Fishing Reports

Fishing Conditions of Local Water Around My Shop!


East Portal can be accessed within the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park near Montrose.  The road down to the river "East Portal Road" is closed during winter and it is challenging to find the opening dates every year but our shop is the closest to the resource so if you follow our fish report, you will find out in no time.  It is a tail water stretch of the Gunnison River below Crystal dam.  It is the last stop for the salmon fly hatch and provides consistent fishing during season.  Campgrounds are available throughout the season.  


Current Conditions: PORTAL ROAD IS OPEN!!! Yes the road is open, constructions is in progress, drive slow! Fishing is just starting to heat up. Try fishing the edges of riffles and faster water. Fish are feeding on smaller midges and emergers in the 22-24 sizes. lead with larger weighted flies like 20 incher, and pats. Trail smaller flies behind.

Fly selection:  Zebra midge Black or Olive #22-24, WD-40 Brown or Tan,Pats Rubber leg Coffee or Black #8-12, 20 Incher #10-12, Perdigons Purple, Black, or Natural #14-18,  Lucent soft hackle pheasant tail #12- #16, spanish bullet #16 (natural color, purple), Frenchie #16, Rainbow warrior #16, hare's ear #16  

GUNNISON RIVER (Gunnison Gorge Upstream of Pleasure Park)


This particular section of Gunnison River consists of a tailwater fishery out of Crystal Dam, which is a part of Black Canyon National Park near Montrose, Colorado.  Base flows of recent years have been between 325 cfs up to 5000 cfs.  It is technically a tail water, however it fishes like a freestone river with prolific hatches of multiple aquatic insects.  Popular hatches include Salmon Fly (Pteronarcys), Yellow Sally, Caddis, Pale Morning Dun, and Blue Winged Olive along with terrestrials.  Since it is a tailwater, it is fishable year round. 


Current Condition:

This section has been fishing great as the spring days get warmer. Focusing on the deep long runs with eggs, small midges in brown and black,  and baetis nymphs may be the most productive throughout the day. Keep an eye open for Midges or BWO dries hatching in the evening. Streamers have also been productive throughout the day. 


Fly Selection: Duracell #12-#14, pheasant tail jig #14-#18, Chubbies #8 - #10,  natural colored perdigons #14-#18, Outrigger Caddis #16


GUNNISON RIVER (downstream of Pleasure Park)

This section of the Gunnison River is downstream of the confluence between the main stem of the Gunnison and the North Fork of the Gunnison River.  It can be fished by walk-wading as well as on a comfortable drift boat/ raft.  This section can be a bit more touchy as far as the flow goes because of the North Fork.  When North Fork is in high water, usually caused by runoff or rain storms, it dumps dirty water to the Gunnison River and could cause fishing to slow down.  As far as hatches go, it is very similar to the Upstream section.  


Current Condition: 

Spring conditions have started on the lower Gunnison. Rising water levels in the north fork have muddied up the lower section, and created tough fishing conditions. Warm evenings are still creating a good BWO hatch. With recent colder, and windy days fish are still holding in deep winter areas. Try fishing Eggs and worms with the muddy conditions. Baetis patterns have been working as well. Streamer fishing has been hit or miss. Dark color streamers fished slow in the deep pools has been working the best.

Fly Selection:  Chubbies #8-#10, black perdigon, #16, Higa's SOS jig #16 black, trico #22, natural colored perdigons #16, McCannels Mighty Midge #18, Stalcups Baetis #18 Olive.  

Uncompahgre River 


This Tailwater stretch of river is located between Montrose and Ridgway. This is our favorite portion of river to walk and wade all year round. With stable water levels and clear water fish thrive here ranging from small to extra large. Brown trout Rainbow trout, and Cutthroat trout all call these waters home. As most tailwaters this part of the river requires a stealthy approach, small flies in the 22-24 range, and lighter tippets 5x-6x

 Current Conditions: This stretch of river is a little more technical than most surrounding rivers. Fishing has been good, with continued winter flows. Nymphing with eggs, and small size 22-24 nymphs in red and black trailed behind have been working the best. With low clear water be careful as you approach to not spook fish. Watch for small BWOs hatching in the evening. Small dries with emergers trailed behind.

Uncompahgre Town Section:

This stretch is fishable all year round except during runoff.  The runoff on this river is caused by the Cow Creek upstream.  Between April and October, it is the high water season, which is caused by the canal connecting the Gunnison River and the Uncompahgre River to provide enough water for the farmers downstream for their crops.  During the high water season, fish can be caught in slow eddies.  During the low water season, fish can be caught in slow riffles and cut banks.  The river holds a healthy population of brown trout and rainbow trout with chances of hooking into a fish of a lifetime.  


Current Condition:  

Currently the Uncompahgre is running slightly off color and high. Fishing has been great from mid morning all the way through early evening. Nymphing and euro nymphing has been successful, Along with dry dropper fishing with Mini Chubbys and baetis patterns underneath. Later in the evening look for blue wing olives to hatch in the tail outs and flats in between pools. Streamer fishing has been successful with small leeches, and wooly boogers.

Recommended Gear:  9ft 5wt rod.


Fly Selection:  Gold Chubby#10, hare's ear #12-#14, rainbow warrior#16, Higa's SOS Black #16 jig.  TIE YOUR FLIES ON PINK BEADS!!


Updated 4/14/24 AP