South Fork & Henry's Fork Fishing Reports

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South Fork

Jimmy's All Seasons Angler / South Fork (Page 34)

South Fork 7/3/13

The South fork is fishing very well right now. Bruce provided a lot of good information in his previous report, but I just wanted to add a little to it. Like Bruce said there are bugs coming off all over the place. The big salmonflies are on the upper river and have been fishing best earlier in the morning. Patterns like the CFO Pink ant size 8, Jakes Hot Cakes Salmon Fly size 6, and the Kingfisher Widowmaker in a size 4 would all be good bets. Golden Stones are hatching as well and flies like Berrett’s Golden Stone in sizes 8-12 and the CFO Yellow ant in size 8 have been producing. The PMD fishing in the riffles has been on fire all up and down the river. The fish haven’t been to picky yet, but if they are, its important to switch up your flies in until you figure out what the fish are taking. The pink comparaduns in size 16-18 have still been producing well but flies like the Quigley’s pink hackle stacker sizes 16-18, Harrop’s pink thorax dun sizes 16-18, and the CFO pink spinner size 18 would be good to have with you too. If the fish are being really finicky in the riffles try fishing a PMD hunchback emerger in a size 18 as a dropper, sometimes that really works. Yellow sallies are still coming off too so make sure you have a few of those on hand too like Kyles Yellow sally sizes 14-16 and the CFO Yellow Sally in 14-16. The fishing has been very good and will likely to continue to be good so get out there!


South Fork 7-2-13

For weeks now the South Fork has seen constant flows  (12800 cfs) coming out of Palisades Dam.   That kind of stability helps make for the great fishing we are seeing now. Water temps at the dam are around 58 deg F. but will begin rising as we head through July.  Right now big stoneflies are in the Swan Valley reach of the river (get to Huskey’s, Spring Creek, or Conant early if you want convenient parking!) .  Golden stones are coming out just below.  Yellows sallys are everywhere, and PMDs are emerging, so the river is doing what fly-fishers expect this time of year.  There are many fly patterns that work for all of these, and we stock every one of them.  None is particularly better than another given equal presentation.  The best question to ask while deciding to purchase at dry pattern is:  “Can I see this one on the broken surface that so much characterizes the South Fork? ”  Here’s another tip for fishing this great river. In areas of broken surface, and most of this river has such, it is best to use a stout leader to present flies. This is especially true if you fish from a boat.  Go to a 3X tippet in your favorite brand for presenting big stonefly patterns, especially from a boat. For PMD  emergers and duns use 4X, or even 3X.   In broken water the fish are a lot less leader shy than in the slower moving water that resembles that in the Harriman reach of the Henry’s Fork, or Bechler River.   The results of using this stronger leader will be more fish brought to the net.




South Fork 6/29/13

The South Fork is fishing great right now! There are all sorts of bugs out and the fish seem to be looking up for all of them. Fish are being caught on the banks with adult salmonfly and golden stone patterns. The CFO Flamer ant and Pink ant #8, Jakes Hot Cake Salmonfly #6, and Berrett’s Golden stone in sz’s 8-12 have all been producing well. Fishing earlier in the morning has been better for throwing the big bugs. Later in the morning and throughout the day,the PMD’s have been coming off thick in the riffles and people have been having luck throwing flies like the Pink Comparadun in a #16-18, PMD hunchback emerger in #16-18, and the CFO pink spinner in #18. The whole river is fishing really good and last we heard the big bugs were up around Conant. We will continue to update our reports throughout the salmonfly hatch as we hear more information on where the bugs are at. Stop in at the shop on your way up to pick up what ever you need and get the most up to date information!


6-25-13 South Fork

Note: This post is in addition to an earlier post by Bruce so be sure to read his report also.  Due to the low water level and warmer water temperatures in Palisades Reservoir the hatches are progressing fast so we thought an additional report was in order-Jimmy

The big bugs are here! The Salmon flies are the way up to Dry Creek in the Canyon. Use a Kingfisher Widow Maker size 4 and a CFO Flammer ant size 8  to imitate a Salmon fly  and should be very productive in catching trout along the banks and any log jams. Along with the Salmon flies are Green drakes and PMDs in the riffles and using A Olive Hare’s Ear Parachute size 12 (Green Drake) and a Pink Comparadun size 16 (PMD)  can allow a great riffle fishing on the South Fork.

