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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





HAPPY HOLIDAY'S!!!! Just wanted to give everyone an update on the fishing here in the Norte. Fishing continues to be good but, with this latest cold snap I would concentrate my fishing efforts during the middle of the day. Temperatures should come back into the mid fifties next week. Fishing has been best downstream of the tailwaters of the Chama if you are looking for trout. If Pike is your quarry the Rio Grande has picked up and cleared. The flows are still a bit high for this time of year but, it should continue to drop as the winter progresses.  Call the fly shop or come on by for the latest fishing information and updates.



Pecos River (36 cfs) Mora River (8 cfs)

Winter mode on the upper Pecos! Unless it is a really warm day I would fish over at Villanueva. G&F has been stocking and the fishing has been good over there.


Brazos river

To Cold!


Rio Chama (220 cfs below Abiquiu, (220 cfs below El Vado), (43 cfs near La Puente)


The Chama is still fishing pretty good. Releases from both dams are at a great level. We are getting good bwo hatches after 11am, especially on the cloudy days. Definitely worth the trip. The chance for a monster brown is there!


 Rio Grande 

Flows are still a bit high but the fishing has been good for both pike and trout. Vary your retrieves and colors when fishing for pike. Some days they eat and some days they just chase your fly around. If the pike fishing is tough fishing for trout has picked up recently. Nymphing bigger flies trailing it with something smaller will get em.


Jemez Area 

Its is gettin cold. Fish the streams in the middle of the day for your best chance of sucess. Dry dropper rigs are the ticket.


San Juan River

We have had good reports from the San Juan! Less pressure from anglers and steadier flows have helped fish to settle into better feeding patterns. 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 

Flows are a little low at 12 cfs. If you go check the stream gage first. The water can be shut off at any time.


Red River (53 cfs)

The Red has been good to great the last few days. Nice browns and cutbows are in the water system right now. Please start looking for redds and avoid stepping on them. 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