Coming soon to a river near you!

Colorado Fishing Brochure

Although the weather is still a little unpredictable, warmer weather is coming and with it hoards of Caddis! This is the time of year we talk about the famous “Mother's Day” hatch, when thousands of caddis flies hatch in sections of the Arkansas river and hundreds of trout eat them as fast as they can.

We have already had some strong hatches in the Parkdale section and with today's and Friday’s weather looking mighty fine, you might want to move your schedule around a bit. Of course in Colorado, trying to predict the weather, let alone the caddis hatch, is not an easy science. (This is my futile attempt to remove all responsibility from my humble prediction.)

You'll want to keep in mind  that the hatch will fluctuate with the weather - stronger on warmer days and lighter on cooler days. Most of the activity will take place in the afternoon. Start out your day thinking Blue Wing Olives and your morning can actually be very successful.

Remember, a bad day fishing is always better than work and if you wait until after May 10th, then you will miss the Caddis Hatch all together. So clear your calendar and grab your rod. The Caddis are here… for the moment.



I like to fish upstream from the blanket hatch (maybe a mile or two). My favorite patterns are as follows:

Elk hair caddis tan size 14, 16
Lawsons spent caddis tan size 16
Olive stimulator size 16
Lawson's E-Z caddis tan size 14, 16
Puterbaugh's foam caddis black  14, 16

Borieal's caddis pupa 14,16
Sparkle pupa tan or olive 14,16
Barr's Graphic caddis olive  16

Fish on sunny warm days. Stay upstream of the main hatch. Fish the subsurface flies early until you start to see rising fish...pretty simple.

For the more selective caddis risers, I like Lawson's spent caddis. Late in the day I like an egg layer pattern or an orange stimulator (Kingery's egg layer, or the Mother's Day caddis are great egg layer patterns).

You can fish the dry attention to the end of the drift when the subsurface fly starts to rise in the water column.

Some days there are tons of bugs on the water, but very few fish rising.

Obviously fish the pupa patterns when this occurs. Or sometimes I like to fish a big dry like an Amy's Ant in olive size 14 or 12 and drop a pupa off of the big them a porterhouse steak! It might bring them up!

On cooler cloudy days don't forget about the baetis! The Ark is a very underated BWO river. Some of my best dry fly fishing days have been on the Arkansas during a baetis hatch. Fish Neils BWO size 18 or 20 to risers. If no rising fish are present I like to nymph with a Murphy's flashy grub (size 14) trailed with a mercury RS2 size 18. I concentrate on the fast water.

Usually you can see fish flashing in the fast riffles when they are on baetis nymphs preceding a hatch....this is where the Mercury RS2 hammers fish!

Steve Gossage




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