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Roaring Fork River


For this time of year, the Roaring Fork between Carbondale and Glenwood Springs is in good shape. There’s some bank ice in slow and shaded sections but for the most part, the river is open. Over the past few days, Roaring Fork water temps have held at 32 degrees during the morning. Around 1 pm, the water slowly warms up, reaching 35 – 37 degrees. The change is minimal but even a few degrees make a big difference this time of year. Flows are on the low end and trout are favoring their classic winter lies. While you may find a few trout holding in slow riffles and transitions on warm afternoons, your best bet is to focus on soft pools, runs, slack water and pronounced pockets. Deep drifts with a nymph rig will put your flies in front of trout. Small searcher patterns and attractors are productive lead flies. During the morning and when air temps hold below freezing, trail a midge larva pattern. On warmer afternoons, midges are more active and trout will favor midge pupa patterns. Mercury Black Beauties, Top Secrets, Mercury Midges, Chocolate Foam Back Emergers and WD-40s are productive pupa patterns. If you don’t find success, adjust your weight and indicator placement until you locate the right depth. If you receive similar results, move on and sample a different section.

Water Levels

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