The wind never relented through our day on the Colorado, but that didn’t stop my friend, Phyllis and I from celebrating her birthday. I know many of you may not understand that floating a river is one of the best presents someone could ask for, but for those of us “hooked” on fly-fishing, it doesn’t get any better.
The river had turned a light green a few days prior to our float due to some runoff from the previous set of snowstorms that had blown through the Rockies. I thought this might present a problem with fish not being able to see the flies that we tossed in the river, but our guide assured us it would not. We put in at the Two Rivers Park in downtown Glenwood Springs and floated for about eight miles.
In the winter, as explained in a previous post, trout barely move from their hideout in the river. To catch a fish in the winter you pretty much have to land that fly right in front of their mouths so that the total amount of effort to swallow that fly is next to nothing. Come spring, the fish will actively search for their food, even in darkened water. In the Colorado, where the current is strong and the river is wide, it’s as if the fish are working out in their own gym. They are so active and so strong that a trout of 12 – 15 inches will feel like a 22 – 25 inch trout to land. We certainly found this to be true.
We caught lots of fish on this day, which helped us to forget about the chill of a 15 – 20 mile per hour wind. Although there are many spots where the Colorado meanders through bucolic settings, here the river follows I-70, so there is a constant din that accompanies you throughout the trip.
As I’ve mentioned before fly-fishing provides satisfaction in a variety of ways. Today it was about celebrating a birthday and catching fish, and that’s all good.