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Fishing In and Around Taos

After the snow melts in the mountains around Taos, the lakes and rivers fill with water – and fish.  Indeed people from around the country come to Taos to enjoy various types of fishing.  Let’s start with river fishing.

For most fishing on smaller rivers fishermen (and women) find an eight foot, two or three-weight rod is an excellent choice. For the main Rio Grande river a four to six-weight system would be good choice.  There are large northern pikes and some good sized browns.

The Rio Grande Box which is located above the confluence of the Red River is especially good in the fall for rainbows and browns that can be twenty inches or larger. When you hike into the Box carry plenty of water as the trails along the canyon in the summer can reach 100 degrees. Twenty miles southwest of Taos on Highway 68 there is access to the Rio Grande. You take N.M. 570 from the small town of Pilar for five or six miles of good fly and bait fishing for rainbows, browns and northern pike.  You will need to purchase a day pass as you enter the area.


The Rio Hondo river is ten miles north of Taos. The lower section of the Hondo is accessible before the confluence with the Rio Grande.The upper Hondo waters run faster. Good fishing holes in this section often have brush along the riverbank, but fishing the upper section give an opportunity to catch good sized browns. The Rio Chiquito watershed is less crowded.  Miles of these streams are only five to ten feet wide. There are some open areas along the waters and some beaver dams.

Lake fishing is easily found at nearby Eagle Nest Lake, about forty minutes from Taos.Besides the ever present trout you will also find salmon, pike and perch.Good spin fishing and spin casting opportunities can be found on the lake.You can rent spin and fly rods from local vendors (see below) for ten to twenty dollars per day.You can also find fishing guides to help you find the very best places to fish.

Fly Fishing Shops in Taos

The Taos Fly Shop

308C Paseo del Pueblo Sur

The Solitary Angler

204B Paseo del Pueblo Norte
The state of New Mexico offers a web site with reports on stocking and fishing at: