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Phone:  505-632-2194 Outfitting Fishermen for the San Juan since 1958 Navajo Dam, NM  87419
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For Lodging or Guide Service call 505-632-2194
The Restaurant - El Pescador - Closed for the Winter beginning Nov 1, 2015

San Juan USGS River Flow 331 cfs    **   Water Clarity:  2' 1/2  - 3' Visibility Abe's 50 Year Celebration
** On April 23, 2015 the Bureau of Reclamation announced that the flows published by the USGS for the Archuleta Site (09355500) were approximately 135 CFS higher than the actual Flow.  The flow above and the flows for the San Juan Flow Graph toward the bottom of this web page have been adjusted using new data available from USGS on or after 4/24/2015 resulting in a CFS value approximately 135 CFS lower than before.
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Jay Walden's Bad Day At Texas Creek takes you down dusty, gravel roads, with a fly rod under the wiper blade, and a dog's head out the side window. His irreverent view from the windshield, that occasionally appears more like a fun-house mirror, makes you glad you came along for the ride. Whether you're a fly fisherman, dog lover, or none of the above, you'll enjoy this collection of short stories about life and adventure in the Rocky Mountain West.

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Fishing Report
Nov 22, 2015

San Juan Weekly Fishing Report  Bad Day at Texas Creek Image
Jay Walden
If there has ever been a sense of urgency to fish the San Juan, that time is now. Colder weather and all the consequences that come with it are on their way, and you'll see the fishing dynamic soon change. Less obvious than the uncomfortable feeling of icy fingers trying to thread 6x tippet through size 26 and 24 flies, we're going to have to deal with the decreased visibility of the water, once the lake turns over. Depending on who you talk to, that event is either a big deal, or it isn't. Those old boys that live for the tug on a streamer with 3x tippet, tend to love it, the ones who like to sight fish to risers with 24 and 26 midge patterns on 7x—not so much. Like pretty much everything else in life, whether it's politics, or religion, or what have you, everyone's got their own opinion. If you read this column on a regular basis, I think you know which camp I'm in. I've been getting a lot of calls this past week about when this is going to happen, and the best answer I can give is that it's completely weather driven and it'll take place as soon as the top layer of water in the lake becomes cold, and thus denser, and starts to sink toward the bottom. I might add that on most years it tends to happen between Thanksgiving and Christmas, and this Thursday is Thanksgiving and already you can see that the visibility is less than it was a couple of weeks ago. Not so much that you can't still sight fish, but it's changing. All that said, there's some beautiful weather coming up for the earlier part of this week, then we'll see a bit of wind on Wednesday as a cold front moves in and the daytime highs dip to the low and mid-40's. I'm no scientist, but I would have to say that those upcoming, lower daytime temperatures, would tend to be more; not less favorable, to cooler water temperatures in the lake. Well enough of all of that, we'll deal with dirty water once it happens, right now the visibility is still good and so is the fishing. We did have a bit of a bump in the flows this past Wednesday, when the BOR took the level from 350 cfs to about 428 cfs, where it remains at this time, apparently due to a drop in the Animas flow and the need for more water downstream from the Juan to compensate. There doesn't appear to be any moisture moving into the area until later this weekend, so it's likely to stay around 428 cfs throughout the week. If it changes next week it could go to 350 cfs again, but it won't impact the quality of the fishing. As far as what's happening, things are staying pretty predictable with the hatches. There's fish rising to midges as early as 8:00 and 9:00 am, as well as throughout the larger part of the day, so the dry fly fishing is still hanging in there. Red larva and dark pupae patterns are working in the earlier part of the day and adding midge emerger patterns later around noon once the fish start feeding on emerging midges when the hatch really gets going. From Texas Hole and below there has been some baetis activity, so adding gray and chocolate foamwings, as well as Johnny Flash, RS2s, and rootbeers to your arsenal is a good idea if you plan to target the lower river. I've seen some pretty decent hatches with adult BWOs on the water in the lower river, but the fish don't seem to be going crazy over them just yet. Most of the fish I've been seeing that are on to those adults, have been during the heavier part of the hatch, which is short in duration. If you're looking for BWO adult activity, expect to see it start around noon. Saturday and Sunday could be banner days to fish BWO dries with clouds and colder weather moving in. My experience has been that the nastier the weather, the better chance of a BWO hatch. Overall, this is going to be a good week to be on the water and the quality of the fishing should stay pretty solid for a while yet, until we see a change in the water clarity. If you would like to book a guided trip or need more info, give us a call at 505-632-2194. By the way—Abe's will be closed on November 26—Thanksgiving, so plan accordingly if you are coming out.     
Report by Jay Walden

NM Fish and Game LogoNew Fishing License Required April 1       
Reminder - time to purchase new Fishing Licenses:  The 2014-2015 Fishing Season will end March 31, 2015 and a new NM Fishing Season will begin April 1, 2015 and end March 31, 2016.  New NM 2015-2016 licenses will be required beginning April 1, 2015.

