The Essence of Sun Valley.

Fly Fishing Forecast July 27th – August 3rd

“Dave was never on time for work. He was always early.” ~ Terry Ring

That is because it wasn’t work for Dave; it was his passion. Let’s all try to be a little more like Dave. Whether at work or on the water, go fishing with Super Dave in your heart.

SILVER CREEK
The fishing remains spotty on the Creek. Low flows in the Upper Preserve are forcing most of the fish to seek the protection of deeper, cooler water. Traditionally, this week and the next are the peak of the Trico hatch, and then it slowly dwindles into the latter part of August. Due to early morning winds, the Trico hatch has been very unpredictable. Still, there should still be several more solid Trico spinner falls on the horizon. Along with the Tricos in the morning, you will also see Baetis, Callibaetis, and PMDs. If you go, be sure you have the right leader, tippet and flies to fish these complex hatches. I recommend a 12 foot leader to 6X along with Trico and Baetis spinners in size 22 and 24. The fish can be very selective at this stage of the hatch and a perfect drift matched with a the right fly are a must to be successful. During the middle of the day, the Damsels and Callibaetis are the main fare. Hoppers, beetles, and ants are also working if there is a slight wind chop on the surface. In the evenings, there is a smorgasbord of bugs right at sun down. For twilight fishing, always have a few flies that are easy to see in the fading light.

BIG WOOD
The Wood is fishing very well. There are prolific numbers of small fish from 3 to 8 inches in most every fishable run along with a few larger trout. This is a very good sign and bodes well for the future of this wild fishery. In the mornings, there have been strong hatches of Tricos and PMDs depending on the stretch of river you are on. During the heat of the day, grass hoppers are a good option. Caddis have also been very good in the evening. Fishing small parachute patterns or dry dropper rigs in the shallow riffles or seams along the sides of the heavy water is best. For flies try small (12-16) yellow Stimulators, Elk Hair Caddis, Parachute Hare’s Ear, Adams, or Purple Haze trailed by a Rainbow Warrior, Zebra Midge, or Bishop’s Dynamite in size 18 and 16.

WARM SPRINGS
If you like small stream fishing, Warms Springs is a great option. The hatches are very similar to the Wood and can often be even more prolific. With the low flows, the fish are concentrated in the deeper water and around cover. Also, Fish and Game keeps this river well stocked around the bridges. For flies, yellow or orange Stimulators or Spruce Moth patterns are good on top. Tying on a dropper is a good idea as well; Bishop’s Dynamite, Zebra Midge, Pheasant Tails, and Prince Nymphs all work well.

THE SALMON
The flows have dropped making the upper river around Stanley very easy to walk and wade. Also, we are still floating the lower river and the fishing for bank sipping trout remains very good. Spruce moths are the starting to make an appearance and a
size 16 or 14 cream colored Elk Hair Caddis works well to imitate this bug. Focus on the areas that are heavily wooded with evergreens and you will find the moth. Small hoppers and stimulators are also very effective. Fishing dry dropper style with size 14-16 bead head nymphs is also productive. Valley, Marsh, and Bear Valley Creeks are all fishing well.

BIG LOST – MACKAY
Finally, The flows are creeping up and are now close to 450 CFS; they may continue to rise as irrigation demands increase down stream. For most, this flow is simply too high to fish comfortably. For those willing to seek fishable water, nymphing is the most productive technique. Try a variety of different nymphs: San Juan Worms, King Prince, PTs, and small Beatis and Midge patterns. Large crane flies may be skittering across the water, so have some Mackay Specials in your box.

UPPER BIG LOST
Reports have run the gamut from excellent to slow on the upper Lost. It remains true that the anglers that move around and cover a ton of water will find fish, and sometimes nice fish. The East Fork above Wildhorse Creek is very wadable now, but the fishing pressure has made the fishing a bit tough. If you hit a stretch that has been rested for a few days it can still be excellent. The main stem of the river below the North Fork is also becoming more accessible and is worth exploring. You can still cast big attractor flies, but if you get a refusal, switch to a smaller Parachute Adams, PMD or Purple Haze. If that does not work, try small nymphs, like Rainbow Warriors, Bishop’s Dynamite, Pheasant tails or Prince Nymphs.

