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Fly Fishing in Buena Vista: A Hidden Gem for Outdoor Enthusiasts


Buena Vista, a small town in Colorado, has long been known for its vibrant outdoor community, attracting adventure seekers with its exhilarating whitewater and thrilling mountain biking opportunities. However, there is another activity that often gets overshadowed but deserves its fair share of attention – fly fishing. The Arkansas River, which flows right through downtown, offers a phenomenal haven for trout fishing, making Buena Vista a hidden gem for fly fishing enthusiasts.

Unparalleled Fly Fishing Opportunities

The Arkansas River, with its diverse sections and plentiful trout, is a paradise for fly fishermen. From the smaller creek brook trout fishing near the river’s headwaters in the majestic Leadville region to the high quantity and quality brown trout fishing as you move downstream, there is something for every angler’s taste and skill level.

Exploring the Arkansas River and Beyond

Apart from the splendid fishing opportunities in the Arkansas River, there are other serene spots that are worth exploring. The high alpine lakes of the Collegiate Mountains, located in the Collegiate Range, offer a peaceful retreat for anglers willing to embark on a moderate hiking adventure. These pristine lakes are inhabited by hungry cutthroat trout, eagerly biting on everything from streamers to stimulators.

The Best Fishing Sections

While exploring Buena Vista’s fishing scene, there are specific areas that stand out as the best fishing sections. The Numbers, Clear Creek Confluence, and the Big Bend area near Salida are among the top choices for anglers seeking a memorable fly fishing experience. These stretches of the Arkansas River boast abundant trout populations and breathtaking landscapes, making them truly hard to beat.

A True Trophy: Greenback Cutthroat

For those seeking a more challenging and rewarding fishing experience, venturing into the Bear Creek drainage near Leadville is highly recommended. Here, you have a chance to encounter one of the very few remaining pure strain Greenback Cutthroat trout. These native fish are a true trophy, boasting both beauty and rarity, making any catch a remarkable achievement regardless of size.

A Well-Kept Secret

Fly fishing in Buena Vista may not be as widely known as some of the more famous fishing spots in Colorado, but that is part of its allure. The uneducated trout of the Arkansas River provide fly fishermen with thrilling opportunities to test their skills and enjoy the solitude of the picturesque surroundings. The beauty of the landscapes and the abundance of trout make Buena Vista a destination that should not be overlooked by any angler.


In conclusion, Buena Vista’s fly fishing scene is a well-kept secret that deserves recognition. The Arkansas River and its diverse sections offer unparalleled fishing opportunities, while the high alpine lakes of the Collegiate Mountains provide a serene and rewarding angling experience. Whether you are an experienced angler or a beginner looking to try your hand at fly fishing, Buena Vista is a hidden gem that promises unforgettable moments on the water. So grab your fishing gear and immerse yourself in the beauty of Buena Vista’s fly fishing paradise.

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