The Middle section of the Roaring Fork River from Basalt to Carbondale falls in elevation much less than the upper sections and offers larger runs and pools. While not offering quite as much public access as the upper river, it still is a very popular stretch of the river with flyfishers, especially in the wintertime. Due to the influence of the Fryingpan River, this water stays ice-free longer than other parts of the river. Popular with float fishermen in the early season, it usually becomes unfloatable by late July. Brown trout and mountain whitefish are more abundant in this section.
While there is not as much public access as in the upper section of the river, this section is not nearly as heavily fished by wade fishermen. Many times by fishing this area you can find some valuable seclusion.
Carbondale to Basalt:
1. Wheeler Lease, Sutank Bridge on north side of river to Railroad Bridge. Respect private property as posted;
2. Gianetti Lease, 90 feet east of Carbondale Bridge, south of Highway Right of Way, extending upstream on north side of river, approximately 2015 feet. Lease goes to center of the river. South side of river is private property.
3. City of Carbondale, Riverfront Park, behind Crystal Village; also along Roaring Fork River behind Days Inn Motel from Highway (3) Bridge as posted;
4. DOW Crystal River Fish Hatchery, from Hwy. 133 bridge to bridge by hatchery , both sides of river, then along east side to end of DOW property;
5. Beaver Lake State Wildlife Area, Beaver Lake, Crystal River frontage;
6. Catherine Bridge, Garfield County right-of-way, 30 feet from centerline of bridge, all sides. No agreements past this point;
7. BLM property. Watch for signs 1.5 miles east of Catherine Store on Hwy. 82. Access as posted;
8. U.S.F.S. Tree Nursery. Turn at El Jebel intersection on Valley Rd. Park and follow signs to river.