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

 08/08/2019

 

Hey there Reel Lifers! Sorry for such a long period of time between reports! We have been super slammed over here and the fly fishing has been fantastic! With all of the monsoon thunderstorms I would adise calling us for up to the minute fishing reports and water conditions. Rivers and streams will blow out with a good sized storm but they will clear pretty quickly. Just about everything is fishing good with the exception of the Rio Grande which will begin to fish well in the fall. We have been so blessed this year with some excellent water conditions. Fishing should remain really good in August, but with all of the monsoons gettin gout early is a premium! For those wanting to fish near Santa Fe the Pecos River has been on FIRE! Fishing on weekdays will keep the crowd conditions low, if you do choose to fish on the weekends I would recommend getting away from the parking areas and the bait dunkers. Usually walking about 15 minutes will get you away from the majority of the crowds. For those wantin gto get further away up north places like the Chama, Los Pinos, and Conejos River have all been fishing well. We have been using dry droppers for the majority of our fishing. It is not neccessary to be using indicators as the water conditions simply do not call for it. Give us a call or come on by the shop and we will get you completely dialed in for your next outing. If you haven't already please like and follow us on both Facebook and Instagram. 

Tight lines,

Ivan

 

Jemez area streams: water is getting a little skinny and as the  water warms up mid morning the fishing starts to wane. Get out early and the fishing has been really good. Be stealthy and wear mute colors! Using dry's flys like elk hair caddis and parachute adams. Also small stimis are working well. 

Pecos River: 97cfs- The fishing has been fantastic on the Pecos. Fishing on weekdays definitely gets you away from crowds. Also if parking lots look full all you need to do is put 15 minutes on your boots and that will also get you away from people. Dry dropper have been the ticket on our guide trips with 20 -30 fish days not that uncommon for the experienced angler. Patterns we have using are Hoppers, para adams, elk hair caddis, small stimis, and hippie stompers for dries. For nymphs p tails, hares ears, yodas, iron lotus and small prince's have been fuego! Monsoons are hitting us this month so please check the weather and streamflows before you go. 

Chama River: 125 La Puente, 781 below El Vado, 280 below Abiquiu- Fishing on the freestone section has been really good this year with all of the water in the river. I recommend getting out early in the am before the water temps get too high. With all the rain we have been having that shouldn't be a problem for long. Below El Vado has also been really good. Remember that flows are changing on the weekend to accomodate rafters. The Abiquiu stretch won't fish well until November. 

Rio Pueblo: 26 cfs- Fishing has been solid with dry dropper rigs! Using a high floating elk hair of chubby ch

 

 

 

Tight Lines,

Ivan