Colorado Fly Fishing Essentials

In today’s fast paced society, we are continually bombarded with information on what we, as anglers need to be successful on the water.  We’ve all heard the expression, “Keep it simple”.  How many of us actually take that to heart and practice this approach?

Fly fishing has been around for hundreds of years in one form or fashion and we’re sure our predecessors did just fine and would have loved to have today,s options available to them in their day.   

At Trouts, we’re a firm believer that keeping it simple is the perfect recipe for success on the water. As the population in Centennial state continues to grow, we often hear from NEW anglers “I’m overwhelmed and I don’t know where to begin”.

Here’s an applicable gear recipe to consider for fishing in Colorado: 

Rods: A 9-foot, 5-Weight Fly Rod – Sure, there are an abundance of modern fly rods various lengths and weights, but it’s widely agreed that if could only have one rod to effectively fish in Colorado, a 9-foot, 5-weight is the most versatile. There’s a reason that this rod is the most widely sold rod throughout the United States.

Reels: Once you’ve picked out a rod, you’ll need a reel to match to the rod. Again, there are plenty of great reels on today’s market.  We like to suggest a durable, large arbor reel with a sealed drag system that has some stopping power, and that can stand up to a fight with a big fish.  

Fly Lines: A weight forward floating fly line that matches your 5-weight rod.  

Boots and Waders: We’re fortunate to be able to fish 365 days a year in our state. There are times when Mother Nature allows us to wet wade but make no mistake; trout need cold water to survive.  Consider a good pair of breathable stockingfoot waders and boots.  Breathable waders allow you to layer depending on conditions and maintain a comfortable temperature throughout the day.  A well-constructed, comfortable wading boot with good ankle support should be a top priority.  Consider a Vibram sole when looking to purchase boots. Remember, you’ll be on rocky, uneven ground throughout the day.

Leaders and Tippet: The vast majority of fishing throughout our state can easily be had with either a 7 ½ foot or 9 foot tapered leader in 4x, 5x, or 6x depending on location. Corresponding 4x, 5x or 6x tippet allows to build your leaders back their approximate lengths when broken off on fish or snags.

Flies: A good assortment of dry flies and nymphs (sub surface flies) should get the job done it most places.  The following patterns should be in every angler's box: Pheasant Tails, Hares Ears, Prince Nymphs, Parachute Adams, and Elk Hair Caddis just to name a few.

Polarized Glasses: Glasses are an important piece of gear. First and foremost, no fish is worth a hook in the eye. Equally important, a pair of polarized glasses minimizes glare and allows you to better see fish and navigate through the water.

Remember, KEEP IT SIMPLE, HAVE FUN, and get out and FISH!