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Keep Calm and Fish On: 4 Spots in Telluride to Fish with the Kids

fly fishing san miguel

by Jackie Edwards

On the backdrop of the beautiful Rocky Mountains, Telluride has some of the best trout fishing in the region. The network of lakes, ponds, and alpine creeks in Telluride offer unique fly fishing opportunities and are an angler’s haven. If you’re looking for a great spot to take out the kids, here are some recommendations that will have the fish biting, and the kids smiling.  

Trout Lake: Located just 15 miles from downtown Telluride along Highway 145, Trout Lake is the perfect spot for a trip with your little one. The very spacious lake is located at the foot of 14,000 foot mountains and provides amazing views while you’re fishing. The lake is also great for the kids because it has easy fly conditions as the fish are plentiful and are always very hungry. They bite your hook before it even hits the water. The kids will enjoy getting the nibbles and will be fully entertained by all the fish they are sure to catch at Trout Lake.

San Miguel River: Known as one of the friendliest trout streams in the Rockies the San Miguel is appealing to fishermen of all levels. For beginners, the trout here are very unselective and therefore great for the kids first fishing excursion. It is also a great spot to catch some big game. The trout in San Miguel are on average 12 inches, with many fisherman commonly catching trout longer than 18 inches. These will be nice and easy trophies for your kids.

Upper Dolores River: Near Lizard Head Pass and the Wilson Mountain Range, the Dolores watershed offers more than 75 miles of trout water. The trout in the Upper Dolores River don’t see a lot of anglers so they are pretty easy for kids to catch. They are also opportunistic feeders so you simply need a fly that is easy to see in choppy waters. You can find brown, brook and rainbow trout throughout the river, but the fish lower down in the canyons tend to be larger – about 10-14 inches in size. The trout found closer to Lizard Head Pass are smaller and are only about 6-10 inches in size. Therefore, you may want to start your kids at the Lizard Head Pass to practice and then work your way down the river.

Gunnison River: Known as one of Colorado’s legendary trout streams, Gunnison River houses gold medal browns and rainbows that can reach up to two feet in length. Although these fish will be harder for your children to catch, with your help, they could reel in an extremely large trout. The kids will be extremely excited when you both pull in the big ones, and you can get some great shots of them with the fish.


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