Guided Trips

Guided Trips

8-hour, 6-hour, 4-hour trip?
A 4-hour trip usually seems to go by faster than you’d like. Especially for beginners, we highly recommend 6- or 8-hour trips. You’ll have more time to learn, fish, enjoy the surroundings, and savor the experience.

How Many and How Old?
Parties of one, two or three anglers are assigned one guide. Unless all clients are experienced anglers, we suggest that you book no more than two clients per guide. There are always exceptions, but a client should be at least 12 years old. There is no maximum age limit!

What Happens and Where?
Beginners learn fly fishing basics. Intermediate and advanced anglers sharpen their skills. Destinations are in or near Rocky Mountain National Park, catch-and-release only. Private water, back-packing and horseback trips are also available.

Basic Terms and Conditions

Horseback, National Park*
Our guided horseback trips to high mountain lakes and streams take you to some of the most spectacular fly fishing destinations in the world. You’ll arrive at the stable or trailhead about 7:30AM, depart at 8AM, and return there by about 6:30PM. Most rides last less than 2.5 hours, one-way. Overnight horseback outings are also available. Please call for rates.

Backpacking Trips*

Enjoy hiking, camping, fly-fishing and exploring in the beautiful Rocky Mountain National Park backcountry. Please call for rates.
Private Water Access Trips*

Private water trips allow you the freedom to spend the day on water that only you and your guide will be fishing. many areas offer large fish and all lack crowds. An access fee applies. Please ask about current rates and availability.

*Horseback, backpacking and private access trips are limited to 2 clients per guide and must be booked at least 48 hours in advance.
Less Time, More Time, Your Time

A guided trip begins at your scheduled departure time (for example 8AM) and ends when you return to the shop (4PM). If your trip is cut short, we’ll gladly refund your costs based on an hourly rate. If you and your guide agree to extend a trip, you’ll be billed for extra time, also on an hourly rate – unless your guide calls for a bit of extra fishing at no charge. If you’re on a tight schedule and must return by an appointed hour, please let us know. You’ll find that both you and your guide lose track of time too easily while fly fishing!

What You’ll Need

All three of our locations are full service fly fishing pro shops, so we’ve got all the gear you will ever need. Here’s the list of goodies you’ll want:
Polarized glasses, brimmed cap or hat, rain gear (we don’t get steady rain, but it’s not unusual to get an afternoon thundershower), drinking water, food (optional; provided on 8-hour trips), sweater, fleece or jacket, Colorado fishing license (also available in the shop before your trip), extra pair of warm socks, gloves (for cold weather months), insect repellent, sunscreen, completed waiver form and invoice (we’ll take care of that with you …

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Welcome to St. Vrain Angler on The Web

Thanks for dropping by for a visit. Our goal for this site is similar to the goal for the shops: to be your partner in fly fishing! We do our part by providing:

  • Helpful, friendly service
  • Honest, accurate information and fishing reports
  • Great gear that works and fits your budget
  • Informative Classes in Fly Tying, Rod Building, Fly Fishing and more!
  • Fly Fishing Mini-Camps
  • Instructive Guided Trips
  • Adventure Travel to great fly fishing destinations

We love helping folks get into the delightful pastime of fly fishing and then hearing stories, seeing pictures and sharing the joys felt as a result of a great time on the water, at the vise and so on.

Our battle cry is: Let’s Go Fishing! When’s the best time to go? As soon as you can. We’ll help get you on the water in any way that we can.

We’ll be working on this site on a continuous basis and hope you enjoy what you see. As always, any input you have is welcome.

So, come on in and enjoy your stay! We wish you happy browsing and better fishing.

Your friends at St. Vrain Angler Stores…

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St. Vrain Angler Stores

The staff at St. Vrain Angler Stores has a passion for people and for fly fishing. We see our shops as “the great escape” from what has become the normal expectations we have for our shopping experiences. (That is, unfortunately, finding folks that don’t seem to care for either the stuff they are selling or the people they are supposed to be helping. Why is this?) We want to be your fly shop; we want to help you find a sense of peace while you are in one of our stores; we want to help you get the stuff and information you want and need – including time to hang out while you drink a cup of coffee.

