Hola Amigos -
The Trout Buddha's tales of "what I did on my summer vacation" continue with the Epic 50th Birthday Trip moving north to Antonito Colorado (Mogote really) to fish with the Conejos River Anglers. Now Conejos in Spanish means Rabbits - not to be confused with cojones which means; well never mind. Beautiful drive out of Taos across the bridge that spans the Rio Grande Gorge, thru Tres Piedras (translation: three stones), and north to Colorado. We booked a package deal with Conejos River Anglers (sleep, eat, fish package) and spent two days fishing with our guide Jasmine. Jon Harp runs a great shop and the Conejos River Valley is absolutely stunning! To be honest we were a bit worried when we were the last group sent out of the shop that day and they told us the private water we would be on was 1/2 a mile or so down the road alongside a private Elk Ranch. Not exactly what we had in mind; well things have a way of working out. We immediately go into some large fish and spent the entire day hooking several nice sized browns, rainbows, and cutbows. One brown was over 20 inches (a copy of which will be sent to the shop to be placed in the 20+ book!).
Our guide was great. Jasmine has a great disposition, very helpful, great advice, divided her time between the two of us very well, and had NONE of that attitude that guides can adopt after a long summer. She is the real deal. She told us her husband had recently opened a fly shop in Montrose and that she was continuing to guide the Conejos and making trips back and forth for this season. If you are in Colorado check in with Conejos River Anglers and - find out where Jasmine is guiding and book a trip. You will enjoy your time. In this economy every fly shop needs some love. If you are in Montrose check out: Potamoi Anglers (Potamoi was a Greek river god - I like this shop already).
On our second day on the Conejos we went to the canyon stretch of the river and hiked down in an area known as the Pinnacles. Beautiful section of the river. Full public access and despite being a Sunday we fished the river without seeing anyone. Pocket water, beautiful scenery, picking off fish in the riffles on dry flies. Too many caught to count! It was quite the day. In fact this trip was shaping up to one fabulous day after another. Oh well, enjoy the photos.
PS - Great food to be had at Conejos River Ranch - try the BBQ platter or the steak and enchiladas!