Daytime temperatures in the high 30s and low 40s has produced very comfortable fishing as well as some of the best action on the water of the year so far. A variety of nymphs are producing in riffles, riffle pools, seams, and bankside troughs. This includes everything from larger stonefly imitations to smaller chironomid patterns. It’s still almost exclusively midges on the water, but little black stones and little brown stones should be right around the corner.
We are starting to see more fish eating midge adults and emergers on the surface. This is happening primarily at the current margin of riffles pools from mid-morning and continuing through the afternoon. In the afternoon, you may also find trout surface feeding at the head of seams and the shallow inside turn of riffles. I would not suggest going out there and fishing dry flies immediately to start the day. Stick with double nymph rigs. But when you start to see consistent feeding, make the switch to dry flies.
Dry Flies – Snowshoe Midges, Parachute Midges, Furimsky BDEs, Renegades, Griffith Gnats, Krystal Wing Midge Emergers, and CDC Midge Emergers.
Nymphs – Pat’s Rubber Leg, Biot Bugs, Lightening Bugs, Booty’s Deep Stinker Nymph, Rainbow Warriors, Zebra Midges, Ice Cream Cone Midges, and Booty’s Day-2 Midge Pupa.
Streamers – Krystal Buggers, Girdle Bugs, Arum’s Lil’ Kim, and Sculpzillas.
As is the case on the Snake, fishing has been comfortable on the South Fork and quite good compared to the last two month. In fact, this has been the best fishing since November for sure. Lots of nymph patterns are working in riffles, seams, along submerged structure, and on flats later in the day.
Dry fly fishing has really picked up with chironomid and bwo imitations. By no means is it happening everywhere on every stretch of the river, but in the places that it is happening, in can be worth sitting on and fishing to these fish for an hour or so. You will see this activity mainly in the afternoon hours and primarily in slower riffles and riffles pools, as well as seams separating stillwater pools from main channel currents. Some flats, especially on the lower reaches below Byington will also experience decent surface action from mid-afternoon until dusk.
Dry Flies – Snowshoe Midges, Air-Flo Tricos, Furimsky BDEs, Griffith Gnats, Renegades, Krystal Wing Midge Emergers, and CDC Midge Emergers.
Nymphs – Pat’s Rubber Leg, PR Muskrats, Bitch Creek Nymphs, Lightening Bugs, Booty’s Deep Stinker Nymph, Rainbow Warriors, Dorsey’s Mercury Baetis, Copper Johns in olive or black, Zebra Midges, Ice Cream Cone Midges, and Booty’s Day-2 Midge Pupa.
Streamers – Lite Brite Zonkers, Sculpzillas, Beldar Buggers, Marabou Muddlers, J.J. Specials, and Baby Bunnies.