“There are as many reasons why and ways to fish as there are people who do it.”- Russell Chatham
Why? A season can be a reason: Cottonwoods bejeweled in gold; Mountains tipped with snow; Windshields frosted with morning dew. And the colors…Blue Winged Olive, Mahogany, Red Quill, Golden Brown…are reason enough. While I love all the seasons in which trout can be caught, like Hemingway’s famous quote, I love the fall best. Come discover for yourself the whys and ways of October in the Wood River Valley. You will not be disappointed.
SILVER CREEKThe Fall Baetis and the Mahogany Duns are gaining momentum as the days get shorter and the mornings get cooler. For the Baetis, have the full arsenal of duns, cripples, and spinners tied by the House of Harrop in size 20-24. The Mahoganies are the last big bug of the season on the Creek and you should also have the dun, emerger, and spinner patterns for this bug to ensure success. This time of year, watch for the cool, cloudy days and call in sick because the fishing can be incredible. On these blustery days, fishing hoppers or ripping streamers can be fantastic. FYI, if you find some early brown trout on redds, let them be and watch your step.
BIG WOODThe Wood is back! It recovered much quicker than expected and is fishing well. There are still a few Red Quills, but you can expect the Fall Baetis to really ramp up over the next few weeks. Have a few size 12 Parachute Adams and some size 18-20 Gulper Specials in Olive with a high-vis post to match these two bugs. With the slight color to the water, nymphing is going to be very productive. Be sure to have plenty of nymphs with hot spots. Check out Steve Parrot’s blog on hot spot nymphs and come on down to the shop and we will hook you up with some great patterns including Egan’s Frenchy, The Red Dart, Bishop’s Dynamite, and the Iron Lotus (http://www.flyfishingteamusa.com/blog).
UPPER WOOD, TRAIL CREEK, NORTH FORKIf small streams lined with golden cottonwoods and willows is your idea of fun then you need to check out Trail Creek, East Fork, or The North Fork of the Wood. There is nothing terribly complicated about fishing these rivers. Keep it simple and be stealthy in your approach and you will be successful. Everything you fish on the Wood will work here.
THE BIG LOST ABOVE MACKAY
The flows are all over the map right know. Last week they went from 120 to 95 CFS. As of the writing of this report they are back up to 149 CFS. What they will be tomorrow is a mystery. Despite the wacky flows, the fishing is stellar. Some Tricos in the morning followed by a steady Baetis hatch into the early afternoon. To fool these seasoned trout, have a range of Baetis patterns from size 20 to 24. Trouthunter 6 or 6.5X tippet on a 9 to 12 foot leader is a good idea. No risers, no worries. Fishing a dry dropper rig or Euro Nymphing is very productive. For nymphs, try small Baetis style nymphs (18-22) or Zebra Midge in olive, black, or red. Attractor nymphs like the Rainbow Warrior, Iron Lotus, or Bishop’s Dynamite in size 16 and 18 also work very well.
THE UPPER LOST
There are still some Red Quills and a smattering of Beatis hatching in the afternoon. Take a drive and check out the fall colors on your way to fish the main stem of the Lost or one of the tributaries. Take plenty of hoppers and ants as well as some size 14 Parachute Adams or Hare’s Ear parachute to imitate the Red Quills. Be aware that there is road construction happening on the road from the North Fork bridge to the paved road on the Mackay side. You can expect delays from 10 to 30 minutes six days a week until the snow flies.
It is hard to imagine a prettier setting for fishing this fall. The fishing window is short, from 11AM till about 4 PM. Hole-hopping from you vehicle is the best approach. Concentrate your efforts on the classic riffle run holding water and search the water with nymphs or streamers. For nymphs try small rubber legged stones, Bishop’s Dynamite, Rainbow Warriors, or any other beaded size 14 or 16 nymph.
SOUTH FORK OF THE BOISE
The South Fork continues to fish very well. During the pleasant hours of the day there are plenty of Midge, Baetis, Caddis, and Crane Flies to get the fish feeding on top. Fall fishing on the South Fork means small dries, long leaders, and light tippet. For flies try micro caddis in peacock and olive as well as Harrop’s Baetis patterns if you find rising fish. Nymphing Euro Style or Dry Dropper is very productive for both trout and Mountain Whitefish. For nymphs try small Baetis nymph patterns (18-20), Zebra Midge (18-22), Caddis Larva (12-14), Stone Fly patterns (10-12), or San Juan Worms.
Penny Lake, Lake Creek Pond or Gaver Lagoon are the perfect option for a family, fall picnic. We have a complete assortment of spinning gear, lures, bait, and flies so drop on by the shop and we can hook you up no matter the style of fishing you prefer.
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Water Flows – OCTOBER 8TH
The Big Lost
South Fork of the Boise