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Vail Valley Anglers

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Reporter: Patrick Perry
Report Date: March 21, 2017

Current Conditions

With extremely abnormal temperatures for March, the fishing on the Eagle has been great. The river has been busy, as the water below Wolcott has been off color and not fishable. This has condensed anglers from Wolcott area to the Upper Eagle. The water has been stained but by all means fishable, this is due to the high temperatures melting the snowpack. I would recommend some flashy bigger patterns a lead nymph and smaller midge of BWO pattern to the trail. The mornings have been cold, so no need to get out there early. The fishing begins to turn on around 11:00 am and fish well until sunset. As for hatches, we are seeing various different midges from bigger size 16 black midges to smaller size 22 gray and black midges. BWO's have been sporadically  hatching throughout the day. The dry fly fishing has also been good. The fish have been keying in on emergers. I prefer a Para Wulff Adams size 14-16 with a midge BWO biot emerger below it.  Fish have been taking both.  Keep the fish in mind too and use barbless hooks and "keep em wet". 

Guide Tip:  The rainbows have begun their spring spawn, be aware of the redds along the river. With the spawn going on, egg patterns are effective especially when there are no bugs hatching. 

Hatches: Midges, BWOs

Recommended Flies

NYMPHS: Voodo Midge 18-22, Midge Bomb 18-22,  Black and Pearl Rainbow Warrior 18-22, North Fork Specials Black/Tan 10-14, RS2 Gray/Olive 18-22, Juju Baetis 18-22, Zebra Midge Red/Black 18-22, Rubber Leg Hares Ear 18-20, Blue Poison Tung 18-20, Squirmy Worm 

DRIES: Grifiths Gnat 18-22, Sprout Midge 18-22, Hackle Stacker BWO 18-20, Para Adams 18-24, Renegade 16-18, Roys Emerger 18-22

STREAMERS: Thin Mint, Motor Oil, Sparkle Minnow, Sculpzilla, Autumn Splendor, Baby Gongas




The Eagle River is our home river and flows right behind our shop in Edwards. It is an excellent freestone river with prolific hatches. It flows from high above Camp Hale south of Redcliff to its confluence with the Colorado River in Dotsero.  It is most famous for the prolific Caddis hatches that come off in the spring and early summer. The Eagle is noted for  its excellent dry fly fishing for wild brown and rainbow trout. The float fishing season is fantastic but short and runs from April-July in most years.  The Eagle can wade fished year round and there is excellent public access to the river below Wolcott and above Edwards.  

Select the updated graph for a larger version. River Levels


Other Information
Vail Valley Anglers fishes  the Eagle River near Vail, Avon, Edwards, Eagle, and Gypsum Colorado. The fishing on the Eagle is good every month of the year. We provide Guided Fishing Trips Daily throughout the winter. Let us show you some tips for catching fish by hiring a guide for the day. During late spring and through July float fishing is the best way to access the Eagle River. The rest of the year the Eagle is at ideal levels for wade fishing. Take a guided trip and see what an amazing fishery we have in our back yard.