From the Palisades dam down to Conant should have big bugs hatching any day. Nymph fishing up there has been excellent with a Brown Rubber Leg size 6 or 8 and a Red Copper John size 16. A few PMDs have been hatching up there also and if you see any fish rising I would use CFO Pink Albert spinner size 18. Lastly if all else fails on the upper stretch I would use Beadhead Crystal Pheasant tail size 14.



South Fork 6-25-13

Big stoneflies are hatching  in good numbers on the river at least as far as Burns Creek.  Golden stoneflies and yellow sallys are coming out, too.  So it is time to enjoy this great event in a  year when low water may have impact on fishing later in the summer.  Flow out Of Palisades Dam remains at 12800 cfs, the same as it has been since mid-June.  Flows will likely drop later this summer.


South Fork 6-21-13

There are a good number of adult stones out below Lorenzo so the hatch will now start moving upstream over the next two weeks eventually reaching Palisades Dam. Look for the other insects that will begin hatching this time of year which include golden stones, yellow sallies, and  some pale morning duns. The green drakes are still out through the canyon and lower river from late morning through late afternoon.

The nymph and streamer fishing continues produce fish in the upper river but the news for now is the water has warmed up about 10 days earlier than normal and we will see the dry fly fishing really improve over the next couple of days in the lower river.


South Fork 6-17-13

We are getting a lot of calls about the South fork in the anticipation of an early stone fly emergence. As of yesterday there was no sign of a nymph crawl out. We floated from Byington down and know of a couple of boats that were below us and no one saw any of the big bugs. We did have a good hatch of size 10 green drakes from late morning to early afternoon and the small fish were up feeding on them in the riffles.

Our best success still came underneath with size 4 rubber legs followed with a smaller nymph.  Streamers have also been good. The same goes for the upper sections as far as patterns and techniques go..  We are getting a lot questions also about the obstacles in the river below Byington. There is a pretty good suck hole on the north Twin Bridges and a lot of debris is piled up on Lorenzo bridge. Passage under the bridge is down the middle or through the right channel. The ramp at Lorenzo will fit two boats but not three. You can pull over on either side of the river directly blow the bridge to see if the ramp is clear before proceeding to the take out.


South Fork 6-13-13

The flows on the south fork have stabilized at 12,800cfs at Paslisades Dam and 14,000 at Heise. This should be the flow for much of the summer. Run off has peaked according the Bureau of Reclamation and Palisades Reservoir will not fill this year which points to an early stonefly hatch. Traditionally the hatch starts the last week of June but I’m sure we’ll see it start earlier. We floated from Byington to  Lorenzo yesterday and had very good fishing with a pair of Bennett’s brown rubber legs. The fish were holding below the drop offs and troughs in the riffles. We did not see any stone adults but we saw a hand full of yellow sallies and green drakes. Some of the fish had bulging bellies from eating stone nymphs.

We’ll keep you updated on the status and progress of the hatch. Meanwhile the fishing with nymphs and streamers should be very good. The river is the perfect “south fork green” color for this time of year.



South Fork 6-5

Flows on the South Fork have been increased this week. Currently the flows this morning are 12,300. The rise in flows are due to irrigation demand that is being called for downriver. We haven’t heard of these increases hurting the fishing. The water is beginning to warm up and we will see stoneflies in the next few weeks. Everyone in the shop expects the stoneflies to be early this year with the water conditions and how low the reservoir is. We will update you when the flows level out.


South Fork 6-3

Flows have remained steady at 10,800 cfs. The river is fishing good with nymphs. I realize we have written the same thing for the past few posts but we want to keep this report updated and let you all know whats going on. The water quality is really clear and fish have seemed to start to move to the banks and pile up in the riffles. Stonefly nymphs and San Juan worms have been the ticket for hooking lots of fish. The streamer fishing is also good as well. The overcast days are going to be the best days for streamer fishing. If you don’t mind fishing indicators you can catch a lot of fish right now.