into the Fall. Streamers can be fished effectively from Spring through Fall.

RECOMMENDED FLIES

Winter/Spring: Midges, Baetis

Summer: Mayflies (PMD, Red Quills, Green Drakes) , Stoneflies (Salmonflies, Golden Stones, Yellow Sallies), Caddis, Terrestrials, General "Attractor" Dries, Streamers.

Fall: Mayflies (primarily Baetis), Midges, some Caddis, Streamers

Additional River Information

Roaring Fork River near Aspen

COLORADO BASIN River Gauge View Detailed Information

  • Flow 77 cfs
  • Wind 4 mph
  • Temp 36 °F
  • High/Low 50/32

River access

Accessing the Roaring Fork is very easy. Public access exists regularly from Aspen clear down to Glenwood Springs. Highway 82 runs the length of the river and anglers will find considerable access throughout much of this route. Fishing access around Carbondale and Basalt can be , to find and quite productive.

One item to note- While a very wadable river, there is certainly no shortage of moss covered, bowling ball sized rocks covering the streambed. Anglers should wade with caution when learning the river.

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