Tim’s advice given in the 11-15-2011 report for the South Fork still holds good. Perhaps the most comfortable fishing now is pitching streamers because constant casting helps keep you warm. Tim is right: wading to sweet spots is less demanding in cold weather than all the messin’ around with getting that boat in and out of the water, being out on the river with wind, and the risk of a storm coming in and having to get off the river, collecting everything, and getting it back on the road to home. So consider wading to those great locations while being dressed accordingly. It’s also a good idea to check with the USFS or BLM to learn road conditions on the lesser traveled roads along the river.
Flows have remained steady at 3,700 cfs. I don’t see this changing for awhile. Lots of wading access to the river this time of year with the low flows. Once the snow starts flying the boat ramps will out be of commission, and its probably a good idea to just leave the boat at home and wade to the sweet spots. Fish those holes and spots during the warmest part of the day for the best action. Look for fish feeding in the foam lines, back eddies, and the slow moving water in tail outs of riffles. Midges are still hatching and fish can be caught on the surface. Nymphing is really catching lots of fish and so is the streamer. Streamer fishing will slow down as the weather continues to get colder.
Flows have been reduced to 3,700 cfs out of the Dam. I imagine this will be the last drop we see for the winter. Fishing has been really good on the river. Lots of Midges being taken on the surface and below the surface. Fish have been keying in on the Midges in the foam lines in the shade. Rubberlegs and Zebra midges have been working as a good nymphing strategy. I have heard from a few people that in the fall all I tell people to fish with is zebra midges and rubberlegs when it comes to nymphing. Yesterday one of those customers called me while on the river and said “I understand why you always say to use rubberlegs and midges this time of year….It works!”
Streamers have also been producing nice fish. Stick with it through the day, change colors until you start to get some action. You should find better streamer success towards the end of the day vs. early in the morning.
Flows have stayed steady at 4,000cfs. Water temps will be dropping as we continue to get this cold cold weather in the mornings. Blue Wing Olive hatches are most likely finished with but Midges will still continue to hatch. Look for fish feeding on them in the foam lines, eddies, and the calm flats.
Nymphing is probably the best action you will find for catching fish. Streamer fishing will also produce some fish as well. Optimal days are when its overcast and snowing above freezing temps when it comes to streamers. As the water temps drop slow down your presentation with streamers.