Copyright 2018 James Marsh
Fly Fishing On The North Platte River In
The North Platte River is a 550 mile long stream that
begins in the state of Colorado and flows north into
Wyoming. Fly fishing the North Platte River in Colorado is
quite different from fishing it in the state of Wyoming. The
headwaters of the river is located near the continental
divide on the east and south and the mountain drainage
peaks on the east. —the north boundary is the state of
Wyoming boundary. The rugged Rocky Mountains
surrounding the headwaters of the North Platte have at
least twelve peaks over 11,000 feet. The river flows north
about 200 miles  out of the Routt National Forest and
North Park near Walden, Colorado.

The river flows through a variety of country from its
headwater in the Medicine Bow Mountains of northern
Colorado. The portion of the North Platte River located
in Wyoming
is covered under this section of our website.
There are two additional tailwater sections of the river
famous for trout fishing in Wyoming. The Miracle Mile
section of the North Platte River
is covered under this
section of our website and the North Platte River Gray
Reef tailwater
is covered under this section of our
Fly Fishing the North Platte River in Colorado varies from
dealing with smooth flowing meadow streams to rough
pocket water.

The North Platte River is formed from the confluence of
Grizzly Creek and Little Grizzly Creek in the Rabbit Ears
Mountain Range at about 9,000 feet elevation. Roaring
Fork Creek joins the river as soon as it reaches the North
Park valley. This is located near Walden and Cowdrey,
Colorado. Three other tributaries, the Illinois River,
Michigan River and the Canadian Michigan river  
converge with the North Platte in North Park. The
Michigan River
is covered under this section of our

The North Fork River leaves the North Park valley and
flows into the North Gate Canyon and into the state of
Wyoming. This is the most scenic section of the river.
Access to this section is provided by the Routt Forest off
of Highway #125 that leads to Saratoga, Wyoming.The
North Gate Canyon begins downstream of the access at
Windy Hole in the Routt Forest. This section of the North
Platte is designated Gold Medal water by the state of

With the exception of about a half mile of the river that
lies on private property, all of the water in the Routt
Forest access to the Six Mile Gap is open to the public.
This section of the river is about nine miles long. The
water in the canyon is mostly heavy pocket water with
some deep pools and long riffles mixed in. Rainbows and
brown trout are plentiful and average about 12 to 15

The food supply for the trout is varied and plentiful due
to the different types of water. There are fast water
sections and slower meadow sections that provide a
diverse population of aquatic insects. We developed a
hatch chart for the stream and will glad to send anyone a
list of flies that they should be using if they provide us
with a week or so notice.

There are far too many insects, crustaceans, baitfish
species and sculpin to mention here but some of the
more important ones are as follows:

The most important mayflies are Blue-winged Olives
(vary from a size 20 to a 16), Pale Morning Duns, Pale
Evening Duns, Ginger Quills, Green Drakes, Small
Western Green drakes, and Tricos.

There are several different species of Spotted Sedges,
little black caddis, October Caddis, and Little Short-
horned sedges. Stoneflies are also very plentiful and
include some of the giant Salmonflies, Golden Stoneflies,
Little Yellow stoneflies, and a few other species.

Terrestrial insects play an important part of the trout's
diet during the summer months. Sculpin are also very
plentiful and important to imitate anytime there is a low
light situation.

Give us a call, or write us at the numbers or address
shown above under "Options for selecting flies" and let
us help you with your selection. We have taken samples
of the aquatic insects on this stream and base it on facts,
not trial and error.

Some fishing is possible prior to runoff in April and early
Springtime can be a tough time to fish the North Platte
The water usually gets into good shape about the middle
of June. Summertime is the best time to fish the North
Fly fishing can be great in the Fall. The brown trout
spawn during the Fall.

Click Here For Fishing Gear, Tackle and Flies
Type of Stream
Freestone Stream

Rainbow Trout (Wild)
Brown Trout (Wild)

Small to Medium

Northern Colorado

Nearest Towns



Non-Resident License
State of Colorado

National Weather Service Link

Fly Fishing Gear, Tackle and Flies
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Options For Selecting Flies:
1. Email us (
with the dates you will be fishing this
stream and we will send you a list of our
fly suggestions. Please allow up to 24
hours for a response.

2. Call us 800-594-4726 and we will
help you decide which flies you need.

3. Email us (
with a budget for flies and we will select
them to match the budget and get them
to you in time for your fly fishing trip.

All orders are shipped free in the
U. S. Orders over $100 are shipped via
Priority Mail.  
We have Perfect Fly
each of these other
fine trout streams.
fishing information
including descriptions
of the streams,
access, location,
fishing report, hatches
and recommended
trout flies, fly fishing
gear and equipment,
USGS stream data,
local weather and
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