Fly Fishing at one of the best Trout Rivers in the world.

Fly Fishing at one of the best Trout Rivers in the world.


[Music] world of American Angler you’re up with the sun with a fish on your line your day’s just begun the world of American Angler on lakes and on streams Now you are living the good life catch the one of your dreams [Music stinger and fade down] I’m Pat Traynor and welcome to the American Angler today we’re fishing the world-class San Juan River in northwestern New
Mexico and since I’ve decided to take the day off have some fun and just go
fishing your host for today’s show will be Dave Cohen of Arizona outdoors and
your guide will be a gentleman that grew up on this river mr. Paul Faust and our
special guest is Leon Chandler the President of Cortland line you like
catching quality trout a great river stay with us you’re going to like this
one. Stay tuned and I hope you enjoy today’s show they’ll be right back i’m going
fishing [Music stinger and fad down] [intro music] normally we are pleased just to be where
trout live. today we will have the added excitement of fishing and catching trout
and one of the premier tail waters in the United States the San Juan River
located in northwestern New Mexico where the Anasazi Indians also referred to as
the ancient ones used to dwell. The San Juan is home to some truly trophy-sized
Rainbows, Cutthroat and Brown trout the water temperature even during the summer
rarely exceeds 45 degrees ideal for trout and their abundant food sources
this part of the San Juan flows from the base of Navajo dam built in 1962 this
remarkable structure remains one of the largest earthen dams in the United
States river can be fished either by waiting on floating the several miles of
quality water today we will be waiting area called the upper flats [Music] we are coming into
some of the areas now I understand the fish will use to move up into their
spawning areas yes they are going to use this whole riffle almost like a fish
ladder there’s times when you’ll see them going to zigzag crossways through
these riffles and helping to these pools above us will spawn in the gravel almost
looks like a salmon run exactly there’s times when you can look
down from one of these upper pools and see any given time 8 to 10 fish moving up through the riffles
will they hold like salmon? or will they just continue to move up. well they will hold for a moment until
they get their breath again so to speak and then they’ll move up the next step hold for a little while and move right on up’ So you are pretty much chasing them. Yes exactly [Splashing as they wade] these are very slick pools what we can
do here Dave we may want to start in right along this edge and make a few
casts and then kind of just gradually work our way across into this other tongue
and then on over would walk up to them or fish up to them I would probably make all quartering up casts to start with any
technique in here wil work these fish this time of year very hungry very
aggressive fish usually no doubt about the stripe. They really move the indicator Ok what
I’m going to do is I’m going to step right down below you here and i’ll let
you go ahead and start in right on this little tongue and I’ll start right this
little seam right here below you [Casting] we’re just going to gradually work
through these little calm areas and walk on across and keep fishing these
little places like this all up through here I’m gonna take a few steps over now hitting the bottom here a little bit too
these fish are in very shallow water right now they come up into these gravely areas
they dig out a little bit or sometimes they’re called Redd’s there’s a big
rainbow that just feed right there in front of us. just saw him roll I am going to try and
to put a cast right over the top of him you can spot these fish a lot of
times and put a cast right over the top of him and take them. but they won’t move very
far to eat your fly these are tiny little flies. and there’s so many of them in the
water that they don’t have to move far to eat em. see if I can find him again here a lot
of times you can fish a little pool like this. and not take the fish out of 50
casts come back and make one cast and take the fish and the reason is you
probably didn’t get your flies right over the top of him you have to vary
your casts where you put in the current until you get the cast that goes right
over the top of them, the one they want Talk about practicing what you preach looks like a sizable male The reason I am
playing him kind of light here I’ve got him on 6x tippet which is three pound
test looking at the size of this fish i’m going to get them to be probably
three-and-a-half four pound fish and he can break it really easy [Reeling] [Splash] you get that rod real low and to the
side like that you can break their equilibrium and ease them in anywhere you
want to go with them I am going to go ahead and take my gloves off and get
ready to land him here a lot of these fish will play kind of
possum with you until you get in closer they get visual range of you and then
they’re out of here like rocket let’s see if we can ease him up here. he definitely doesn’t want to come into
the shallow water it’s a big male [Splashing on the surface] this one has a few flies actually stuck
in him somebody else he took the little midge
larva pattern you want to make sure you wet your hands before you handle them. ease back
around here get a little bit of a look at him notice these little scars on the
side this from rubbing up against other males. The males push each other around as he gets close to spawning season he is actually still very strong we didn’t
play very long just going to support him here for a minute there he goes he will hold in that area for a few
minutes until he regain his strength a little bit and we’ll be right back up the
ripple that’s about an average sized fish most of the rainbows here average about 16 to 19 inches so they are good sized rainbows we are going to go out and see if we catch
another one here It looks like Dave’s has a good one on. as a weather got colder i
think the fishing got hotter we’ve got these little fronts that are
