LOWER GUNNISON RIVER
EXPERIENCE DRIFT BOAT FLY FISHING
ON THE LOWER GUNNISON RIVER
Float Fish for healthy rainbow and brown trout on the Gold Medal waters of the Lower Gunnison River within the Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area.
Discover 10 miles of guided drift boat float fishing on the Lower Gunnison River, including access to our exclusive two-mile stretch of private water at historic Angell Canyon Ranch, all situated within a wonderfully scenic desert canyon with lush riparian ecology, fantastic trout fishing, and the longest float fishing season in western Colorado. Often referred to as the Black Canyon, the more accessible Gunnison Gorge NCA remains the crown jewel of fly fishing on Colorado’s west slope and truly some of the finest float fishing in all of Colorado. Our all-inclusive service features the finest drift boats in the industry from Boulder Boat Works, offering unparallel float fishing performance and maximum comfort on the river, allowing our guides to quietly glide through skinny sections of river where other boats cannot.
THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE YOU GO
Think About Your Goals
What do you want out of your full-day guided Drift Boat fly fishing trip on Lower Gunnison River? When booking, communicate with our reservation team and let them know what you’d like to focus on or if you have limitations. Just want a relaxing float fish with family and friends? Work on improving your float fishing techniques and fly fishing tactics? As we say, “it’s your trip”, so be sure to convey your goals in advance to maximize the experience.
Access to 10+ miles of quality trout waters, with both public and private float fishing and wade access near Pleasure Park at the Gunnison Forks. The advantage of drift boats is their ability to cover miles of water. Anglers appreciate the benefits of secure casting platforms, padded high-back seating, and easy access to multiple rod storage. All-day comfort is great for those with low mobility. Ask us how to help with travel plans to include a lower Gunnison River drift boat trip as part of a regional adventure when visiting nearby destinations like Gunnison, Grand Junction, Paonia, Montrose, or Delta, Colorado.
Expertise – the Lower Gunnison River & Gunnison Gorge NCA
With 20-plus years of outfitting experience in the Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area, including walk wade, float fishing, overnights, and three-day deluxe wilderness trips, RIGS has set the standard for quality on the Lower Gunnison River. Our Fly Shop offers a deep selection of curated fly-fishing gear and tackle, plus the best fly selections for the lower Gunnison River, Gunnison Gorge NCA, and Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, including the East Portal.
Drift boat trips are available practically year-round due to a protected lower elevation canyon setting (4500 feet) of the lower Gunnison River. Spring conditions offer epic blue wing olive, and caddis fly hatches, while can’t-miss “Stone Fly Hatches” dominate May and June; summer conditions bring excellent hopper, terrestrial and caddis and PMD fishing, while nymphing and streamer tactics prevail in fall, finishing with midge and baetis in the winter months. Run-off, flash floods and water temps can be seasonal considerations, so be sure to discuss the best times of year to go with our staff.
WHAT WE PROVIDE
All-Inclusive + Lunch
We provide all boats, fishing gear, rod/reel/line, and wade boots as needed. Full Day floats include riverside Charcuterie Lunch (locally sourced meat, cheese, crackers, olives, nuts, fruit, and cookie) and filtered water. Our guides provide access to their personal arsenal of hand-selected tools of the trade, including site-specific flies, nets, leader/tippet, nipper/forceps, flotant, indicators, and more. However, if you prefer to bring any of your gear, please do! *Drift boats have limited space for large personal items, but they have the capacity for multiple rods per angler.
Low Client-to-Guide Ratio
Drift boat max capacity is 2 anglers to 1 Guide, but feel free to fish solo and get all the prime casts to yourself. For your benefit, we exclusively offer a low client-to-guide ratio of two clients per guide, so everyone receives hands-on attention and personalized service – no mixed parties. So you can focus on perfecting your cast, learning more about the resource, or working to catch the fish of the day. Our guides are patient and informative professionals.
Trips routinely meet and depart from our Fly Shop in Ridgway, with a detailed check-in process to ensure you are properly outfitted for your day on the boat. From there, your guide provides round-trip transportation and a vehicle shuttle as part of the experience.
Custom Meeting & Pick-Up Locations
Let RIGS bring the experience to you! Coming from Grand Junction, Montrose, Delta, Crested Butte, Gunnison, Colorado, or camping nearby? Save drive time and get on the water faster with RIGS optional Meeting or Pick Up locations. Our advance online waiver process captures guest details in advance of your trip, so our team is informed for easy on-site logistics and your gear needs.
In order to legally fish in the State of Colorado, anyone 16 years or older must possess a valid Colorado State Fishing License. The cost of the fishing license is not included in trip prices. Licenses can be purchased for periods of one day or more. We encourage you to purchase Fishing & Hunting Licenses Online prior to your trip.