Winter Fishing in Spring

Easter weekend. Spring is in the air. Flowers are blooming, trees are coming back to life. So tell me why then is it snowing on April 23rd?

11 Mile Canyon Fly fishing Fly tying Swap River Colorado

Saturday, April 23rd, 2011 was the day for the second annual Fly Swap hosted by  It didn’t take much to explain to my wife last year what a fly swap was. Her response “Oh, like a cookie swap, where everyone bakes different types of cookies and sits around gossiping?” Umm, not quite but I guess that is close enough.

Trout Fly Fishing 11 Mile Canyon South Platte River

DOK - Shot by Coloradonative

For those of you who are lost, a fly swap works like this: You tie a bunch of your own flies, in this case two for every person attending the event. Then when you get to the river, the flies are distributed. As you have read in a previous post, my flies suck! So what better way to rid myself of my crappy flies and get some quality ones from guys who know what they’re doing?

Brown Trout Fly Fishing 11 Mile Canyon Colorado River

Benny - Shot by Coloradonative

Most of the Gold Medal Water fishing is at least two hours from Denver. No different on this day. I woke up at 4 a.m., turned on the coffee maker and loaded up the Jeep. Headed out to meet up with a few friends to carpool, and we were on the road by 5 a.m. We arrived at our destination around seven in the morning and were surprised to see that we were the first ones on the river. I think everyone else was smart enough to stay at home since it was 28º outside and the wind was blowing.

After putting on four layers of clothing – ski hat, wool gloves, and the waders, it was off to the river. I have fished this section of the South Platte about eight years ago so I was vaguely familiar with the area. But believe me when say it is the best section of river I have ever fished!

Trout Fly Fishing 11 Mile Canyon River Colorado South Platte

Carper - Shot by Rick Schroeder

I am not certain (because after a day of drinking beer who is ever really certain), but I think there were a total of 14 of us. You would think with that many people it would put a strain on the productiveness of the fishery but I tell you it did not.

Rainbow Trout Fly Fishing 11 Mile Canyon South Platte River Colorado

The only breaks to be had were for lunch and to thaw one’s appendages. Hanging out with a bunch of fellow trout bums next to a river and grilling out should be on everyone’s top ten list! Buffalo burgers, Portuguese sausage, Boudin, macaroni salad, chips and all of the fixins. Thanks to everyone for the good eats and to Benny for hanging out at the grill flipping the burgers!

Fly Fishing South Platte River Trout Grilling Out Buffalo Burgers Sausage

Grub - Shot by Rick Schroeder

Being able to get 14 guys on fish all day is outstanding. Each of us netting at least 7 fish a piece is quite unbelievable.

Rainbow Trout Fly Fishing 11 Mile Canyon South Platte River Colorado

Two of the fish I was able to net were caught on flies I tied so I guess they aren’t all that bad.



Orvis Helios 9′, 5 weight Rod

Waterworks Lamson Lightspeed Reel

Pheonix Silk Fly Line

Blue Sky Furled Leader

7 thoughts on “Winter Fishing in Spring

  1. Nice stuff buddy! This blog is coming along real nice. We’ve had some EPIC adventures, and I’m glad your documenting them. Keep up the good work!

  2. When I recently discovered your website and started following along, I was thinking I’d post my very 1st comment. I don’t know just what to express except that I truly liked reading by means of. Good writings. I will maintain on visiting this site much more often.

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