A little more than a week in to the New Year. Have you kept your resolutions -- been to the gym more? Eating healthier? Being kinder to your kids? Most importantly -- have you gotten out to the river more? Winter in the Pikes Peak region offers some great fishing opportunities and here are some resources to help you net that nice Brown.
Cheyenne Mountain Chapter of Trout Unlimited: January's guest speaker Reid Baker, Guide Manager for Freestone Outfitters in Denver, will present on Winter Fishing Tactics in Colorado. Learn tips and techniques for successful days of fishing during these colder months and extend your angling calendar to 365 days a year! CMCTU meets at the DOW Building at 4255 Sinton Road, Colorado Springs, CO. Arrive early at 6:30 PM for free pizza and soda! There will also be several raffle items and a fantastic door prize!
Slow Down, Size Down, Tone Down, Present Down(stream): Kirk Deeter offers four tips for catching fish in the slower winter months when the fish's metabolism has slowed way down. We think of presentation being crucial when we fish with dries, but presenting a nymphs or midges to a lethargic fish that is conserving energy is a great challenge, too. Read more of Deeter's tips on the Field and Stream page.
Clothing and protection: Nothing can ruin a fly fishing trip faster than being cold. Like any winter activity, dressing in layers is key. Unlike skiing or other winter activities, though, you are going to be standing more than moving. You'll need a wool hat to keep your ears, head, and back of your neck warm (most of our body heat loss in the winter is out of the top of our heads), gloves (several different styles -- mittens that fold back to allow your fingers to tie on flies or adjust weights; fingerless gloves; you migh need to experiment to find what works for you); warm socks. Don't forget the sunscreen. Even though it may only be 23 degrees, if it is a sunny day you still have to deal with the reflected light from the water, and if there is snow on the ground, the reflection from the snowy banks, too. You'll just have less skin exposed, but you may want to protect your nose and face.
Where to go: Tailwaters are your best bet in Colorado. And we have several spots within an hour or so from the Shop: the Arkansas Tailwaters in Pueblo, Elevenmile Canyon (especially near the dam), Cheesman Canyon, and the Dream Stream, too. Come into the Shop for fishing reports.
One last tip for good fishing in January, particularly if you want to stay warm: head south of the Equator. Where it's summer.
Orvis 101 Introduction to Fly Fishing
Early season stillwater Fundamentals-Classroom