Keep on thinking streamers and BWO life cycle patterns! Streamers are the way to go for such as the run-up browns and ‘bows from Hebgen Lake, the browns beginning to run up the Gardner River from the Yellowstone River, and the browns running into the Lewis River Channel. You can see BWOs emerging on almost all Park streams this time of year. It’s a great time of year to fish Park waters. Crowds are down, insect pests are gone, and the weather can be perfect. But if the weather turns a bit bad, do not lament. That’s when the fishing is best!
With abundance of terrestrial insects around streams, fish tend to feed more and more at intervals. Thus there will be good days and slow days when one presents ant, beetle, hopper and such patterns. That coupled with a clear, bright atmosphere can make for particularly slow conditions. Look for the partly cloudy days with threatening thunder showers to be best bet for times with action. In particular, we have reports of the Gallatin River in the Park providing some great action for those presenting traditional attractor and caddis life cycle patterns. We’ll bet that Fall River around Cave Falls, which is bigger, but similar water, would also produce well to these types of flies.
Streamers are becoming more important on all waters. BWOs are becoming important on many streams, especially in the Madison River drainage. Cold weather will soon begin taking its toll on hoppers, and other terrestrials. But for now stick with them on Slough Creek, Soda Butte Creek, Lamar River, Gallatin River, Gardner River, Duck, Grayling, and Cougar creeks, and Fall River Basin streams. Beula Lake remains one of the best places in the Park for great fly-fishing action.
With cooling weather and frosty nights terrestrials will become less important, but so far their populations are holding up. But look for streamer patterns to become more important as we get into fall fishing. Here’s why. Watch for Lewis River system browns to become active and begin moving towards outlets and inlets of Lewis and Shoshone lakes. Increasing numbers of Hebgen Lake bows and browns will begin going towards inlet streams. If you are a dry fly enthusiast, be sure to have BWO and October caddis patterns in your fly box, especially if you are heading to the Madison, Firehole or Gibbon.
Cool weather made for some BWO action on some streams but slowed action resulting from terrestrial patterns. Green drakes are emerging on Slough Creek. With warming weather a return to action for those presenting terrestrial patterns is sure to happen on all streams. Fall River Basin streams still feature AM trico spinner falls, and Beula Lake remains the best still water fishing in the Park until cold weather hits.
Spruce moth patterns are producing on the lower end of the Madison in the Park and on the upper reached of the Gallatin in the Park. Terrestrials are bringing action on all streams, and caddis swarms provide evening action. The Snake River at the South Entrance can offer great action this time of year for those offering terrestrial patterns. This is also a great place to offer humpys; they make a great horsefly imitation. The best still water action in the Park is on Beula Lake. Action on Riddle lake is bad either.
The best way to fishing success on all meadow reaches of Park streams is to present ant, beetle, and hopper patterns. See the list of streams in our 8/4 report to learn where this applies to. With respect to hoppers, be sure to match color of your pattern to that of the meadow grasses. If you are not fishing Beula Lake you are missing some of the fastest fishing in the Park. You will need a float tube to experience the best of what this lake offers, but shoreline fishing can also be satisfying.
Terrestrial insects are coming on strong and should be your primary patterns on streams. Also think thundershowers and more humidity in the atmosphere! These bright, dry days relegates the best fishing success to late in the day. Partly cloudy conditions act as overhead cover, and with that fishing improves. With these conditions the list of great streams will include names such as the Gallatin, Soda Butte, Slough, Bechler, Boundary, Fall, Mountain Ash, Lamar, Gibbon, Madison, Gardner, Lava, etc. With respect to still waters, Beula remains at the top of the list with gulpers working big time.