The fishing remains fantastic in and around the valley. As we head into the hottest time of the year, here is a reminder about protecting our wild trout: While it is always the case that you want to return them to the water as quickly as possible, it is especially important with the days heating up and the water levels dropping. Please learn how to use a Ketchum Release tool and purchase a thermometer. If the river reaches 68 degrees, take the day off.
BIG WOOD RIVER—At 200 CFS the Wood is at a good level for freely moving about and with the air temps in the mid- to high-80s, it is a perfect time to wet wade. If you do see bugs, it will be a mixed bag of some PMDs, Baetis, Tricos, Micro Caddis, Pink Alberts, Western Quills, Yellow Sallies, Crane Flies and hoppers. For dry flies try smaller size 14 or 16 patterns as large attractors will turn fish but often get a short strike. A simple dry dropper setup can be deadly. Remember, the fish hit the fly with astonishing speed this time of year, so hone your hook setting skills.
SILVER CREEK—The Creek is beginning to settle into its consistent summer pattern. The morning begins with Callibaetis and Baetis spinners with a few Trico Duns on the water. As the morning progresses, Baetis take center stage and the fish pod briefly. The Trico spinner fall is weak, but it should continue to build steam. When the morning activity subsides, blue damsels take the stage as well as Callibaetis duns and spinners. Of course, beetles and ants are good midday. In the evening, Caddis and PMDs can be abundant. As you can tell, you need to have your box ready with all the usual suspects and bring your “A” game. Remember, when fishing the Preserve, the visitor center remains closed. Look for posted information at each access allowing you to sign in via your phone with a QR code or by texting “Visitor” to (833) 593-0682.
WARM SPRINGS AND TRAIL CREEK—With lower flows, these two creeks are perfect for families and easy wet wading. There are stocked fish around the bridges and campgrounds and plenty of wild fish in between.
UPPER BIG LOST RIVER—The Upper Lost has been fishing well. Anglers who are most successful are the ones who remain mobile. For the most part, the Upper Lost fish are opportunists and will feed on the first well-presented fly. If you don’t turn any fish in some likely water, just move on and keep searching.
LOWER LOST RIVER—Flows on the Lower Lost are up a bit to about 380 CFS. Since access is limited, only strong waders should attempt this flow. The hatches are a bit spotty, but you will see Baetis, Yellow Sallies, PMDs, Crane Flies, along with a few Tricos.
SALMON RIVER—Floating the Salmon is still a good option. There are also good walk and wade opportunities all along the river from above Stanley all the way to Clayton. While the Stoneflies are dissipating, it is not too early to start tossing small hopper patterns. These fish also love standard beaded nymphs.
SOUTH FORK OF THE BOISE—There may still be some stones about this week, but the big show has come and gone. The flows are holding steady at 1200 CFS which is a good level for floating, but some wade fishing opportunities can be found. There are some Pink Alberts during the day as well and in the evening be sure to have plenty of Caddis.
LOCAL PONDS—Gaver’s Lagoon, Penny and Lake Creek ponds have been stocked and make a great location for a family picnic.