Basalt visitors aren’t just smitten with our fishing opportunities; we’d say they’re hooked. Anglers flock to Basalt, where two notable trout streams provide challenging rainbow, brook and brown trout fishing year round.
Here’s a snapshot of Colorado and Basalt fishing, by the numbers:
There are 6,000 miles of fishable streams and rivers in Colorado.
Of that, there are 322 miles of Gold Medal* fisheries that include 11 rivers and three lakes.
Basalt is the hub for not just one, but two, Gold Medal rivers—comprising 36 miles of angling paradise in all four seasons.
The first, the Fryingpan River, boasts 14 miles of these extra-productive waters. The Gold Medal section can be found between its confluence with the Roaring Fork River and Ruedi Reservoir, with clear, luminous water, awe-inspiring alpine views, and lunker-sized trout. This section of the river offers catch-and-release brown trout and rainbow trout fishing. Check out the Fryingpan River Report for updated conditions.
Roaring Fork River
And the second, the Roaring Fork River, has 22 miles of Gold Medal fishing in its 60 miles of fishable waters.The headwaters start high above Aspen, and then flow through Basalt and on to the mighty Colorado River. The water remains a Gold Medal section from its confluence at the Fryingpan down to the Colorado River at Glenwood Springs. Mountain whitefish, brown trout and rainbow trout populate this stretch. Check out the Roaring Fork River Report for updates on conditions.
Just 20 minutes from Basalt, the Colorado can be accessed from the shore in waders or by float fishing in a drift boat. Rainbow, brown and cutthroat trout live in its depths.
The Crystal River is named for its clarity and beautiful color. Its headwaters start above the town of Marble, Colorado. Then it flows through Redstone and past Carbondale, where it joins the Roaring Fork River. Most of the Crystal River flows through White River National Forest land parallel to Hwy. 133, which gives great public fishing access to hook the brown and rainbow trout that populate its waters.
Local Fly Fishing Guides
Check with local outfitters to find out what’s hatching, or catching, and to show you around Basalt’s Gold Medal waters. Try these pros:
* What are Gold Medal waters? Here’s the lowdown: Gold Medal waters, on a per acre basis, produce a minimum of 12 trout that are 14 inches or more. The health and richness of living organisms in the ecosystem—that includes fish, plant life and micro-invertebrates, known as standing stock, must be 60 pounds per acre. Finally, waters get the designation of Gold Medal only if they are accessible to the public.