Chuck Mann of Lutherville, Md., shows off a chunky brown trout he caught Sunday on private water about three miles upstream from Steamboat Springs city limits. Mann was using a size 16 pale morning dun mayfly pattern.
Steamboat Springs The Yampa River was flowing at 2,500 cubic feet per second Monday morning at the Fifth Street Bridge, a record for July 11, but there was good dry fly fishing for trout in the city limits above the confluence of Fish Creek.
It is Fish Creek that is driving the Yampa’s record flows right now. The river upstream is running high (thanks to Soda Creek), but it is clear and more fishable.
Michael Boatwright of Straightline Outdoor Sports said a group from the shop enjoyed good fishing Sunday on a mayfly hatch that peaked around 11 a.m.
Fly shops in Steamboat can turn you on to the right fly: in this case, a parachute version of the pale morning dun in size 16 or 18.
Anglers strolling the Yampa River Core Trail in the evenings are apt to spy small clouds of caddis flies. However, Boatwright said the fish aren’t really feeding on those insects yet.
An alternative to the pale morning dun (PMD for short) right now is the yellow sally pattern, which floats well in the Yampa’s vigorous current.