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Image: Ed Northen

“April is the gateway to the joys of summer.”

– Fennel Hudson

While the fishing season on some of our local waters comes to an end, there are still fishing opportunities for those willing to seek them out. And the joy of summer rests quietly upon the mountains.

Big Wood/Silver Creek/South Fork of the Boise
You only have a few days to get on these rivers, and the fishing will be great. The winter midge hatch is in full swing for dry fly enthusiasts. All three of these fisheries will close on April 1st until Saturday of Memorial Day weekend.

The Lost Below Mackay
Unlike the Wood, the South Fork, and the Creek, the Lost is open year round. At the moment the flows are at around 93 CFS and should remain at these levels for a while as  Mackay reservoir refills.  Bugwise, be prepared for prolific midge activity with a few Baetis in the mix. You can expect to find plenty of dry fly opportunities as the day warms. Keep in mind that the rainbows and cutbows tend to spawn early on this river, so please wade carefully and avoid redds.

The Salmon 
As of the writing of this report, the Pahsimeori Hatchery has trapped 664 hatchery steelhead and Sawtooth Hatchery is reporting 138 returns. With the cold weather in the forecast this week the river should remain clear. The season is open until the end of April and will fish well as long as the weather stays cool and the water clear. Come on by the shop for the latest updates and grab some flies before you head over the hill.

The Little Wood
The lower Little Wood in the Taylor “Bear Tracks” Williams State Recreation Area should remain clear and fishable as long as cooler weather persists. This stretch of the river will go off color as the low altitude snow melts off, however. This area has quite a few small trout with the occasional lunker. You might try pulling a streamer along the banks and cover a lot of water. If you find a deep bucket, beaded nymphs may produce as well.

The thaw has begun, so you will want to keep Mackay, the Little Wood, and Magic on your radar. A visit to CJ Strike outside Mountain Home to hunt carp or a trek to the Duck Valley Indian Reservation could also be worth your time. We have a great supply of lake flies, so drop by the shop for the latest info as these stillwater options begin to open up.

Silver Creek: Beatis Nymphs | Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive | Small Pheasant Tails | Streamers

Big Wood: Adult Midge | Miller’s +1 | Blowtorch | Bishop’s Dynamite | Mops and Mini Mopcicles | Red Neck Midge | DD Midge | Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive

Big Lost: Adult Midge | Miller’s +1 | Blowtorch | Bishop’s Dynamite | Mops and Mini Mopcicles | Red Neck Midge | DD Midge | Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive | Streamers

South Fork of the Boise: Baetis | Midge | Duracell | French Nymph | Perdigons | San Juan Worm | Pat’s Rubber Leg Stone




Silver Creek 221 cfs
Big Wood 312 cfs
The Lost Below Mackay 93.1 cfs
Salmon 524 cfs
South Fork of the Boise 610 cfs