South Fork & Henry's Fork Fishing Reports

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Still Water

Jimmy's All Seasons Angler / Still Water (Page 7)

Still Waters 9-13-16

Daniels Reservoir currently remains the best location for action. Midge pupa at the taking depth and underneath an indicator as well as damsel fly nymph patterns fished the same way or slowly stripped seem to work best.  The same approaches plus presenting small leech patterns is bringing action on Springfield Reservoir. Chesterfield and twenty-Four Mile Reservoirs have been slow fishing all season.  Because of introduced bass, plans are taking shape to poison Hawkins Reservoir to return it to a trout fishery for which it is best suited.


Still Water 8-27-16

Compared to our numerous more renowned still waters Horseshoe Lake is almost on the “Where’s That?” list. It is remote, not frequently fished, has (at best) primitive facilities, and hosts no self-sustaining salmonid population.  But Horseshoe Lake has an attraction no other eastern Idaho water can boast: Montana grayling.  The lake has no inlet and outlet needed, in suitable condition, for their spawning.  Thus its stock of grayling is replenished each year from a Montana hatchery ( rainbow trout released here come from an Idaho hatchery). A resident grayling here is a “braggin’ fish” if it grows to a foot long, nevertheless they are beautiful to behold, and because of their near endangered status a privilege to catch and release. Resident rainbow trout, also stocked, outnumber them here on a near 10:1 basis, so patience is required to encounter one.  The lightest weight in fly rod systems is most appropriate for presentations, and “small” applies to fly patterns. Standard nymph patterns with or without bead heads and soft hackled patterns, both in size 16 or smaller and presented on a floating line and long slender tippet are good choices for achieving interest from grayling.  However during wind-free times when rise forms are numerous, nothing beats presenting small (#18 and smaller) dry patterns such as adams, light cahill, and purple haze, all in more visible parachute form, to these fish. You may have to get through several rainbows of similar size before one of these strikes. That makes catching and releasing one even more of a privilege.

Horseshoe Lake is about twenty-five miles east of Ashton.  Its road, winding northeasterly, leaves the Cave Falls Road about a mile east of the LDS Church’s Rock Creek Girl’s Camp. It’s a fairly rough road with pot holes, rocks, and lots of dust. Tires in good shape and cautious speeds are required.  There are a few non-motorized boat launching sites at the northwest corner of the lake, and flotation devices are most suited for fishing.  The best chance for action is through locating in front of the west side lily pad beds where fish cruise looking for emerging aquatic insects.  Good Luck!


Still Waters 8-23-16

The gulper event on Hebgen Lake remains the best still water fishing in the region. The gulper event on Beula Lake in Yellowstone Park is also very good.  Gulper activity happens on any still water when callibaetis mayflies emerge in abundance. Sand Creek Pond #4, Elk, Wade, Springfield, and Horseshoe Lakes can host good ones, but timing is important because these can vary in time water for water. On some of these, good emergences begin in Mid-July, on others gulpers last well into September. Also time of day can vary. The famed Hebgen event happens during AM hours, but on other locations afternoons offer the best gulper fishing. Forget about gulper fishing anywhere when wind comes up, and we have had plenty of that this season.


Still Waters 7-26-16

Daniels Reservoir continues to offer the best still water trout fishing in reservoirs to the south. Damselfly nymph patterns and midge pupa patterns, both under an indicator, bring most interest from trout. Although not really still water fishing, right below Oneida Narrows Dam has been good with bead head nymph and streamer patterns. Both trout and bass respond. Sand Creek Pond #4 offers slow fishing during daytime, but for those beginning fishing at first light results are much better until daytime heat begins. Try damselfly nymph and small leech patterns.  The lack of invasive species check stations makes boating and fishing from boats on Franklin County still waters inconvenient for visitors and anglers coming from the north. Horseshoe Lake was stocked with grayling last September and rainbow trout this June. Most enjoyable fishing there is to present speckled dun emerger and adult patterns in front of lily pad beds. Has anyone tried fishing Teardrop Lake (Snow Creek Pond) off the Fish Creek Road? It was stocked with rainbow trout back in June and hosts hold-overs.


Still Waters 7-16-16

Daniels Reservoir remains the “star of the show” for reservoirs to the south, and can be a bit crowded.  Damselfly life cycle patterns work very well (adult patterns work better on wind-free days) as do midge pupa patterns under an indicator. You must determine the taking depth. Springfield Reservoir can be good for those presenting dry damselfly patterns on top of channels between weed beds, again being best during wind-free times. Twenty-Four Mile Reservoir is pretty much done for the year, Hawkins Reservoir is being drawn down, and Chesterfield Reservoir is not producing up to par. We do not have as much information as is usual for this time of year simply because people are not fishing these and other reservoirs to the southeast because of political-social reasons. If you go to our current Warm Water report, you will see an sketch of the reasons why.


