Fly Fishing In The Rockies

Colorado is a fly fisher’s dream. Hundreds and hundreds of miles of alpine rivers and streams flow within two hours of downtown Denver.

The Rocky Mountains lie just a few minutes east of the city and offer some of the most enjoyable fishing conditions in the country. Beautiful mountains, rich forests, and crystal clear streams make fly fishing the perfect way to enjoy the area.

Wondering where exactly the best fly fishing near Denver is? Want to try your hand at landing fish in the world-class Rocky Mountains? Here is everything you need to know to plan a fly fishing trip to the Rockies.

Why the Rockies Are Perfect for Fly Fishing 

What’s the best part about fishing for trout? They live in beautiful places. Colorado, and the Rocky Mountains, in particular, is a world-class trout fishing destination.

The Rocky Mountains are astounding. This vast mountain range is overshadowed by dozens and dozens of mountain peaks over 10,000 feet.

The alpine forest is especially scenic and full of wildlife. If you value solitude and time in the wilderness, especially while fishing, the Rockies are for you.

Due to the altitude, fishing primarily takes place in the summer, when daytime temperatures are pleasant. Summer is also the time where trout feed aggressively, as they prepare for the long, cold winters. The combination of sunshine, vast wilderness, and hungry fish is hard to beat.

What to Catch in the Rockies

People come from all over the world to catch trout in Colorado. While multiple species can be caught while fly fishing in the Rockies, most anglers are after the unique cutthroat trout. 

Rocky Mountain Trout Species

Cutthroat trout have a luscious red band on their neck. They look like they are bleeding, hence the name cutthroat. Cutthroat trout are native to the American West, with the Rockies being one of their major native habitats.

While cutthroat trout may be what you’re after, it’s likely you’ll catch far more brown trout. 

Brown trout are native to Europe and Western Asia but were introduced to Colorado in the late 1800s. They are usually the biggest trout you can catch in the Rockies.

You can also expect to see some rainbow trout. While rainbows are native to the US, they aren’t native to Colorado. They were also brought here in the late 1800s and have become a Colorado fly fishing staple, as it’s now the main fish stocked in the state. 

Brook trout, or brookies, are beautiful fish with dark bodies and bright spots. They are often small and tend to outbreed other species of trout. You can find brookies in the highest lakes and creeks.

Other Species in the Rockies

If you are looking to catch something other than trout, Mountain Whitefish are a popular, yet challenging fish to pursue. Mountain Whitefish have smaller mouths than trout, making it more difficult to get a bite. 

Whitefish are best caught in the fall, during the spawning period. Small, bead-head nymphs are the go-to approach. These fish are tasty, native, and have liberal bag limits so you can bring some home for the smoker or grill.

Best Places to Fish in the Rocky Mountains

There are dozens of accessible creeks and rivers in the Rockies just east of Denver. Some of the most notable include Clear Creek, Mill Creek, and Boulder Creek.

Georgetown Lake offers the chance to catch stocked rainbow trout year-round, as well as wild brown trout. It’s also a popular spot for ice fishing in the winter. This alpine lake is surrounded by mountains on all sides, making for a scenic day on the water.

If you don’t mind a little hiking, the Fall River and reservoir offer excellent brook trout fishing and even better views of the mountains and forests.

The Perfect Basecamp for Colorado Fishing

When you are planning a fishing trip to the Rocky Mountains, you need a basecamp that’s comfortable and gives you easy access to the best mountain rivers and streams. You don’t want to have to drive in from Denver or the surrounding cities each day, or you will lose valuable fishing time.

Lawson Adventure Park is a quick 45 minutes east of Denver in the Rockies. We are in the perfect spot if you are spending time in the city or flying in. You can share a cabin with your fishing buddies, or bring the whole family and let them engage in our family-friendly activities while you chase fish.

We have comfortable cabins set back in the high alpine forest. Full bathrooms, modern kitchens, and a deck with a grill mean you can enjoy your basecamp as much as the rivers you are fishing.

One and two-bedroom cabins are available when fishing with a group or bringing your family along. The more adventurous can rent one of our yurts, which are cozy and insulated.

If you need a break from fishing, we offer a wide range of adventurous or relaxing activities on or near our 40-acre property, such as disc golf with a view. Otherwise, stop by the bar after a day of fishing for a drink on our spacious deck overlooking the hills. 

How to Prepare for Fly Fishing in Colorado

As you prepare for your fishing excursion near Denver, Colorado, you’ll need to ensure you have a Colorado fishing license. You can purchase a one-day, five-day, or annual fishing license online.

Fishing regulations vary from state to state. Be sure to brush up on Colorado fishing regulations before keeping any fish.

Weather in the high elevations of the Rockies can change fast. You might set out on a warm, sunny morning.

But storms can roll in quick in the afternoon and temperatures can drop quite a bit. Always be prepared with warm, insulating layers and carry reliable raingear, even in the summer. 

Are you new to the sport of fly fishing? Learning how to fish in the beautiful Rocky Mountains will be an incredible experience. 

Many outfitters offer fly fishing 101 classes, as well as guided trips, to get you on top of fish faster. You can find many schools in and around Denver.

Fly Fishing Near Me: Abundant Opportunity In the Rockies

It’s no wonder why so many people travel across the country and the world to fish in Colorado. It’s a fly fishing paradise. With over 8,000 miles of rivers and 2,000 lakes, there’s ample opportunity to find your new favorite fishing spot.

When traveling to the breathtaking Rocky Mountains, be sure to choose a basecamp that offers the best of the Rockies; wide-open mountain views, convenient access to fishing spots, and all the comforts of home.

Book your cabin or yurt at Lawson Adventure Park today and get ready for the best fly fishing of your life.