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Welcome to Santa Fe’s premier Fly Shop and Guide Service!  We specialize in guiding public and private waters throughout northern New Mexico.  Our full service fly shop is conveniently located inside the De Vargas Mall and stocks everything you need to make your next fishing trip a success. 

Our staff of patient and professional instructors can help you maximize your time on the water, all the while improving your Fly Fishing skills.  We guide full and half day trips on the Pecos, Chama, Rio Grande, Brazos, Jemez and more!

In March of 2014 The Reel Life was purchased d by Nick Streit and Ivan Valdez and the store was moved to its current location inside the De Vargas Mall at 526 North Guadalupe.  Both native New Mexican's, Nick and Ivan have extensive expireince fly fishing and guiding in the Santa Fe area.  

Nick also owns the Taos Fly Shop and has built a reputation as one of New Mexico's top guides. When he was 17 he was on the Junior US Fly Fishing team that placed 2nd in Europe.  Nick has guided and fished all over the world, cutting his teeth on rivers from Alaska to Argentina, not to mention the salt flats of the Caribbean.   

Fishing Reports





Here is the latest on what is happening here in Northern New Mexico. With all of these high temps we have been getting, the water sheds are starting to get alot of runoff. Think of fishing things that are big and bright, or pull a streamer if the situation presents itself. Fishing the tailwaters is a good bet right now. The Chama below Abiquiu is starting to rise, so its days are numbered. If I were going out I would try the San Juan, the Upper Pecos, the Red, or El Vado. Everything else is to high and murky. Be sure to call us before you plan a trip and we will give you up to the minute reports. Until then TIGHT LINES!




Pecos River (110 cfs) Mora River (28 cfs)

Some fish are being caught up on the Pecos. Try larger stoneflies, eggs, worms, or streamers. Fish are being caught up there. Worth a shot.


Brazos river

To Cold!


Rio Chama (240 cfs below Abiquiu, (57 cfs below El Vado), (380 cfs near La Puente)


The season below the Q is winding down. LOTS of people this last weekend. This is probably the last week that you will be able to fish it. Not many people fishing below ElVado. Midges, eggs, pats rubber leggs, san juan worms, and streamers are your best bet for flies.


Rio Grande: 1300 cfs

High and muddy!


Jemez Area 

Water is high


San Juan River

We have had good reports from the San Juan! The Lake has turned over. So, don't be afraid to use a little bigger flies and tippet. Chocolate midges, UV midges, and tiny red annelids have been productive in the higher stretches, and there is always a chance of seeing a good baetis hatch down lower. We have been catching some really nice fish in the upper section of the river. 


Cimmaron river 

No release yet out of the dam. Try below the feeder creeks there is water down there. No reports from there though.


Red River (53 cfs)

The Red has come down in flows and should be good. Nice browns and cutbows are in the water system right now. The beatis should be hatching especially on cloudy days. The farther you get away from the hatchery the bigger fish you will find. Beatis nymphs and dries, buggers, and eggs have been my go to bugs.



Area Lakes:

No recent reports


Stop by the shop on your way up north for anything you may need to make a memorible day on the water.We are open at 9am. We have some great new flies and current daily fishing reports.

Guided Trips
Full Day Wade Trip
Winter Special
Half Day- Morning