It’s been said that we are a lot like the old barber shop or hardware store. When you come in, you will be greeted by someone with a smile on their face. We’ll find out where you’ve been fishing and where you plan to go on your next outing.

We’ll help you tie a fly, select a new material or fly, and we’ll go outside and do some casting – time permitting.
Come on by and breathe some rarified fly shop air. We specialize in refreshment and fun. Oh, yeah – we’re the big kids toy store, too.

We show folks how to use the materials and equipment that we sell. Try rods; heft reels; look through sunglasses; and so on. Want to know how a certain material will look on a fly? We’ll tie it for you, share some helpful hints we’ve learned, then give you the fly as a pattern, if you’d like.

Our fly tying materials selection is one of the best you’ll find anywhere! We’re constantly adding new materials for a wide array of fly tying, including trout and warm water flies, saltwater and Alaska flies, and Atlantic Salmon and Steelhead flies. If you want to tie it, chances are, we’ve go the material to do the job.

When you need a fly rod, we’ll be sure to match your budget with the best that’s available – and we guarantee it! When you buy a rod from St. Vrain Angler Stores we guarantee you’ll be happy with its performance or you can return the rod for a refund or exchange it for a new one! We want you to be happy with what you buy from us. (Actually, we hope you’ll use everything lots, too!)…

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Helpful Fishing Tips

April is wonderful: Spring is here, plants are budding, most of the rivers are clear of ice and the high lakes are thawing as well. It’s a wonderful time to be alive, to make time for some fly fishing. Clocks have moved ahead and there is more daylight in the evening. It’s time to fish: let’s go!

In the plains, warm water lakes will be heating up and panfish, bass, wipers and so on will become more active. Active fish are hungry fish and an evening or afternoon at a local impoundment will often yield good fishing. Fish the edges of ponds with nymphs such as Prince Nymph or another peacock fly, woolly buggers in black, olive or brown and small poppers. If you have a float tube, try fishing around islands or other cover in shallow water. Look for spawning panfish and pester them for a few minutes, too. They are particularly aggressive and, when released, will return to their beds. The one potential negative for warm water fishing during April is the onset of foul weather, including snowstorms. Cool nights and cold storms will lower water temperatures, temporarily putting fish off the feed. Keep trying. For panfish, use 4-5X tippet; for bass, 2-3X, depending on the outfit you use.

Now, to trout. Streams from an elevation of about 9,000 feet or so and below are open and free of ice. If a stream has a southern exposure, and has been getting sunshine, there’s a good chance it may be ice free even higher. Flows are relatively low, but may change due to rain or snowfall and snowmelt. For the most part, the water is pretty clear. While flows are low, it is a nice time to check the structure of some of your larger, favorite streams to get a feel for where fish will hold when the water gets higher. Same is true for smaller streams, of course, but in that case, the fish don’t have as many choices.

This is the season of midges, beatis, early brown stones and a few caddis hatches. The fish are hungry, the water temperature is rising, which increases the fish’s metabolism, and nature is providing more and larger bugs for the fish to eat. Patterns that imitate the above insects, including blue-winged olive in 16-22, small, dark caddis in 16-20, Griffith’s gnats and other midge patterns and the nymph and emerger patterns to complement the adults are all in order. Also, it’s always a good idea to have a few attractor patterns such as small (16-20) Parachute Adams, Royal Wulff, Coachman Trude and so on.

When the water is low, fish will find the best holding areas available to them when they aren’t feeding. When bugs become active and the trout follow by feeding on them, the fish will move to the area where the concentration of insects is highest – in riffles and runs before hatches, and in the tails of runs and pools as the hatch reaches its peak …

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