“How many activities can you count in your life that you engage in simply because they delight you and grip your soul? Find them out, cultivate them, for they are your passport to freedom and to love.”
– Anthony de Mello
Certainly fly fishing is one such soul-gripping activity. We are grateful to all who help us cultivate our passion of angling.
If you are looking for an escape this Thanksgiving, you are sure to find solitude on the Big Wood. Access is easy at the moment since we have yet to receive a dump of snow on the valley floor. If you go, you will find the fish holding in classic winter water. And no need to go early as the best fishing window is from noon until about three in the afternoon. You will find a few midge hatching and the occasional surface feeder; however, nymphing is the most productive approach with small midge patterns. Remember, winter fish hold in really slow water and the takes are very subtle so don’t waste time fishing fast water where there are no fish. Also, learn how to use a Ketchum Release tool. This way you will keep your hands dry and warm and the fish stay wet and happy.
This is the last week to fish the Creek above Kilpatrick Bridge as the Preserve closes to fishing at the end of November. Downstream of Kilpatrick bridge, however, will remain open until the end of March. With much cooler weather settling on the Valley, the fishing window is short. In the late afternoon you may see some bug activity and a few fish working. Expect mostly midge and a few Baetis. Small nymphs and dries along with fine tippet are a must. Streamers are a good option as well.
The Upper Lost
While it may look passable, the Trail Creek Pass gate is closed for the season. You will need to drive all the way around and up into this area. It is a long way to go, but you can guarantee solitude.
The Lost Below Mackay
The flows have stabilized at around 200 CFS. This is higher than average for this time of year and they may drop to typical winter flows (100 to 80 CFS) any day. The fishing has been fair, and if you are looking for a full day adventure this is a good option.
It is really cold in Stanley this time of year, but fishing in the afternoon is doable. Pick some decent holding water and you will find a few rainbows, cutthroat, whitefish, and possibly a bull trout.
South Fork of the Boise
The road to Anderson Dam should be open again this week, but check before you go. The road to Cow Creek is still open and should remain passable until we get more snow. As for fishing, flows are holding steady at 300 CFS making for easy wading. The cold weather will slow the hatch activity but you will still see some Baetis and midge in the afternoon.
Silver Creek: Beatis | Nymphs | Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive | Small Pheasant Tails | Streamers
Big Wood and Warm Springs: Adult Midge | Small Perdigons | Bishop’s Dynamite | Zebra Midge in black, red, or olive
Salmon: Olive, Brown, Black Buggers | Pat’s Rubber Legs | Bishop’s Dynamite | Prince Nymph
South Fork of the Boise: Baetis | Midge | Duracell | Bullet French Nymph | Perdigons | San Juan Worm | Pat’s Rubber Leg Stone
|The Lost Below Mackay
|South Fork of the Boise