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Yellowstone Park

Jimmy's All Seasons Angler / Yellowstone Park (Page 4)

Yellowstone Park 9-1-15

As with anywhere else you are considering to visit, expect crowds on Park waters. The best chance for getting away from crowds is to be willing to walk a bit. The second meadow above on Slough  Creek would be a good choice. So would the Bechler Meadows streams Bechler River and Boundary Creek. In fact, the creek would be less crowded of the two, especially in the upper meadow. Walking downstream from Nez Perce Ford on Yellowstone River can get you into some large cutthroat trout, and the further you walk, the less the crowding.   Lamar River above the cascades and in the meadows will be crowded, but walking upstream to such as Cache Creek will get you away from the bulk of crowds. Very few folks walk into the meadows along the middle of the Lewis River Channel between Lewis and Shoshone Lakes.  The Gallatin River along the highway will be popular, but you can avoid crowds by walking up the Big Horn trail a few miles to a meadow reach or up Fan Creek a mile or so to another meadow reach.  Spruce moths will supplement the other terrestrial insects on these.

I seem to be stressing meadow sections of these streams, and for good reason: terrestrial insects abound in these, and for now will provide your best chance of fishing success, even tho’ tricos are coming out on some waters. In all of these be “bear aware.” Bring the spray and a noise maker. The “noise maker” can be a loud talking buddy, but a boat horn, AKA “claxon horn,” is an even better choice. You can find one for under ten bucks at any marine supply shop or mega-store sporting goods department.  It fits easily in a shirt or vest pocket and weighs next to nothing. Be assured that it will carry a lot further than any loud talking buddy you might have!

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Yellowstone Park 8-29-15

Terrestrial insect patterns bring the best action on all park streams this time of year. This is a fact, but trying a dry adult damselfly pattern brings the same response on still waters and slow moving reaches of all streams. Give one a try. You will be pleasantly surprised. Beula Lake continues to offer the fastest action in the park, and presenting a dry damselfly pattern there will cut you off a chunk of it.

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Yellowstone Park 8-8-15

If you fish the northeast corner of the park, expect company because so many easy to approach streams within the park are fishing slowly.  There are plenty of anglers on the Lamar River in the meadows both above and below the cascades, on Soda Butte Creek, and on lower Slough Creek. We traveled through this area on Thursday, and we saw the Lamar discolored, likely because of thundershower related erosion in its upper drainage. Some cars were parked at the Trout Lake trail head.  This time of year fishing there can be tough because of an algae bloom, so a speckled dun emerger pattern presented under an indicator is a good strategy if fish are rising.

Remember what we suggested a few days ago about fastest fishing in the Park? That still applies to Beula and Riddle Lakes!

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Yellowstone Park 8-4-15

Any stream you choose to fish in the Park, this is the season when terrestrial insect patterns should be in your fly box.  Dry ant, beetle, cranefly, cricket, hopper, and sprucefly patterns fished near overhead cover, especially adjacent to deep water are the names of the game. Consider that the days are getting shorter meaning that it takes water and surroundings a bit longer to heat up for insects, then fish to become active. So concentrate your fishing efforts with these patterns into the afternoons. Fastest action currently in the Park, you ask? For moving water try Boundary, Obsidian, Soda Butte, or Slough Creeks. For still waters try either Beula or Riddle Lakes.

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Yellowstone Park 7-25-15

We do not get a lot of information on fishing at the northeast corner of the park, but we have heard that Soda Butte Creek is fishing very well with cutthroat responding to green drake and PMD life cycle patterns. Most of Soda Butte Creek flows along the northeast entrance road, and therefore can become crowded. Crowding increases on approaching the confluence with the Lamar River, so fish upstream from here to minimize company. Speaking of the Lamar River, its also fishing well.  But it is a good idea to check weather conditions before a visit because this river has a reputation of discoloring when thundershowers dump on its drainage above its reach along the highway.  Beula Lake continues to fish as well as any still water in the park. Gulpers are working these, but when wind comes up, switch to small olive or black leech patterns.

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Yellowstone Park 7-21-15

Lamar River drainage streams are in great shape now. Strong thundershowers can create erosion that can temporarily discolor water, especially in the Lamar River. Right now morning spinner falls, caddis and diminishing golden stonefly activities, and increasing interest from fish in terrestrial insects provide the ways to best success.

