In the past few years, Colorado has welcomed over 30 million visitors a year. This highest state in America offers tourists a spectacular range of adventure and beauty, from majestic mountains and rushing rivers, to desert landscapes and grassland vistas. Many come to explore mining museums, dinosaur fossils and the rich heritage of cliff dwellings and American Indian art. Fly fishing enthusiasts are drawn by the over 9,000 miles of trout streams in Colorado many of them flow near Denver. Even more appealing is the designation of Gold Medal fishing areas in the State.
The Colorado Wildlife Commission designates areas as the best spots to catch large trout. These Gold Medal waters can yield 60 pounds of trout per acre and at least a dozen 14 inch trout or larger per acre. In 2015 over 320 miles and three lakes were provided with the Gold Medal designation. For visiting fly fishing enthusiasts, the attraction is magnetic.
You will need some preparation to plan your fly fishing Gold Medal water experience. Be sure to check local regulations and permissions required to fish on private lands. Regulations often vary along stretches of the same Gold Medal water. For example, some areas may be fly and lure only, and others catch and release for specified species. Online information can provide regulations, descriptions of the waters, and maps and directions to reach the area. Access points are typically included in this information.
Choosing your exact destination can be daunting, as Gold Medal waters are located throughout the state. Spots include locations on the Arkansas River, the Blue River, Rio Grande, Spinney Mountain Reservoir, the Colorado River and the North and South Platte Rivers. The choice is still large even after picking a location. For example, the South Platte River fishing location runs from the convergence of the South and Middle forks to the Spinney Mountain Reservoir and then to the Eleven Mile Reservoir.
Many anglers new to the area and even locals who want to try new waters often rely on an experienced fly fishing guide service to get them on location quickly. They want to spend their time battling wits with the trout rather than spending time figuring out where to go and what regulations are applicable. A knowledgeable fly fishing guide from the Vail, Minturn or Denver locations of Minturn Anglers would be pleased to assist in planning your next Colorado fly fishing adventure.