South Fork & Henry's Fork Fishing Reports

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Small Streams

Jimmy's All Seasons Angler / Small Streams

Small Streams 10-21-17

Blackfoot River above graves creek

The best possible happening for resident trout in the lower Blackfoot River is that 200 cfs rather than 100 cfs is coming out of the reservoir. The result is that  trout have many deeper runs and pockets into which they can live with good overhead cover.  In recent years the scanty flows, sometimes less than 100 cfs,  reduced good living space to the deepest holes with resulting crowding. A few hoppers remain on stream-side banks, and patterns for them can interest fish. But the best fishing results from offering bead head nymphs, small streamers, and woolly bugger types.  BWO hatches continue to provide good afternoon fishing on Teton River in the Basin. The best news is that except for some duck hunters, most recreational boaters have left the river meaning fewer interruptions.

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Small Streams 10-14-17

 

robinson creek3

Last night’s storm will make it difficult to reach some back country waters in the region until soon-to-come warmer weather melts the resulting snow accumulation. Then muddy conditions could prevail for a while on unpaved roads.  Some of the unpaved back country roads giving access to best small waters are used frequently this time of year by ranchers and farmers, so can be maintained because of demand.  For the next few days check with county road maintenance offices to determine driving conditions before attempting to reach waters “off the beaten path.”  Doing so might be a good idea for such as fishing visits planned for upper Warm River, Bitch and Robinson Creeks in Fremont County, Blackfoot River in Bingham and Caribou Counties, and Bear, Big Elk,  and McCoy Creeks in Bonneville County.

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Small Streams 9-30-17

Old Stockng Ranch (640x480)

The above photo shows the Blackfoot River Wildlife Management Area with the river in the distance. The big meadow you see it winding through is still full of grasshoppers. The river is flowing slightly above normal meaning there is plenty of cover so some large cutthroat remain within.  Also no killing frosts here yet, but any day now that could change.  The same applies to the Teton River in the Basin where elevation is about the same as the Blackfoot River in the above photo.

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Small Streams 9-26-17

 

 

snake-river-cutthroat

 

Now that October is approaching,  keep track of the flow level in the Blackfoot River below the Reservoir.  Any day now water impoundment in the reservoir will begin, and flow in the river below will drop to less than 200 cfs. A flow below this level results in great fishing, especially if a killing frost has not wiped out bank side terrestrial insect populations. Afternoon caddis activity should attract trout throughout the month. Dry fly fishing will be the best approach until copious submerged weed beds break up, then presenting streamers will become practical at many points in the river.  So the best time to fish the river below the reservoir is just ahead.

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Small Streams 9-23-17

Teton River 9-25-13Blackfoot River above graves creek

 

Now that the number of recreational boaters are diminishing on the Teton River in Teton Basin it is time to enjoy uninterrupted daytime fishing.  BWOs and mahogany dun action and a few gray drakes are bringing trout up.  Sometime during the first week of October flow out of the Blackfoot River Reservoir will drop to around 100 cfs. Dry fly fishing and streamer presentation on the river below will improve to destination quality and remain so through October.

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Small Streams 9-9-17

It is the time of year when many of our small tributary streams are at or approaching base level flows.  This reduces overhead cover, so combined with warm late summer and early autumn daytime temperatures, many resident trout begin moving downstream to larger waters which provide better overhead cover and cooler temperatures.  This does not impact our “larger” small streams, such as Big Lost, Blackfoot, Fall, Teton and Warm Rivers as well as Birch, Bitch, Little Lost, Medicine Lodge and the larger South Fork-Palisades Reservoir tributaries. Such as Burns, Robinson, Jackknife, Lanes, Rock, and Tincup Creeks are among those seeing this migration. Thus, if you enjoy streams such as these, the best of what their smaller reaches offer with respect to fishing action will diminish as we advance into autumn.

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Small Streams 8-28-17

There was a fair amount of information in the last small streams report, but one item was not present. Last year IDF&G tried to begin a population of kokanee from Big Elk Creek in Bear Creek on the other side of the reservoir.  Has anyone seen these in Bear Creek?

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Small Streams 8-26-17

Several small streams should be on your destination list. For example, the Teton River in the Basin features very good early in the day Trico and PMD spinner falls. These happen before recreational boaters and floaters in big numbers come to the river. Bitch Creek offers cutties responding in tranquility and they can be enjoyed through limited access over private land. Lower Fall River features a great evening caddis swarm with evening dry fly action making up for the usual daytime lull.  Warm River just below Warm River Spring offers dry fly fishing (caddis, terrestrial insect and traditional attractor patterns) with a good chance of solitude. Palisades Reservoir tribs and Palisades Creek currently feature good dry fly fishing through using a variety of patterns from traditional attractor and caddis life cycle to terrestrial insect patterns. The upper Blackfoot River in its meadow sections seems to host half the world’s grasshopper supply, and trout there are taking advantage of them. Looking for a stream that will produce enough brook trout for that Labor Day weekend fish fry? Try Sawmill Creek at the head of Little Lost River. That’s a long way to travel (130 miles from Idaho Falls) so nearby Beaver Creek above the I-15 Stoddard Creek interchange is a good candidate, and in the same area Modoc Creek below Paul Reservoir is another host of numerous aggressive brookies.  Further east over Porcupine Pass West Camas Creek does the same. Towards Island Park, Little Warm River in the Pole Bridge Campground area hosts brookies in good numbers. Toms Creek, feeding into the upper Buffalo River, is another candidate for bagging pan-sized brookies.  Thinking of a visit to these or other great small waters? Visit us, or get in touch for more information.

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Small Streams 8-19-17

We have so many small waters that currently will reward you with good fishing action that it is hard to single out any one to recommend.  It’s like being a kid in a candy store. Perhaps the best approach is to contact us to pass on such as which trout species you wish to target, which water type you want to try, your terminal tackle preference, and perhaps your time constraints. That way we can suggest candidate waters to try and an appropriate fly pattern selection.

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Small Streams 8-12-17

What a difference a year makes with respect to small stream fishing success! Last year such as Palisades Reservoir tribs as McCoy and Bear Creeks were slow dry fly fishing most of the summer. Now both host some large cutts that have remained in-stream because of abundant food, better cover, and cooler water.  Traditional dry patterns (humpys, renegades, wulffs, p-chute adams & cahills), caddis life cycle, and terrestrial insect patterns bring action with the chance for a trophy cutt responding from late morning to early evening.  Afternoon western green drake (flav) activity on Big Elk Creek, in addition to what works on other reservoir tribs, makes that creek particularly fun to visit.  Look for the kokanee run to start there soon, and let’s see if the same happens on Bear Creek where IDF&G transplanted some last year from Big Elk Creek.  Teton River PMD and speckled dun activity is bringing action in the river in the Basin.  But the canoe, kayak, row boat, and paddle-board emergence can hinder mid day fishing. So best chance for uninterrupted fishing there is during early AM spinner falls, and evening caddis emergence, but do not overlook presenting terrestrial insect patterns during daytime and early evening. The Blackfoot River above the reservoir features cutts responding to the great grasshopper abundance in not only the wildlife management area but the Monsanto purchase downstream of the narrows.

So it goes on and on with great small stream fishing in the area. Come to the shop, or get in touch with us for more info on our abundance of great small waters to visit and current conditions on them.

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