South Fork & Henry's Fork Fishing Reports

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Yellowstone Park

Jimmy's All Seasons Angler / Yellowstone Park (Page 3)

Yellowstone Park 8-22-17

Yesterday park fisheries personnel began treating the Gibbon River to remove all salmonids above Virginia Cascades including Ice, Grebe and Wolf Lakes. Their plan is to eventually introduce fluvial grayling (those now present are adfluvial) and westslope cutts in that section of the drainage including the lakes.   View more details of this action visit the Yellowstone Park Fisheries and Aquatic Science Program web site.

Currently for most of the rivers worth a visit in the park, presenting terrestrial insect patterns brings the best responses from trout.

This time of the season most sources relate that park still water fishing slacks off. This may be true of such as Heart, Lewis, Shoshone, Trout, and Yellowstone Lakes, but it is not the case with Beula Lake. Right now it offers the fastest still water fishing in the park, and likely in the immediate surroundings. To enjoy Beula Lake you must be willing to drive the somewhat rough Ashton-Flagg Road, walk 2.5 miles to the lake, and either wade the shoreline or carry in a flotation device to fish the entire lake.  Cinnamon caddis, speckled dun, and damselfly life cycle and small leech patterns are the best for getting responses from resident Yellowstone cutthroat trout.  Not many regional fly shops tout this serene lake in the Fall River drainage, but we have “the goods” on it, so get in touch if you are considering a visit to this 107 acre lake.

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Yellowstone Park 8-19-17

For sure such great but easily approached park waters such as the Gibbon, Lamar and Madison Rivers, Slough and Soda Butte Creeks have as many fly-fishing visitors as resident trout. Fall River Basin features streams where the sames strategies apply (current emphasis on presenting terrestrial insect patterns daytime, and trico spinner patterns in the AM, caddis life cycle patterns in later PM) but much fewer fly-fishing visitors.  But Fall River Basin also features Beula Lake which this time of year offers perhaps the fastest fly-fishing in the park.  It is only a 2.5 mile walk off the Ashton-Flagg Road and can be fished from shore to enjoy a Yellowstone cutthroat trout population with individuals ranging to trophy size. Before usual PM breezes kick in, dry fly action through presenting  cinnamon caddis, speckled dun and damsel fly adult patterns around the shoreline can be excellent. Afterwards small leech, and nymph patterns bring the best action.  The Ashton-Flagg road is rough but with care can be traveled by such as sedans.   Like much of the park Fall River Basin is bear country and PM thundershowers are frequent. Other than these for which standard precautions apply, no big dangers exist. Contact us for more information on fishing not only Beula Lake but other Fall River Basin waters whether Beula Lake or the other quality waters within.

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Yellowstone Park 8-12-17

If you enjoy presenting terrestrial insect patterns on meadow streams, this time of year the park offers an unmatched variety of quality waters for doing so. Starting in the southwest corner, all Fall River Basin (Bechler, & Fall Rivers, Boundary & Mountain Ash Creeks) streams have meadow reaches full of ants, beetles, crane flies, and grasshoppers and not many fly-fishing visitors. The same insects prevail in the meadow stretches on Duck Creek and the Gibbon River, and the “Grasshopper Bank” on the Madison River was named for good reason.  Do Firehole River trout a favor and try elsewhere until late September cools waters to their comfort. Now that the big stonefly events have moved through the Black Canyon of the Yellowstone River, terrestrial insect patterns bring the big interest from trout as they do on the Gardner River meadow sections. Not to be outdone, the northeast corner of the park offers almost a many quality meadow streams as Fall River Basin, but in a more crowded manner. Lamar River and Slough and Soda Butte Creek offer roadside convenience as well as upstream isolation.  To the south, Lewis River meadow sections and the Snake River around and above the south entrance offer the same.

Certainly aquatic insect activity attracts trout on all these waters with such as AM spinner falls,  daytime PMD & speckled dun emergences and some afternoon caddis activity. But you can bet on those big fish lurking in undercuts and beneath well-vegetated banks waiting for that unfortunate terrestrial guy drifting by and a resulting take!

