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Colorado Trip

Freshwater Reports from near and far
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Joined: Wed Apr 22, 2009 9:44 pm

Colorado Trip

Postby Siessmack » Wed Sep 25, 2013 1:14 am

About a month or so ago I was lucky enough to head west out to Colorado for an old friend's wedding. I decided to stretch the trip into 9 days of traveling, fly fishing, hiking and visiting old friends and places. Long story short I fished the Eagle, Crystal, Gunnison, Roaring Fork, and Arkansas rivers, and high mountain lakes and a few ranch lakes. The main focus of the trip was the Roaring Fork in Aspen where I cut my guiding teeth, but also found a new favorite in the Arkansas, which is a very good river.

The fishing started off slow on the Eagle and Fork the first few days, then continuously got better culminating in probably the best day I've ever had on the Fork, hooking 18 fish and landing 8 on Labor Day. The Fork is insanely technical and difficult, with 6x flouro required to have any type of consistent success fishing size 18-22 flies this time of the year for some of the strongest trout I've ever hooked. My top fish from the Fork was an 18 inch bow, with lots of cookie cutter browns in the Arkansas and some 17 inch high mountain cut throats. I broke off ALOT of fish, including some big ones pushing 20 inches. Evidently I'm not as good with the 6x as I used to be... My top secret lake produced a 19" brown, which is small for that water. I also scored a Colorado slam, brown, brookie, bow and cutthroat all in one day.

Besides the fly fishing I visited the small town of Westcliffe in south central Colorado for the wedding, saw sun rise over the Black Canyon of the Gunnison River National Park, finally checked out Crested Butter for an afternoon, put 1400 miles on my rental car and saw lots of old friends in and around Aspen. I sure as hell do miss it out there and think about moving back often. My old boss even said my spot on the guide list is still there if I want it. Tempting!

Highlight of the trip was my friend's wedding as well as the epic Labor Day fishing capped off by a drunk kickball game in an Aspen park with a bunch of old friends. Low point of the trip was learning of a former guide and friend's passing from colon cancer after a three year battle. Sean Groover and I fished nearly 40 trips together over two summers and I learned an awful lot about trout fishing from him. He was very passionate about fly fishing and lit up like a little kid when the strike indicator went under. Sean spent his entire life doing what he loved as a trout guide and paragliding instructor. He was good friends with Andy Mill and well known around Aspen and will certainly be missed.

Back to the happy stuff, here's a few photos... enjoy!

Image The Roaring Fork at Lower Woody Creek

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Image Found this bottle of BBQ sauce floating down the river, that was a first!

Image Gunnison River at Pleasure Park

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Image Black Canyon

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Image Painted Wall, over two Empire State Buildings tall

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Image Upper Gunnison

Image In the Canyon

Image Crested Butte lunch

Image 20 inch bow in this hole, can you see it? He has a lip ring from my fly...

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Image Arkansas Canyon

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Image Cross D Bar Trout Ranch

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Image Home for two nights

Image Redneck draperies, they were there when I arrived

Image Awesome barn at the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains

Image Independence Pass south of Aspen

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Image Guided my friend to his first trout on fly

Image Prettiest fish of the trip, 17" cuttie

Image American Lake

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Image Maroon Bells

Image Roaring Fork... my favorite river in Colorado

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Re: Colorado Trip

Postby Emerson » Wed Sep 25, 2013 6:14 am

Great picture story! What a trip!

Thanks for sharing :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :D
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Emerson

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Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2009 4:02 pm

Re: Colorado Trip

Postby Todd » Wed Sep 25, 2013 8:50 am

Emerson wrote:Great picture story! What a trip!

Thanks for sharing :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :D


What he said!

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