Rob Herrmann Photography

South Platte River: Eleven Mile Canyon

Difficulty Intermediate
Ideal Days To Fish 11/30, 12/1 & 12/5

Weekly Report

Report DateNov. 25, 2021

Flows dropped last week but appear to have settled just below 100 cfs. Despite flow volatility, Eleven Mile Canyon is fishing well right now. The early morning hours aren’t for the faint of heart as the canyon is bitter cold before the sun rises above the canyon walls. Anglers dead set on being the first to the river will find trout holding deep in soft pools and runs. Achieving a slow and clean drift with a deep nymph rig is key. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself chipping ice off your guides prior to 11 am. After 11 am, the water will warm up and provide trout with more energy to feed and adjust their depth/holding position. Most trout will favor deep pools and soft runs but you’ll also find trout feeding in slow riffles, pockets and in seams between a fast run and slack water. Eggs, olive leeches, Rainbow Warriors and red Copper Johns were hot lead patterns last week. Bling Midges, Mercury Midges, Top Secrets, JuJu Baetis, Barr’s Emergers and Chocolate Foam Back Emergers did the trick in the trailer position. Favor midge larva/pupa patterns during the morning/late afternoon and baetis emergers during the middle of the day. Hatch activity has been consistent but surface feeding can be hit or miss. Sections that receive ample sunlight typically produce the most bugs and surface feeders.

Recommended Flies

River Flow

Flow Region
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Detailed River Info


The Eleven Mile section of the South Platte is a gorgeous stretch of river that offers anglers amazing fishing year round. The canyon experiences some great hatches throughout the warmer months and because it's a tail water, it can be fished in the winter. As you explore this river you'll notice that it has blended characteristics of the Cheesman Canyon and Deckers sections of the South Platte. While the best fishing usually occurs within two miles of the dam, the road that parallels the river makes it easy to jump in and out of the car to explore different sections. Eleven Mile has quickly become one of our favorite places to fish.


The Eleven Mile stretch of the South Platte offers a wide range of features that caters to any style of fly fisherman. The canyon sections of the river provide deep pools for the streamer junkie and the nymph fisherman who likes to sling around a lot of weight and drift flies down deep to try and catch a picture worthy fish. Other sections of the river remind us more of Deckers with medium depth riffles, runs and tail outs. Considering this section is a tail water, the standard South Platte flies are the way to go. Classic examples are size 18 - 24 RS2's, Top Secrets and Zebra Midges. Other than the beauty, our favorite part about this river is it's ease of access and the ability to fish 2-4 sections in a day. Our favorite thing to do is drive up close to the damn, fish a quarter mile section, jump back in the car and move down river until we find another quality section to fish. No need to haul around a big back pack either! With the road so close to the river, you can access your lunch and river beers with ease! 

River Access

The Eleven Mile  section of the South Platte river is easy accessed from County Road 96. County Road 96 is a dirt road that starts in Lake George and runs along the river up to the dam. The road consists of pull-offs and designated parking lots making it easy to jump in and out of the car to fish different sections of the river. One thing to be aware of is the $7 entrance fee that needs to be paid to enter the canyon. Plan on bringing a check or cash to pay this fee.