“Choosing to save a river is more often an act of passion than of careful calculation. You make the choice because the river has touched your life in an intimate and irreversible way, because you are unwilling to accept its loss.” ~ David Bolling
In November of 2014 the Kilpatrick/Purdy Pond project was completed. The restoration project addressed the accumulation of silt in the pond portion of the Creek which resulted in higher water temperatures down stream during the summer months. In the process, the restoration also created fantastic trout habitat allowing the fish of Silver Creek to have a safe haven during our lean water years. We are certainly reaping the benefit of this as the fish and the hatches have been fantastic this summer. Thank you Nature Conservancy and Picabo Livestock Co. for your act of passion and your careful calculation!
It is Trico time! As always, the timing and the duration of the hatch will vary with each given day. As a general rule of thumb, the spinners will hit the water when the air temps hit 60 to 65 degrees which is around 9:30 to 10 AM with the current weather pattern. The spinner fall can last anywhere from 30 minutes to a full hour or more. Before the spinners come down, the fish will be plucking off the occasional Female Trico Dun, Callibaetis spinner, PMD spinner, or Baetis spinner. The fish can be very picky during this hatch and anglers need to have a variety of patterns to match each phase. Also long twelve to fifteen foot leaders are a must down to 6, 6.5, or even 7X tippet. Once the hatch subsides, around 11:30 AM, most of the anglers will vacate the river; however, the fishing can remain good throughout the day for those anglers willing to try a variety of techniques and flies. Often on warmer days, Blue Damsels will blanket the weed beds and become easy prey for cruising fish. Ants and beetles get blown into the water on windy days. And nymphing will always produce a fish or two. The evening hatch is a very complex mix of insects and can be another chance to find fish on top. Caddis and PMDs are the dominate bugs in the evening.
THE BIG WOOD
The Wood has weathered the afternoon thunderstorms well and at the moment is running clear. The flows have come down making the entire river very wadable. It is time to shrink the flies down another size. Most any parachute pattern in a size 16 will bring fish while searching the soft seams. If you do see bugs during the day, more than likely it will be either Pink Alberts, PMDs, or Caddis. Fishing dry dropper is very effective using size 16 and 18 Zebra Midge, Rainbow Warriors, Bishop’s Dynamite, or Pheasant Tail nymphs. The Wood should continue to fish well throughout the day as long as we stay in this mild weather pattern.
SOUTH FORK OF THE BOISE
There are Stoneflies and Cicadas throughout the river. It is time to toss big bugs at the bank. Flows are back down to 1,600 CFS, a perfect level for drift boats. If the big bugs aren’t turning fish, try a dropper or stop and work the riffles over with nymphs. Try Rubber Legged Stones and other traditional stonefly patterns, as well as San Juan Worms, Caddis Larva, beaded PTs and Zebra Midge for the best results. Swinging a streamer is also a good idea and may result in a good size Bull Trout.
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.
Nice Cutthroat and Rainbows are still being caught both from drift boats and from foot. There are still some Yellow Sallies around as well as PMDs. Yellow Stimulators are a great searching bug. If you tie on a beaded nymph you should be able to keep your rod bent all day on trout and white fish.
BIG LOST BELOW MACKAY
The flows have come just below 400 CFS and river is fishable and wadable. However, wading remains challenging and certain runs are still to deep and fast to fish effectively. The best flies are Rubber Leg Stones, San Juan Worms, and King Princes. Small nymphs are working as well: Zebra Midge, Bishop’s Dynamite, and Rainbow Warriors in size 16 and 18. Mid day there can a decent Baetis hatch with a few PMDs. This will bring fish up if you are in the right place at the right time.
UPPER LOST- COPPER BASIN
Reports have been spotty in this area. Usually those who are willing to cover massive amounts of water are the most successful. These fish are opportunistic feeders and typically if your first or second pass through a run with a fly does not turn a fish, move on. Cutthroat love attractor patterns and have a slow, deliberate take. It is quite common for anglers used to catching rainbows to set the hook too quickly and pull the fly right out of the Cutty’s mouth. Be patient with your set! You may only have a few chances at these magnificent fish. If you are looking to hike, fish, and see some fantastic country, this is your place. If you want numbers of fish, go to the Wood instead.
South Fork of the Boise