2.5 Miles of the South Fork of the South Platte
This property is shared by adjacent property owners who fish the DM Ranch upon occasion. We therefore can't guarantee exclusive use of this property (see "Property Description" below).
The DM Ranch is now available for both fishing and overnight lodging. Check out the DM reservation calendar to establish the availability of this property for fishing, lodging, or both.
Current conditions are posted as often as possible, including hatches and fishing reports.
View property map of DM Ranch Near Fairplay.
This lease encompasses 2.5 miles of the South Fork of the South Platte River, and one half-mile of Twelvemile Creek at an elevation of 9,500 feet. Until 2009 it has never been available to the public.
Stream flows range from 10 to 150 cfs and average 40 cfs during the open water season. Because of the amount of stream (3 miles) and complexity of habitat, up to 4 anglers per day may reserve this lease. However, we suggest that at least 2 anglers fish together on this vast property. Releasing 50 fish per day is not uncommon, a few of which may be around 20 inches.
$60.00 per angler; maximum of 4 anglers per day. No refunds once payments are made.
ALL anglers must obtain a daily parking pass and sign a release form after 8:00 AM at "High Alpine Sports" in Fairplay before proceeding to the DM Ranch! High Alpine Sports is located at the corner of 6th and Main Streets in Fairplay.
Anglers must close and lock the ranch gate after entering and leaving the property. This property is patrolled and unauthorized vehicles will be reported immediately to the County Sheriff.
SHARED FISHING EASEMENT
Four adjacent property owners hold perpetual fishing easements on the DM Ranch. Others may hold the right to fish Twelvemile Creek (only) on the ranch. As a result, we can't guarantee that other anglers won't be fishing there on the same day. With three miles of stream, numerous beaver ponds and incredible fishing, we feel this property is worth offering through the program, even if others might be fishing on the same day. We suggest avoiding weekends and holidays during July and August, unless you don't mind sharing the stream. In the event that other anglers are encountered on the property, please respect their right to be there at any time. They are nice people who want to maintain a quality experience for everyone.
Ranging from 15 to 50 feet across, the South Fork of the South Platte on the DM Ranch is a small river with very complex habitat and numerous side channels (springs and beaver sloughs). Countless pools, deep trenches, and undercut banks harbor an amazing number of browns and a few cutthroats in the 9-16" range, with lunker browns (3 to 6 pounds) in the larger beaver ponds. Endless meanders and numerous beaver ponds allow up to 4 anglers to fish together all day without crossing lines. Due to the amount of quality fish habitat, fly-fishers should cover every meter of water while working upstream. With fish in virtually every portion of the stream, skilled anglers should expect constant action during peak season (July-August).
This portion of the South Platte River is considered a "reference property" for stream restoration projects. This means that high quality habitat on the ranch is used as a goal or "target" for other streams in the area.
A conservation easement funded by Great Outdoors Colorado now protects the stream, wetlands and wildlife on the DM Ranch. Observant anglers may spot deer, elk, hawks, eagles, heron, bobcat, martin, bear or even moose while fishing on this property (stay away from the moose).
Lightning is a very real hazard and limited shelter exists on this working ranch. Remote portions of property are a 30-minute slog through wetlands and willow thickets back to the car. Speaking from experience, you should plan accordingly if thunderheads are building (we're not kidding here)!
Sloughs and beaver ponds up to eight feet deep, thick willows, and bottomless mud create potentially hazardous walking and wading conditions, especially during high water. It is therefore recommended that two or more anglers fish together on this vast property.
An outhouse is centrally located on the property for angler use. The nearest bathrooms, drinking water and other services are located in the town of Fairplay. Please plan accordingly on the day of your arrival.
Owners of the DM Ranch are offering their remodeled Guest Cabin to anglers and others for overnight use. Since use of the cabin requires a separate reservation, we suggest checking available fishing dates before reserving the cabin. Unless you make a separate reservation for lodging, you will NOT be allowed to spend the night. Likewise, reserving the cabin does NOT entitle guests to fish the property unless a fishing reservation is also secured for the same date(s).
The DM Ranch is located on County Road 22 (Weston Pass Road), 12 miles south of Fairplay on US Highway 285. Please call (719) 748-1494 for directions or more information about the DM Ranch property.