SOUTH FORK OF THE BOISE
The flows remain around 1700 CFS. The fishing has slowed a bit now that the Salmon flies have disappeared, but hoppers are now clattering up and down the canyon keeping the fish looking for a big meal. Also, Pinks Alberts are hatching around the riffles throughout the day. Of course, caddis cloud the air in the evenings and you should pack a good selection of Trailing Shuck Caddis and traditional Elk Hair Caddis in brown and olive sizes 18 to 14. Nymphing the riffles and seams with large stone fly imitations, caddis larva, and small zebra midge is effective for trout and whitefish.

STILLWATERS & LOCAL WATERS
This is a good time to take the family to Lake Creek, Penny Lake, or Gaver’s Lagoon. All the ponds have been stocked and will receive regular stockings throughout the summer season. Whatever style of fishing you want to do, we are your headquarters. So drop on by before you take your family fishing and we will make sure you have the right gear to be successful.

 

 

Silver Creek

Big Wood

South Fork of the Boise

The Salmon

The Big Lost

93 cfs

234 cfs

1730 cfs

587 cfs

479 cfs

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Fly Fishing Forecast July 20-27th

“We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” ~ Walt Disney

 

Join us Saturday, July 23rd, to celebrate the sport of fly fishing and preview the latest innovations and technology from your favorite brands. Experts will be here showcasing new product from: Winston, Sage, Fishpond, Hatch Reels, Waterworks/Lamson Patagonia, Simms, Filson, Rio, Trouthunter, Smith Optics, and Redington.

SILVER CREEK
I mentioned it last week and it is worth repeating: with the low flows in the Upper Preserve, most of the fish are seeking the cover of deeper water. And with increased angler pressure and a limited number of fish spread throughout the system, the fishing will remain spotty for the duration of the summer. That said, there are Tricos on the Creek. As always, the timing and the duration of the hatch will vary with each given day. As a general rule of thumb, the spinners will hit the water when the air temps hit 60 to 65 degrees which is around 9:30 to 10 AM with the current weather pattern. The spinner fall can last anywhere from 30 minutes to a full hour or more. Before the spinners come down, the fish will be plucking off the occasional Female Trico Dun, Callibaetis spinner, PMD spinner, or Baetis spinner. The fish can be very picky during this hatch and anglers need to have a variety of patterns to match each phase. Also long twelve to fifteen foot leaders are a must down to 6, 6.5, or even 7X tippet. Once the hatch subsides, around 11:30 AM, most of the anglers will vacate the river; however, the fishing can remain good throughout the day for those anglers willing to try a variety of techniques and flies. Often on warmer days, Blue Damsels will blanket the weed beds and become easy prey for cruising fish. Ants and beetles get blown into the water on windy days. And nymphing will always produce a fish or two. The evening hatch is a very complex mix of insects and can be another chance to find fish on top. Caddis and PMDs are the dominate bugs in the evening.

BIG WOOD
The flows are still a bit pushy south of town, but most all the river is open to strong waders and with the current air temperatures, the wet wading has been refreshing. Once the Green Drakes conclude for the season the fishing typically slows down a bit on the Wood. However, fishing has still been good in the mornings with plenty of Caddis, Grey Drakes, Rusty Spinners, Baetis, PMDs, and Pink Alberts around. Fish the margins of the fast water and buckets with small (16 and 14) parachute patterns or try Dry Dropper rigs in the shallow riffles at the head of the runs to find fish. A good combination of flies are Stimulators, Parachute Hare’s Ear, or Chubby Chernoby is trailed by a Rainbow Warrior, Zebra Midge, or Bishop’s Dynamite in size 16 or 18.

WARM SPRINGS
This is a great river to go to if the Wood is still to high for your tastes. Like the Wood, the hatches have been strong. Fish and Game keeps this river well stocked around the bridges and plenty of wild fish can be found where the river leaves the road. For flies, yellow or orange Stimulators or Green Drakes are good on top. Tying on a dropper is a good idea as well; Bishop’s Dynamite, Zebra Midge, Pheasant Tails, Prince Nymphs all work well.

