South Fork & Henry's Fork Fishing Reports

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Fishing Reports

Jimmy's All Seasons Angler / Fishing Reports (Page 22)

Henry’s Lake, May 26th, 2020

Weather was a big factor in fishing Henry’s Lake during opening weekend.  This weekend on the lake is always a “happening”, so crowds were present.  From what has come our way from the few that have stopped by, it seems that fishing success was rather spotty.


South Fork, May 26th, 2020

Flow out of Palisades Dam has been stepped down to 11600 cfs (12600 cfs at Heise,  5950 cfs at Lorenzo). This means that several walk-in wade locations are along the river, especially because the river road from Wolverine to Black Canyon is now open. Streamer and rubber leg patterns are good choices for action in deeper water, but tops of riffles can offer some afternoon BWO activity.  Remember that any pattern resembling an aquatic worm will always be effective. So such as a San Juan Worm is worthy of being in your fly box here or anywhere. Consider that while the giant and golden stone fly hatches are ongoing through the Henry’s Fork, the South Fork offers a less crowded alternative for wading and floating.


Henry’s Fork, May 26th, 2020

The big bugs are out and flying all along the lower river. This will make for crowds being present to enjoy responding fish.  Bear Gulch is one of the best locations for finding solitude during this event, and the big stonefly hatch here is as thick as any location on the river. Most boating anglers will be on the river below (hard bottomed boats are not allowed to portage down the slide below Lower Mesa Falls Campground), and few anglers are willing to walk the near-mile downhill to the river at the Gulch. Certainly with the warming weather coming up the hatch will advance quickly up the river.  So such as Mesa Falls, Hatchery Ford, and Riverside will be locations to consider soon for meeting the hatch.


Southwest Montana, May 26th, 2020

Governor Bullock intends to remove the self quarantine restriction for out of state visitors on June 1st.  Thus Yellowstone Park  gateway communities will offer all retail services including those for angling.  Likely many businesses will be under social distancing conditions, so consider contacting these before a visit.


South Fork, May23rd, 2020

Flow out of Palisades Dam is down to 11600 cfs. This will make for more wading opportunities and some good fishing in the river below.   Nymph patterns with and without a bead  as well as rubber leg and streamer patterns will produce. With this lower flow riffles could produce some afternoon BWO activity, and  the top of these with shallow water will be best locations to try life cycle patterns.  Consider that with this lowered flow the South Fork offers a relatively uncrowded alternative to the lower Henry’s Fork where the giant stonefly hatch attracts a crowd.


Henry’s Fork, May 23rd, 2020

The big stoneflies are coming out on the lower river. But you can bet those big bugs are hunkering low today!  Just getting to the river now could be  a bit tough with this late season snow storm.  But when the warm-up predicted in a few days kicks in, the top water fun will begin. For now, drive safely.


Big Lost River, May 16th, 2020

Big Lost

Flow out of Mackay Dam remains about constant at just under 250 cfs. This is a good flow for wading the river below, and it looks like some BWO weather will arrive in a few days.  So the river here offers a chance to get away from the crowds getting ready for stone fly activity on the lower Henry’s Fork.


Henry’s Fork, May 16th, 2020

Few fly-fishing world happenings are anticipated as much as are the giant and golden stonefly emergences on regional rivers. With respect to the Henry’s Fork, nymphs of these species are moving toward banks along the lower river thus making patterns imitating these currently very effective (don’t overlook pitching a streamer).  It will be a matter of several days before these bugs will be flying, but look for the first to appear in numbers significant to attract trout attention in the Ashton through Bear Gulch reach of the river. Soon to follow will be the same activity happening from the river below Ashton Dam.  So if you  intend to be at the fly tying bench, tying nymph and dry patterns for giant and golden stoneflies will be time well spent!


Yellowstone Park, May 16th, 2020


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We will be a 2020 Yellowstone National Park fishing license vendor.  Interruptions caused by dealing with the covid-19 virus has slowed the Park’s preparation and distribution of these licenses, but we expect having them with accompanying regulations soon. On arrival of these items, we will place notice of such here.  The Park fishing season is scheduled to open this year on Saturday, May 23rd. However to date certain areas of the Park are currently closed including to fishing.  If/when these areas open to fishing, we will post such on this web site.

For more information on Yellowstone Park’s upcoming happenings and plans, go to