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Fishing Information

South Platte River - Cheesman Canyon

198 cfs
13 mph
68 °F
Weather @SOUTH PLATTE BASIN - Updated June 29, 2020 - 9:28am

Current River Flow Updates

Latest Update 6/29/2020 --

Flows below the lake are currently at 76.6 CFS as of 6-29. Flows are down for this time of year. Cheesman Reservoir is at 76% capacity so flows could stay low for a while. Fishing has been good on the edges and in riffles and deeper runs. Tandem nymph rigs with a worm, egg or Pat's Rubberlegs as the point fly with a Caddis or Baetis dropper have been bringing fish to the net. Don't hesitate to put a scud or cranefly in to the mix on your nymph rig to entice the canyon fish. Pat's in a variety of colors in sizes 10-12. Splatte rollers, buckskins, and wired caddis in 16's are a good choice right now. Dry Droppers, sight fishing in shallower water can be a ton of fun at these flows. Throw a small hopper and drop a black beauty (20) or Radiation Baetis in 20 or 22. There are some crowded days in the canyon right now so don't be afraid to hike in a little further to get away from other anglers.

River Information

Cheesman Canyon is the picture perfect trout stream. With house-sized boulders in the center of the river, not a road in sight, and bald eagles flying above, it doesn't get much "troutier" and beautiful than Cheesman Canyon. A mixed bag of wild rainbows and brown trout in the 12-20+ range is what will likely be on the end of your line once you can figure out what these picky trout are feeding on. Nymphing is the name of the game here but on certain days dry fly fishing and streamer fishing can be very productive as well. Rumor is that if you can catch a fish in the canyon you can catch a fish anywhere.

Seasonal Conditions

In the warm summer months, these trout will be gorging themselves on baetis, midges, stoneflies, caddis, and leeches. These trout can be difficult to trick so the key is to find feeding fish and keep swapping out rigs until you find the golden ticket. When you enter the colder winter months these fish predominately feed on small midges in the 20-26 range. At these times make sure to keep your rig on light fluorocarbon tippet (5-7x) and eliminate the indicator if you can.

Additional River Information

South Platte River below Cheesman Reservoir

SOUTH PLATTE BASIN River Gauge View Detailed Information

  • Flow 198 cfs
  • Wind 13 mph
  • Temp 68 °F
  • High/Low 70/33

River access

To get to Cheesman Canyon it is easiest to take 285 west and then turn left onto 126. After passing through Pine and Buffalo Creek you will go down a large hill that is 3 lanes. At the bottom of that hill where the speed limit drops you will see a paved parking lot on your right. This is the Lower Gill Trail parking lot. This lot is about a 30-minute hike to the first fishable water. From there you have about 5 miles of water to explore up-river.

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