“Teaching is only demonstrating that it is possible. Learning is making it possible for yourself.”
– Paulo Coelho
A simple cast, take, set, play, followed by a deft release; a master angler makes it look simple. However, the moment does not reveal the hours of failure, the occasional successes, or the infinite number of decisions that have been turned to instinct. A master teacher can remove the mystery of fly fishing and demonstrate to anyone with a desire to learn that it is possible. If you are looking to explore the possibility for yourself, now is a great time to try one of our Fly Fishing 101 sessions. Every Saturday through mid-August, we will be holding these three-hour hands-on classes. The cost is $95 per person and has a minimum enrollment of 4 and a maximum of 6. Interested? Register online or call the shop at 208-726-5282.
The Creek is fishing well, but the trout are not as gullible as they were during the first weeks of June. There continues to be a strong midday hatch of Callibaetis on the lower Preserve and Pond. Have a nice variety of flies including spinners, duns, and emergers. The early season Callibaetis are larger than the late summer variety as well, a true size 16. There have been a few Green Drakes and Baetis as well, especially in the upper reaches. While we typically see a good number of PMDs, they have been elusive. If you are not finding any bugs fluttering about, try drifting terrestrials (beetles and ants) or small nymphs. Perhaps swim a damsel nymph over open water. The evening fishing has been decent thanks to a prolific caddis hatch. Remember, the Nature Conservancy has improved access and kindly asks that users stay on the designated trails and utilize the access points to prevent habitat degradation. Also, the visitor center is being remodeled and will remain closed. Look for posted information at each access allowing you to sign in via your phone with a QR code or by texting “Visitor” to (833) 593-0682.
Here we are in the middle of June and the water levels on the Wood look like late July, even August on some stretches. With the exceptionally low flows we are seeing, be sure to keep your eye on water temps while fishing. The higher the water temperature, the less dissolved oxygen is present. This is why it is vital to play trout quickly and return them to the water immediately. As for the fishing, it continues to be good and should get even better now that the Green Drakes have arrived. The low flows and warm temps have pushed this hatch forward, so keep an eye out for them. Even if you are not seeing them, the fish are looking for them. You will also see a mixed bag of caddis, medium and small mayflies, as well as golden stones depending on where you are on the river. It is a good time to be a dry fly angler! Of course, nymphing with a variety of patterns has been very productive as well. On a final note, even with the low flows, still wade with caution.
Warm Springs and Trail Creek
These Big Wood tributaries are fishable, but very low for this time of year. There are stocked rainbows around the bridges and easy access points, but an angler who is willing to move around and employ stealth will find a few wild fish.
The flows continue to linger just above 300 CFS. This is a very pushy flow and moving around the river can be challenging.
Upper Lost River
It is time to start exploring the upper river above Wildhorse. You will find a mixed bag of bugs: PMDs, Yellow Sallies, Golden Stones, and Green Drakes. Attractor patterns that have a hint of yellow or orange are very effective. These fish are opportunistic feeders and will likely take a look at any well presented dry fly. If you get a rejection, downsize and try again.
The river is lower than average and ready to float! Our guides have been up there, and reports are good. The wade fishing options are limited, but you can find some pull-outs and hole hop above and below Stanley. Expect to find good numbers of Salmon flies once the day warms up. This is a good place to toss big foam patterns towards the bank in search of trout. Add a dropper and you will find a ton of whitefish.
Southfork of the Boise
Flows are steady at just above 1800 CFS. Wade fishing is limited, but if you have a boat or a friend with a boat, drifting is your best option. A few Salmon flies have been spotted on the lower river and this hatch should start to make its way upstream over the next few weeks.
It is time to take the family to Lake Creek, Penny Lake, or Gaver’s Lagoon. All the ponds are stocked and will receive regular stockings throughout the summer season.
Big Wood: Chubby Chernobyl | Stimulators | Bullet French Nymph | Lite Brite Perdigons | Sexy Walts | Perdichigons | Pat’s Rubber Legs | Bishop’s Dynamite | DB Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive
Silver Creek: PMDs | Baetis | Callibaetis | Green Drakes | Brown Drakes | Bullet French Nymph | DB Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive | Pine Squirrel Leech
Big Lost: Golden Stones | PMDs | Sexy Walts | Perdichigons | Bullet French Nymph | TG Hide a Bead Baetis | CDC France Fly | Lite Brite Perdigons | Duracell Jig | Bishop’s Dynamite | DB Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive
South Fork of the Boise: Chubby Chernobyl | Caddis | Sexy Walts | Perdichigons | Bullet French Nymph | Lite Brite Perdigons | Pat’s Rubber Legs | Bishop’s Dynamite | DB Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive
|Silver Creek||93.2 cfs|
|Big Wood||433 cfs|
|The Big Lost||320 cfs|
|South Fork of the Boise||1810 cfs|
|Salmon River||1650 cfs|