THE SALMON
The dry fly fishing on the Upper and Lower Salmon continues to impress with good numbers of Golden Stones and Yellow Sallies in the morning and the Spruce Moth making an appearance in the afternoons. This is an incredibly scenic river to float or hole hop in your vehicle. Take a bunch of Stimulators in sizes 10 to 14 as well as Tan Elk Hair Caddis in size 14. If you want to increase your action add a size 14 or 16 Beaded Phaseant Tail or Bishop’s Dynamite. For a change of pace you can try swinging a Black Woolly Bugger and find plenty of willing takers, maybe even a Bull Trout Or a Chinook Salmon.
BIG LOST – MACKAY
Finally, at 400 CFS this river is ready to fish for strong waders; it is still very high and difficult to cross and move about. It needs to drop another 100 CFS to be prime. There are good morning hatches consisting of a mix of PMDs and Beatis, yet the dry fly fishing is minimal at these flows. Nymphing is most productive with a variety of different nymphs: San Juan Worms, King Prince, PTs, and  small Beatis and Midge patternsLarge crane flies are also skittering across the water, so have some Mackay Specials.

UPPER BIG LOST
The Upper Lost continues to fish well for those who cover a lot of water. The flows are opening up more water on the main stem and places on the Upper East Fork and West Fork are beginning to slow down as the water drops and fishing pressure increases.Big drys will turn fish, but if you get a refusal, switch to a smaller Parachute Adams, PMD or Purple Haze. If that does not work, try small nymphs, like Rainbow Warriors, Bishop’s Dynamite, Pheasant tails or Prince Nymphs.

SOUTH FORK OF THE BOISE
The flows are up a tad to 1710 CFS. For dry fly enthusiasts this has been one of the best season in years. The Salmon flies my be done; however, you should have plenty of big foam bugs (Cicadas and Hoppers) for working the banks. The Pinks Alberts have also begun and you should have this bug in your box in all its stages. Caddis remain a factor as well in the evenings and you should pack a good selection of Trailing Shuck Caddis and traditional Elk Hair Caddis in brown and olive sizes 18 to 14. Nymphing the riffles and seams with large stone fly imitations and caddis larva is always productive.

STILLWATERS & LOCAL WATERS
This is a good time to take the family to Lake Creek, Penny Lake, or Gaver’s Lagoon. All the ponds have been stocked and will receive regular stockings throughout the summer season. Whatever style of fishing you want to do, we are your headquarters. So drop on by before you take your family fishing and we will make sure you have the right gear to be successful.

 

 

Silver Creek

Big Wood

South Fork of the Boise

The Salmon

The Big Lost

112 cfs

507 cfs

1720 cfs

1140 cfs

579 cfs

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Fly Fishing Forecast July 13th – 20th

“…what fishing ought to be about: using the ceremony of our sport and passion to arouse greater reverberations within ourselves.” ~ Thomas McGuane

This July, trade self-consciousness for river-consciousness. Become aware of the flight patterns of swallows. Observe the complexity of insects trapped in the spiders web. Note the interplay of light and water. See fish through the eyes of a heron. Let your heart vibrate to the river’s song. The ceremony of our sport reminds us that we are part of something bigger than the daily ritual of our lives.

SILVER CREEK
If you go, don’t expect to find many fish in the upper Preserve. The low flows are forcing most of the fish to seek the cover of deeper water. However, some fish have begun to move into the lower Preserve now that the Tricos have begun. Keep in mind, with the onset of the Trico hatch, the number of anglers increase as well, especially in the Preserve. Please use common sense and courtesy when fishing around other anglers. Of course, with increased angler pressure and a limited number of fish spread out, the fishing will remain spotty. On a positive note, the morning hatches should be getting more consistent as the week warms up. There has been a complex array of bugs beginning with Callibaetis spinners and Trico Duns on the water early. As the morning progresses, Baetis might make an appearance as well as PMD spinners and Duns. The Trico spinner fall typically occurs once the air temp hits 60 degrees and should continue to build steam over the next few weeks. When the morning activity subsides the Blue Damsels take the stage as well as Callibaetis Duns and Spinners. Of course, beetles and ants are also good midday. In the evening, Caddis and PMDs, both 16 and 18 can be abundant. As you can tell, you need to have your box ready with all the usual suspects and bring your “A” game to the creek this time of year. Be sure to also have plenty of Frogs Fanny to help keep your size 20 to 24 flies floating high and dry as well as enough Trouthunter 6.5X tippet.