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Yellowstone Park 7-28-17

The giant and golden stonefly hatches are progressing up the Yellowstone River.  Now into September is when terrestrial insect patterns work well on Fall River Basin streams. Streams in the northeast corner of the park are now in good fishing shape. Lamar River, Slough and Soda Butte Creeks offer good dry fly fishing  with caddis, PMD, yellow sally life cycle patterns and those for terrestrial insects bringing action. Be aware that these streams tend to get crowded from now through August.   Some smaller streams in that area offering better solitude, but smaller fish, include Buffalo Fork off Slough Creek, Pebble Creek off Soda Butte Creek, and Cache Creek off the Lamar River. Leave the Firehole River alone until September when cooling air temps will bring water temperatures down to levels where fish can better withstand the rigors of being caught and released

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Yellowstone Park 7-22-17

All Fall River Basin streams (Bechler and Fall Rivers, Boundary and Mountain Ash Creeks) are in dry fly fishing shape now. Damselflies, Yellow sallys and PMDs are emerging to interest fish.  Fish take patterns presented for these during late AM to late afternoon hours as well for the few golden stoneflies brought in by the wind.  During evening hours their interest turns to brown drakes. Terrestrial insects are building around the edge of the meadow reaches meaning its time to stock up on ant, beetle, cricket, and hopper patterns.

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Yellowstone Park 7-8-17

The Ashton-Flagg Ranch road is open, but a bit slow going east of Calf Creek Hill. Fall River is still running about 50% higher than normal meaning any pattern imitating a drifting earthworm presented deep works best.  For sure the best fishing action off the road is in Beula Lake. Damsel fly and speckled dun life cycle patterns work well along with small leech patterns.   Also consider that Hering Lake may offer good fishing, but you will need to pack in a flotation device to enjoy it. The lower half of Bechler Meadows  may just as well be a rice paddy, and any pattern resembling a drifting earthworm works best in the river for now.

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Yellowstone Park 7-1-17

Looking for brown drake hatches that feature fewer anglers present?  Try either Duck Creek or the meadow reaches of the Gibbon River above the falls. Evening hours are the time to be at these waters.  Applying stealth will greatly improve your  chances of meeting large fish.  Use a floatation device to get out to Shoshone Lake weed beds to enjoy cookie cutter juvenile lake trout responding to leech and small streamer patterns presented on full-sink lines. The green drake hatch on the Lewis River in the meadow along the South Entrance Road is in progress during afternoons.  Lewis River channel between Lewis and Shoshone Lakes offers good streamer fishing with a few green drakes hatching and some fish responding. Best dry fly conditions on Fall River Basin streams is several days away.

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Yellowstone Park 6-17-17

Firehole River offers the best dry fly fishing in the park with BWO, PMD and caddis life cycle patterns getting the most attention from trout. Be sure to try soft hackle versions of emerger patterns for these insects.  Lewis River channel offers good streamer fishing for brown trout. Use generous insulating layers or insulated waders for comfort while wading the ultra-cold river water. Ice is off Shoshone Lake, but trails to it still have areas with snow and with muddy stretches. You will need a non-motorized boating permit and a free Yellowstone Park invasive species sticker on any floatation device to be used on the lake and on any park still water. Go to Yellowstone Park web site boating regulations page for details.

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Yellowstone Park 6-10-17

The Firehole River continues to produce well, but is somewhat crowded. Here’s a way to avoid its crowding; try Duck Creek. The creek is in great condition, and any thing that imitates an earthworm or dragonfly nymph will bring responses from rainbows ranging to over twenty inches as well as from some brown trout.  Ice is off Shoshone and Lewis Lakes, but we have no reports on how fishing is going there.

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Yellowstone Park 6-3-17

As is usual in the early season, the Firehole River provides the best fishing. Your favorite BWO and caddis life cycle patterns as well as small bead head nymph patternsmwill bring responses, but do not overlook presenting the variety of soft hackled patterns including partridge and orange, partridge and olive, and partridge and purple, all in sizes 12-16. We have no word yet on ice-out on Shoshone and Lewis Lakes, but it is a sure bet that trails into Shoshone Lake remain clogged with snow.

Remember: you can purchase any class of Yellowstone Park fishing license here at Jimmy’s.

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