We have had some very great autumn fishing over the past two months, but colder weather is moving in over the next week, and this requires a change in strategies and tactics on the Snake. Chironomids, micro caddis, and blue-winged olives will be the primary emergences on the water and this means fishing nymphs and surface patterns that match. Don’t bother with large attractors and stonefly larva patterns. Go down a couple sizes. #10 and #12 will suffice for lead nymphs and #14 to #18 trailers generally do the trick as trailers. On the surface, # 16 to #18 duns and emergers is the way to go. It is key to target slow holding water and be on the slower portions of current margins. Riffle tailouts, seam margins, and flats are the places to be. Nymphs are productive throughout the day. Dry flies start to take effect in the mid-afternoon hours. It’s cold, but its November, and fishing can be very good on streams like the Snake. Bundle up, stay focused, and have fun. The bugling of elk and the movement of moose and deer through the riverbed is an added bonus.
Effective dry flies – Parachute Adams, Furimsky BDEs, Booty’s BWO emerger, Parachute Extended Body BWOs, Film Critics, Quigley Cripples, Elk Hair Caddis, Air-Flo Tricos, Griffith Gnats, and Krystal Wing Midges.
Effective nymphs – Flashback Princes, Flashback Pheasant Tails, Soft Hackle Princes, Booty’s Deep Stinker Nymph, Lightening Bugs, Rainbow Warriors, Copper Johns in red or olive, Booty’s Day-2 Midge Pupa, Ice Cream Cone Midges, and Zebra Midges.
As on the Snake, the South Fork is impacted by the cold weather on the way, but Swan Valley and the lower South Fork average about four degrees warmer. Fishing is a bit more comfortable, but you still have to stay focused in order to have success. Chironomids, blue-winged olives, and micro caddis is what you will be seeing on the surface. Riffle tailouts, current margins, seam margins, flats, slow eddies, and slow bankside currents with moderate depths is what you will be targeting. The South Fork is beautiful this time of year. And as I said in the Snake River report above – Bundle up, stay focused, and have fun.
Effective dry flies – Parachute Extended Body BWOs, Snowshoe Duns, Parachute Adams, Booty’s BWO Emerger, Q’s Loop Wing Cripple, Quigley Cripples, Elk Hair Caddis, Air-Flo Tricos, and Griffith Gnats.
Note – Snake River Angler will begin posting fishing reports every two weeks from now until the middle of March.