September 3rd marks the first day of 100% containment of the Castle Rock Fire here in the Sun Valley area. Home owners have returned, and we hope that the angling public will join us here again in the valley for what should be first rate fall fishing! The big bugs have returned, and like the rest of this seasons hatches, they are early. The anglers that are here are enjoying a great show, where we have many conditions working in favor of the angler.
â€¢ The big bugs are out, making fish greedy for these big mouthfuls of nourishment.
â€¢ Continued low water conditions, means the fish are concentrated and easy to find.
â€¢ The fire essentially closed the access to many points on the Big Wood and the fish were given a nice long mid-summer break and are less wise to the fly than normal for this time of year.
â€¢ The amount of anglers that didnâ€™t come to the valley due to the fires means less people have been on the water on all the area rivers and pressure has been minimal.
â€¢ Hunting season has started reducing angler numbers even more.
â€¢ The weather is beautiful, the fishing window is mid-day and local businesses will be rolling out the red carpet for the Autumn Anglers as we all try to make a comeback from several very hard weeks.
â€¢Please join us in Sun Valley for some of this seasons best fishing opportunities.
The Creek has been very good lately, despite the lower than normal water conditions. The cool nights are keeping the water temperatures down and angling pressure is at a minimum. Tricos are still out in the mornings, with the intensity levels varying from morning to morning, but there are always a few fish up and taking them off of the surface. This is coupled with decent Baetis activity that is happening with the morning Trico event and then again, very late in the evening. This late hatch really has the fish looking up and moving to feeding positions for the last magic hours of the day. The biggest event on the Creek is the afternoon Callibaetis activity that is taking place on the slow waters near the bottom end of the Nature Conservancy and in the sloughs. This area is best fished from a float tube (except the sloughs) where anglers can slowly move from one rising fish to the next. The fall is also an excellent time of the season to fish terrestrials, so if you arenâ€™t getting the strikes you think you could be getting on the Callibaetis imitations, do not hesitate to try an Ant or Beetle.
If you are in the area, donâ€™t forget about the public meeting from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. September 11, in rooms 301-302 at the Community Campus, 1050 Fox Acres Road in Hailey, where anglers can voice there opinion to Idaho Fish and Game regarding the proposed regulation changes to Silver Creek. The proposal is to add a 6 fish limit on Brown Trout and to allow fishing from boats the entire length of the Creek.
Big Wood River
The Western Red Quill, like all of this summers insects, is coming off early this year. Anglers searching the river with large Quill imitations like the Quill Gordon, Royal Wulff, Gray Wulff, and the H and L Variant will find nice sized fish coming to get them. The low water means anglers should fish these flies in the fastest water near the heads of the pools. The fish will move to these areas as the hatch activity strengthens throughout the day. Fish will also move in the opposite direction when the Fall Baetis begin to hatch. Expect to see Baetis bringing fish to the surface in the tail-outs of the pools. When fish are rising, a Gulper Special is a perfect imitation. Small Pheasant Tail nymphs are an excellent choice if the fish wonâ€™t come up or to use as a dropper. Be sure, as you approach a pool, to look very closely into the glassy tailouts as many nice sized fish will hold in the shallow water awaiting the Baetis activity. Keep in mind that many areas of the river have not been fished for several weeks and the fishing should be quite good as the fish havenâ€™t been fooled for some time now.
Upper Lost River and Copper Basin
Lower water levels have made these areas a low light fishery and not as easy to fish as they have been earlier in the year. It is still a terrific area to go and find serenity and to see the first amazing bits of fall colors. Should you go, try the lower waters first, below the North Fork and East Fork confluence. Small flies like a sized 16 Royal Trude, or a similar sized Ant will get some fish up, but do not hesitate to throw small, sized 16 Pheasant Tail nymphs as well. If you want to fish big flies use a Grasshopper imitation and cover a lot of water.
Big Lost River
The Lost below the Mackay Dam is flowing at 225 CFS which is a fantastic flow to fish on this river. Trico and Baetis are the fly of choice for the fish, and small Pheasant Tails nymphs are also a great way to go. With the Kokanee getting ready to spawn, have some small red nymphs as well. Little red Copper Johnâ€™s and San Juan Worms are excellent choices to fish behind the redds made by Kokanee that spill through the dam. They also make a nice dropper fly. Grasshoppers are still a good choice when first approaching a run. Start with big flies like a Hopper and then switch to smaller flies if you find rising fish. A Gulper Special is a great Baetis imitation on this river and all our area waters.
South Fork of the Boise
The South Fork is still at an excellent flow for boaters, running about 1600 CFS. Hoppers are the best fly for fishing from the boat. Watch for Pink Alberts and Baetis in the afternoon and evening. Keep an eye on the flows before you tow a boat all the way over, as they could be dropping off anytime soon. You can find the CFS for all our area water on our website at www.Silver-Creek.com
We want to say Welcome Back to all the anglers that have missed the past few weeks of fishing out here due to the fire activity. Stop by the shop for the latest updates and take advantage of what is and what should continue to be a wonderful fall fishery! We look forward to helping you have an outstanding fly-fishing adventure.