The Snake River is another Park stream that can become discolored because of thunder storms causing erosion.  It seems more overlooked than the Lamar River, but it offers interesting fishing for those taking time to give it a try. This time of year it hosts brown and Snake River fine spotted cutthroat trout as well as whitefish. All these reach trophy sizes. Caddis life cycle patterns, golden stone fly adult patterns, traditional dry attractor (it’s almost sinful not to try humpys on Wyoming waters!) and terrestrial insect patterns and streamers presented in low light conditions bring interest. The Snake River is easily approached from where it exits the Park. Park at the South Entrance picnic area and head upstream on either side of the river. You will encounter a lot fewer anglers than on the Lamar, Madison, or Yellowstone Rivers.

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Yellowstone Park 7-18-15

Stealth is the name of the game on all Fall River Basin streams these days. The best time to fish is during days when thunder showers threaten because higher relative humidity brings on denser aquatic insect hatches and clouds mean more overhead cover. However getting hit directly by such a shower isn’t desirable because of discoloring water and bringing on a rapid rise then fall in flow. So hope for a glancing blow or near miss. The bulk of aquatic insect hatches are over on these streams, with speckled duns (#12-14) emerging in the meadow sections, some smaller (#18-22) PMDs, and tricos coming on later. Do not overlook drifting an adult damselfly pattern on the meadow sections, Keep ant and beetle patterns in your fly box, and get those big hopper patterns ready for action.  These thoughts also apply to any meadow stream in the Park, so whether Slough or Soda Butte Creeks or the Lamar or Gibbon Rivers, consider them.  And yes, Beula Lake still offers some of the fastest fishing in the Park.

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Yellowstone Park 7-11-15

Warming waters has slowed fishing on the Madison River within the Park and made fishing dangerous to any fish caught on the Firehole River. Fall River Basin streams are low, clear, and tend to warm up to the low 60s in deg, F. by late afternoon hours. Stealth is the most important aspect for fishing success on these.  Best fishing in Fall River Basin is at Beula Lake, and possibly on all of Park still waters.  Traditional and parachute Adams (#14-16) on the surface will get attention of gulpers. When/if wind comes up, switch to small leech patterns.

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Yellowstone Park 7-7-15

Firehole River has warmed to the point that trout within are in danger of exhaustion when being played.  That is because geothermal water now makes up a higher component in its flow.  Iron Spring Creek and the Little Firehole River have cooler water, so trout from the river seek refuge in these during summer.  When  cooling atmosphere arrives in September the Firehole River will again be in better thermal shape for trout.

Shoshone and Lewis Lakes are warming meaning fish are heading to deeper water.  Go to a full-sink line and get out in the lakes for best chance of success.

Lamar River drainage streams are now in good shape for fishing. Being close to roads, especially lower Slough Creek, Soda Butte Creek, and Lamar River in it meadows, expect crowds of anglers to develop. Avoid the most of these by fishing early (spinner falls) and late (PMDs, caddis, ants & beetles, a few golden stones).

Fall River Basin streams are low and clear, meaning they will be tough fishing during these bright, clear days. Expect best dry fly fishing to take place during a cumulus build-up with increase in relative humidity (the drier the atmosphere, the lesser the aquatic insect emergence), all leading to a thunder shower threat. Hey; this train of thought applies to any of our streams!

 

 

 

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Yellowstone Park 6-27-15

Here’s an FYI for folks wanting to use floatation devices on Park still waters and using the Park West Entrance. Floatation boat permits and inspections are no longer available at the West Yellowstone Visitor’s Center.  The nearest they are available is at the Old Faithful Backcountry Ranger Office.

We took float tubes into Shoshone Lake via the Delacey Creek trail yesterday. The lake is low with warmer than normal water (48 deg. F.). Submerged weed beds are not very numerous.  Juvenile lake trout responded well to black leech and various steamer patterns featuring black and yellow. The Firehole River is warming, and fewer fly-fishers are trying it as a result.  Not many fly-fishers were on the Madison along the West Entrance Road also suggesting slower fishing.

 

 

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