Finally, the lake is turning on! We have reports of large fish being caught in good numbers. The south and west sides seem to provide the best action. Try big woolly bugger types or streamers in about ten feet of water. Some of the reasons for this turn-around is that the blue-green algae mats are decreasing and water temperatures are also going down. These mean more dissolved oxygen thus more active fish. With the decrease in algae and lowering water temperatures, we could be heading for some of the famed fall fishing Henry’s Lake is capable of providing.
River flow has been stable for several days: just a tad below 9000 cfs out of Palisades Dam and just under 9900 cfs at Heise. You could not ask for better weather for good BWO and Mahogany dun emergences than what we have today and coming up for the next few days. The prevailing low light conditions also means better conditions for trying streamer patterns. So whether you wade or fish from a boat, now is a great time to try the South Fork.
This cool wet weather is making a difference with respect to fishing the lower river. BWO and midges are emerging in abundance, and mahogany duns are around. With terrestrial insects remaining top water fishing should be good for days to come, but as we move into October consider that presenting streamer patterns under low light conditions will become more important.
Idaho Department of Fish and Game is proposing to transfer some Big Elk Creek kokanee to Bear Creek with the idea of starting another run from Palisades Reservoir. Lets hope it works because if successful, there would be more forage fish for large trout in the reservoir. Right now Bear Creek might be a good choice to try with the great terrestrial insect population in its meadows. Also with the daytime becoming shorter and cooler, fish in beaver ponds there will become more interested in small leech patterns.
As a result of flow out of Palisades Dam being raised to just over 9000 cfs, mutant golden stonefly hatch and resulting action to them by trout has slowed a bit. The best of this activity can be found now on the lower river. Activity from fish feeding in riffles has slowed a bit, but fishing these can be productive. Try parachute or traditional Adams, purple haze, renegade, or cinnamon ants, all in size 16. Fish still respond to drifting hopper patterns, evening caddis emergences, and streamers fished around pods of baitfish. Under low light conditions presenting streamers can result in larger trout encounters.
With most summer vacations over such streams as Teton River in Teton Basin and lower Fall River will see fewer recreational boaters. This means mid day fishing will have fewer interruptions. The Teton River in the Basin is fishing very well with terrestrial insect and mahogany dun life cycle patterns producing during afternoon hours. Now that days are shortening and cooling most of the best dry fly fishing on small streams, excepting during remaining trico activity, will take place during afternoon hours. More time is now needed for the atmosphere and therefore waters to warm up to point of best insect activity.
The Forest Service is closing the Ashton-Flagg Ranch Road in late September through October in order for heavy equipment to perform some upgrades. More details on the closure can be obtained from the Caribou-Targhee National Forest web site. We place this announcement here because the road provides access for fishing waters in the south side of Fall River Basin within and outside the Park. Access to Grassy Lake Reservoir and the Beula Lake trail head will be available from the east end of the road at Flagg Ranch Resort. Speaking of Beula Lake, now that the nearby scout camp is closed for the season, your chance for solitude while fishing there is a lot better.
Teton River in the basin is a good place to try with fish taking terrestrial insect patterns, and lately mahogany duns. Daytime recreationists will soon diminish to the point of not interfering with mid day fishing.
Kokanee are in Big Elk Creek big time, but they do not interfere with fishing for the cutts as much as folks trying to fish for them by legal and illegal means.
Warm River remains good fishing for folks presenting terrestrial insect, traditional attractor, and caddisfly life cycle patterns. Best location is just below Warm River Spring. After this weekend Warm River Campground will empty out, and the lower river will be less crowded for fishing.
The cooling weather is just what is needed for fishing to pick up on the Blackfoot River in the Wildlife Management Area. The low, warm water has slowed fishing there most of the summer, but now look for fish to respond well to AM tricos and day time terrestrial insect patterns.