Main stem flows are now dropping to normal levels for this time of year. Consider that there are fewer trout in the main stem of the Snake River, but there are more large fish within than any other river around here. The best way to encounter these large fish is through float-fishing, but there are plenty of walk-in locations. Presenting streamers is the best technique, so have bright and somber patterns in large sizes within that fly box. Brown trout are moving to spawning areas, and rainbows will soon be following. Evenings and early mornings will be the best times to encounter the big fish.
Flow out of Blackfoot River Reservoir is dropping and currently is just below 200 cfs. This signals the beginning of good dry fly fishing in this part of the river where banks still hold good numbers of hoppers. Evening caddis activity will attract more fish now that water is lower. As we cool down be aware that weeds are breaking up and mats of them will be drifting down the river. Float fishing on the river below the dam will end soon because of the “rock gardens” that emerge with dropping flows this time of year.
Streamer fishing on lower river is picking up as browns begin spawning migrations. Choose low light conditions for best chances of encountering one, and have both somber and bright patterns in that fly box. BWOs and mahoganies are also emerging, so mid-day dry fly fishing can be good. Consider that wind will blow concentrations of these mayflies to the down-wind side of the river, so position yourself accordingly when presenting dun patterns.
Flow out of Palisades Dam was dropped last night to 6750 cfs last night, and may continuing to drop today. Current flow of 7060 at Heise will drop further today. Look for flows to drop again later this week. BWOs and Mahoganies are emerging from the South Fork, at least along the lower river. Streamer action is also picking up. Hoppers are abundant throughout, and fish near vegetated banks are responding to patterns cast toward them. Caddis provide evening action. So looks like autumn is bringing better fishing up and down the river.
Now that most recreationists have left for the summer, the Teton River in the Basin is a lot more tranquil for a visit. Expect a few duck hunters on the river when mid October rolls around, but they will not be scaring BWOs. Warm River offers some good evening fishing, thanks to caddis activity. Some of our smaller streams, i.e. Palisades, Big Elk, Stump, South Fork of Tincup, and Bear, will offer good fishing for weeks to come. The Blackfoot River below the reservoir will become a destination when flows are reduced at the end of the month. Consider taking that lightweight rod to the Birch Creek Family Area. So there is a lot of small stream fishing to enjoy during autumn. Get in touch with us, and we can suggest even more streams to enjoy.
Flow out of Palisades Dam was dropped to 7200 cfs on 9/20. Flow at Lorenzo is now about 3500 cfs. This makes for more walk-in wade opportunities. Hopper-dropper combinations seem to work OK the lower river, but streamer fishing has been good up and down the river. Somber patterns ( black, dark olive, brown) seem most effective. Don’t expect BWOs and mahoganies to provide good dry fly fishing until we get some really stormy weather.
We have a most unusual small stream in our area that can offer most interesting fishing. That stream is Red Rock Creek in Montana’s Centennial Valley, just west of Henry’s Lake. What makes it so interesting is its grayling population, among which are a few individuals approaching eighteen inches in length. These fish can be difficult, however, but when found in a feeding mood provide perhaps amongst our rarest of fly-fishing treats. Right now their season in the creek is winding down, so they are retreating downstream to upper Red Rock Lake. They however can take caddis life cycle patterns (#12-18) and small ( nothing bigger than #10, 2x long hooks is advised) terrestrial patterns if in a feeding mode. If you are lucky enough to encounter then release one, be sure to handle it gently and quickly. That is because these unusually beautiful salmonids are in danger of diminishing. By the way, Odell Creek, further to the west, slightly smaller, and ending in Lower Red Rock Lake also hosts these living gems.
Fishing sure has slowed down up & down the river. Best results, if you can call it such, seems to be for those fly-fishers presenting hopper-dropper ( bead head nymphs of choice) combinations in the canyon stretch. Flow out of Palisades has been constant for about ten days at around 8100-8500 cfs. Lower flows are coming, but what is really needed to bring on the BWOs and mahoganies is a stretch of cold stormy weather, and for now none of this is in weather forecasts.
Flow out of Palisades Dam remains constant at about 8500 cfs. For some set of reasons riffle fishing on the upper river has slowed, but presenting hopper patterns in close to vegetated banks remains effective, especially on the lower river. Flows below the Big Feeder are around 5600 cfs ( just about normal for this time of year), so downstream of Heise is best water for finding action. For sure some stormy weather would help bring on the BWO activity everyone is waiting for!