From Lionshead to East Vail: the river is holding at about 100 cfs and consistant, cold temperature. Water clarity has improved and the water level is perfect for pocket water fishing. The fish are not concentrated on deeper runs, so spotting them beforehand will be a great help. With the clear water, try to avoid using nymphs with a bobber. As soon as the bobber hits the water the fish are gone. Dry – dropper will be your most effective technique. Use a size 10 – 14 PMX (yellow or royal) with a size 22 Mercury RS2 (see the blog post here about RS2s from our guide, Robert Gibbes), chocolate WD40, or black zebra midge patterns about two feet from the dry. Other stimulator or hopper patterns will also work as your dry fly. Also, use lighter weight line (6X) in the clear, shallow water. Good luck out there and have fun.
Gore Creek comes out of the 13,000-foot Gore Range and proceeds through the heart of Vail on its way to the Eagle River at Dowd Junction. The lower portion (from Lionshead at Red Sandstone Creek to the confluence) is Gold Medal water. The Colorado Parks and Wildlife defines “Gold Medal” in this way: “In order to receive a Gold Medal listing, a body of water must consistently support a minimum trout standing stock of 60 pounds per acre, as well as consistently support a minimum average of 12 quality trout – trout larger than 14 inches – per acre.” Access points on the lower creek are numerous, but some of our favorites are behind the Vail Cascade, in Donovan Park, and in Stephen’s Park. One fun way to fish the Gore is to sight-fish from some of the downstream bridges with a friend. Be wary of wading, as it is easy to step on great holding water right next to the bank.