Eleven Mile Fly Fishing Report
Latest update: 11/30/2017: As we head into December, don't expect any major changes in the canyon. Go light on the tippet, 5x-6x and preferably Fluorocarbon. Look for fish to begin moving back to the deeper runs where they will stack in the winter. Baetis and Midges are the major food sources right now, with some sporadic stonefly, worm and caddis action taking place. Focus on shelves and tail outs of pronounced runs to be the main areas where fish will be feeding. Take advantage of the great sight fishing opportunities as well. On the warmer days, fish will slide up in the the riffles to take advantage of some easy meals. Good patterns are going to be RS2s in Grey, Olive and Black, WD-40s and WD-50s, JuJu Baeitis and Juju Emergers, Radiation Baetis and a good variety of midges, including: Black Beauties, Brassies and JuJu Midges.
- Flow: 101 cfs
- Wind: 2 MPH
- Temp: 15.4 °F
- High/Low: 42/22
Eleven Mile Canyon is another very popular and productive spot to fish along the South Platte River. Approximately 2 hours from Denver, this tailwater section of river created from 11 Mile Reservoir, holds Rainbow, Brown and Cutthroat trout. Fish numbers are very high in the first several miles below the dam and the river is abundant with aquatic bug life. This river sees some phenomal BWO, midge and PMD hatches providing exceptional dry fly fishing at times. 12"-18" fish would be considered average here, however fish much bigger than this are taken every year- especially within the first two miles of the dam. Given it's proximity to Denver, angling pressure can be quite high here, however the fish are typically still quite catchable.
Like all stretches of the South Platte, Elevenmile Canyon is another great piece of water to spend a fall/winter day. This section of the Platte often gets overlooked this time of the year as the Dream Stream commands so much attention. The crystal clear waters of this canyon can provide some incredible sight fishing opportunities with both dries and nymphs on any given day. Streamer fishing can also be quite good in here as well- particularly on cloudier days.
Fishing here in the winter is going to follow the weather trends. Fishing will be most productive up near the top of the canyon where the water will be warmer.
For consistent activity I recommend nymphing unless you see fish actively feeding on the surface. Look for fish to still be holding near the riffles and shallow shelves, buckets, drop-offs and rock gardens.
Don’t shy away from stripping streamers in the lower canyon stretch as well. As cold weather slows fish down, they are eager to grab a big protein meal in the plunge pools.
Bug life here will mirror most other stretches of the Platte with BWO/Midge showing up throughout the season. As is always the case on this river, cover water and don't spend too much time in an area if it's not producing.
Recommended flies: jujubaetis, barr's BWO emerger, freestone emerger, batwing bwo, stalcups std baetis, mercury RS2 Flashback, dorsey's mercury rs2, juju baetis, craven's juju baetis, mercury bead pheasant tail, rainbow warriors, rs2's, graphic caddis, bucksin, black beauty, foamback emerger, rojo midge, pure midge, jujubee midge, bling midge, film critic bwo, parawulff, parachute adams, griffiths gnat, eric's hi-viz midge, chubby chernobyl, parachute hopper, sculpzilla, slumpbuster, thin mint, double-mint.
11 Mile Canyon is best accessed via US Hwy 24 in Lake George. Once here, take Country Road 96. Stay to the right at the fork in the road. There is an entrance station which is manned during the day. A self service fee tube is also availble for after hours. The park is generally accessible year round.