Bruce Ajari: Federation of Fly Fishers event near quality Colorado fisheries |

Bruce Ajari: Federation of Fly Fishers event near quality Colorado fisheries

This yearand#8217;s Federation of Fly Fishers Annual Conclave will be held in Loveland, Colo., from July 28 through Aug. 1. Loveland is located in northern Colorado where there are a number of great waters to fish within a few hours.

There are great seminars, youth programs, casting clinics and plenty of fly-tying demonstrations to be viewed at the clinic. Many luminaries of the sport such as Bruce Richards, Bob Jacklin and Lefty Kreh will be present, and it is an excellent opportunity for any level of fly fisher to improve his or her skills.

Pre-registration for this event is already closed. Registration will be open on July 28. For more information contact Jessica Atherton at (406) 222-9369, ext. 107, or via e-mail at

Northern Colorado has a variety of fly fishing opportunities. The Big Thompson, which flows out of Rocky Mountain National Park, and its sister river, the Cache la Poudre, offer more than 100 miles of classic western pockets water. Both rivers are within 20 minutes of Loveland on their lower reaches. While these rivers are not big-fish waters, they make up for it with numbers of trout up to 16 inches. The average fish is a healthy 12 inches.

For those with a little more time to fish, the North Platte River and South Platte River are a little over two hours away. The trico hatch on the North Platte outside of Walden should be in full swing.

Three hours away, near Casper, Wyo., is the tail water on the North Platte known as Grey Reef. This fishery has tons of fish that average 16 inches, and the chance of catching a trout in the double-digits is always a possibility.

The South Platte River in Cheesman Canyon above Deckers is one of the Westand#8217;s premier tail water fisheries. If you are willing to do a little hiking into the canyon, the fishing is technical but offers the chance of big fish on small dry flies and nymphs.

There are also a variety of quality lakes in the region. The three Delaney Butte Lakes near Walden are excellent fisheries. The north lake is managed as a trophy brown trout fishery. (The Zonker pattern was first fished on Delaney Butte.) There are also a number of productive lakes around Laramie, Wyo., which is an hour north of Loveland.

All this great fishing is available as well as a chance to learn so much at the Conclave, which will be located at the Embassy Suites in Loveland. You can find out everything about the Conclave schedule at

Be sure to call Jessica Atherton right away if you are interested in going. Workshops and classes still have openings.

and#8212; Bruce Ajari is a Truckee resident and regular fishing columnist for the Sierra Sun and other area newspapers.

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