South Fork & Henry's Fork Fishing Reports

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South Fork

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

South Fork 7-2-18

Fall Cr. Falls (640x480)

Flow out of Palisades Dam was reduced  from 16400 cfs  to 14100 cfs last night (now 13700 cfs at Heise, 6640 cfs at Lorenzo). That’s only 1000 cfs over the normal flow for this date for the river below the dam. All kinds of bugs are flying as we mentioned in the last South Fork fishing report, but fish still seem to prefer rubber legs and streamers especially above the Big Feeder.  That will change soon as the river clears some more and flows drop, so keep those big dry patterns and PMD and caddis life cycle patterns handy.  We will keep tabs on when this begins to change.

FYI: First channel to Twin Bridges is open, but second channel remains blocked.

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South Fork 6-30-18

Above Menan (640x480)

Flow out of Palisades Dam has been stable since Wednesday at just under 17000 cfs  (16300 cfs at Heise, 8900 cfs at Lorenzo), and the reservoir is 100% full. All kinds of  bugs (big and golden stones, PMDs, sallies, caddis) are flying as far upstream as the canyon.  Fish are not on these big time yet as flow at this level still brings them enough drifting nymphs and annelids so less energy is needed to grab ’em than that needed to go to the surface. So what we recommend as strategy in the last few fishing reports  remains good for now.   The safest and most numerous places for walk in-wade fishing are below the Big Feeder which is taking off enough water to give more numerous wading opportunities below.

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South Fork 6-26-18

Fall Cr. Falls (640x480)

Flow out of Palisades Dam has been temporarily raised to 16000 cfs, but USBuRec says it will be back down to the 13000 cfs level by the weekend. This is good news because all kinds of bugs are beginning to show. These include big and golden stoneflies, sallies, PMDs, green drakes, and caddis. Fish are not keying on these yet because recent high flows have washed so many annelids and nymphs into the river.  So for now stick with the strategy we recommended in recent South Fork fishing reports. Things could change by this weekend, though, with reduced flow and increased density of aquatic insect emergences.

 

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South Fork 6-23-18

From Cpgd (640x480)

Since Wednesday flow out of Palisades Dam has been decreased from 18400 to 15400 cfs.  The reservoir above remains at 97% of capacity and normal late June flow is around 13400 cfs out of the dam.  So it’s going in the right direction to begin aquatic insect hatches. Look for the big stoneflies to begin hatching sometime next week. Right now yellow sallies are showing up with hatches peeking at mid-day, but best fishing for now remains presenting big rubberlegs, San Juan worms and streamers deep from drop-offs.

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South Fork 6-19-18

Flow out of Palisades Dam was raised yesterday to 22500 cfs (now 23200 cfs at Heise, 17900 cfs at Lorenzo, back up to 22900 cfs at Menan ).  Flow out of Palisades Dam was around 17000 cfs just a few days ago.  The present flow sure makes fishing a bit tough! Try any pattern that resembles a drifting earth or aquatic worm or a scoured out and drifting stonefly nymph, and present it deep.  Be careful as the current flow level makes for a very dangerous river.

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South Fork 6-12-18

matt nielson

In the last few days flow out of Palisades Reservoir has dropped from 22300 cfs to 18400 cfs.  We have past the run-off peak in this part of the Snake River drainage. Now if we can maintain a similar drop in flow, we should have close to normal flows in the South Fork before the end of the month.  That would mean a return of the normal stonefly, caddisfly and mayfly emergences. For now look for drop-off for presenting nymph and streamer patterns. Do not overlook presenting weighted rubber leg patterns around this feature.

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South Fork 6-5-18

At Heise Br. (640x480)

Eventually the river will be at this level!

For the current really high water situation (21900 cfs out of Palisades Dam today!), don’t expect great fishing. But side channels, gravel bars and drop offs, where you an find them in a safe and cautious manner, nymph patterns we suggest include red or black zebra midge, copper john, both in size 12-16, rubberlegs in sizes 4-10, and San Juan worms and squirmy worms  in sizes 10-12. For effective streamer patterns try sex dungeons, sparkle minnows and peanut envys in as large a size as you can find.

We will suggest dry fly patterns when the river drops to a level when such patterns will be effective.

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South Fork 6-2-18

With flow out of Palisades Dam over 20000 cfs the river below is dangerous. For now, expressing caution when approaching the river is important.  Palisades Reservoir is about 85% full, and water managers are trying to keep up with the high inflow and yet minimize flooding threats from the river below.  Flow into Jackson Lake has dropped significantly. Nevertheless there is potential for the river below Palisades Dam to remain very high through much of this month.

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South Fork 5-26-18

 

 

Kyle Spencer

Flow out of Palisades Dam was increased to 19100 cfs Wednesday  (Now 19400 cfs at Heise, 14900 cfs at Lorenzo). With the reservoir about 75 % full and over 30000 cfs coming into it, an increase in outflow seems necessary.  However with irrigation water being taken out on a large scale, flow below Byington is about 14500 cfs which is about double for this time of year.  Water is discolored with suspended matter.  We have a few reports of exposed gravel bars and some fishing action below Byington where rubberlegs and brightly colored streamer patterns  sunk deep are interesting fish.  No dry fly action yet, but at least something is going on with respect to fishing on the lower river.  Above Byington it is best to try drop-offs and any gravel bars that are not in deep water. A weighted rubberlegs trailed with a San Juan worm trailor might be the best way to interest fish.

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Henry’s Fork 5-22-18

Bear Gulch

 

Big bugs are out big time from Ora to Vernon Bridges and increasing from Warm River to top of Ashton Reservoir. But the same goes for float and wading anglers. Anywhere you try  in these areas you will experience REAL crowds of fly-fishers.  I hope you are exposed to good stream etiquette along these places. Whether you are or are not exposed to such, strive to be a good example of such. Understand that as the big bug emergence moves upstream, there are a number of location in which you can find minimized crowding. Try walking down to the river from the old Bear Gulch ski area. Best fishing here is upstream. Try the river from the Sheep Falls Road off Highway 20 or from the Mesa Falls Park just off the Mesa Falls Scenic Highway.  Try the river from the West Hatchery Ford Road from the Highway 20 side, or walk downstream from Riverside campground.  These and other unmentioned places will have more solitude, tranquility, and likely better fishing than the easily approached locations most folks frequent along the river.  Be assured that any big floating fly pattern resembling a giant stonefly will work; just place that pattern close or drift it by or under vegetation hanging over banks, beneath cliffs, around rocks above the surface, or any object protruding into the river.

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