New Mexico San Juan River  Rainbow/Br Trout  Day #17  State #20 June 29, 2009 06/13/09 Pennsylvania
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Aztec Anglers Guide Service
Guide: Paul Freeman
Navajo Dam
Phone: 877-298-3204
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The San Juan River is known by most fly fisherman as one of those must visit places in your lifetime.  This river, a tailwater from the Navajo Reservoir in northern New Mexico is loaded – I mean loaded with big bruising rainbow trout and its fair share of big browns as well.  The problem – these fish have a PhD in fly tackle.  Typical flies and presentations just don’t get it done.  Our guide, Aaron Hyder, tied a #22 midge below an attractor and expected us to catch a fish with it.  Let me explain what this means.  We nicknamed our fly the “atomic hook” as it couldn’t possibly take very many atoms to compose this fly.  You could probably swallow it yourself and be none the wiser – not recommended though.

Taylor and I caught 14 trout in our 4 hour float – but we easily missed or lost 20 more as these trout don’t hit your fly they just gum it or something.  The most common words on the water today by our guide were “Missed him.”  “Missed another one.”  “Missed him again.”  Taylor and I were afraid to blink   It was a classic stare down.  If you blinked they’d hit.  This was the most technical day of fishing we’ve ever seen. 

Below us we could see trout everywhere – and huge guys as well – so you knew you were just one blink away from having a chance at one of these trophies. 

On this day our trout were fairly small with sizes ranging between 12” – 17” – but the fight these fish put on keep them in a class of their own.  I can only imagine the fight a 20” rainbow would put up.

Our drive to Page, Arizona was a short one by this journey’s standards at a mere 280 miles.  Tomorrow we will be on the Colorado River at Lees Ferry in the company of the Grand Canyon – at 6AM.


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Fish    Last Updated June 29, 2009  - Copyright 2009