The Red River is one of the best fly-fishing rivers in New Mexico. The river begins in the high mountains and drop over 6,000’ during the 20 mile stretch of the river. The river passes through Red River on its way to the Rio Grande River. There are portions of river that are spring fed with warm water. This makes this river one of the best streams to fish in the winter because of the warm water during this time period.

Large Cuttbows leave the Rio Grande to come here to spawn during the winter months. Most of the Brown and Cuttbow trout in this stream average about 11”. The best area to fish is from the confluence of the Rio Grande upstream to the fish hatchery near Questa. The access to this area is from the hatchery along a couple of trails that drop about 600’ in elevation.

Some of the hatches you will find on this river would be Blue Winged Olive from January through March. Caddis will be active in the spring and from Jul through October. There is a nice Pale Morning Dun hatch in April and May. Stone Flies, grasshoppers and moths are active from June until October.

During October and November you can find some nice size fish as they move up or down the river to spawn, or return after spawning to the Rio Grande. Be mindful of the fish beds, usually shallow small rock areas, and try not to disturb these areas or the fish that are getting busy spawning.

At one time this river use to be one of the prime river’s in the country to fly fish, people use to travel from all over to take on this river. Since then various industries, like mining, over the years have damaged the river. It is starting to return to its glory but it still has a long way to go. Because of the plentiful fish this river deserves recognition as a good fly-fishing destination.

View Larger Map

Leave the Red River and return to New Mexico page.

New Mexico Fishing Regulations

Good Starter Fly Rod Combo Kit

Product Features Spooled with Backing, Fly Line and Tippet

3-Piece, Sensitive Graphite Rod

Aluminum Oxide Stripper Guides

Stainless Steel Snake Guides

Fully Adjustable Disk Drag System