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Colorado Lake Fork

Characteristics updated 5 months ago
Flow updated about 6 hours ago
Available Segments 1

Lake Fork River, Colorado: Your Ultimate Guide to Fly Fishing

Challenges, Preferred Season, and Ideal Flow Rate
The Lake Fork River in Colorado offers a challenging yet rewarding experience for anglers of all levels. The river is known for its crystal-clear waters and abundant trout population, making it a prime destination for fly fishing. The preferred season for fishing on the Lake Fork River is typically late spring through early fall when water levels are stable and the weather is pleasant. The ideal flow rate can vary, but anglers generally succeed when the river flows moderately and consistently.

River Access Issues
Accessing the Lake Fork River can sometimes pose challenges. Many areas along the river are privately owned, so respecting property boundaries and obtaining the necessary permits or permissions is crucial. Additionally, some parts of the river may have limited public access, so planning your trip accordingly and researching access points beforehand is essential.

Top-Rated Local Fly Shops and Guides
For those seeking professional guidance or quality gear, here are three highly-rated local fly shops and guides located near Lake Fork River in Salida, Crested Butte and Lake City, Colorado:

  1. Gunnison River Fly Shop - Gunnison River Fly Shop has been a feature of the Gunnison River Valley in Colorado for many years. It is known for its wide variety of flies and fly fishing gear. The experienced, helpful staff will help you find your way around the Gunnison Valley for your fishing adventure or set you up with a guided trip—a great way to cover a lot of water and see some beautiful country.
  2. The Next Eddy - We are a full-service fly shop and guide operation in downtown Salida, Colorado. What does a full-service shop mean? We can help you out in any aspect of fly fishing. We sell and rent the gear you need for a day on the river and help you with the equipment you already have. We pride ourselves in having the friendliest guides and staff. There is a lot to learn when you are beginning to fly fish, and let's be honest, throughout a lifetime of fly fishing! We want to help create a community of anglers. We don't want anyone to feel intimidated for asking what we all had to learn at some point, so come in and ask! Meet our staff and guides; you'll most likely recognize them the next time you're out on the river.
  3. Dragon Fly Anglers - The best fly shop and guide service in Crested Butte. 

River Stewardship and Conservation
Responsible river stewardship, sustainability, and conservation are top priorities at Lake Fork River. It's essential to practice "Leave No Trace" principles to minimize your impact on the environment. For more information on river conservation efforts and how to get involved, visit [Running Rivers](, the platform where you're reading this information, offers valuable river flow data, including mean temperatures and CFS rates, to help you plan your fishing trips effectively. Whether you're a novice or an experienced angler, Lake Fork River in Colorado promises an authentic and enriching fly fishing experience.

Characteristics & Metrics

Natural Flow / Un-dammed / Freestone
⋅ Sep 11, 2023
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Current Flow

Lake Fork - Colorado
Gage Station Temp
(ft ³/s)
(ft ³/s)
lake fork blw lake san cristobal nr lake city, co n/a 13.1 10.6
lake fork at gateview, co. n/a n/a n/a
* Mean data is from Tuesday - February 20, 2024
** Updated about 6 hours ago
*** streamflow is the volume of water flowing past a given point in the stream in a given period of time.(USGS)


* Based on YTD -- 2024
** Toggle legend names for an uncluttered view

Additional Resources

River and steam flow data are acquired from multiped sources. This feature is only available in select states (Colorado only). Flows are updated multiple times a day. Data might be unavailable due to ice or other objects obstructing the gage.

Update 5 days ago

Flow: 48 cfs

Data Source: USGS


* 1 segment listed for the Lake Fork
Name Fishy Updated
Gateview Canyon · Super Fishy over 1 year ago


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Aug 12, 2021

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Aug 26, 2021

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Sep 18, 2022

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Sep 18, 2022


Craig Hoffman

over 2 years ago

Steep Canyons along the river make for some dramatic imagery. :)
Craig Hoffman

over 2 years ago

Lake Fork at night.

Known Fish

Known Fish of the Lake Fork
Type Species Up To
Trout Brown 15 in.
Trout Rainbow 15 in.
Trout Cutthroat 15 in.
* Fish likely to be found. Size is a approximation.