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Arkansas River - Upper


Upper Arkansas River flows increased this week at a rather fast pace. For context, flows at Salida increased ~400 cfs and Leadville increased by 100 cfs. Cooler weather over the weekend will pause runoff, but that will be short lived as warm air temps will return early next week. Similar to last week, the river downstream of Buena Vista is off-color and visibility is limited. While you can certainly put a few fish in the net with heavy nymph rigs and patience, you’ll find more productive fishing upstream of BV. While there is still decent visibility, large and/or flashy patterns will help attract attention. Electric Caddis, Rainbow Warriors (silver or green), Psycho Prince Nymphs, red/green Copper Johns, Frenchies and Perdigons are all viable options. Pat’s Rubber Legs in black/tan and chartreuse/black are also solid patterns at the moment. Midge larva and baetis emergers have outperformed caddis pupa in the trailer position, but with continued warm weather, we expect to see caddis activity increase. With that in mind, keep some Sparkle Pupa’s and other caddis pupa patterns on hand. Surface activity has been spotty but it’s worth a shot during a strong hatch. When fishing dry flies, focus on the outer seams and banks where water clarity is best. A similar approach is best with nymphing but it doesn’t hurt to cycle in soft pools, runs and transitions.

Water Levels

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