BIG WOOD
The Green Drakes are wrapping up for the season, but the Wood continues to fish well. At over 400 CFS the river is still a bit high for freely moving about. Still new water is opening up daily as the flows continue to drop and intrepid waders can find water that has not been fished this season. The action is good from mid morning into the early afternoon, but it will slow down until the evening caddis action, especially once a warmer weather pattern returns. If you do see bugs, it will be a mixed bag of some Pink Alberts, Western Quills, Yellow Sallies, Crane Flies and Baetis. For drys you should try smaller size 14 or 16 parachute patterns like Purple Haze, Parachute Hare’s Ear, or Gulper Specials in olive or tan. Large attractor drys will turn fish but often get a short strike. Still a dry dropper set up can be deadly. Smaller nymphs are starting to work well; try a red or black Zebra Midge, a beaded pheasant tail, a Rainbow Warrior, or a Bishop’s Dynamite in size 16 or 18 trailed behind a high floating dry. Straight up nymphing with an indicator or European style can be very effective. The fish hit the fly, whether wet or dry, with astonishing speed this time of year, so be sure to hone your hook setting skills by managing you slack line both in your hands and on the water.

WARM SPRINGS
This is a great river to go to if the Wood is still to high for your tastes. Like the Wood, the hatches have been strong. Fish and Game keeps this river well stocked around the bridges and plenty of wild fish can be found where the river leaves the road. For flies, yellow or orange Stimulators or Green Drakes are good on top. Tying on a dropper is a good idea as well; Bishop’s Dynamite, Zebra Midge, Pheasant Tails, Prince Nymphs all work well.

THE SALMON
The fishing remains very good on the Salmon for cutthroat, rainbows, cutbows, whitefish, and the occasional bull trout . We offer guided float trips on the Lower Salmon River and if you have yet to do this, you should give it a try. The walk and wade fishing above Stanley has also been productive, although there are portions of the river full of shoulder to shoulder Salmon anglers; it is best to avoid these areas. If you go, be sure and take a good selection of Yellow Stone fly patterns, some Olive Caddis, Green Drakes and an array of beaded nymphs.

BIG LOST – MACKAY
With flows above 600 CFS, this is too high to fish safely. Once the flows drop below 350 CFS in late July, early August, this river will be ready to fish again.

UPPER BIG LOST
The Upper Lost is fishing well. Focus your attention on the East Fork above Wild Horse, the West Fork, and the North Fork. As has been the case the last few years, some stretches of this river fish better than others. The more water you cover the more productive your day will be. There are some Green Drakes late in the day, as well as a mixed bag of Stone Flies. Big drys will turn fish, but if you get a refusal, switch to a smaller Parachute Adams, PMD or Purple Haze. If that does not work, try small nymphs, like Rainbow Warriors, Bishop’s Dynamite, Pheasant tails or Prince Nymphs. Persistent Anglers are being rewarded with some spectacular fish.

SOUTH FORK OF THE BOISE
The flows are holding around 1650 CFS; a perfect flow for floating, but tough for wading. The Salmon flies are done for the season; however, the caddis remain very strong in the mornings and evenings. Still you should have plenty of big foam bugs (Cicadas and Hoppers) for working the banks and a good selection of Trailing Shuck Caddis and traditional Elk Hair Caddis in brown and olive sizes 18 to 14. Nymphing the riffles and seams with large stone fly imitations and caddis larva is always a good call.

STILLWATERS & LOCAL WATERS
This is a good time to take the family to Lake Creek, Penny Lake, or Gaver’s Lagoon. All the ponds have been stocked and will receive regular stockings throughout the summer season. Whatever style of fishing you want to do, we are your headquarters. So drop on by before you take your family fishing and we will make sure you have the right gear to be successful.

 

 

Silver Creek

Big Wood

South Fork of the Boise

The Salmon

The Big Lost

112 cfs

507 cfs

1720 cfs

1140 cfs

579 cfs

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