Fishing the green stream Dutch John, Utah

Below the flaming gorge dam in Dutch John, Utah lies one of the most prolific and diversified fly fishing rivers of the west named the Green River. Broken down into three sections ( A, B, and C) all sections can provide the inexperienced to the most experienced angler with incredible fishing.

Green River2
Colin has a rainbow with bright spawning colors.

Green River5
Easy to understand how the river gets its name.

The A section, which is the most popular at six thousand fish per mile, is accessed just below the flaming gorge dam and the take out is at Little Hole. The float is about five hours without stopping and aproximately seven miles. However, a full day in this section is worthwhile. A shuttle can be arranged through either the Flaming gorge Lodge or Green River outfitters fly shop located at Little Hole. A permit to access the put in at the dam is needed and can be purchased at either the lodge or fly shop. Boats should be prepped before accessing the put in, there are a lot of boats putting in at the same time. Because of the Green's popularity, there are a lot of people fishing in the same spots, try not to float through others fishing spots. Wade fishing is accessible in two locations just below the dam and there is an excellent trail system, which allows one to hike all the way down to the take out at Little Hole.

Green River
These guys are cheating...

B section: Starts from Little Hole and ends at Indian Creek Crossing. It is approximately nine miles. This section can either be floated or accessed to wade at Little Hole. This is a longer float which, usually take six hours. One can expect to spend a full day on this section of water.

The B section mostly consists of brown trout with an occasional rainbow and cutthroat trout. The further traveled the water slows in speed creating long rifles foam lines where fish will usually be found. Along this further traveled, watch for insect activity. If you see less fish feeding on top switch to streamers. Wade fishing the first several miles can also be a very successful trip. A less sophisticated trail system found at Little Hole will lead you into water were there are less fisherman and plenty of average to above average sized fish. A half an hour hike over the first canyon wall found, down to what the guides call Grasshopper Island is highly recommended.

Green River3
It might be a little early for Coling to eat here, but the fish are definitely hungry.

C section: The fishing for this section should primarily be done by boat and is also the longest stretch to fish. Starting at Indian Creek Crossing, this float can be completed in five, seven, ten, or fifteen miles with respecive take outs at Pipe Five, Little Swallow Canyon, Swallow Canyon, or Swing Bridge. This section of river holds big browns. A good day of fishing will produce maybe half a dozen fish. Fishing streamers is probably the most successful, but always bring all the goods that are recommended above just in case. Bring plenty film, for there is a lot of wildlife and no people. This section of water during the fall will also hold some water fowlers. Be prepared to hear guns early in the morning!

By Colin Taylor, guide Roaring Fork Anglers.



Fly selection, leader, and tippet sizes: Easiest way to catch fish is to nymph, especially in the A section. Fly recommendations are the following in sizes 18-24. Black, brown, green, red, white zebra midges and rs2s (tungsten beads a plus), beatis nymphs and emergers, prince nymphs, copper johns, Roy palm emerger or Roy boy, scuds in orange, olive, and natural, pheasant tails, and wd-40's in tan, black, red, and white,. Use 5x to 6x fluorocarbon and nine-foot leader with strike indicator. For the more technical, dry fly fishing is hard but a lot of fun. Once a day you will see a large hatch. The Green usually holds three major hatches: Beatis, Midge, and Cicada. Beatis and midges hatches occur throughout the year. Use a 12 foot 6x to 7x leader with size 20-26 flies. Flies recommended are beatis cdc, beatis cripples, calabeatis and beatis comparaduns, beatis parachutes, midge parachutes,Cannon's bunny dun, griffith's gnat, midge cluster or mating midge. I have personally witnessed fish deny size 26 midge dries on 7x tippet, so be prepared for refusals. When fishing keep eyes peeled to water to find pods of fish rising. Anchor boat or use eddy lines to make a few rounds through these holes. The Cicada hatch is the one not to miss. Similar to the green drake hatch on the Roaring Fork, these enormous prehistoric size beetles fall to the water. These bugs exist in the four to five inch sizes. Big foam bodies in black with rubber legs. This is the anglers' delight for the flies are easy to see and the tippet size can be in the 4x range. This hatch will usually occur in late May and go through early July. Another a good bet is to fish streamers, especially on the B and C section. Fly selection should be black, olive, yellow, and brown woolly buggers, autumn splendors, brown and black zuddler minnows, motto's minnow, and olive wool head sculpin. Leader rigs out of the boat should be 2x about 7 feet long with tandem streamers. Try placing two or three spilt shot spaced about a foot apart along your leader. This will be awkward to cast at first, but watch how it produces fish.

Looking for a good guide, try Dan Oais of Green River Outfitters cell phone number is 307 413 0435. If you go: Bring your own food. Bring your own alcohol Utah has different laws. There are is an assortment of pay camp sites which will be seen while driving into town that are cheap and fun to bump into other fisher people. Good camp sites are above Little hole at dipping springs and above the Flaming Gorge Lodge. Some of these campsites were burned last summer in a forest fire which closed the river for several months. If you are planning to float the B or C section it is also a good idea to call Green River outfitters prior to leaving to get a river condition. There are several creeks that can muddy up the river if blown.

Directions from Denver: Take I-70 west to Rifle exit. Take route 13 north to Meeker. Take route 64 west to Rangley. Take Rt. 40 west to Vernal, Utah. Take route 191 to Dutch John.

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Globetrotter Adventures
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