Monthly Archives: May 2016

South Fork 5-31-16

It’s a bit rare that we talk about a BWO emergence this time of year on the South Fork. This last weekend featured an excellent one during afternoons through the canyon. Some of this event can be credited to flow out of Palisades Dam having been stable (just under 12000 cfs) for many days and water temperature beginning to climb. Streamer fishing for rainbows remains effective on the upper river, and rubber leg patterns drifted deep have been attracting fish. Let’s see if the BWO activity lasts through the upcoming warming spell, and an increase in flow out of Palisades Dam could put a damper on it.  We’ll keep an eye on the flow, and report significant changes here.

Update 5:30 PM   5-31-16

Releases from Palisades Reservoir will be increased this week for the
cutthroat freshet. Diversions downstream from Palisades Dam should be prepared for
high levels in the Snake River this week and next week. Releases at Palisades Dam
have been approximately 11,500 cfs. Releases will increase each day beginning
tomorrow until reaching 16,000 cfs on Sunday, June 5’h. At that time, the new Great
Feeder head gates will be inspected. If no problems are found with the head gates at
these flows, increases at Palisades Dam will resume, reaching a maximum release of
19,000 cfs on Wednesday, June 8’h. Flows will be slowly ramped down each day
thereafter to return to either 11,500 cfs or to an amount necessary to satisfy downstream
irrigation demand. The increased releases will not affect accrual to unfilled reservoir
water rights. Storage accrued to the American Falls storage water right physically held
in Palisades is simply being moved downstream to be physically held in the empty
physical space of American Falls Reservoir until used by downstream diversions.

Henry’s Fork 5-28-16

More than weather impacted fishing on the Henry’s Fork below Island Park Dam yesterday. Flow out of the dam was increased from about 450 cfs to about 650 cfs on May 25th.  Our fishing at Hatchery Ford resulted in only small fish responding to mayfly ( BWO, March brown) and caddisfly life cycle patterns. Conversations with other fly-fishers present indicated similar experiences. Stoneflies were out, but not many flying as clouds with rain & hail showers moved in and air temps dipped into the mid forties in deg. F. Look for better fishing later this weekend as fish adjust to the flow and predicted warmer weather moves in to make the big stoneflies more active. When you come across fish taking the big bugs, any big floating pattern of similar shape will do.

South Fork 5-24-16

Flow out of Palisades Dam has been steady (around 11400 cfs) for several days.  The result is good streamer and rubber-legs fishing, especially on the upper river where spawning and post-spawning rainbows are concentrated. Cool cloudy days has resulted in some BWO activity along calmer side channels and backwaters from the dam downstream through the canyon, but you will likely need a boat to get to these locations.  No word yet on a flush out of the Palisades Dam.



Henry’s Fork 5-24-16

Cool weather has slowed the giant stonefly advance and activity on the upper river.  Many recent nights have seen below freezing air temperatures. Giant stoneflies are emerging now as far upstream as Riverside, but are needing warmer weather to become real active. Currently trout are taking caddis, BWOs, and march browns here and on the lower river where big stoneflies are more active. With warm weather and resulting active stonefly activity, look for trout to take interest on the upper river. Who knows if the big bugs will fly in Box Canyon by the upcoming weekend. All depends on the weather!

Franklin County Lakes & Invasive Species Update

A big story this spring in Franklin County has been the threat to close access to lakes because of the concern of invasive mussels. The situation seems to be constantly evolving, but here is the most current information as we have heard it. The whole situation is very confusing, so interpret this information as you wish, hopefully things are clarified here shortly.

All Franklin County Reservoirs: No ballast compartment boats allowed (wake board boats)

Twin Lakes : $5 launching fee, all watercraft using Twin Lakes must have been recently inspected by an inspection station operated by and for the ISDA and have in its possession written certification. You have to stop at Twin Lakes e to show this.

Glendale Reservoir: The barricades will be open tomorrow May 15 at 7:00 a.m. A verification checkpoint will be staffed 7 days a week from 7 am to 7 pm The cost for verification per watercraft will be $10.00 for Franklin county residents and $20.00 for out of county. The license plate of the tow vehicle and driver license will prove residency. No cash accepted just debit/credit cards and local checks.
The verification staff will be asking for proof of a ISDA inspection form/passbook for any watercraft that has left the county AND a 2016 invasive sticker attached to vessel or Idaho boat registration. The ISDA form must then be displayed on the dashboard of tow vehicle. County residents need to visit the ISDA station within 5 days of launching or have an ISDA trailer/boat orange tag.