NM Fishing License Info

 Spring High Flow 2015

Bureau of Reclamation
San Juan Flow Info
Snowpack for the 2014/2015 winter season has been below normal, unless signifiicant moisturre comes into the system in late spring it is not expected that there will be a 2015 High Flow which normally occurrs in late May to June. 
Motel Info

The San Juan features year round consistent temperatures out of Navajo Dam providing a fabulous Four Season Fishery!  Water temps are in the low 40's near the dam providing a consistent environment for insect growth and development.  Fish have access to midges and annelids year round in addition to more seasonal mayfly, caddis, terrestrials and golden stonefly nymphs and adults.

Born 'N' Raised Info 

NM Free Fishing Days:  You may fish without a license on two scheduled Saturdays/year as part of National Fishing Day & National Hunting & Fishing Day -- generally the first Saturday in June & the last Saturday in September. Please consult the NM Fishing Proclamation for exact dates &/or changes.  
NM Fishing Proclamation

 Link to Restaurant Page

Restaurant - El Pescador is Closing for the winter season beginning Nov 1, 2015

Hours:  Wednesday - Saturday 6:30 am-9:00 pm,  Sun 6:30 am - 2:00 pm    Closed Monday and Tuesday


RV Slot Info 

BOR Stream Improvement Project - Project Completed Jan 2012  Beginning Oct. 10, 2011 the BOR will begin a $300,000 habitat improvement project on the “ Braids” section of the San Juan River. The first phase of the project will encompass changes to the Rex Smith Wash and address the silting problems associated with that area. During this time, the trail to the upper reaches of the river will be inaccessible from the berm area of the Texas Hole parking lot. In order to reach those areas of the river, you will have to access them by wading upriver from the Kiddie Hole Area, or from the BOR parking lot, located near the dam. The second phase of the project will begin sometime in November and the “Braids” area will be closed to fishing for about 30 days, until early December. The entire project is scheduled to be completed by January 8, 2012. There will still be plenty of water to fish during this time and upon completion, this project will add more fishable water and improved habitat for the trout in that area. We will be posting further information via our weekly fishing reports on our website.

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As always, we truly value our faithful customers and look forward to meeting new fishers daily to the San Juan -- Please stop in for a visit and share your fishin' stories. We'll be scoutin' and fishin' the river to provide you with the most current river info.

  2015 and 2008-2012 Historical Flow Data for the San Juan River

   San Juan Flow Graph

** On April 23, 2015 the Bureau of Reclamation announced that the flows published by the USGS for the Archuleta Site (09355500) were approximately 135CFS higher than the actual Flow.  The flow above and for the San Juan Flow Graph have been adjusted beginning 1/1/2015 using new data available from USGS on or after 4/24/2015.  Data for years prior to 2015 has not been changed. 

  San Juan River estimated Flow Data 2008 to Current

San Juan Flow Graph 2014
San Juan Flow Graph 2013

The San Juan Flow Graph data above are provided by Abe's Motel and Fly Shop and Aspire Computer Solutions, LLC as information to fishermen/women and other interested parties.  The data are drawn from the USGS public records, some of the data are provisional and may be subject to change.  In some cases CFS values were missing and estimated CFS Average values were substituted based on available Gauge readings. 

The flows in the San Juan river below Navajo Dam are controlled by the Bureau of Reclamation (BOR) in compliance with existing law and authorized purposes.  As is the case with many other western waters, some flows are influenced by system wide efforts to protect endangered species.  Water is naturally limited and always in high demand  in the Southwest, many competing entities are present staking claims to San Juan water and by complying with previous agreements/laws,  the BOR has limited flexibility in how flows are maintained. 

The reservoir at Navajo Dam was constructed from 1958 to 1962 as part of the Colorado River Storage Project.  There were two important provisions to the congressional authorization to build the dam, one included a substantial diversion of water from the San Juan Basin through the continental divide to the Chama river in northern New Mexico to supply additional waters to New Mexico cities along the Rio Grande.  These flows are not shown on the graph as the San Juan Chama Project water is drawn from the system before it enters Navajo Reservoir.  The second provision set aside a substantial amount of San Juan water to provide for the Navajo Indian Irrigation Project (NIIP).  The NIIP project is intended to irrigate approximately 110,600 acres of Navajo farmland south of the San Juan River.  The water for the NIIP project is drawn from the reservoir through a diversion headworks near the south side of the dam and moves water to the NIIP Project through approximately 60 miles of tunnels and canals south of the river,  bypassing the river.  As a result of the San Juan Chama Project and the NIIP Project waters no longer being present in the main river channel,  the San Juan has been a smaller river since the dam was constructed.   

In recent years flows on the San Juan have been significantly influenced by the San Juan River Basin Recovery Implementation Program (SJRIP) which recommends minimum flows (500 - 1000 cfs) in a targeted critical habitat downstream for two endangered species,  the Colorado Pikeminnow and the Razorback Sucker.  The critical habitat area is between Farmington and Lake Powell.  When sufficient water is available a short period of high water (5,000 CFS) is delivered to the river in spring to mimic historical flows in the interest of improving downstream habitat for the Endangered Species.  The main contributors to flow in the Endangered Species Habitat area are the San Juan and the Animas rivers.  As the Animas is a free flowing river, flows from the San Juan are adjusted up and down to try to meet the recommended flows in the Critical Habitat Area. 

For fishermen/women the lower flows of 2015 provide access to more of the river.  For those on Guided Trips, the river still fishes well in drift boats. 

The BOR provides information on the current status of the reservoir at Navajo Dam at the following link:


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