Destination : Lee’s Ferry Anglers – Arizona US

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Quick Facts

Species: Rainbow Trout with distinctive red cheeks
Season: Year Round
Capacity:  25 anglers; 30 at the lodge

Rates:

Fishing:
One Angler:                                   $350
Two Anglers:                                 $450
Three Anglers:                              $550

Lodging:
$90 – $100 per night

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Helpful Hints 

Location:  Situated on the Colorado River, between Glen Canyon Dam and Grand Canyon National Park

Closest Airport:  Page, AZ airport (PGA)

Local Time:  Mountain Standard Time and does not observe Daylight Saving Time

Communications:  Most cellular phone networks will work at the lodge

Documents Required:  Arizona fishing license (available at the fly shop)

Destination Overview

Lees Ferry Anglers was established in 1989, and since then we have expanded to include Cliff Dwellers Lodge and Cliff Dwellers Restaurant in order to provide a complete fishing lodge experience. Lees Ferry Anglers is a 30 acre complex situated on the Colorado River, between Glen Canyon Dam and Grand Canyon National Park.  This year-round fishery is a 15.5 mile spring creek of crystal clear water holding 14”-22’ rainbow trout.  Enjoy the breathtaking beauty of the 1000’ cliffs that surround you, while your Guide cruises up-river in 20’ covered boats.  You may see blue herons, eagles and maybe even condors, as you drift your way back.  You’ll fish from the boat if the water is high or wade the otherwise, inaccessible Canyon in low water areas.  Non-anglers may enjoy local hiking and photography or visit the National Parks nearby. There is a full-service Fly Shop and fine dining at Cliff Dwellers Restaurant. Cliff Dwellers Lodge is at the base the Vermillion Cliff’s National Monument.

Accommodations and Lodging

Cliff Dwellers Lodge – 20 unit motel ($80-$90 per night, double occupancy)

The original lodge was built in 1954 and has a nostalgic craftsman feel which is evident in the king rooms with beautiful and intricate wood work. These 8 rooms (1-8) have been refurbished for the 2011 season.  The “newer” section of the lodge was constructed in 1991 and has 12 rooms (21-32).

  •             Rooms 1-4 / King bed $85  (Front porch rooms / shower)
  •             Rooms 5-8 / Two double beds $80  (Carport / Shower & pet Friendly)
  •             Rooms 21-32  / Two queen beds $90  (No Pets / Tub/Shower)
  •             Room 30 Handicapped accessible
  •             Room 31- 32 are adjoining

Guest House - Sleeps 6 (3 bedroom 2 full bath) $250 per night 

The house was the previous owner’s home that we have converted into a nightly rental.  Amenities include:  A full kitchen, dining room, TV room with cable TV, and two full decks.  Located at the rear of our 30 acre property, the house offers privacy for your family or friends. The house always books up, so be sure to plan ahead and make your reservation well in advance.

(All rooms and restaurant are non-smoking)

Dining

Cliff Dwellers Restaurant and bar – fine dining, open year round with breakfast, lunch and dinner. Please let Lees Ferry Anglers and Cliff Dwellers Lodge know your dietary restrictions ahead of time, so they may accommodate your needs

Fishing Information

We have 13 full-time guides on staff, and every one of them is competent in assisting all types of anglers: from beginner to the most advanced fly caster.

The Colorado is a truly unique destination fishing locale. With its thousand foot Navajo Sandstone cliffs and its crystal clear water, the Colorado River is a desert refuge destined to capture the hearts and minds of any fly fishing fanatic. Our up-river fishing trips take passengers through fourteen miles of Glen Canyon were they will experience why John Wesley Powell, the first explorer of the lower Colorado Basin, gave the canyon a name which connotes a sense of peace and tranquility.

The river flows at varying rates but the water temperature stays at a constant forty-eight degrees, a perfect environment for healthy trout. Because Lees Ferry is a year-round fishery, an angler, on any give day, can catch twelve to twenty four inch free swimming rainbow trout. As the seasons change so does the fishing. The summer months are a great time to visit the Ferry and target eager rainbows rising to a whole slough of big terrestrials. In the fall, spring and winter months we fish for aggressively feeding rainbows in the riffles and deeper runs. Trout at Lees Ferry gorge themselves on tiny midge larva, scuds, and aquatic worms. The tannins in the fishes’ food source cause them to exhibit magnificent spawning colors which have become synonymous with Lees Ferry.

Depending on the season, water flows and conditions, we use a number of different fishing techniques at Lees Ferry. The food base is more limited in diversity than many other rivers, consequently our main food items consist of Scuds (freshwater shrimp), Midges (50 different varieties!), and worms (San Juan). As a result, most of our fishing is done with nymphs, however we do have some dry fly fishing which is not as predictable as nymph fishing and mostly occurs in July when we have a huge cicada hatch.

The only way to access the 16 mile section of river at Lees Ferry is by powerboat. We leave the boat ramp and head upriver. Water levels and conditions decide whether we wade or fish from the boat. Most times we can do either or both. However in high water conditions we mostly fish from the boat.

The water at Lees Ferry is always clear and if the conditions are right, we can wade and sight-cast to either groups or individual fish using dry flies, dry fly with a nymph dropper, or nymphs.  If we are planning to wade, your guide will find the best possible spot to catch fish. One of the rules of the river is that if an area is occupied, we do not pull in and fish the same bar as other anglers so that everyone can get the maximum enjoyment from their trip. The guide will pull onto the bar get rigged up with the right flies and then discuss tactics and techniques.

