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The Experience
Fly Fishing via the Durango-Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad is one of the most unique angling adventures in North America. Step back in time by climbing aboard the historic steam powered train as it chugs north from Durango to Silverton. After pushing through the lazy Animas valley the Durango-Silverton rambles into the San Juan National Forest. Giant ponderosa pines line the tracks through the stunning upper Animas canyon. The narrow rails parallel the entire length of the Animas River from Durango to Silverton. As an angler you'll be itching' to cast into the the pockets and pools of the enchanting waters. Access into this section of the Animas is limited to hiking, horseback and of course, by train. Because of the limited access, this remote section of river is full of gullible trout and sees very little fishing pressure.

The fishing

The Animas north of Durango fishes like a mountain stream, although it has more flow and depth than a typical high country creek. The river crashes and cascades from one fishy pool to another through steep canyons and tree lined banks. The water is clear-green with a good mix of pocket water and pools.
Rainbow, cutthroat, brook and brown trout will come willingly to dries and nymphs. Hopper-dropper rigs are effective in most waters, but a full nymph rig worked in the deepest pools will find the larger trout. Fish size ranges from 8 to 16 inches. The tributaries are also a blast to fish as they tumble out from their respective valleys before converging with the Animas. There are strong populations of trout in the tributaries and their size range from 6 to 12 inches. If you like fishing a light rod then these waters are for you. This is serious zero to 3 weight water.

The day
We will meet clients at the Depot in Durango or at any of the area hotels. The early morning departure will begin from the downtown Durango or Rockwood train depot. (Rockwood is located about 18 miles north of Durango.) Depending on the departure location, the train ride will last an hour and twenty minuets to a little over two hours. Once the train drops us off, we will fish all day, taking a few breaks to check out the scenery and have a quick bite to eat. We'll work the waters until the afternoon train makes its way back from Silverton. Each train has a different schedule and your trusty guide will know when and were to meet it.

The details and dates
Train trips are available spring, summer and fall. Please book well in advance because the Durango-Silverton Train is one of Durango's most popular activities and seats fill fast. Fall is a stunning time to be on the rails as well as the water, however, spring and summer are pretty nice as well. Click the rates link below for costs and booking details.

Train buffs and anglers alike will find this to be an exciting way to fish the remote sections of the upper Animas Canyon.

Guide Trips
Train and Trout guide trips include:

  • Professional Guide
  • Flies (including secret guide patterns)
  • Terminal Tackle
  • Hearty stream-side lunch with drinks
  • Transportation (if needed)
  • Rod/Reel and Waders/Boots

Train and Trout trips do not include: Colorado fishing license and
customary gratuity for the guide

If you or any one in your group needs to use a rod and reel and/or waders for the day, no problem, we will supply high-end gear at no extra cost. Most guide services tack that, as well as flies, on to the bill. Right there you and your group are saving over $40 per angler.