Took a day trip up to the Blue River on Sunday (better than watching the Broncos get beat). Went with an old friend and a new friend. We targeted the area below Green Mountain Reservoir.
For people not familiar with that area, it is about 20 miles (or so) north of the town of Silverthorne on the way to Steamboat Springs. Silverthorne gets all the attention because it does have huge fish, but below GM reservoir is a completely different experience.
It is a section sometimes called Jurassic Park due to its prehistoric looking landscape and its huge fish (some over 30 inches long). It is a very steep canyon that has few easy access points. During the summer and early fall, the flows are too high to wade and an average of only 8 drift boats hit these waters on most days. When in early winter, when the flows get to 300 cfs or lower, you can wade it. If you plan to go, be prepared to hike or to negotiate a pretty steep incline that is snow packed and slippery. It is cold down there.
We did really well on big patterns using pretty heavy tippet (4 and 5X). These are mostly post-spawn browns, so bright eggs, pink san juan worms, and big flashy nymphs were the ticket. I'll bet a sparkly streamer would do well, too. The males are very territorial still. We tried very hard to stay off the huge redds and fish around them. These guys are hungry right now!
These pictures show just a few of the many fish we landed - well over 20 between us. No real slabs, but all over 14 inches. Some nearing 20. These give you a sense of the steep canyon walls and the cold conditions.
Bring a 5 or 6 weight and lots of warm clothes and lunch if you ever go.