Hard to believe Labor Day weekend is here. Maybe it's because time passes more quickly as I get older, but suddenly we're headed into our fall fishing. And fall is the best time to be on the river. Fishing has remained strong but as I pointed out last week, things are changing. Let's take a glance at what you can expect to find out there.
SILVER CREEK—As I predicted, Trico will begin to slow, and that has proven to be the case. You might get 20 minutes out of it but that's about it. For those 20 minutes, Dave's Trico #22 works wonders. The little Beatis spinner is still out there and a Mason Quill Beatis Spinner #22 is deadly. It's still a bit early, but things are beginning to shift into the afternoon primarily in the floating area with the emergence of Callibeatis duns. The actual size of the fly gets smaller and by mid-September it can drop clear to a size 20. Either a Thorax or Parachute Speckled Dun #18-20 will take fish. Crippled Callibeatis #18-20 is also effective. This latter hatch should last through late September. Starting this week, it will get stronger and stronger with each day.
BIG WOOD—Surprisingly, there is nothing in the way of a sustainable hatch to fish to, but it doesn't seem to really matter. Where Trico and Beatis are hiding is anybody's guess. But they are not being seen, and they haven't become important on the river, yet. As a result, Para Adams #16, Purple Haze #16 and Cluster Midges #16-18 take fish nicely on the surface. For the better fish, Copper John's #14, Zebra Midges #16-18 and Bead Head Flashback Pheasant Tails #16-18 will do the job. Although it is early, in past years I've seen a few Red Quills (T. hecuba) emerge the last week of August so you might keep an eye out for this beauty. Mid to late afternoon is when it will be seen if at all.
BIG LOST—Once again Copper Basin has been very iffy with the fish spread out and scattered over an extensive area. The Lost below the reservoir has been fishing nicely on the surface in the morning, if the wind doesn't blow. Trico is the main hatch and appears about 8:30-9 a.m. Otherwise, Copper John's #12-14, Prince Nymph #12 and Zebra Midges #14-16 are the mainstays when fished wet. Crane Fly patterns are very important and can be deadly when skated on the surface or retrieved back upstream fishing sub-surface.
WARM SPRINGS/TRAIL CREEK—The fish are small and the water levels are low, but both streams are quite active on the surface. Regular and Yellow Parachute Adams #14-16, Para Hares Ear #16 and Prince Nymph #14-16 take fish underneath.
PENNY LAKE/LAKE CREEK—Will be heavily planted for Labor Day weekend and will provide some great fishing using both flies and bait. Still the best bet to take young kids fishing.