“Maybe your stature as a fly fisherman isn’t determined by how big a trout you can catch, but by how small a trout you can catch without being disappointed.” ~John Gierach
The weather forecast is calling for cooler temperatures; if you plan to spend the day on the water, dress for the season. The cooler temps will continue to shorten our fishing window and the bugs of summer will fade away until next year. This is a great time of year to be on the water, as fish of all sizes are feeding with vigor in anticipation of winter. So, while fishing this October, focus on companionship or solitude, not on fish count or size. Make being completely present your goal and you will never be disappointed.
Fall Baetis and Mahogany Duns are gaining momentum as the days get shorter and the mornings get cooler. For Fall Baetis, have the full arsenal of duns, cripples, and spinners tied by the House of Harrop in size 20-24. The Mahoganies are the last big bug of the season on the Creek and you should also have the dun and emerger patterns for this bug to ensure success. This time of year, watch for the cool, cloudy days…the fishing can be incredible. On these blustery days, fishing hoppers or pulling streamers can be fantastic. FYI, if you find some early brown trout on redds, let them be and watch your step.
Upper Big Lost
There are still some Red Quills and a smattering of Beatis hatching in the afternoon. Take a drive and check out the fall colors on your way to fish the main stem of the Lost or one of the tributaries. Take plenty of hoppers and ants as well as some size 14 Parachute Adams or Hare’s Ear parachute to imitate the Red Quills.
The Lost Below Mackay
The flows are holding at 270 CFS. On the pleasant fall days, expect to have steady Baetis starting around 10 or 11 AM and lasting until 2 PM. Have a range of Baetis patterns from size 20 to 24 and fish at least 6 or 6.5X tippet on a 9 to 12 foot leader. If you can’t find surface feeders, try fishing a dry dropper rig or Euro Nymphing. For nymphs, try small Baetis style nymphs (18-22), Zebra Midge, or attractor nymphs like the Rainbow Warrior, Iron Lotus, or Bishop’s Dynamite in size 16 and 18.
Morning temps are going to be in the 20s around the Stanley Basin, so give it time to warm up. The best fishing is from noon until about 4 PM. Look for pull outs with access to classic riffle run holding water and search the water with nymphs or streamers. For nymphs try small rubber legged stones, Bishop’s Dynamite, Rainbow Warriors, or any other beaded size 14 or 16 nymph.
South Fork of the Boise
The South Fork continues to fish very well. During the pleasant hours of the day, there are plenty of midge, Baetis, caddis, and crane flies to get the fish feeding on top. Fall fishing on the South Fork means small dries, long leaders, and light tippet. For flies try micro caddis in peacock and olive as well as Harrop’s Baetis patterns if you find rising fish. Nymphing Euro Style or Dry Dropper is very productive for both trout and Mountain Whitefish.
Penny Lake, Lake Creek Pond or Gaver Lagoon are the perfect option for a family, fall picnic. We have a complete assortment of spinning gear, lures, bait, and flies so drop on by the shop and we can hook you up no matter the style of fishing you prefer.
Silver Creek Flies: Beatis 18 | Callibeatis 16 | Mahogany Duns 16 | Hoppers, Beetles, Ants | Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive 16,18 | Pheasant Tails 16,18 | Baetis Nymphs
Big Wood, Big Lost, Salmon River Flies: Grasshoppers | Red Quills (Hecuba) | Elk Hair Caddis | Stimulators | Chubby Chernobyl | Parachute Adams | Rubber Legged Stones |Iron Lotus | Pheasant Tails | Bishop’s Dynamite | King Prince | Streamers
South Fork of the Boise Flies: Baetis | Flavs | Crane Flies | Hoppers | Rubber Legged Stones | Zebra Midge | Caddis Larva | Flash Back Pheasant tails | King Prince | Streamers
Upper Big Lost
The Big Lost
South Fork of the Boise