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mcnerney 11-08-2010 02:54 PM

San Juan River Float
I took Thur and Fri off work and drove down to the San Juan River, NM. Crittergetter from the forum has family in the area and was there hunting and wanted someone to split the cost of a guided float trip so I volunteered. I got there around 2 pm on Thur and did a little wade fishing, but only caught a few fish, nothing of any size, but now I know what they mean about the San Juan Shuffle. As you move around you stir up the mud on the bottom and the fish start lining up behind you eating the bugs kicked up, at one point I had 11 trout lined up behind me with the closest one about a foot behind my boots. I tried getting a photo but it didn't turn out. The next morning we met up with Mark Engler from Duranglers, Mark is the person that developed the WD-40 fly pattern. I have floated this river 4-5 times before but it was always during late May or early June, on this trip I couldnít believe the crowds, at one point I counted 13 boats in our little stretch of the river. I wonít go back there in the fall, just too many anglers for such a small stretch of river. Each boat was sitting over a hole and would fish it until the fish would quit biting and then move on so the fish get pretty picky. We were using size 26 midge patterns on 6x tippet so it didnít take much to break a fish off. Toward the end of the day I lost three strikes and couldnít figure out why, but as I was breaking the rod down at the end of the float, I noticed that I was missing the point on one of the flies I was using. Oh well, lesson learned to check those hooks a little more carefully. The next morning I got up at 4 am and drove over to the South Platte River, CO (Dream Stream between 11 Mile Reservoir and Spinney Reservoir), it is a 3 mile section of river. Even though there were lots of cars in the parking lot there was plenty of room to spread out. I landed 4 fish and lost two monsters, I need to get back up there and redeem myself! Overall a great weekend fishing and it was great to meet Crittergetter and fish with another forum member!

Mark on the oars and Crittergetter taking up the rear:

One of the nice rainbows:

A shot showing some of the crowding taking place:

Another shot of the river:

Another nice rainbow:

A nice Brown:

The take out:

South Platte Rainbow:


kglissmeyer1 11-08-2010 03:58 PM

Re: San Juan River Float
Larry, you dog! Way to go, but what a drive. You caught some dandies and I'm jealous. My last trip to the San Juan was at least five years ago in February. It was cold, rainy, and we slayed them. Glad you got into some fish, but you got to experience first-hand why I probably won't go back anytime soon - too many people for such a river. Nevertheless, you rock, brother, for taking such a long trip. Glad it turned out reasonably well.


Jimmie 11-08-2010 04:16 PM

Re: San Juan River Float
Thanks for another nice trip report Larry. Nice pictures. Tied some WD-40's a number of weeks ago (I think after you used them on one of your outings) so it was neat to see Mark, the originator.

jpbfly 11-09-2010 03:23 PM

Re: San Juan River Float
Beautiful river and fish Larry;)they'll have to put traffic lights to control the traffic there soon:D

Ard 11-09-2010 03:41 PM

Re: San Juan River Float
The boats at that gravel bar remind me of the Kenai, looks like it was a good day weather & all.

mcnerney 11-09-2010 04:05 PM

Re: San Juan River Float

Originally Posted by Hardyreels (Post 163603)
The boats at that gravel bar remind me of the Kenai, looks like it was a good day weather & all.

Ard: You got that right! Unfortunately, when you take a photo you only see what the lens will allow, the conditions were much worse than that. I won't go back there in the fall. I had heard the river was crowded in the summer, but I figured it would thin out in the fall with people going hunting, but no such luck. If I go back it will be in the early spring to avoid all that traffic. It is a gorgeous river with some great looking fish but the river is not nearly as big as the Kenai (maybe a 1/3 the size).


---------- Post added at 03:05 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:03 PM ----------


Originally Posted by jbbfly (Post 163599)
Beautiful river and fish Larry;)they'll have to put traffic lights to control the traffic there soon:D

With all that traffic they might have to think about something like that in the future or maybe draw permits to fish there! That should raise some eye brows! LOL!


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