The Blue River’s “significant other” on Black Monday 1987

In Colorado fly fishing circles, the name Jones is oft mentioned when discussing a conspicuously maintained section of the lower Blue River.

Lower Blue River via satellite

Actually one of Colorado’s gold medal waters, this section of the Blue is accessible only by raft. The optimum flow conditions for a safe float are a closely guarded secret, and you best be a very experienced (and well insured) oarsman if you try. Reason? The river is littered with huge protruding boulders and man-made weirs, and you can’t stop and/or set foot in the stream bed as it’s almost all private property. By the way, those weirs were built to keep the river’s inhabitants happy, and the occasionally catches of some of the larger [cough, choke, cough, cough] denizens forced locals to nickname the stretch Jurassic Park.

I’ve heard this significant portion of one of the finest trout waters imaginable called the Dow Jones property, but it has nothing to do with the Wall Street-esque publisher. No, the Jones property is owned by one Paul Tudor Jones, an avid outdoorsman who also happens to be a pretty [cough, choke, cough, cough] wealthy hedge fund manager.

A PBS special on Mr. Jones, aired in the late 80’s, was on YouTube for a bit – it’s since been taken down due to a copyright claim, but I did get a chance to see the first clip which ended just before Black Monday, 1987. Anyone want to venture a guess as to how Mr. Jones and his fund fared that fateful day?

Comments

I wake up at 4 am says:

I believe he “tripled” his money on that date. Gracie, you ever fished down there?

I’m not sure of the exact multiple, but I’m fairly certain it was a turning point for Jones’s desk as well as several others. Zero-sum game. Didn’t know you were a student of market history. Next answer…yes.

Nobody Atall says:

So here’s the deal with the Blue Valley Ranch (aka Jurassic Park). Paul Jones has put in a lot of money into stream “improvement”. This involves extensive rock weirs placed with bulldozers. Large rainbow trout were also stocked and are fed large amounts of food weekly. The Blue River is one of the most stunning trout rivers in the state, but it has been significantly altered here, and natural trout made rare. In addition to the Blue River water, there are several ponds and I think 2 small streams which have been stocked with cutthroat trout. The fish in the river and ponds probably average 18-22 inches with fish frequently in the 10 pound range. Although they are stocked, they fight incredible hard. Sometimes they will hit streamers, sometimes large nymphs (san juan worms, princes, etc), but rarely hit dries.
The way to fish this water is to launch a small raft just below Green Mtn dam- slide your boat down a steep slope. The initial canyon part is beautiful and filled with healthy wild browns. When floating through the ranch, make sure you don’t touch the bank- they do have security which has a very close relationship with local police (aka the same) and keep a close eye on who floats down. The flows pretty much have to be over 500 to not touch the rocks.
Paul Jones in quite wealthy from Hedge Funds and possibly a family fortune. Most of the people who fish the ranch are his guests and usually fish with guides.
That’s the scoop.

Thanks…Nobody!

Have been down that stretch – it is lovely. Have also slogged into the canyon on foot…probably 50+ times.

Jeff says:

Floated that stretch quite a few times, launched below Green Mountain dam and got out at confluence of Blue River and Colorado River. Haven’t done it in a long time, they have made it difficult, take some wire cutters, and some balls