With warmer temperature and less precipitation it is starting to look like most of our rivers are shaping up just in time for the big weekend. Freestone streams like the upper Big Lost and the Big Wood are just days away from safe fishing levels.
Big Wood River
The Wood has dropped over 350cfs in the past week and will continue to plummet throughout the weekend. Dropping water levels will create ideal conditions for the Green Drake hatch that’s about to sweep through the valley. Anglers have been finding success with Royal Stimulators, Prince Nymphs, Girdle Bugs, and Parachute Adams when fish aren’t actively feeding. Recent warm temperatures have started to get evening Caddis and PMD activity rolling. If you can’t get the fish to eat your caddis on a dead drift, try skating the fly a little bit. Sometimes just a little movement can make the fish close the deal.
It is now the time of year when anglers need to be prepared with a large variety of Mayfly patterns for fishing the Creek. Early in the morning, anglers can expect to find fish feeding on Baetis, PMD’s, and possibly even Trico spinners. As the day progresses, keep an eye out for Green Drakes and Callibaetis . If you cannot find actively working fish, a Beetle or Damselfly might turn a few fish during the heat of the day. Evenings will primarily be a Caddis show but there is a very small (size 22) yellow Baetis that has been hatching over the past week. A size 22 PMD or light colored Baetis is a very realistic imitation of this insect.
Big Lost River
Unfortunately, at 1070cfs (cubic feet per second), the Big Lost is still too high to fish. Keep an eye on the river levels and if the stream flow gets below 450cfs the Lost will become fishable.
Upper Big Lost / Copper Basin
The Copper Basin is still a little bit high for optimal fishing, but the upper stretches are starting to shape up. Be prepared with Green Drakes, Stimulators, Humpies, Parachute Adams, Prince Nymphs and Streamers if you head over the hill.
South Fork of the Boise
Despite the crowds, the South Fork of the Boise has been fishing well lately. Cicadas and Salmonflies along the bank should produce strikes. Additionally, the caddis activity has really picked up over the past week. Be prepared with a handful of size 16-18 Caddis imitations if you’re fishing late in the day.