“Spring creek trout have a reputation for being moody, which often means they are difficult, but when they are in the mood to feast, almost nothing– not sloppy wading, not poor casting, not a ridiculous choice of flies–will dissuade them.” ~ Ted Leeson
Ted is right about spring creek trout. When it is time to feast, when the Tricos and the Baetis spinners are on the water, the trout on Silver Creek eat with an intense focus that blocks out all distractions…truly “nothing will dissuade them.” But just because they are eating with abandon, they do not become foolish. Sloppy wading, poor casting, and ridiculous flies will not dissuade the trout from feeding, but it certainly will not allow the angler to catch them. To fool these trout, the angler must match their rhythm and intensity. These fish are not caught by a stroke of luck but by persistence, patience, and skill. There is no one so humble as the angler that has matched his wits with a trout and lost.
With stable weather in the forecast, we should have another week of good Trico action on the Creek. The Tricos did start earlier than average this season, so don’t be surprised if the hatches begin to diminish in intensity as we move into the middle of the month. When fishing the Trico hatch, be sure you have the right leader, tippet and flies to fish this hatch. I recommend a 12 foot leader to 6X along with Trico and Baetis spinners in size 22 and 24. The fish can be very selective at this stage of the hatch and a perfect drift matched with a the right fly are a must to be successful. During the middle of the day, the Damsels and Callibaetis are the main fare mainly down in the pond area. As we move into August, I look for the Callibaetis to gain in strength and this is a hatch that is impervious to the wind, unlike the Tricos. Also Hoppers, beetles and ants are a good option if the wind blows in the afternoon. In the evenings, there is an abundance of bugs right at sun down and most of the fisherman have gone home.
THE BIG WOOD
The reports on the Wood remain spotty. The water is low and clear and the bigger fish can become scarce in August. With the low flows, focus on the aerated water above the deeper slow runs. The bigger fish seek out oxygen this time of year and tend to feed better early and late. Fishing small parachute patterns or dry dropper rigs in the shallow riffles or seams along the sides of the heavy water can be productive. For flies try small (12-16) yellow Stimulators, Parachute Hare’s Ear, Adams, or Purple Haze trailed by a Rainbow Warrior, Zebra Midge, or Bishop’s Dynamite in size 16 or 18.
SOUTH FORK OF THE BOISE
The flows remain at 1,730 CFS. It is time to toss big hoppers to the bank from a drift boat; however, I recommend parking the boat whenever you can and working the riffles and runs with a single dry, dry dropper rig, or Euro Style. Look for PMDs and Pink Alberts to hatch mid morning into the afternoon. Caddis are still the main course in the evening.
Lake Creek, Penny Lake, or Gaver’s Lagoon are all great places to practice casting and catching. All the ponds have been stocked and will receive regular stockings throughout the summer season. Drop on by before you go or take your family fishing and we will make sure you have the right gear to be successful.
The trout on the upper and lower Salmon should begin to get more active as the Spruce Moth gain momentum. The water is low, but floating is still a possibility in the lower stretches and walk and wade fishing is fantastic in the upper reaches. Olive and tan Caddis work well as Spruce Moth patterns, but also have an assortment of parachute patterns in grey, tan and purple in size 14 and 12. These fish are gullible for standard beaded nymphs like pheasant tails, prince nymphs, stone fly nymphs, and hare’s ear nymphs, especially the whitefish, in size 16 to 10. Bear valley Creek and Marsh Creek have also been fishing well with hoppers, ants, nymphs and streamer patterns.
BIG LOST BELOW MACKAY
The flows are up again to 356 CFS. The seesaw flows have slowed the fishing a bit and the wading is difficult, but not impossible. Still the Trico hatch is gaining in strength and is followed by an intermittent Baetis hatch throughout most of the day. With persistence, dry fly anglers can find rising fish in the morning and bring fish up throughput the day in the soft seams. Still, nymphing is the most productive. Try Rubber Leg Stones, San Juan Worms, and King Princes in the heavy runs. For the shallow water, try small nymphs like Zebra Midge, Bishop’s Dynamite, and Rainbow Warriors in size 16, 18, and 20.
UPPER LOST- COPPER BASIN
If you like to hike and fish, this is a good place to go. The fishing has been spotty, but anglers who have been covering vast amounts of water have been finding decent fish. Not a lot, but good quality. Remember, when you do find fish, they will be opportunistic feeders and a well presented hopper or other attractor pattern will turn fish on the first cast. Setting the hook properly on the takes you get can be the difference between a good day and a bad. Nymphing is also a good way to search the deeper pools and to keep the rod bent catching Mountain Whitefish.
South Fork of the Boise