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Fly Fishing

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The Roaring Fork Valley is a destination for anyone who loves fly fishing. With four rivers, each offering a spectacular, challenging, and unique environment, there's nothing like fly fishing in Aspen. Flowing down from the top of Independence Pass is the Roaring Fork River, from which the Roaring Fork Valley takes its name, as the river runs throughout the entire stretch of the valley floor from Aspen to Glenwood Springs. The Frying Pan River flows through the Frying Pan Valley and into Basalt to join the Roaring Fork River. In Carbondale, there is the option to fly fish on 3 different rivers, the Roaring Fork, Frying Pan, and on the Crystal River. Running through Glenwood Springs and Glenwood Canyon is the Colorado River.

Roaring Fork River

If already a seasoned and knowledgeable fly fisherman and fly fisherwoman, the best Aspen fly fishing locations can be found nearly anywhere in Aspen, Snowmass, Basalt, El Jebel, Carbondale, and Glenwood Springs. Some of the most challenging fly fishing on the Roaring Fork River can be had just below Henry Stein Park along the Rio Grande Trail. This scenic stretch of river represents the best of Colorado fly fishing trips with equal amounts of challenge, fun, natural beauty, and the chance to land plenty of cutthroat and rainbow trout.

Fly Fishing the Frying Pan River

Another popular fishing location is along the Frying Pan River just outside of Basalt. Driving along Frying Pan Road, there are a large number of great fishing spots, offering parking and easy access to the Frying Pan River, famous for being clear as glass all year round.

Hire a Guide

For those aspiring fly fisherman and fly fisherwoman, or for those looking to learn more about river ecology and perfecting a casting technique, it is always a great idea to go on a guided fly fishing trip in Aspen with a guide from one of the local fly fishing shops and outfitters. As fly fishing is a popular sport in the Roaring Fork Valley, there are a number of shops and outfitters that offer outstanding guided fly fishing trips. With locations in Aspen and Basalt, Taylor Creek Fly Shop offers wade trips and float trips throughout the year, and especially encourages people to try a new experience of fly fishing in the winter. Aspen Guide Service specializes in year-round float trips and wade trips throughout the valley, and their guides thoughtfully customizes each trip to match the client's skill level and trip preferences. For a fly fishing trip that strikes a balance between the rugged outdoors and the height of luxury, book a trip with one of the guides at The Little Nell Fly Fishing Adventure Shop. Fly fishing guide companies offer half day and full day trips. On full day trips, a picnic lunch is provided, and on half day adventures, snacks and beverages are often supplied.

Places to Explore on Your Own

Hunter Creek

Many of the local Aspen hikes and Aspen biking trails to high alpine lakes offer a great spot for a picnic lunch and a few hours of fly fishing in the stunning beauty of the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Just outside of Aspen is the Hunter Creek Trail, whose trail follows Hunter Creek into Hunter Valley. This is a beautiful moderate hike through evergreens and aspens, and fly fishing is excellent on Hunter Creek upon reaching the flat open meadows of Hunter Valley.

Cathedral Lake & American Lake

Popular hikes up Castle Creek Road include Cathedral Lake and American Lake, both high alpine lakes situated at an elevation of approximately 11,000 feet. The trek to either lake is approximately 3 miles one way, so fly fishing in either lake affords the opportunity not only learn to fly fish in an alpine lake, but to also enjoy the abundant sunshine and to take a well-deserved break.

Maroon Lake & the Maroon Bells

Though a trip to view the Maroon Bells is quite spectacular in and of itself, it is certainly worth taking in the beauty of the two fourteeners while fly fishing on Maroon Lake. This high alpine lake situated at roughly 9,500 feet offers great fly fishing opportunities and quite often captures the reflection of the Maroon Bells on its surface.

Biking & Fishing on Rio Grande Trail

A fun biking and fly fishing adventure can be had along the Rio Grande Trail. Grab the fishing rod and pedal down the Rio Grande Trail, a 43 mile long trail that follows the Roaring Fork River from Aspen to Glenwood Springs. Bike and fish for approximately 7 miles heading towards Woody Creek, and the ever-popular fishing spot of Jaffee Park. After a great morning and early afternoon of biking and fly fishing on the Roaring Fork, bike on over to the Woody Creek Tavern for a delicious lunch in this famous Woody Creek restaurant.

Book a Trip

Fly fishing in and around Aspen can make for an unforgettable experience. Not only does it afford the chance to enjoy the great outdoors, but anglers can also receive an education on the local river ecosystem. Go with a guide on an all day float trip adventure or go on a solo wade trip to enjoy the peaceful environment of one of Aspen's best fly fishing rivers. When it comes to the best fly fishing rivers in Colorado, Aspen and the Roaring Fork Valley have it all. Aspen Square guests who want additional information on Aspen fly fishing can call our concierges at (866) 285-7876 ext. 3515 or email them at Non-guests can contact the Aspen Chamber Resort Association by calling (970) 925-1940.