Located on NM highway 4 between San Diego Picnic Area and Vista Linda Campground the Jemez River S Bend National Recreation Area provides easy public trout fishing access.
The Jemez River is formed by the confluence of the East Fork Jemez River and San Antonio Creek, which drain a number of tributaries in the area of the Valles Caldera, Jemez Mountains and Santa Fe National Forest. The Jemez River is about 50 miles long, or about 80 miles long if its longest headwater tributary, San Antonio Creek, is included. The East Fork Jemez River is about 22 miles long. Both San Antonio Creek and the East Fork Jemez River flow through intricate meanders along their courses. The East Fork Jemez is a National Wild and Scenic River.
Most of the Jemez ranges between 15-30 feet wide and generally 2-3 feet deep with a few deeper pools reaching five feet. Cottonwoods, willows and alders are scattered along this freestone like river forcing anglers to wade up the middle. NM Highway 4 parallels the river so access is extremely easy.
The Jemez River is a low elevation trout stream, during the heat of summer water temps can soar making for a tough day. Winter on the other hand is cold but seldom freezing making this a wonderful winter fishery. Midge hatches provide the bulk of dry fly action during the winter months, however a well-filled box should include nymphs and streamers. Wild browns range from 8-12 inches, New Mexico Game and Fish stocks rainbows throughout the winter months.