C.A.R.E. Report & Other need to knows @ SWCO.....
Well I been putting off writing our latest Newsletter and Blog Post an extra two weeks or so waiting for a change in the weather and water conditions. As my records show for the last 11 years we usually have a major storm system push through anywhere from three days to a week or more of rain & snow anywhere from mid-September to the first week of October boosting up water flows, cooling of water & air temperatures and the end of the dog days of Summer. Over the years of writing &/or conversations I had always referred to this as the “Refresher” the start of fantastic Fall Fishing. Through the past few weeks forecasts have been threatening rain & snowstorms for at least a few days each week with little to nothing to show for it. Yes, we have had some great guided fishing trips since my last newsletter & blog post, but I was even more excited for even better fishing/guiding with the “Refresher” that still has not happened. Recently to present we are in what I refer to as the “One & Done” “No Margin for Error” timeframe this usually happens in the dog days of late Summer but took a bit longer this year due to the large snowpack and Monsoons. Unfortunately, our normal Monsoons were below average precipitation and ended earlier than normal and as the rain stopped our local waters dropped like a rock to low, clear, glassy conditions more and more daily. But on the flip side of that fortunately it had cooled down drastically at least helping keep our local waters & trout cool and healthy. Who would've thought with all the snowpack(some still remaining), all the rain, and high water flows well above average till August 28th that from then on we would get back into a drought with below average flows almost immediately. Strange Times! We didn't start float trips/ raft guiding till July 13th (usually done over with too low by the 4th @ Best), our first safe & more easily fishable walk/wade guide trips didn't start till 7/17 on the San Juan River "Proper" other than a few tailwater & high country creek trips. Now back in drought with below average flows, Let it Rain, Let it Snow! Wound like to gain 30-100 CFS before Winter officially arrives and waters start freezing, not only will a boost in flows help fishing success, will also help with Fall/Winter migration, spawning, and prevent future Winter Kill.
Our President Joseph Eichelberger, with 20 years of guiding experience and a long family heritage of responsible outdoorsmanship, brings a unique perspective to our blog as he promotes fishing conservation and education in Pagosa Springs, CO where he's lived since 2008.