The Taylor River flows from the snow pack high in the Colorado Rockies, from the peaks surrounding Taylor Park. The river drains into Taylor Reservoir at about 9,300 feet. The tailwater below the dam flows down through Taylor Canyon some 20 miles before it joins the East River to form the Gunnison River at Almont.
The Taylor is a medium-sized river which contains deep pools and pocket water, and plenty of riffles and runs. The water releases from Taylor Reservoir provide constant and predictable flows, and consistent hatches throughout the fishing season. The Taylor River contains a very high density of trout, including wild browns, rainbows, and cutthroat. Rainbow trout are also stocked during the fishing season.
The upper section of the Taylor River just below the dam is designated catch-and-release (C&R) water. This is trophy trout water with some fish in the 8 to 12-pound range. These big wild trout enjoy a constant food source which includes a steady diet of Mysis shrimp and midges. The C&R section can be very challenging and requires some technical angling skills. This section of the Taylor River can be fished year round.
The rest of the river is much easier to fish and 20-fish days are not uncommon. There is plenty of public access throughout Taylor Canyon. It can be a difficult river to wade; therefore many anglers use a wading staff for added safety. Chest waders are recommended. A 9-foot 5-weight fly rod is a good all-purpose choice for the Taylor River. A shorter and lighter outfit can be used for dry fly fishing. The peak fishing season is from mid June to mid September. The fishing in Taylor Canyon during fall is very good. You’ll find beautiful scenery with golden aspens and less anglers on the river.