South Fork & Henry's Fork Fishing Reports

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South Fork

Jimmy's All Seasons Angler / South Fork (Page 55)

South Fork 4/21/09

Flows on the South Fork have increased to 16,200 cfs.  Fish the big back eddys and side channels. Streamers and nymphing will produce fish. Don’t let the dirty water scare you from fishing. Head up to Swan Valley and the water will be cleaner. When the flows stay steady the river bounces back very quickly. It only takes a day or two to settle and the fishing is really good when this happens. You might only have a 3 day window with steady flows but day two and three should be good fishing. Call us at the shop if you need an up to date report, also feel free to check the current flows by clicking here.

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South Fork 4-15-09

The river is at 12,700 cfs. The flows on the river are continuing to increase. Fish slow pools and tailouts with nymphs for your best results.

The road to Cottonwood will not be open for at least another 2-3 weeks. The forest service will keep this road closed until the wintering wildlife has moved and the road is in drivable condition. We will keep you posted as soon as it opens.

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South Fork 4-13-09

Ramping up of flows out of Palisades Dam continues to make room for run-off expected because of our great March and early April snowfall.  Expect flows there to reach 10000 cfs by mid-April and 14000-17000 cfs by the first of May. This puts the “kibosh” on top water fishing here. But streamers and large nymphs presented on fast sinking sink tip lines will bring the best chances for success.  Remember that what happens on the South Fork impacts the mainstem Snake River below.  If you want a better chance for top water fishing, see our Henry’s Fork report.

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South Fork 4-11-09

The flows got raised today 1000 cfs to put the the flow at 7700 cfs.  We are not for sure what they flows will be raised to. We will keep you updated on the fishing conditions as they continue to change and the flows change. I fished today and was able to catch fish on rubberlegs, and red zebra midges today. Fish the upper section in Swan Valley for clear water. The further down river you go the more debri you will find floating down the river. As we get closer to spring time and runoff the conditions of the river will begin to change more frequently we will continue to keep you updated.

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South Fork 4-10-09

The flows on the South Fork have settled out to 6400 cfs. it has been steady for the last 4 days now. I would expect to see these flows stay steady for a couple weeks.  We will keep you updated when the flows begin to increasea again. As far as fishing goes nymphing will be your best option for catching fish. Streamers will also produce fish. Remember to slow down those streamer presentations.

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South Fork 04-08-09

The South Fork has stabalized at 6500 cfs.  According to the Bureau of Reclamation this should be the level through mid May and that time the flow will be increased significantly.  The water is clear from Palisades Dam through the canyon. Below Byington there is still some color and debris but it will clear in the next day or so. As the water is turned back into the Great Feeder Canal at Heise look for the water to drop in the Lorenzo section.

All boat ramps are now usable except for Cottonwood which won’t open until after April 15th. Some years Cottonwood doesn’t open until after the 15th do to fallen rocks and soft/muddy road surfaces.

The situation at Twin Bridges is the same as last Fall where there is enough water to launch a boat but the channel down to the ramp is still too low float.   Its a weird concept to think about but you’ll understand when you see it.  If you launch at Byinton you are going to Lorenzo.

The streamer fishing will be very good now through mid May as will the nymph fishing. We recommend using a 15 or 20 foot sink tip for streamers. A Bennetts Brown Rubber Leg Nymph with a glo bug or San Juan dropper is a good combo under a srike indicator.

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South Fork 04-02-09

Flows on the South Fork have begun to rise. We have been told that they are bumping the flows between 5,000 and 7,000 by April 15. Fishing on the South Fork will be more difficult while the water is beng bumped everyday or two. You will have a lot of debree floating down the river as the water continues to rise. This will also  make the water dirty and off color. The good news is that the fish still have to eat. Concentrate on side channels and back eddys. Nymphing and Streamers will produce fish in these type of conditions. Rememebr to use bigger, and brighter flies with these water conditions.  After things calm down with increasing the flows it will only be a matter of 2 or 3 days defore the water is clear and the fishing will pick up tremdously. Stay tuned to the fishing report and be sure to call us if you have any questions or need and up to the minute report.

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South Fork 03-27-09

Fishing on the South Fork had been picking up. You best approach is to nymph until you see midges hatching. No reports of Blue Wing Olives yet.  Rubberlegs, and small bead head nymphs will produce fish. Put you strike indicator 6-8 feet above your first nymph.  Streamers have been working but remember to slow down that presentation. The Spring Creek boat ramp is NOT OPEN!!! There is still 3-4 feet of snow blocking the boat ramp and parking lot. Drift boats will need to float to Conant boat ramp. There is still 30 feet of the ramp at Pallisades Dam covered with snow. You can get a boat in at Huskies, Irwin, Conant, Wolf, and Byington. Cottonwood is still closed for wintering wildlife.

The Bureau of Reclemation has informed us that they will be raising the flows on the river to make room for spring runoff. Starting Sunday of Monday flows will be increased every few days until they reach 7,000 cfs. The plan is to reach 7,000cfs by mid April. This doesn’t mean that fishing on the South Fork out of the question. Usually a day or two after the increase the fishing will turn back on and start eating again.

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South Fork 03-20-09

There is no new information to share except for reports that there are some  Blue Wing Olives hatching on the lower river from Twin Bridges down to Menan. The water gets a chance to warm up by the time it gets down there which explains why we see them on the lower river and not as much closer to Palisades Dam.

One other feature of the lower river are some of the sloughs that are connected to the river. Some of them are worth rowing into and looking for trout feeding on midges. We use a number 12 or 14 beadhead midge Pupa suspended under an indicator.

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South Fork 03-16-2009

March CutthroatFishing Spectators

Today undoubtably has been the warmest day of the year for Eastern Idaho for 2009. For the next 3 weeks we should see midge hatches everyday and only brief periods during the day where your rod guides freeze!

The ramps at Palisades Dam and Huskey’s are now usable. The take at Spring Creek is still pretty messy so take out 2 miles below Spring Creek at Conant. I’m still having my best success wading so do keep in mind that with these low seasonal flows you really don’t need a boat. A boat will just get you away from the ramps and bridges.

I’ve mentioned before that March is becoming my favorite month of the year on the South Fork. Pack a thermous of soup and get out there at least once this month before the irrigation season brings us higher flows.

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