Still Water 6-25-16

Damselfly activity on Daniels Reservoir provides the best action on our irrigation reservoirs. Activity remains relatively slow on Chesterfield and Twenty-Four Mile Reservoirs. Springfield Reservoir is mossing up meaning that a great strategy is to fish dry damselfly patterns over channels through the weeds. Looking for an out-of-the-way still water? Consider Teardrop Lake. It’s just off the Fish Creek Road not far from the Yellowstone Park west boundary and good for flotation devices.  Like so many of our reservoirs it is stocked with rainbows, and holdovers grow to good sizes. Standard stuff like small leech and scud patterns work well as do damselfly and speckled dun life cycle patterns.


Still Waters 6-18-16

Daniels and Hawkins reservoirs seem to offer the best fishing of irrigation reservoirs to the southeast. Damselflies are beginning to emerge on these.  Have you fished Teardrop Lake?  It’s just off the upper Fish Creek Road. It hosts brook trout but has been stocked with rainbow trout, some of which hold over. Standard still water patterns (damselfly life cycle, leech, scud, speckled dun life cycle) should work well.


Still Waters 6-7-16

Here’s some interesting info about 24-Mile Reservoir: folks with fish finders say there are fish in deepest water just above the dam.  Chesterfield Reservoir remains slow fishing, but the Portneuf river below is in good shape.  Daniels Reservoir is fishing nicely with the upper area springs being the best location. Try your favorite damselfly nymph pattern, small black or olive leech pattern, callibaetis nymph pattern, or midge pupa pattern under an indicator.  Springfield Reservoir is also fishing very well. Try the same strategy as given above for Daniels, and don’t overlook trying in front of the culverts.  Conditions at Treasureton Reservoir are being monitored because of the impact of “Johnny Appleseed” introduced largemouth bass on rainbow trout population. Being considered, amongst other options, is whether or not to chemically treat the reservoir to regain its renown as a trophy rainbow trout fishery.  IDF&G Southeast Region personnel in Pocatello would appreciate your input.


Franklin County Lakes & Invasive Species Update

A big story this spring in Franklin County has been the threat to close access to lakes because of the concern of invasive mussels. The situation seems to be constantly evolving, but here is the most current information as we have heard it. The whole situation is very confusing, so interpret this information as you wish, hopefully things are clarified here shortly.

All Franklin County Reservoirs: No ballast compartment boats allowed (wake board boats)

Twin Lakes : $5 launching fee, all watercraft using Twin Lakes must have been recently inspected by an inspection station operated by and for the ISDA and have in its possession written certification. You have to stop at Twin Lakes e to show this.

Glendale Reservoir: The barricades will be open tomorrow May 15 at 7:00 a.m. A verification checkpoint will be staffed 7 days a week from 7 am to 7 pm The cost for verification per watercraft will be $10.00 for Franklin county residents and $20.00 for out of county. The license plate of the tow vehicle and driver license will prove residency. No cash accepted just debit/credit cards and local checks.
The verification staff will be asking for proof of a ISDA inspection form/passbook for any watercraft that has left the county AND a 2016 invasive sticker attached to vessel or Idaho boat registration. The ISDA form must then be displayed on the dashboard of tow vehicle. County residents need to visit the ISDA station within 5 days of launching or have an ISDA trailer/boat orange tag.

ISDA stations are open all daylight hours. One is located at Highway 91 in Franklin City. Others at state line roads throughout Idaho.”

These are the two main lakes we have heard information about. You can safely assume that all lakes owned by the Twin Lakes Canal company will have these regulations in place.As of this writing, nothing has been posted or made known to us about Treasureton Reservoir.

Speaking of Treasureton…… For those who fish Treasureton, this is a big year for the lake. For several years the Fish and Game has been monitoring the situation at the lake with illegally introduced Largemouth Bass. There is talk of poisoning the reservoir this fall and starting over. We have been talking to biologist Dave Teuscher about this and have mixed feelings. Here is a message from Dave regarding the situation;

“We have been considering a treatment since bass were illegally introduced about 10 years ago. As you know, we have many bass fisheries in Franklin County and Treasureton Reservoir is managed as a trophy trout water. I am preparing a data summary for the reservoir that shows the changes that have occurred in the fishery and what actions IDFG has completed to limit bass expansion (e.g., no harvest or size limit on bass and moving bass from Treasureton to other bass fisheries).

We plan to have that summary done in the next week or so. Please check back with me for a copy.

Prior to making a final decision, we will hold a meeting in Preston to discuss options. I will also be trying to meet with the irrigation company to get their input. The irrigation company has been excellent to work with and very supportive of the fishery.”

We will be sure to update conditions as they progress, as well as when this meeting will take place. Dropping an email to the Idaho Fish and Game would be a great way to voice your opinion as well.



Stillwater 5-16-16

Not a whole lot has changed from our previous stillwater post except damsel nymphs are starting to become more active on the bottom of some of our lower elevation lakes. Water temps on most area reservoirs is hovering in the 55-60 degree range, so if we can get a string of warm weather days things should really get going. Some of the best fishing of the year is when damsel nymphs become active on the bottom and begin moving around. This doesn’t always mean you will see the adults, but having plenty of damsel nymphs on you in the next couple weeks would be smart. Fish these nymphs close to the bottom in 4-15 ft of water either by sinking line or indicator and hang on……….