South Fork & Henry's Fork Fishing Reports

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Henry’s Fork

Jimmy's All Seasons Angler / Henry’s Fork (Page 16)

Henry’s Fork 9-15-12

If you look at our experience fishing the lower Blackfoot River in our  Small Streams report today there are words on the effects of aquatic weeds breaking up.  Those words apply, as well,  to sections of the Henry’s Fork that “weed up” during the growing season.   That includes such as the Harriman State Park reach, the River above Mack’s Inn, above Coffee Pot Rapids, and others.  What is important regardless of the water you fish, weeds breaking up this time of year release life forms that therefore become more easily available to foraging fish. Thus because of availability they will key on these life forms and your response should be to simulate them in the flies you offer.

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Henry’s Fork 9-11-12

Cooler and longer nights, lower flows out of Island Park Dam, and less daylight are making for changes.  Streamer and two-fly nymph rigs fishing is picking up in Box Canyon.   Mahogany Duns and BWOs are showing on the river below as tricos and callibaetis decrease.   Terrestrial patterns still work, but their days are coming to an end as we cool of further.  So make some changes in your fly box!

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Henry’s Fork 9-8-12

Now that cooler weather is here mayfly hatches,  though still significant, are not the only game in town.  If you tend toward the river in  Harriman State Park this time of year, a good strategy for presenting larger flies are long, drag free as possible, drifts.  Present in this manner around bank side cover, sweepers (which are relatively rare here), rocky shorelines, and timbered shorelines.  Terrestrial patterns are best for using this technique, and those, especially hopper patterns,  tied with traditional materials seem most effective within these.   Don’t expect to catch a huge number of fish using this strategy, but do expect to encounter some of the larger fish here.

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Henry’s Fork 9-4-12

If you venture to the Last Chance-Harriman State Park reach the fishing sequence is trico spinners and egg layers in the AM, flying ants later in the morning, terrestrials through the day to caddis in the evening. Not may anglers will be present, so you can pretty much choose your waters.    Flow out of Island Park Dam has dropped considerably making for easier wading conditions in Box Canyon.   Below Riverside campground go with terrestrial patterns along banks, and your favorite bead head nymph in deeper water.   Streamers should be effective below Coffee Pot Rapids and the best choice if you fish above Mack’s Inn.

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Henry’s Fork 9-1-12

With Labor Day weekend passing some welcomed happenings are coming. Crowds fishing the river will decrease substantially, waters will cool thanks to shortening and cooling days, and flow out of Island Park Reservoir will drop in preparation for winter storage.   These will result in better fishing conditions all along the river.  Likely the lower river will “come back to life” with renewed BWO hatches, continuing terrestrial insect and caddis activities, and increased effectiveness of presenting streamer patterns during low light conditions.   The upper river will benefit as decreased flows in Box Canyon will make for safer wading and better approachability there.  Above the reservoir big rainbows are moving into the river  to feed on kokanee spawn. and throughout terrestrial insect pattens will remain effective until killing frosts.  So it is a great time to be fishing just about anywhere on the river.

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Henry’s Fork 8-28-12

Kokanee are moving out of Island Park Reservoir into the river and tributaries above.  Big rainbows will follow them and offer good streamer fishing. For now try below Coffee Pot Rapids, but as we go through September, try “The Tubs” beginning at the Henry’s Lake Outlet and Big Springs Outlet confluence.  After Labor Day weekend number of recreational floaters will decrease here.  Early morning trico activity continues to bring good fishing on the Harriman State Park reach of the upper river.

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Henry’s Fork 8-25-12

Best news here is that PacifiCorp, the owner of Ashton Dam has decided not to lower Ashton Reservoir to stop seepage under the coffer dam.  See details on the Henry’s Fork Foundation web site on how they plan to stop the seepage.   The solution PacifiCorp proposes keeps the best interests of the Henry’s Fork fishery up front, something we all want to happen. Meanwhile go to the upper river around Harriman, Last Chance, and Coffee Pot for best fishing.  Go early in the day for the trico activity, switch to terrestrial patterns when they fade out.  Switch to caddis in the evening, and don’t forget that hair mouse!  If you fish The Tubs area above Mack’s Inn, go very late or very early in the day to avoid the recreational floaters. Try streamers in the deep runs that give The Tubs their names.

 

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Henry’s Fork 8-21-12

We have not heard of a resolution to repairing the leaking coffer dam above the Ashton Dam. When such a resolution appears, we will post it here.  Not much change to fishing action on the river has happened since our last report.  An increase in day to day thundershower activity sure would help.

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Henry’s Fork 8-18-12

Keep watching the Henry’s Fork Foundation web site for developments and discussions on coffer dam situation at the Ashton Dam.  As Everet mention in his 8/16 “Today at Jimmy’s” report, we have Mike Lawson’s new book ” Fly-Fishing Guide to the Henry’s Fork” in stock.  This book has all of Mike’s angling knowledge on each part of this great river.  No one knows the river in its entirety as well as Mike.   This book proves it and sharing it demonstrates Mike’s generosity.  Mike offers that for several reasons August is his favorite month to fish the Harriman State Park reach of the Henry’s Fork.  That is right now, and the best source for strategy to do so is in his new book.   Come in and pick up a copy now, or get in touch to have us put one aside for your next visit.

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Henry’s Fork 8-14-12

Water seepage under the coffer dam is slowing construction on the Ashton Dam.  Let’s hope that seepage does not alter water management plans during the  project or impact completion target.  Keep in touch with the Henry’s Fork Foundation web site for the impact, proposals, and responses to this problem.  The lower river above and below the dam remains tough during daytime which is usual for this time of year.  Streamers presented in the evening and early morning brings best chance for meeting a big fish.  Streamers and spinner falls in the evening and morning along with evening caddis swarms make for best fishing on much of the upper river.   Terrestrial patterns presented close to the banks  just about anywhere can work during daytime but are sure to be more effective with cumulus buildup.   Those big fish moving out of the Outlet reach are in the river from The Tubs to Island Park Reservoir.  Expect recreational boaters down to Mack’s Inn during daytime, so evenings or early AM with streamer patterns may be the best times for fishing. Want to read some interesting Henry’s Fork commentary?  Go to Henry’s Fork Anglers web site and take a look at Mike Lawson’s August 9th Henry’s Fork fishing reports.   Mike offers valuable strategy gems for fishing the river this time of year, but also gives some thoughts on the crowds that frequent the river at certain times.

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