South Fork & Henry's Fork Fishing Reports

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Yellowstone Park

Jimmy's All Seasons Angler / Yellowstone Park (Page 5)

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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Yellowstone Park 6-23-15

Streams in the northeast portions of the Park (Lamar River drainage) are beginning shape up, dropping and clearing, that is.  Some of the best fishing right now in that neck of the woods is at Trout Lake. As we advance in to summer, however, fishing slows there with weed growth and warming waters. If you are considering a visit there, do so in the next several days. Some of the largest cutthroat-rainbow trout in Park waters await you. They may even take that dry damselfly pattern if they are tired of a leech and midge pupa diet!

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Yellowstone Park 6-20-15

Streams in the northeast part of the Park, (the Lamar River drainage) remain high and discolored in contrast to streams in the southwest corner (Madison and Fall River drainages).  Trout Lake is your best bet for fishing success in northeast area for the next several days. Walk the shoreline or pack a floatation device to get out on the lake to present damselfly nymph patterns or midge pupa patterns under an indicator. The Firehole River continues to offer good fishing with PMD, BWO, caddis life cycle, and soft hackled patterns bringing best reactions. As we move into July look for fishing to slow there with warming weather. Caddis and PMD life cycle patterns are working well on the Madison River during PM hours.  Duck Creek is tough fishing, but in a few weeks evening brown drake activity will bring fish up. Flows in Fall River Basin streams are dropping to levels where dry fly fishing will be excellent soon. Beula Lake has been a relative hot spot with damselfly nymphs and small leech patterns producing.  Those tasty lake trout are still in Yellowstone Lake shallows. Anywhere you can find weed beds on Shoshone Lake you will catch juvenile lake trout and have a chance at a trophy brown trout. All you need is a boat or floatation device to get out to the weeds, then present small olive or black leech patterns.

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Yellowstone Park 6-16-15

Now that weather is warming significantly, here’s some thoughts on planning a trip to fish Yellowstone Park streams. Things are happening early this season because of relatively meager run-off. Flows on some Park streams, such as those in Fall River Basin, are at amounts usually expected around the first and even middle of July.  This suggests that barring big rainfalls, streams by mid-July could be lower than normal and with higher than normal water temperatures.  Such conditions slow fishing.  Thus the earlier you fish Park streams this season, the better are your chances for fishing success. And remember that in the past the Park has limited fishing when water temps get to levels that are dangerous for trout survival.

Trout Lake in the northeast corner of the Park opened to fishing yesterday.   This lake hosts some of the largest cutthroat-rainbow hybrid trout in Park waters.  However it warms and mosses up quickly. If you plan to visit there do so within the next few weeks in this year of low water. Be sure to have your damselfly life cycle and leech patterns.  You can wade much of the lake shoreline, or you can pack a flotation device the six-tenths of a mile to the lake. It’s a uphill walk, but the reward could be the best fish of the year.

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Yellowstone Park 6-13-15

Ashton-Flagg Ranch Road is open, and Beula Lake is fishing dynamite good. Try your favorite small leech and damselfly nymph patterns on either an intermediate of floating line. No speckled duns emerging yet, but a few damselflies are.  Be sure to bring your DEET, or be ready for a transfusion if you do not. Yes, those little pests are out big time all over Fall River Basin country. I fished Bechler Meadows yesterday. So glad I had DEET along! Not quite dry fly season yet with only a very few yellow sallys emerging. River is low for this time of year when run-off is usually roaring through, but water is clear and plentiful right now. It wont be that way much longer because of low snow pack last winter. Firehole River is still producing well with PMD, BWO, caddisfly life, white miller, and soft hackled patterns producing best.  Hebgen Lake rainbows are pretty much out of the Madison River upstream.  Fishing on Duck Creek has slowed.

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