Big Thompson River Report

Big Thompson River Report


The Big T is still flowing in the upper 40's. In addition to top release, they have also been doing bottom releases which have helped cool water temps on all but the hottest days. Fishing is still great, with some bigger fish moving into the system. You can target the bigger fish on streamers, but wait for cooler weather for those bigger fish to really turn on. Meanwhile, think the smallest flies you have in terms of dries and nymphs, and with the flows, go down in tippet size.


For dries, use a High Vis Midge, Mole Midge, Mole Fly, Tail Water Midge, Griffith's Gnat, AR's BWO, CDC Comapardun Trico, Baby Boy Hopper, Flag Dun Adams, Parachute Adams, Purple Haze and Hippy Stomper.


For sub-surface, use a RS-2, Zebra Midge, Sow Bug, Thin Mint, Wooley Bugger, Rainbow Warrior, Copper John, Prince Nymph, Bling Midge, Cheeseman Emerger, and a Foam Back RS-2

Guide Rating


Weather Experienced

- Temperature: Low 70's

- Wind Conditions: Breezy

- Precipitation: None

Water Observations

- Water Temperature: Upper 50's

- Flow Level: 48 CFS

- Water Clarity: Slight stain

About Big Thompson River Fly Fishing

Starting as a mere trickle on the east side of the Continental Divide, inside Rocky Mountain National Park, the Big Thompson flows from Forest Canyon Pass near the top of Trail Ridge Road through Forest Canyon. As small drainages offer additional snowmelt, the Big Thompson picks up volume, turning into one of Colorado’s finest streams.

The Big Thompson becomes fishable at Moraine Park in Rocky Mountain National Park, about six miles downstream of its headwaters. It’s there at Moraine Park, where the river splits into numerous braids and channels, that fisherman encounter the river’s first public access. Trails leading up and down the river from that point will lead you to great flyfishing experiences.

Moraine is a wide-open area, but the Big Thompson’s banks are lined with willows. It’s typical small stream conditions, and the river is filled with, you guessed it, brook, brown, and cutthroat trout in the 6- to 12-inch range. They’ll readily take a variety of general attractor flies.