With many area rivers coming into prime shape we are truly enjoying a feeling much like opening weekend. There is a lot of water that has not been fished yet this summer, a lot of fish that have yet to see a fly and an overall forecast that looks great! Expect more people on the water between now and Labor Day weekend, but also expect to see people spreading out. High mountain lakes are opening up, freestone rivers are dropping, tailwaters are rising, while others are dropping in all the right places. July is looking like it may be the best month of the summer season for fishing this year.
A few Tricos are beginning to show up, although not in huge numbers yet. The Baetis activity has been strong in the mornings, while Callibaetis are showing in the afternoons, and the Caddis are showing strong both early morning and late in the evening. The midday fishing is becoming more challenging and a serious lack of Grasshoppers is going to keep it this way for awhile. This will mean Damsel Fly fishing will become more and more important for those who want to search the waters surface when the insect activity slows with the heat of the day. Ants and Beetles fished a bit oversized with a chop on the water will get a few fish up as well.
The sloughs continue to fish well with Callibaetis dries, although the fish are becoming a bit more educated. The 3X tippets we were getting away with two weeks ago now need to be dropped to 5X with a little chop on the water, and even 6X if things are really calm.
The Silver Creek Valley is definitely mosquito heaven right now, so much so, that they will even find you in the heat of the day. Be sure to have bug spray with you when you go! Being well protected from these little blood suckers will make your day much more enjoyable!
Big Wood River
The Wood is still dropping nearly 100 CFS (Cubic Feet per Second) daily. Green Drakes are out and about and many anglers are reporting some great fishing. The lower river is still large, but should be incredibly manageable by this time next week. Above the East Fork confluence the river seems to look more fishable, but most Green Drake reports have been coming from Bellevue north to East Fork. Expect to see more of this insect upstream in the coming week.
The Drake is a heat of the day insect and often shows in good numbers between noon and five oâ€™clock. If you are out before or after this time big bushy dries like Stimulators are still taking fish, and large to medium sized bead head nymphs fished underneath a big dry fly will also produce hook ups. The more insects we begin to see on the river, the more the fish should move into traditional holding areas. If you are fishing early in the morning, do not overlook the water right next to the bank.
Upper Lost River / Copper Basin
The waters â€œup topâ€ are looking really good. Although there is still limited holding water and some tough wading conditions, anglers willing to cover a large area and explore ill find fish rising to a variety of insects. A lot of Caddis activity is happening along with Stoneflies, and Drakes. Much like the Big Wood these rivers are dropping fast and will be in prime shape by this time next week.
Big Lost River
Still high, but dropping fast. The Lost is not the place for fishing quite yet. The reservoir is nearly full, so these flows should remain strong for another month or so, but it is possible we could see a really nice late summer season here.
Little Wood River
Much like the Big Wood, the river above Carey has little holding water and fast currents, but fishable areas can be found. In the desert below the Silver Creek confluence the river has more area to spread, although most is taken out for irrigation before it ever gets this far, turning the lower stretch essentially into Silver Creek, as far as where the water is coming from. If you go to either area, general attractor patterns in large sizes, both wet and dry will take a few fish.
South Fork of the Boise
The river has finally been cranked up from 600 CFS to a little over 1000 CFS. As of this writing it will have been two days that it has been pushed up. This is great news for boaters. Give the river until after the weekend to settle into shape. Salmon Flies, Cicadas, Pink Alberts and Caddis are all on the menu. The river will probably get cranked up a bit higher until it reaches about 1,500 CFS.