South Fork & Henry's Fork Fishing Reports

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Henry’s Fork

Jimmy's All Seasons Angler / Henry’s Fork (Page 5)

Henry’s Fork, April 18th, 2020

Social distancing is a bit tougher to find at launch sites on the lower river. That is because currently some of the best fishing in the region can be found there.  Sun shiny days, like those coming up until mid-week, will dampen the BWO activity a little, but March browns, caddis and midges will provide surface and near surface action from life cycle patterns of each.  Streamers remain effective under low-light conditions and as we advance past April, large stonefly nymph patterns will be increasingly effective.

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Henry’s Fork, April 10th, 2020

A good bit of news for the Henry’s Fork  immediately below Island Park Dam is that flow out of the dam has remained above 500 cfs all winter. Annual average flow out of the dam through the winter has been just below 400 cfs.   The higher flow gives more natural bank cover for the youngest of trout to use for shelter thus helping their life expectancy.  They are the future, so the more of them, the better.

Chester Dam b4 redo (640x480)

On the lower river successful fishing is holding steady, so visits whether through boating or wading are on the increase making “social distancing”  more difficult to achieve. Nevertheless solitude can be found especially early and late in the day. Consider using the presentation strategies offered in our recent fishing reports for this part of the river.

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Henry’s Fork, April 7th, 2020

Fun Farm Bridge (1024x768)

Fun Farm Bridge at Twilight

Below Ashton Dam river flow has been near normal with minor variations not being enough to impact fishing success.  With near constant flow and increasing daylight BWO, midge and increasing March brown  and caddis activities are making presenting their life cycle patterns effective. Add to these streamer and large nymph presentations also being effective, and many fly-fishers are currently attracted to the river.   Thus compared to the South Fork, social distancing is a bit harder to realize, especially around boat launching locations.  Nevertheless, solitude can be realized but especially during early and late hours.  So consider these times for a visit.

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Henry’s Fork, March 24, 2020

Some folks are drift boating from Warm River to Ashton.  Midges and BWO life cycle patterns will bring the most action, but streamer and stonefly nymph/rubber legs patterns will likely be more interesting to the larger fish anywhere you try the river. Consider trying places upstream along the river road after crossing the Fun Farm Bridge. Access on the lower river is shaping up, but the bad news is that the private access on the other side of the river above the Chester backwaters, known as Seeley’s, has been closed by the owner. Misuse by inconsiderate individuals accumulated enough to cause this closure.

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Henry’s Fork, March 10th, 2020

Flow out of Island Park Reservoir has been around 550 cfs all winter, that flow increased by that from the Buffalo River has given good natural shelter along banks to young trout for habitation.   This situation gives a better chance for a boost to future populations on downstream in the Island Park area.

Currently much of the lower river has  snow covered banks limiting access at boat launch sites and walk-in access at most places. Nevertheless,  were walk-in access is available, fishing has been good. Midge and BWO activity produce for the small fly enthusiast.  Streamers and big nymphs produce for the large fly enthusiast.

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Henry’s Fork 11-16-19

Lower river offers good streamer fishing for browns late and early in the day, but some ‘bows and browns are taking midge and BWO life cycle patterns. You may have to search  river locations to find just where such activity is going on.

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Henry’s Fork 11-9-2019

The lower Henry’s Fork has been offering great but sporadic fishing during these beautiful “Indian Summer” days.  Sporadic meaning fish seem active  in certain areas, but not in others.   Active means responding to midge and BWO activity. Case in point is our yesterday’s experience where there was little activity on the river just below the Ora Bridge ( some discolored water coming from construction actions on the far side of the river but the Ashton side features crystal clear water). Whereas in the Vernon Bridge area fish were numerously responding to midge and BWO activity.  So consider scouting out the river to find active fish before committing to a certain location.

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Henry’s Fork 10-26-19

Weather like we are having today may be difficult with the snow, wind, and falling air temperatures, but it is almost perfect for success through pitching streamer patterns for migrating browns. This applies to anywhere on the river below lower Mesa Falls to the South Fork confluence.  Dress accordingly!

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Henry’s Fork 10-15-19

Remember the comment “This time of year what happens on the lower Henry’s Fork is similar to what happens on the South Fork?”  This is the case with brown trout migrating to spawning areas in both rivers, and presenting streamer patterns being a most effective strategy to encounter them.  For sure resident rainbows ( and South Fork cutties) will also respond to well placed streamer patterns.

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Henry’s Fork 10-8-19

Aquatic and terrestrial insect hatches are “signing off” for the year. Now is when streamer patterns should dominate in that fly box.  With the wintry weather predicted for the next few days there will be enough time to ensure this suggestion.   Time at the tying bench or searching the fly bins of regional shops seems better than ice in the guides, in the reel mechanism and in freezing fingers.   Better weather is coming and  lower river brown trout will remain active for several weeks to come.

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