Four Season Fishing

–  November-March:  This is spawn time, sight-cast to large trout using egg patterns and small attractors. Often, there will be midge fishing, both wet and dry.

–  March-May:  Mix of spawners and feeding fish will test your skills at both sight-casting and nymph fishing traditional riffles and runs. It’s the season of sight-casting tiny midges to trout as they drift in and out of feeding lanes.

–  June-August:  Sight-cast to feeding fish with dry flies; nymph fishing runs and riffles. A nymph fished through riffles and runs can be rewarding. Very rewarding. July the cicadas start to sing and depending on the year, we get a massive hatch and the fish will slam big dry flies.

–  September-October: Cooling weather can be anticipated, but essentially the same techniques as in summer. By mid-October, your guide will be looking for the nests of early spawners.

Rates

Fishing – Guided Day Rate:

One Angler                           $350
Two Anglers                         $450
Three Anglers                      $550*

*There is only room for 2 people to wade and fish effectively. You’ll have to take turns.

Non-fishing guest are welcome, up to four people total. The cost is $20 per guest and that includes their lunch.

Lodging (per night):

Rooms 1-4 / King bed                                                        $85
Rooms 5-8 / Two double beds                                        $80
Rooms 21-32  / Two queen beds                                     $90
Guest House - Sleeps 6 (3 bedroom 2 full bath)        $250

Remember Fishermen’s Spot Travel services are always FREE to you!  You never pay more than what you would pay if you booked directly with the lodge.

What’s Included:

  • Lunch on Guided days

What’s Not Included:

  • Transportation to and from the lodge
  • Gear and tackle
  • Arizona fishing license
  • Beverages
  • Gratuities for guides and staff

How to get there

Flying:

Fly into Page, AZ airport (PGA).  Rent a care in Page.

Driving:

Page – Highway 89 South 29 miles. Turn right on Highway 89A, continue 15 miles until you cross the Colorado River. Once over the river, continue on 89A for 9 miles. Lees Ferry Anglers is on your right, in historic Cliff Dwellers Lodge. Do not turn into the Glen Canyon/Lees Ferry Recreation Area. This is where you will fish, but there are no services.

Las Vegas – I-15 North to St. George, Utah. Nine miles North of St. George exit on Highway 9 to Hurricane. In Hurricane, follow the signs to Lake Powell and Highway 59. The highway number changes in the town of Colorado City to Highway 389; continue until you reach Fredonia. At Fredonia, take a right on Highway 89A. Follow Highway 89A 60 miles andLees Ferry Anglers will be on your left in historic Cliff Dwellers Lodge.

Phoenix – I-17 North to Flagstaff. To bypass Flagstaff, take I-40 East to the Page-Grand Canyon exit. This will put you on North Highway 89. Continue about 110 miles, then left on Highway 89A toward the North rim of the Grand Canyon. Stay on 89A for 15 miles until you cross the Colorado River. Once over the river, continue on 89A for 9 miles. Lees Ferry Anglersis on your right in historic Cliff Dwellers Lodge. Do not turn into the Glen Canyon/Lees Ferry Recreation Area. This is where you will fish, but there are no services.

Non-Angling Activities

  •     Grand Canyon and other National Parks
  •     Lake Powell
  •     Glen Canyon Dam
  •     Photography
  •     Day Hikes in the Lees Ferry Area

Here are some day Hikes:

Cathedral Wash

Duration: 2 hours round trip

Location: Two miles after the turn off to Lees Ferry from Marble Canyon is a pull out on the left hand side of the road. There is a Park Service point of interest sign here and the trail begins in the wash bottom another fifty yards down the road. Subject to flash flooding.

Spencer Trail (Horseshoe Bend)

Duration:  4-5 hours

Difficulty:  Difficult switchbacks, deep drop-off, not recommended in summer heat. Bring 2-3 gallons of water

Location: Trailhead sign (or pile of rocks) located a couple hundred yards upstream from the Lees Ferry boat launch. There is a sign and rock cairn where the trail takes off to the left.  Once you arrive at the top, you may continue straight-bound for a couple hundred yards and you’ll be able to see the 6-mile turn of the Colorado River, in addition, to the city of Page and Navajo Bridge in distance.

Honeymoon Trail

This wagon trail (4-wheel drive only) ran right through the Cliff Dwellers Lodge property and was the historic old wagon road linking St. George, Utah with Lees Ferry on the Colorado River; and from there, to numerous settlements throughout northeastern Arizona. The route was used for several years by young married couples from Arizona seeking Temple marriage in what was then the only “Mormon” Temple west of the Mississippi River.The trip took 3-6 weeks, with the worst section being the crossing of the Colorado River. Earlier, in 1870, Brigham Young had sent John D. Lee to establish a ferry and by 1872 it was fully functional. Lee worked the ferry until 1874, after which it was manned by the Johnson family until 1896. In 1928, Navajo Bridge was built, replacing the ferry. Some parts are still visible, such as names carved in rocks.

Other Information

Lees Ferry Fly Shop

Lees Ferry Anglers is Arizona’s largest and oldest fly fishing outfitter and Fly Shop

  •   Convenience store
  •   Sinclair gas station