blowing through right now and they’re cold little snow storms to see
intermittently hit a hitting us pretty soon this will probably clear out and
we’ll get kind of sunny again lighten up a little they really don’t affect the fishing if
anything they can help enhance the fishing we seem to have heavier insect
hatches during bad weather the exact reason for that is anybody’s question
I’ve asked a number of biologists why there’s various theories parametric
pressure how weather affects the way fish feed one thing that the
weather is doing for us right now is it it’s disguising us some what so were able
to get very close to the fish and they’re not quite as wherry as they
normally would be on a sunny day so it’s definitely helping us out. we all…
I think we’re all a little bit cold right now but will trade, to take
the cold for the fishing that we’re getting we’re having some excellent
fishing how about this Faust he’s at it again making a pretty Hardy run here [sound of water running and rain falling] if you look at him when he’s rolling
around out there you can see how red they are. when the male start to spawn they
turn real bright colors like that I think there probably as beautiful this
time of year as anytime this fish is not done yet, by a long shot ah we’re going down the riffles here [splashing] I think we’ve just about got him now he is getting a little tried famous last words it’s amazing how much pressure you can
put on these fish to be light tippets most people wouldn’t believe that you
catch a rainbow this side on-line this light. I will walk down here to him and see
what he does yeah he’s still pretty lively. I will try and ease him toward the bank impressive thing about this particular
fish he’s got a lot of girth to him. there we go let’s see here where we’re at he’s been around the block a little bit Ok notice the girth on this fish just a
beautiful rainbow I am going to lay this rod down right here ease him back out in the current. [splash from wading] [Music fading up] ok you face them upstream and then rock
them very gently it forces water back through their gills actually in essence your.. resuscitating them let’s see what he does there he goes oh yeah he’s still real
strong alright let’s see if we get another here. My hands are a little bit cold that water temperature is about 43, 44 degrees
so if i look like i’m in pain a little bit i am just a little [Laughter] The American Angler
returns in a moment [fade up music] Paul what are you looking at here well Leon
what we’ve got here these are the actual insects that are imitating with our flies
in various stages here we’ve got some midge larvae you can see them
crawling around on the rocks and here are actually some of the midge pupa
they make a little case around themselves and they go into the pupil
stage and then as they hatch and become winged adults and they shoot out of these little cases very similar to the catalyst do they swim to the surface yes they do certainly do. there’s a few of them. these are actually called black fly larvae here they have a little bulbous end on one
end we have several types of midges we have black fly which are actually
diptera and we also have khurana mids which is kind of a general
classification midges we look over here on this rock by the reels and then on
this other little rock and we can see the tiny adult swing adults flying
around so the user going through this whole stage and other ready to start it
all over again. exactly. what you’ll see you’ll see these winged adults going
into little groups or balls these are mating clusters sometimes they’ll be as
many as a hundred midges in a cluster these fish will key these clusters as
they come floating down they’ll kind of pile up say in a back eddy someplace where
they have time to collect and as they float down these fish Will key these big
clusters and eat them and that’s really when the winged adult becomes important right
now like you say most of the fish that we’ve got today have all been on larvae
and pupae patterns but these little winged adults can also be very important
and very calm smooth water with the fish have time to look at them they will rise
up and take these little tiny flies and we’re talking about again its fly that is
from anywhere from a size 20 down to a 28 or 30 they’re very tiny flies There should be fish lying right in
the end of that run and what I’d like to do is to get that nymph to float down
through that rift as thou it’s unattached and I hope that he would move and take
it I’m absolutely amazed at these fish that
fish of this size would would make the effort to remove and take these little
tiny nymphs [cough] but they do see ideally I want that nymph to come downstream on a
dead drift as though it’s an attached to anything and I just keep laying it in there right in front of the
nose and AH! and the take is very very gentle so that’s the reason we have the strike
indicator so that we can see any unnatural movement of that line and
leader sometimes we catch the bottom [Laughter[ and Ah but sometimes it’s a fish I’m doing this kind of fishing we. we
will use a very short line because we must have control of the line if we try
to make long cast in this situation we would not have that control he took it He toke it. [drag spinning out] [Reeling] [Drag] [Reeling] [splashing] [walking] i can’t see [fish splashing[ yeah pretty fish beatiful fish! there he goes one of life’s greatest pleasures releasing
a rainbow like! The American Angler returns in a moment [Music] anytime you have the opportunity to fish
one of the top five tailwater trout fisheries in the US and share the day
with good company and expert fisherman like Paul Faust and Leon Chandler, you drop everything and go The San Juan is fish able 12 months a year if you don’t mind an occasional snow storm whether your preferences catching
release or keeping a fish or two to eat there’s a stretch of the river with
regulations to your liking hopefully thoughtful management will
keep the river as productive as it was today we thank Paul and Leon for joining
us. If you plan to visit the San Juan and hire a guide Paul Faust of Rocky Mountain
Anglers should be your choice if you just want company called me! [Music]

16 thoughts on “Fly Fishing at one of the best Trout Rivers in the world.”

  • Great video. I had the pleasure of living in Farmington  for 10 years and fished the river 3xs a week. I was also lucky enough to fish with Chuck Rizzutto a few times.

  • First of all never handle a trout by the jaw! That first fish had a busted jaw.. Many of the trout on the Juan have busted jaws because people don't know how to handle them….

  • This is an awesome video! Edited and Narrated so well! I love vintage video like this! It's like a treasure just to watch and learn from!

  • Thanks so much for this great vid. I am retiring this winter and moving to New Mexico to fulfill my dream of being a trout bum. Can't wait to fish the San Juan. Thanks.

  • Use a net. It shortens the fight so they're more likely to survive.

    Most of those fish were 1/2 dead by the time they were landed. You're not impressing anyone by lipping them.

  • We've learned alot since this video was shot. Now just about all fly fisherman on the Juan use nets and handle the fish as little as possible. Play the fish as little as possible and that is due to the quality of the equipment. It's an always evolving sport!

  • To bad it was not a wild trout, San Juan River, New Mexico is a fisherman's trap, and the biggest hidden one! Your fishing a hatchery built by the state's biggest ideal of lies to the world and a trap for tourists for their money, fish are extremely lazy, fish do not have much freedom, 80,000 fish shoved into one little area with major rules for your dollars with or without guides to lie and steal your money, little sporting in this trap when fish are dead in natural resources, fish will not even breed in these conditions meaning nothing but stocked fish with sickness and disease and the bad health from the over charging conditions keeping them all contained like prisoners, their is no spawning on the San Juan River, All this is kept from the public, one of the biggest state river lies of hiding the truth in the world of lazy dead big unhealthy trout. Just try to catch one below or west of Bloomfield, NM and you'll know the truth of containment for the millions of dollars made off your bought fish, not to be a fighter of wild trout when the resources are abundance below Bloomfield to produce the biggest lunker's alive, and fighting and spawning, to be a real sport instead of no fish at all, not one fish, down stream, sorry for being so negative when speaking the facts on San Juan River's none sporting bought Trout! Good sport fishing elsewhere to be close to world famous credited!

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