Henry’s Fork 7-30-16

The outflow from Island Park Dam has cleared resulting in much better fishing in the river below  down to Riverside Campground. The reason for this rather sudden clear-up seems obscure, but a good analysis for its presence and of the previous suspended residue within can be seen on the 7/22/16 Henry’s Fork Anglers fishing report. Mike Lawson wrote it. This guy’s life time of Henry’s Fork experience more than matches that of ALL HF enthusiasts that walk into his business. When he writes/speaks on the Henry’s Fork, it is time to read/listen.

If I were going to fish the river below the dam and Box Canyon, I would concentrate a variety of terrestrial patterns on board. With respect to mayflies, flavs and PMDs are decreasing in the Last Chance-Harriman reach, but speckled duns are coming on. I’d do the same with respect to terrestrial patterns in the Cardiac Canyon reach, but also have large stonefly nymph patterns on  board and hope for some overcast weather (even a passing thundershower (we sure need moisture anyway)) which makes for the best time to present them.

Henry’s Fork 7-26-16

If you are concerned about slower fishing this season on the river from Box Canyon to Riverside Campground, read and consider the “River Is Changing, We’re On It” article on the Henry’s Fork Foundation web site home page.

Flow out of Henry’s Lake has been raised to 100 cfs and Henry’s Lake Outlet section was stocked with rainbows in early July. With low flows out of the lake early in the year, not as many as usual trout escaped to the outlet. However, trout stocked earlier this month and any from the lake will tend to stay in the outlet until flows drop, then they will migrate to the river below.  Good fishing can happen for folks presenting terrestrial patterns here. Concentrate these presentations where the river flows though willow thickets at the top and bottom of the Flat Ranch Preserve, and be sure to check in (and out) at the Ranch Visitor Center to help in the Nature Conservancy’s efforts to maintain the property.  Only “fly in the ointment” is the travel delays because of construction on US Highway 20 to the south.

Henry’s Fork 7-19-16

If you plan to fish the Henry’s Fork above Island Park Reservoir, Henry’s Lake, the Madison River, or Yellowstone Park via the West Entrance, be aware of the U. S. Highway 20 road construction from about Pond’s Lodge to Island Park Village (at the south side of Henry’s Lake Flat).  The result is travel delays up to one hour. Expect these delays to continue into September.   Only practical alternative is to take Interstate 15 to Monida, Montana then the South Valley Road across the Centennial Valley and over Red Rock Pass then around Henry’s Lake to Highway 20 above the construction.  So plan accordingly. Meanwhile, enjoy trout responding to the remaining PM flavs, AM rusty spinners, and growing terrestrial insect population from Last Chance on downstream or nymphing in Box Canyon.

Henry’s Fork 7-16-16

Higher water releases from Island Park Reservoir draw down resulted in turbid water flowing through the Last Chance-Harriman reach on downstream a ways. This impacted fishing success for a few days, but should decrease with any decrease in flows. Some afternoon flavs remain, but rusty spinner patterns bring the most interest during evening hours. Fishing on the river below Ashton Dam remains slow with best times to do so being early in the day.  But below the dam and above the reservoir to Warm River terrestrial insects are becoming more important in dry fly fishing.

Henry’s Fork 7-2-16

Emerging PMDs and their spinner falls are providing action on the upper river and brown drakes are still emerging during evenings on the river from Wood Rd 16  up to the Osborne Bridge. Select locations within can become somewhat crowded. Flavs are coming on, too. Nymphing is the best way for action in Box Canyon. The lower river, mainly below Ashton Dam, is warming to the point that choosing another location to fish is worth considering. With summer coming on and accompanying low water, looks like mid-day fishing may not pick up until September. That means fruitful lower river fishing visits will take place during early morning and evening hours.

Henry’s Fork 06-27-16

The fishing on the Henry’s Fork on the lower section is starting to slow down and be an early morning and late evening game due to the hot water. The upper Henry’s Fork from Harriman State Park and up has been fishing well. The lower section has been most consistent with Caddis in the evening and a few mayflies in the mornings. Harriman has been fishing well with PMDs and Box Canyon has been fishing well with nymphs even though the river has been raised to 1300 cfs.

Flies I would use:

Dry Flies: Rusty Biot Spinner size 16 & 18, CDC PMD Thorax Dun 18, Elk Hair Caddis Tan 14,

Nymphs: Bennett’s Rubber Leg Brown size 10, Psycho Prince size 16, Pheasant Tail size 16, Bead-Headed Crystal Pheasant Tail size 16 & 18.

Henry’s Fork 06-20-16

Despite this warm weather and warmer water temperatures, the Henry’s Fork has been fishing well in the morning and in the evenings. The Green Drakes have still been coming off in the morning with fish looking for them. Along with the Green Drakes, there is still a good PMD spinner fall in the morning and evenings. Also, the nymph fishing in the slots and behind rocks has been working. Lastly, the Caddis fishing has been the best in the evenings right before dark with a lot of fish looking up.

Flies I would use:

Dry Flies: Rusty Biot Spinner size 16 & 18, CDC PMD Thorax Dun 18, Elk Hair Caddis Tan 14, Green Drake Wulff 10.

Nymphs: Bennett’s Rubber Leg Brown size 10, Psycho Prince size 16, Pheasant Tail size 16, Bead-Headed Crystal Pheasant Tail size 16 & 18.

Henry’s Fork 06-16-16

The Henry’s Fork still continues to fish well with Green Drakes, PMD’s, and Caddis. The mornings and evenings have seen a good PMD fall with rusty spinners. Green Drakes have been fishing the best in about mid day, and even fishing them blind has worked if you don’t see any of them coming off. If all else fails fishing a dry fly, the nymph fishing in the slots and behind rocks will produce a couple of fish. Lastly, the fishing right before dark with Caddis has been good.

Flies I would use:

Dry Flies: Rusty Biot Spinner size 16 & 18, CDC PMD Thorax Dun 18, Elk Hair Caddis Tan 14, Green Drake Wulff 10.

Nymphs: Bennett’s Rubber Leg Brown size 10, Psycho Prince size 16, Pheasant Tail size 16, Bead-Headed Crystal Pheasant Tail size 16 & 18.

Henry’s Fork 06-13-16

Fishing Green Drakes on the Henry’s Fork has a been good. The best fishing with the Green Drakes has been from about 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m during a bright sunny day. Along with the drakes, there has been a good PMD spinner fall in the morning and in the evenings. On the lower Henry’s Fork, there has been a dead period between 2:00 p.m. to about 5:30ish during the hottest part of the day. Then, fishing has been good right at dark with caddis. Lastly, a friendly reminder that Harriman State Park, the Ranch, is open on Wednesday, June 15th.

Flies I would use:

Dry Flies: Rusty Biot Spinner size 16 & 18, CDC PMD Thorax Dun 18, Elk Hair Caddis Tan 14, Green Drake Wulff 10.

Nymphs: Bennett’s Rubber Leg Brown size 10, Psycho Prince size 16, Pheasant Tail size 16, Bead-Headed Crystal Pheasant Tail size 16 & 18.

Henry’s Fork 6-11-16

The best action to date is on the lower river (Bear Gulch to Chester Dam) where caddisflies are out big time. They are accompanied in smaller numbers by yellow sallies. A few green and gray drakes and PMDs are making appearances with hatch peaks yet to come. Some adult golden stoneflies remain and cloudier afternoons will bring out BWOs. Midges are always present and ants and beetles fall into shoreline waters. So for the fish conditions are like having an aqueous Chuckarama where the choice of what to eat is up to them. For the fly-fisher this means figuring out what fish are taking at a given time!