August Doldrums? Not This Year!

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Synopsis

If an angler were to only fish the afternoon hours in August, it would be easy to say the August doldrums are upon us. Anglers that are out early and also those fishing until the last moments of visibility before dark know that there are no August doldrums this year. The long delayed runoff we experienced this June is now coming back to us in spades as we enjoy a wonderful summer season on almost all our area waters.

Silver Creek

The Creek continues to have excellent morning fishing. The Trico we expected to see throughout the month seems to be waning a bit, but this has been a case of where an angler is on the Creek. Some spots are heavy with the insect while others are nearly devoid of it, yet another reason to get moving and constantly look for new water to fish. Fishing the same corner or bucket every morning can be a good learning experience, but it can also keep anglers from the best fishing of the day.

The Trico has been heavily supplemented by big hatches and spinner falls of Baetis and anglers with small patterns in lighter shades of green are catching fish. The female Trico is an excellent choice for a fly that imitates both the Baetis and Trico alike.

Afternoons are an excellent time to float tube the Stillwater sections or bank fish the sloughs with Callibaetis patterns. Hopper fishing has been hot and cold, like someone throwing a switch off and on. One day it is great, and then the next it’s a head scratcher. The only way to find out is to go do it!

Big Wood River

Excellent morning activity has fish looking up until almost 11:00 a.m. and sometimes a little bit later. Once the fish have keyed on the surface they can be easily taken with Parachute Adams, Trudes, and Caddis patterns.

The afternoons belong to nymph anglers and Hopper / Dropper set ups. It is important to cover a good section of water to be productive. Stay on the move and fish a variety of water types with extra attention being paid to shady areas and structure.

The evening show is an angler’s best chance to catch a big fish. The late night Caddis action combined with low light is getting big fish to move out of their holding areas. When the sun is high and the water low like it is now, the late evening rise can sometimes be the only surface activity one will see that has big fish moving about. Plan on staying until nearly pitch dark to enjoy this event. Goddard Caddis, large Elk Hairs and Irresistible Adams are all excellent choices for this event.

Upper Lost and Copper Basin

A lot like the Big Wood, low light is spurring more activity from the fish, but with miles and miles of overhanging vegetation on these rivers an angler has a great chance to find big fish even during the middle of the day. Start the morning with small attractors and then move toward Hoppers and bigger Attractors in the afternoon. In the evening plan on throwing Caddis.

Big Lost River

The Big Lost is beginning to drop into a fishable flow. In another week or so here we should have an outstanding fishery, with many, many fish yet to see an angler or fly this season. Be prepared with well tied nymphs like Princes and Pheasant Tails and also have a variety of parachute Adams in different sizes. Tricos are also a late summer factor on this river as the flows begin to drop and the pools become glassy.

South Fork of the Boise

It is still a boater’s river right now with flows near 1800 CFS and it is also Pink Albert time as well as Grass Hopper time. Cast big Hoppers from the boat while floating and then pull into the riffles in the middle of the day to find fish sitting just below the surface waiting for the midday hatches. Remember that this insect emerges with their wing out on the bottom and swim up as a dun. Make sure your patterns reflect this life cycle.

Little Wood River

There is some excellent “small fish” angling opportunities above the reservoir for those willing to walk and explore. The fish near the campground have mostly been taken out, but with a little effort anglers can get away from the easy to access areas and find little spots full of 8 to 14 inch fish!