Be prepared to once again, get up early and stay up late for the best fishing. The midday window is closing rapidly and the fishes feeding behavior is going to begin coinciding with the major insect activity. With the Green Drake and Stonefly season pretty much behind us, the evening Caddis, and morning Mayfly spinner falls are coming rapidly to the forefront of the fishing day. We are still a few weeks away form really good Hopper fishing, leaving the afternoons to nymphing and searching the fast shallows at the heads of pools with medium sized attractor dry flies.
The Creek is beginning to act like it does at this time every summer, with hatches and spinner falls one can set their clocks to and a need to get there early and / or stay late. The big news is the appearance of the Trico Spinner Fall in the morning. The other bit of news is the down stream silt that many anglers are concerned with may be a bit of a blessing in disguise. It is fair to say that the lower river has not seen the amount of Trico activity that has been apparent in the past, but with the new influx of silt from last season flooding on the Creek, we may see a return of this insect in great numbers, as it is a silt dwelling insect in its nymph form. Time will tell, but early reports of this insect have been outstanding so far. Expect to see a fair amount of Baetis and Pale Morning Dun activity as the Trico Spinner Fall begins to wane in the late morning. Most surface activity should cease by about 11:00 a.m.
In the afternoon on the Creek, donâ€™t expect to see a lot of activity. The Green Drake which loves the heat is gone, and afternoon temperatures nearing 100 degrees are making the wind blow and putting the fish on the cool dark bottom. The sloughs may be a nice place to cool your heels and will fish well throughout the day, with the high noontime sun helping anglers see and target their quarry.
The soft evening light signals a return of rising fish, and the Baetis and PMD, as well as a few Caddis are the targets of the fish. This activity should last all the way into the twilight hours. The only thing to ruin a fishing session on the Creek this time of year is the wind. If it comes on strong, just head a few miles up to the Big Wood and try again later in the day or the following day.
Big Wood River
The Wood is certainly seeing a drop off in good afternoon fishing, but the morning and evening activity is still strong and productive. This will change in a few weeks with Hopper season returning us to an all day affair, but for now look to fish Mayfly Spinner Falls in the morning and evening and stay late for the Caddis activity. The norm this time of year is for fish to utilize the heavy, fast, shallow water adjacent the main current at the heads of the runs in the afternoon. This is often the place most anglers are drawn to stand in while they fish the main current. Be aware that the fish want the cover of the rapids, but donâ€™t want to fight the main current. These adjacent shallows become important places for them to feed, seek shelter, and collect oxygen during the heat of the day. In the morning, undisturbed fish may be in calm shallows close to the bank, and in the evening expect to see them in more normal places like foam lines and along brush lined shores. Medium sized attractor patterns are good choices when searching with a dry fly, as are Ants and Beetles in big sizes. Fishing medium sized bead head nymphs is also a good way to take fish throughout the day.
Copper Basin and the Upper Lost River
Much like the Big Wood the low light periods are going to be prime times for fishing. The exception being the areas of these rivers where you see a lot of overhanging vegetation. These spots will hold trout that will feed throughout the day, but anglers need to be able to get a fly well up under the overhangs. This can call for creative mending, and advanced casting skills. It is a great challenge and very rewarding when an 18 nch Cutthroat decides to take your well placed offering. Attractor flies and large Terrestrials are all good choices. Ants seem to be a real favorite of these fish. Once the light drops expect to see fish materialize out of places you may have previously thought held no fish. The last hour of light can be a blast for those willing to stick it out to the last hour of the day.
Big Lost River
Below the Dam at Mackay the river is beginning to drop very slowly. Each day a tiny bit more water should be accessible. Anglers that have fished where they could have had some success both subsurface and on the top, but wading is still somewhat of a limiting factor. It should be a great late season fishery so be patient, and prepared for when this section does come into a nice wadeable flow.
South Fork of the Boise
This river is holding steady at 1800 CFS, which is a perfect boating flow, but very limiting for wade anglers. The Pink Alberts should begin to come off in the heat of the day and can provide many exciting hours of fishing. Keep in mind that once this hatch starts the fish will move to the shallowest of the shallows to grab the emergers. They Albert emerges with its wings fully out as it leaves the bottom of the river making them easy targets for the trout. Make sure your emerger patterns have a cutt-wing or similar style to draw the most attention. Once on the surface a well tied size 16 Parachute Adams, or Pink Albert Thorax pattern will do the trick.