Scott Taylor

Last week's warm temperatures broke all the ice on the upper San Juan River and the flows went from 150 cfs to 850 cfs this morning. Run off is starting. As the lakes start to lose their ice, the fishing should be good on them. Most of the high country lakes do not lose their ice until late May or June. With that said the Forest Service roads generally do not open until May 15. If the roads are dry they open them earlier.

The best fishing over the next few weeks will be in-between cold fronts that slow the run off, and clear the river. Drifting Pop's Buggers, caddis patterns, and egg patterns are often my best bets. Look for parts of the river where the fish can get a break from the current. Often you will find fish stacked in one section. If you find one these places, you can be sure there will be more fish holding in similar spots. I will assume that this is a "pattern". If you think you have the "pattern" figured out, move up or down river looking for similar water. I don't waste time fishing up to the next spot that might have stacked fish. By the time you get there, the bite could be over! With higher flows, be careful wadding the river. It might be a good idea to wear an inflatable life jacket.

Of course the fishing below the dam on the Lower San Juan should remain good with flows around 500 cfs the wadding will be good until the flows get higher after the lake fills up. Last week guide Steve Baird did best on chocolate KF, black UV, and some of his no-name midges. The fishing was best during mid-day for him.

Navajo lake is where the pike action is. Reports of good catches started back in Feb. when we still had powder days at Wolf Creek on our minds. As the lake fills and warms up the action should continue. It is also crappie time! My neighbor Jim Mudrock caught 20 last Saturday.

If you are planning on a guided trip this summer give us a call and we will help you plan a great fishing trip. Our trips range from fishing the high country streams for cutthroats, private property trips on the San Juan River, Floats & Wade trips on the Lower San Juan River, and Lake trips on Navajo Lake.

Tight line,

Scott Taylor


While you are in town make sure that you visit the following businesses!

Need Fly Fishing gear? See Pop's

Let it Fly

Located on Put hill, just West of Downtown Pagosa Springs.


Hungry for Adventure?

Pagosa Outside Adventures - Rafting, Biking, Kayaking, Tubing

Downtown Pagosa Springs


Need Ski Rentals?

Pagosa Ski Rental (PSR)

Downtown Pagosa Springs


Fish Species: Trout
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Scott Taylor

About The Author: Captain Scott Taylor

Company: High Country Fishing Charters

Area Reporting: South West Colorado

Bio: Scott Taylor has been guiding fishermen since he was 20 yrs old. His experience led him to start his own guide service in Vail, CO for 12 years before becoming a Charter Captain on the Gulf Coast of Florida. With 6 years experience on the saltwater flats of Pine Island Sound, Scott specialized in sight fishing for Redfish, Snook and Tarpon! Now in the summer time Scott runs the only charter service out of Colorado on Navajo Lake - High Country Fishing Charters! In the winter Scott is the Training Coordinator and Ski Instructor at Wolf Creek Ski Area, just outside of Pagosa Springs. Scott is Full Cert. instructor with 16 years experience at the Vail Ski School. Scott has appeared 2 times on ESPN, and once on High Country Outdoors. For information on guided fishing trips, or for Private Ski Lessons at Wolf Creek with Scott, please send an Email. The main style of fishing offered on Navajo Lake is fly fishing and light tackle (spinning & bait casting) with artificial lures and fly's. On the quality waters of the San Juan River trips are fly fishing only, instruction being the specialty. Teaching how to cast, when to cast, how to work the fly or lure, and when and where to fish. I am a very patient instructor / guide, and enjoy teaching new anglers to fish with either spinning gear or a fly rod. For the more experienced angler, I also teach techniques to improve accuracy and increase casting distance.

Click Here For Past Fishing Reports by Captain Scott Taylor