ISDA stations are open all daylight hours. One is located at Highway 91 in Franklin City. Others at state line roads throughout Idaho.”

These are the two main lakes we have heard information about. You can safely assume that all lakes owned by the Twin Lakes Canal company will have these regulations in place.As of this writing, nothing has been posted or made known to us about Treasureton Reservoir.

Speaking of Treasureton…… For those who fish Treasureton, this is a big year for the lake. For several years the Fish and Game has been monitoring the situation at the lake with illegally introduced Largemouth Bass. There is talk of poisoning the reservoir this fall and starting over. We have been talking to biologist Dave Teuscher about this and have mixed feelings. Here is a message from Dave regarding the situation;

“We have been considering a treatment since bass were illegally introduced about 10 years ago. As you know, we have many bass fisheries in Franklin County and Treasureton Reservoir is managed as a trophy trout water. I am preparing a data summary for the reservoir that shows the changes that have occurred in the fishery and what actions IDFG has completed to limit bass expansion (e.g., no harvest or size limit on bass and moving bass from Treasureton to other bass fisheries).

We plan to have that summary done in the next week or so. Please check back with me for a copy.

Prior to making a final decision, we will hold a meeting in Preston to discuss options. I will also be trying to meet with the irrigation company to get their input. The irrigation company has been excellent to work with and very supportive of the fishery.”

We will be sure to update conditions as they progress, as well as when this meeting will take place. Dropping an email to the Idaho Fish and Game would be a great way to voice your opinion as well.


Henry’s Lake 5-16-16

The opener is just 12 days away and we have received quite a few calls from folks wondering how the fishing will be this year. From what we have heard from the fish and game as well as current water levels, there is no reason not to be optimistic. Last fall, people were finally starting to catch some of the nicer fish the lake is known for with some consistency. The ice came off the lake early this year, so focus on water deeper than you typically would on the opener. Fish should be hanging in that 6-15ft range and should be hungry. Leeches dominate early season fishing so be sure to have a large assortment of leeches in different sizes and colors to make sure your prepared. I would make sure you have some california leeches sz 6, purple showgirls size 4, black mohair leeches in sz 8, and brown and black crystal buggers in sz 8. Call us at the shop with any questions you may have!

here is a little blurb from the fish and game about the spring gillnetting up at the lake “Henrys Lake spring netting is complete. Although the fish per net was below objective, there are sufficient numbers to provide good catch rates. Relative weight or how fat the fish are is improved. Lake conditions look favorable and it should be a good year to catch that fish of a lifetime. Many thanks to University of Idaho graduate students and BYU/Idaho biology students for participating this year.”

Stillwater 5-16-16

Not a whole lot has changed from our previous stillwater post except damsel nymphs are starting to become more active on the bottom of some of our lower elevation lakes. Water temps on most area reservoirs is hovering in the 55-60 degree range, so if we can get a string of warm weather days things should really get going. Some of the best fishing of the year is when damsel nymphs become active on the bottom and begin moving around. This doesn’t always mean you will see the adults, but having plenty of damsel nymphs on you in the next couple weeks would be smart. Fish these nymphs close to the bottom in 4-15 ft of water either by sinking line or indicator and hang on……….

Henry’s Fork 5-16-16

Now is the time for fishing big bugs on the Henry’s Fork! Fishing from Ashton dam down to the Chester backwaters has been the most productive with Salmonflies out in force. Warm River to Ashton has been producing as well. Look for the hatch to continue upriver through lower mesa in the coming days. Chubby Chernobyl’s in size 6, Dornan’s Water Walker in size 6 & 8, Rollin Stones in size 4, CFO Ant’s in size 6 have all been great flies. Consider adding a smaller rubberleg dropper (size 8 or 10) below your dry fly as well. Call us at the shop with any questions you have! Get out there, now is the time!

South Fork 5-10-16

Flow out of Palisades Dam has been around 11700 cfs for the last several days. About the only activity we have heard of is streamers being effective for catching rainbows below the dam where  rainbows are in a spawning mode.  Native cutthroat will thank you for presenting streamers and then removing any responding rainbows from the river!

We received an email on Friday that there is a tree across the middle channel just above twin bridges. It is about 1000 yards above the twin bridges highway. If you get out at the twin bridges boat dock, plan on dragging your boat around the log.