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Discussion Starter #1
IS THE GUNNISON VALLEY REALLY COLORADO’S BEST FLY FISHING FISHERY?

Folks like myself who live in the Gunnison Basin take it for granted that the Gunnison Valley is Colorado’s best fly angling playground. To me it is a fact…same as Jordan is better than LeBron and Tom is (unfortunately) better than Peyton. But, I’m curious what arguments could be made for other areas of Colorado being better than the Gunnison Basin?

I’ll bet you’d concede that a float down the Gunnison Gorge is THE marquee fly fishing float in the Centennial State, so no sense arguing that. Chalk one up for the Gunnison Country! I’m guessing most folks would agree that the Taylor tailwater is either the 1st or 2nd best trophy tailwater in Colorado, with a semi-rational argument being made for the Frying Pan. And with 4 legit “major” rivers in the area, three of which quality for Gold Medal designation (the Taylor, Lake Fork of the Gunnison, and the entire Gunnison River) I think the Gunnison Valley doesn’t play 2nd fiddle to any other area in Colorado. Even if all of the above were somehow matched by another area, I guarantee you that the Gunnison Basin has less fishermen (and thus less crowding) on its rivers than whatever region you think stacks up well against it (see Roaring Fork Valley).

It is not a coincidence that the Gunnison Valley holds so many of the Colorado state angling records, with the current brown trout (Roaring Judy SFH), rainbow trout (Taylor River), Snake River cutthroat trout (Taylor River), and the cutbow (Gunnison River) records all coming from the fly waters of the Gunnison Country. The Gunnison Country holds its own with respect to big fish…no question. I’m guessing someone out there can make a good argument for another area, but I don’t think there is any question that the Gunnison Basin is the PREMEIRE fly fishing locale in all of Colorado.
 

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It is not a coincidence that the Gunnison Valley holds so many of the Colorado state angling records, with the current brown trout (Roaring Judy SFH), rainbow trout (Taylor River), Snake River cutthroat trout (Taylor River), and the cutbow (Gunnison River) records all coming from the fly waters of the Gunnison Country. The Gunnison Country holds its own with respect to big fish…no question. I’m guessing someone out there can make a good argument for another area, but I don’t think there is any question that the Gunnison Basin is the PREMEIRE fly fishing locale in all of Colorado.
I think the cutbow record is the 18 pounder from Antero Reservoir. And I think the rainbow record is the 19 pounder out of the Gunnison in the vicinity of Morrow Point Reservoir.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Molniya-
Thanks for keeping me honest. The rainbow trout record is indeed from Morrow Point Reservoir, not the Taylor River (obviously still within the Gunnison Country), but the Cutbow record, formerly out of Antero, was broken in 2014 by a local Gunnison Country guide and did come from the Gunnison River. The really impressive photo of the angler and cutbow is out there on the web if you look for it.
 
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