“No fisherman ever fishes as much as he wants…this is the first great rule of fishing, and it explains a world of otherwise inexplicable behavior.” – Geoffrey Norman
Don’t let the seasonal closures and excessive high water keep you from fishing as much as you want. While there is no water for a local angler to casually fish for an hour or two after work and then make it home for dinner, a committed angler can still find fantastic fishing by heading out of town. The Big Lost and the Salmon are still fishing well and are certainly worth the trip. So as the ski season comes to a close, make productive use of your time rather than engaging in inexplicable behavior and go fishing!
There are a limited number of days left, as the steelhead season closes the end of April. The latest update from the Sawtooth Hatchery reported that 1,700 steelhead have been trapped. At this late stage, the majority of the remaining fish are between Valley Creek and the Hatchery. Below Yankee Fork, the river is high and off color. The conditions can change rapidly with rain and warmer temperatures in the forecast, so please check with us before you go.
THE BIG LOST – MACKAY
The flows continue to hold at around 400 CFS. Strong waders can navigate the river at this level with caution. The flows may go up even higher once the upper river flows start to increase. There can be really strong spring Baetis hatches during the afternoon; however, nymphing with a heavy double nymph rig will be the way to go.
Magic is still off color due to the rapid influx of water from the recent low altitude snow melt, but this would be a place to go if you are dying to wet a line for a few hours. Another great Stillwater option is the Duck Valley Indian Reservation. If you have a day or two, this is definitely worth the trip. This fishery is managed by the Shoshone-Paiute Tribes and has three different reservoirs to pick from: Mountain View, Lake Billy Shaw, and Sheep Creek. For a small fee, you can fish all three and camping facilities are available for an additional fee. As for techniques in both locations, try pulling a team of small leech patterns in black, brown or olive on an intermediate or type 3 or 5 sinking line. Often spring trout are feeding on Daphnia, aka fresh water plankton, and a leech is a welcome meal. Sheep Creek Specials always seem to work in Duck Valley. Also, suspending a series of nymphs or chironomids at the right depth can also be effective at both locations. Come on by the shop and we can set you up.
THE BIG WOOD • SILVER CREEK • SOUTH FORK OF THE BOISE
These rivers are now closed until opening day May 27th.
South Fork of the Boise
The Big Wood