Cooler weather over this past week has benefitted dry fly fishing on the Snake big time. A surge in productivity and more action throughout the system throughout the day, although there is still a slight lull in the afternoon, but nothing to be too concerned about. Just fish tighter to banks, structure, riffle heads and current lines, and fish will come up.
Every reach of the Snake is fishing productively. Off-color water from recent rains have subsided fully. Mornings will fish well with larger attractor patterns and mayfly or caddis adult/emerger imitations. Target riffles, bankside troughs, seams, banks and structure. In the afternoon, you will see more hatches of caddis and mayflies, but it is surface attractors in the #8 to #10 range that will produce. This might be in large part due to the appearance of grasshoppers, which have come on strong this past week. Give these patterns some movement for added effectiveness.
Nymphs will produce throughout the day but become a bit more important in the afternoon. A dry-dropper is good enough. Fish this combo at the head of slow riffles and through seams in the afternoon, and good things will happen. In fact, target these waters with dry-droppers all day long and good things will happen.
The streamer bite has been very good on the Snake, especially in the morning and early afternoon. A variety of pattern sizes and colors are working. We have found that going with a floating, hover, or intermediate sinking line is producing the best results. 3ips sinking tips are also effective, but there is very little reason to go with anything heavier.
Effective dry flies – Circus Peanuts, Will’s Winged Chernobyl, Rubber Legged Double Humpies, Stimulators, SRA Chernobyls, Bart’s Lipstick, Mary Kays, Parachute Hoppers, Whitlock Hoppers, Parachute Extended Body PMDs, Parachute Adams, Booty’s PMD Emerger, Quigley Cripples, Film Critics, Halo Emergers, Galloup’s Ant Acid, and Elk Hair Caddis.
Effective streamers – Silvey Sculpins, SRA Double Bunnies, Marabou Muddlers, Bow River Buggers, Swimmin’ Jimmies, Galloup’s Zoo Cougar, Kreelux, Chicklett’s, and Teller’s Nightmare Streamer.
Effective nymphs – 20-inchers, Flashback Prince Nymphs, Biot Bugs, San Juan Worms, Lightening Bugs, Flashback Pheasant Tail Nymphs, Robins, Psycho Princes, Psycho Mays, Copper Johns in red or copper, and Mercer’s Bead Tail Caddis.
Not much has changed on the South Fork over this past week. Releases from Palisades Reservoir remain at 13,500cfs, bugs continue to pop on all reaches, and the fishing is very good. Salmon flies are emerging on the upper sections in Swan Valley reach and the upper canyon. PMDs, yellow sallies, and caddis are emerging along the entire river. This is making for some solid fishing from the dam down to Lorenzo. The upper piece of the South Fork from the Dam down to Cottonwood is fishing best, but there is still plenty of action on the lower reaches.
Banks and structure are fishing well with dry flies, nymphs, and streamers, but placement does not have to be tight – we are seeing plenty of eats off of the prime holding water by three to five feet in some places. Riffles come alive in the afternoon with trout feeding on surface adult and emerger imitations as well as nymphs in the top one foot of the water column. Concentrate on active riffles, as well as seams and eddies with mayflies, yellow sallies, and caddis imitations from about 11am until dusk. But focus these patterns, as well as your attractors, at banks and structure throughout the entire day.
Effective dry flies – Barrett’s Ant, Snake River Water Walker, Circus Peanuts, Chubby Chernobyls, Stimulators, Yellow Sallie Hackle Stackers, Tent Wing Caddis, Comparaduns, Snowshoe Duns, Booty’s PMD Emergers, Pink Sulfur Duns, Pink Sulfur Emergers, Film Critics, Cole’s ILR, and Quigley Cripples.
Effective nymphs – Pat’s Rubber Legs, Foxy Sallie Stones, Mercer’s Z-Lon Caddis Larva, Lightening Bugs, Psycho Mays, and Bruised Mays.
Effective Streamers – Kreelux, Chickletts, J.J. Specials, Galloup’s Peanut Envy, Silvey Sculpins, and Lite Brite Zonkers.
Cooler temps over the past week have been a godsend for action on the Green. It waned a bit last week, but we have had a noticeably upturn in productive on all reaches from the Forest Service Boundary down to Sommers. We are seeing a good number of gray drakes, golden stones, PMDs, and caddis about. It’s hard not to stay on the surface, but going somewhat deeper with a dry-dropper nymph can produce when there are slow periods with dry flies.
Submerged structure, bankside troughs, riffles, and seams are all good types to target. There is a bit of a slowdown in afternoon, but it is kind of splitting hairs with the action you can get in the morning. Do milk it for all its worth, as air temperatures are forecasted to increase, and this may put a little nix on what we are currently experiencing.
And don’t refrain from skittering those bigger patterns on seams and around submerged structure. It’s the most effective thing in your arsenal at the moment.
Effective dry flies – Snake River Water Walkers, Will’s Winged Chernobyls, Circus Peanuts, Rubber Legged Double Humpies, Booty’s Gray Drake Emerger, Parachute Adams, Parachute Hares Ears, Quad Wing Drakes, Hair Body Parachute Drakes, Parachute Extended Body PMDs, Booty’s PMD Emergers, Film Critics, Quigley Cripples, Q’s Loop Wing Cripple, Elk Hair Caddis, and Sanchez’s Foam Wing Caddis.
Effective Nymphs – Lightening Bugs, Rainbow Warriors, Psycho Princes, Foxy Sallie Stones, Mercer’s Bead Tail Caddis Pupa, Copper Johns in red or olive, Robins, LOF Pheasant Tails, and Zug Bugs.