Now that the Fourth of July has passed, we're entering our first "transitional" fishing period when both fishing and hatch activity will see a noticeable change. Disappearing are our large insects. They are being replaced with much smaller size bugs that will be present for the next month or so. In general, fishing has been good but water flows, which seem to creep downward at a snail's pace, are still limiting the amount of water that can be worked effectively. In short, you need to know where to go and what to use to be successful.
SILVER CREEK—Fishing has been good but you need to be patient concerning hatches. If the bugs are there, picking off a few fish is quite easy. Most concerning is the scattered inconsistency, very typical for mid-July. Beatis spinners are quite heavy in the morning and a Mason Quill Beatis Spinner #22 works well. This is the week that Trico should begin to have major significance but I do say this with caution and with crossed fingers. The last couple of years, Trico hasn't been its "normal, over-the-top" self. Yet there is hope for improvement with better-than-normal habitat conditions this spring. So it's time to set the alarm clock early and at all times carry a Dave's CDC Trico Spinner #22 and a few Trico Para Duns #22 (used prior to spinner fall) to be successful. In the late afternoon/evening, PMDs and Callibeatis are seen. If you're patient, fish can taken using Para PMD's #18 and Partridge Spinners #16. Ants and Beatle imitations, size 16-18 and Damselfly's are also effective throughout hatch downtimes. In the meantime, keep your fingers crossed on Trico.
BIG WOOD RIVER—Fishing has been productive, despite the fact that we're still fighting water flows that limit where we can wade and cast a fly. Our big hatches have passed. Still, we can still use large imitations to entice fish to the surface. Making things happen are flys like Para Adams #12-14, Para Hares Ear #12-14, Gulper Specials #14, Purple Peril #12-14, Pink Alberts #14 and Yellow Simulators #12. For larger fish, use the old standbys like Prince Nymphs #10-12, Copper Johns #12 and Bead Head Hares Ear #12-14, fished deep. Cream Duns (E. deceptivus) are also seen but because of their smaller sizes (16s), they will probably go unnoticed until water levels drop. It's the time of year to begin looking for Caddis in the evenings. Small Partridge Caddis #14-16, Para Caddis #14-16 and Gray Caddis Pupa #14 can make for a great dinnertime treat.
WARM SPRINGS/TRAIL CREEK—Both in prime condition and fishing quite nicely. Fish & Game has started planting fish in the upper reaches of both streams. That should further enhance your success ratio. Standard patterns are the norm. Para Adams #14-16, Partridge Caddis #16, various Stimulators #14-16 and Bead Head Prince #14 will always find some fish.
BIG LOST DRAINAGES—East Fork or Copper Basin areas are clear and very fishable. Success has been scattered. Flys suggested for the Big Wood will prove to be productive. The lower river below the reservoir has maintained its consistent level, but at 575 cfs and with the best hatches done for the year, wading is still tough and fishing nymphs are your greatest methods for success. Therefore Prince Nymphs #8-12, Copper Johns #12 and San Juan Worms are the flies of choice. Craneflys are also active and a big Mackay Special #10 can produce some jarring strikes.
PENNY LAKE/LAKE CREEK/GAVER'S LAGOON (HAYSPUR)— Always supplied with fish that are easy to catch. Flies and bait seem to be the best method to hook a few trout. Take what you will use and leave a few for others.
SOUTH FORK OF THE BOISE—Fishing has been very good but because it's still running at 1,800 cfs, floating the river is still your best option for maximizing your overall success. It can be waded in certain defined spots but for the most part, it's still tricky. Salmonflys are lingering and can be fished with some effectiveness, but from this point forward, I'd be looking for Pink Alberts, Caddis and Hoppers.