Nestled in the pine and aspen lined Taylor River Gorge, Taylor River Lodge by Eleven Angling is home to some of the best trout fishing in Colorado. The Taylor River is a tailwater that drops quickly through the gorge before it joins the East River to form the Gunnison River in Almont, CO. The river is home to trout of unusual size and supports a healthy wild population of fish thanks to the constant cold water outflow from the dam.
The Taylor River Lodge features absolutely gorgeous cabins with all the amenities you could ask for, located right alongside some of the most productive fishing waters around, this experience is not only great for avid anglers but even beginners with little experience on the water. Take a dip in the heated indoor pool.
Or find yourself grabbing a beer and playing a game of pool in between the hatches…
Elevens goal is to take your fishing experience to the “next level” – hence “Eleven” not 10
With a trout pond to help new anglers perfect casting, learn how to handle a fish on the other end of the line, and incredible guides to teach you the ropes, or put you on the best fish, this place is sure to not disappoint. Behind the main lodge, you can treat yourself to over a mile of semi-private and majestic water.
The stretch of river features enough small water that allows for anglers of all types to get in positions to hook into, and land some gorgeous fish, while also provide some unique ways to spot some of the more elusive fish in the water. This river doesn’t only house some incredibly beautiful browns, bows, and cutties, but from experience, we can tell you that it is home to some 20+ inch fish as well.
After a long day on the water, guests can relax in their cabins, enjoy the bar, or hop in the pool or hot tub for some relaxation.
Firsthand Experience from Flylords Team Member Max Desmarais:
After an amazing IFTD experience in Denver, the Flylords team gathered up our gear and headed west from Denver to experience the lodge and the fabled Taylor River ourselves. Upon arrival, we headed out to the river with our guides and immediately started seeing fish. Trout of all sizes were in abundance and we were fooling them on nymphs, streamers and dry droppers for the majority of the day.
Towards the end of our fishing day, the sun was getting low, and we all decided to give a small section of the river with a few holes in it a try before making the short walk back to our cabins. It was clear that this piece of water had the potential to hold some really nice fish. A few of the others in our group managed to land some nice bows and one gorgeous cutthroat. As others were calling it a day, it was my turn to give the hole a go. Only expecting to fish it for 5 or 10 minutes, I stubbornly approached a hole, and proceeded to try and attain a perfect drift in a section that just seemed like it had to house the fish we’ve been waiting to see.
For 20 minutes I tried with no avail and kept inching closer to get just the right drift. Nearing quitting time, I waded just a few inches forward and managed what was a pretty good drift. My dry fly hesitated, I lifted my rod tip and dead weight. Just a few feet in front of me I beheld what must have been a 5+ pound cutthroat that quickly maneuvered back into its hole.
I kept pressure on the fish, and calmly said to our friends on the water, that I just hooked into a really big fish, and I was going to need a bit of help. Knowing I had 5x tippet with fast water on either side of me, it was clear that this fish was going to be hard to land.
It was the start of a 5 minute + fight that I won’t ever forget. Applying as much pressure as I safely could, I tried to bring the fish in water where we could net it, and we were inches away numerous times.
About 3 minutes into the fight, something unique happened – a 12-inch rainbow launched itself out of the water, attacking the hopper tied as the top fly on my rig – nearly hooking itself mid-air. I was fortunate this fish missed because I surely would have lost both fish immediately.
It was time to bring this fish into the shallower water to have a chance to net it. With our guide wading and waiting with his large Fishpond net, the fish begin to push downstream into faster water. I watched our guide dive to net the fish, I felt the fly break off, and I watched in agony as the best fish of my life disappeared.
What was the most disappointing moment of this trip, was also the most incredible. I felt nothing but pure joy for every second of fighting that fish, and despite the pain of losing it, I left the Taylor River Lodge that day with satisfaction, and excitement for the next big fish I hook into. I’ll be back again.