“My beloved October has returned—with its brilliant colors, cool temperatures and sunny, cloudless, azure skies, and I must enjoy it before it escapes for another year.”
– Peggy Toney Horton
We only get so many Octobers…make this one your masterpiece.
The Creek is fishing well with a nice mix of bugs: baetis, midge, October caddis, and a smattering of mahogany duns. The surface feeding window is short, from mid to late afternoon until the sun and temperature drops, and it can be sporadic to prolific depending on the day and where you are. To fool these seasoned trout, use a long leader, fine tippet, and drag free presentations. If the wind blows, get out your terrestrials and shorten your leader. Nymphs and streamers can also be very effective this time of year. Remember, while fishing in the Preserve, you are required to sign in. This can be done via your phone with the QR code posted at all access points, by texting “Visitor” to (833) 593-0682, or by simply dropping into the visitor center.
Fall is a good time to search likely water with your favorite dry fly patterns. Red Quills, flying ants, caddis, and Baetis are all good options. Target the soft water around the deep buckets and runs. The fish can be quick and you should expect a strike the moment your fly touches the water. To avoid missed strikes, try shortening your cast and get ready to set. Of course, nymphing is effective this time of year as well with dry-dropper or Euro style rigs.
The Upper Lost
The water is low and cold, so plan on fishing late in the day for the best results. Also, the fish are concentrated in the prime holding water. Take along your favorite attractor dry flies and nymphs as well as standard parachute patterns. You can expect to see similar bugs here as you might find on the Big Wood.
The Lost Below Mackay
Flows are just under 200 CFS, perfect for wading and allowing the fish to remain spread out from the riffles to the deeper buckets. The fishing is good once the water warms up enough to get the bugs going. Look for heads in the seams and in the slow tail outs sipping fall baetis and tricos. When the bugs are sparse, be prepared to nymph.
Despite the low morning temperatures, the Salmon River is a good option. During the pleasant time of day you will find consistent action on whitefish and trout. A variety of techniques and flies will work as these fish are not terribly selective.
South Fork of the Boise
The flows have dropped to around 300 CFS and are perfect for wade fishing. On these lovely fall days, the afternoons can be a bug stew with a mix of caddis, crane flies, pinks, flavs, and baetis. This is a very popular fishery, so please be kind to each other and enjoy the great fishing!
Warm Springs and Trail Creek
If you like skinny, challenging water, then give these two tributaries a try. Fish and Game has stocked these rivers around the bridges; however, if you seek wild fish, just venture away from the easy access points. The key to success…stealth. As long as the fish are not scared, they will eat.
Lake Creek Pond, Penny Lake, and Gaver’s Lagoon are a nice place for a fall family picnic and the chance to catch a few remaining stocked trout.
Big Wood: Baetis | Caddies | Crane Flies | Hopper Patterns | Red Quills (Hecuba) | Duracell | Bullet French Nymph | Rain Drop Jigs | Maktima UV Jig | Bishop’s Dynamite | Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive
Silver Creek: Baetis | Mahogany Duns | October Caddis| Hopper Patterns | Bullet French Nymph | DB Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive | Pine Squirrel Leech
Salmon: Hopper Patterns | Chubby Chernobyl | Spruce Moth | Duracell | Bullet French Nymph | Rain Drop Jigs | Maktima UV Jig | Pat’s Rubber Legs | Bishop’s Dynamite
Big Lost Flies: Baetis | Crane Flies | Duracell | Bullet French Nymph | Rain Drop Jigs | Maktima UV Jig | Bishop’s Dynamite | Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive
South Fork of the Boise: Caddis | Pink Alberts | Baetis | Flav | Deep Cleaner | Duracell | Bullet French Nymph | Rain Drop Jigs | Maktima UV Jig | Pat’s Rubber Legs
|Silver Creek||91.5 cfs|
|Big Wood||137 cfs|
|The Lost Below Mackay||190 cfs|
|South Fork of the Boise||299 cfs|