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.
The colors of fall are here!!! Fishing has been fantastic accross the Norte. Lots of mayflies are hatching and the browns are beginning their fall ritual of the SPAWN! Please keep in mind of a couple of things, first browns are not stocked in our rivers and lakes so a good spawn is critical to their survival. Please DO NOT fish at spawners on their Redds. Also when wading please be conscience of a redd, these are the big circles of gravel that the browns have cleaned in order to lay eggs. Well the weather is gonna start getting cold so get out and get it while its nice right now. If you have any questions or need a guided trip give us a call at the fly shop.
Pecos River (39 cfs) Mora River (11 cfs)
The Pecos and the Mora are fishing great at the moment. Beatis are hatching, especially on the cloudy days. I have seen the Pecos fish a WHOLE lot better with all of the stream improvements that have been added. I would fish with a dry dropper rig at the moment. A Chubby CHernobyl trailed by a micro mayfly, hares ears, frenchie, or a sj worm.
Conejos River (143 cfs MOgote)
If you have never seen the fall colors of the Conejos Valley this time of year you don't know what you are missing! They are so amazing and to be able to have good fishing with these surroundings, well it's an experience you will never forget. Have an assortment of mayfly patterns and worms this time of year. Have some pats rubber leggs, sprkle worms, barr emergers, and some anato mays as well. Be sure to get your depth right and hang on!
Water is a little skinny and the fish are a bit spooky, but the fishng is great! Especially up at Corkins! Mayflies are hatching really good and the fish are eating trying to put on some weight for the winter!
Rio Chama (283 cfs below Abiquiu, (200 cfs below El Vado), (56 cfs near La Puente)
We haven't fished below the Q yet, but the flows are right there to to give a cast. Not sure what the clarity is at the moment. Fishing below El Vado has been spot on and should only get better as the browns make their way upstream. Nymph rigs are your best bet with a wolly bugger trailed by mayfly nymph like a copper john or a pheasent tail. Try above El Vado if you want to get into some Kokanees that are getting into the river.
Rio Grande: 94@ Cerro, 223 @ TJB
The Rio is fishing good as well. Please be aware that the Rio Grande will be very busy this weekend with the Trout Unlimited Fly fishing tournament going on. Good mayfly hatches have been coming into play after 10 am. Have some para adams for the risers and a good selection of may nymphs to to get em sub surface.
San Juan River 400 cfs
Lot of midges and beatis coming off midday. The river is in excellent shape right now after the high flows and the fish are fat and healthy! Red annalids, rs2s, chocholate foam backs, and ju ju beatis are great choices for flies on 6X. Hopper patterns and griffiths knats for the dries
Jemez streams- 13 cfs
I have been getting some great reports from the Caldera fishing terrestrials and may dries for risers! GET OUT
My best bets would be to try Monastary and Santa Cruz lakes in the Santa Fe Area. Smaller streamers and stones for your subsurface patterns, Beatis and caddis for your dries!
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.