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“A fisherman is always hopeful – nearly always more hopeful than he has any right to be.”

– Roderick Haig-Brown

Anglers are an optimistic lot, ever hopeful that the next cast, the next hatch, the next day may provide another opportunity to pursue their quarry. However, in June and July, anglers wondered if there would be such opportunities in August with water levels dropping and water temperatures soaring. And now that August has arrived, the forecast calls for more occasions to hope.

Silver Creek
While there has been some improvement in flow and temperatures, it is still fluctuating day to day. Therefore, the Preserve’s access closure remains in place. Along with water temperature, dissolved oxygen (DO) is a key factor in the health of Silver Creek’s trout. During the daytime, DO is introduced into the water mostly by aquatic plants photosynthesizing. At night, those same plants will respirate; consuming oxygen and releasing carbon dioxide into the water. On the Creek, although water temperatures may seem ideal early in the morning, this period has some of the lowest DO concentrations. This is just as stressful on the fish as the 70 degree water temperatures which have been occurring later in the day. It is very difficult to predict how long this closure will be in place. Let’s hope next week’s cooler weather pattern makes a difference.

Big Wood
The Big Wood has jumped from 115 cubic feet per second last week to nearly 250 in Hailey thanks to the rain. Both Baker Creek and Warm Springs have turned muddy as of August 2nd and it will take a few days for the Wood to completely clear up. The increase in flows will also slow the hatch activity, but once a stable weather pattern sets in, the flows drop, and the water clears we should see the return of the bugs. Look for pale morning duns, blue winged olives, golden stones, crane flies, caddis, and tricos depending on where you fish.

Lower and Upper Lost River
Trail Creek Pass received an excessive amount of rain in a short period of time causing a mudslide to cover the road as of August 2nd. At this point there is no set date as to when it will be cleared and the road reopened. If you wish to fish this area you will need to go to Arco and up to Mackay. While the flows on the Lower Lost have stabilized at 130 CFS, it appears that the reservoir will be completely out of water soon. At this point the out flow should match the inflow. Tricos are still hatching as well as caddis and some baetis. The best fishing is in the morning into the early afternoon when the temps are in the low to mid 60s. Once the bugs are gone, the fishing slows dramatically. The Upper Lost, like the Wood, has seen a bump in flows and some muddy water. Once the water clears, fishing should get back on track.

The Salmon
The Salmon too has seen an increase in flows and some muddy water below the East Fork but should clear in a few days. Thanks to the rain, floating is still a possibility on the lower reaches. As for bugs, look for decent hatches of caddis, spruce moths, and golden stoneflies.

Southfork of the Boise
Wade anglers rejoice! The flows have dropped 1,400 to 700 CFS. Expect golden stoneflies, pink alberts, and caddis.

Local Ponds
The local ponds have been stocked and are ready for a family picnic and some fishing.

Big Wood: Alt RKR PMD | Stimulators | EZ Caddis | Bullet French Nymph | Roza Perdigons | Sexy Walts | Quilldigon | Bishop’s Dynamite | DB Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive

Big Lost: Golden Stones | Apple Green PMD | Baetis Sparkle Duns Harrop | Sexy Walts | Bullet French Nymph | Tasmanian Devil | Roza Perdigon | Lite Brite Perdigons | Roza WW Pheasant Tail | Bishop’s Dynamite | DB Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive

Salmon: Chubby Chernobyl | EZ Caddis | Spruce Moth | Tasmanian Devil | Roza WW Pheasant Tail | Bishop’s Dynamite | Lite Brite Perdigons | Pat’s Rubber Legs

South Fork of the Boise: Chubby Chernobyl | Caddis | Sexy Walts | Bullet French Nymph | Lite Brite Perdigons | Pat’s Rubber Legs | Bishop’s Dynamite | DB Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive



Silver Creek 69.5 cfs
Big Wood 236 cfs
The Big Lost 140 cfs
South Fork of the Boise 692 cfs
Salmon River 1060 cfs