Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Fishing Report by Bill Mason


Now that the Memorial Day weekend has past, we have entered into a few weeks of fishing doldrums where fishing waters are limited and hatches are sparse and seemingly all over the place. Unfortunately, that's just the way it is. Depending on where you chose to fish and where you were located, the recent Memorial Day holiday weekend was a mixed bag in terms of results. And that's pretty much a typical opening. It also gave us a clearer understanding as to where we stand in terms of snow runoff.

Typical of the first couple of weeks in June, because of limited waters, scattered hatches and depending of your physical location, fishing has been productive but overall, spotty at best. With the appearance of our first major hatch this week, this situation should change at least for the next seven to 10 days. Although most of our waters are still too high to fish effectively, the snow runoff is coming off beautifully and the snowpack has dissipated to the point that we may have all of our waters available sooner than later.

Let's take a peek at what's available.

SILVER CREEK—Hatches have been inconsistent and all over the place making fishing in general, spotty as hell. When activity is strong, it is generally short lived. Until we get some weed-bed fish cover later in the month, this will be the situation. The Pale Morning Duns are seen in limited quantities throughout the afternoon. They are stronger in the evening and a Para PMD #18 and a Cripple PMD #18 will take most fish working to it. The main activity is with Midges. That seems to be a size 32 (are we having fun yet?) but a Para Adams #22, Para Black Midge #22, if you can see it, will take fish. A few Beatis spinners are also seen and a Mason Quill Spinner #22 is very effective. Nymphing has been spotty. The good news is that the "Heart-Breaker, Home-Wrecker" hatch is upon us, if it has not started already. Brown Drake nymphs have been seen found in abundance and if the thunderstorms hold off in the evenings (spinner stages of Mayflys don't like dropping barometric changes), it could be a dandy. Brown Drake Paradrakes, Cut Wing Drakes and Mason Brown Drake Spinner #10-12 should meet most surface situations. A Stillborn Brown Drake and a Brown Drake Nymph #10 can be an ace-in-the hole if needed.

Over the past 37 years I have more than done my tour of duty but these days, the hatch is now past my bedtime so everybody else have fun out there. Oh, don't forget to take your own rock to stand on as well.

BIG WOOD RIVER—For a few hours in the morning, the Wood actually fished over the holiday, if you knew exactly where to go. Big Stonefly Nymphs #8 and Copper Johns #8-10 took a few fish in the side eddies but as the water quickly came up and turned off color, it didn't last long. Because we still have 60% of snowpack to come down and unless we get a strange cool weather pattern, high water will be the case for the next few weeks. Summing it up in the first week of June, there is too much water to wade and fish effectively but snowpack levels have dropped significantly.

BIG LOST— The Upper Lost is roaring (1950 cfs) making this part of the river and its tributaries unfishable. Interestingly, a great deal of the snowpack has disappeared, with only 10% remaining. As a result we might get on the water sooner than expected. I will keep you in touch. Water levels on the lower river (below Mackay Reservoir) out of the dam are now too high to wade comfortably.

WARM SPRINGS/TRAIL CREEK—A few people attempted to fish Warm Springs but for the most part the results were dubious at best. That said, although it is presently high, Warm Springs is always the first piece of water to clear up. And its counterpart Trail Creek is always the last to clear. That creates our biggest problems with the Big Wood conditions. Just food for thought.

PENNY LAKE/LAKE CREEK—Both are loaded with planted fish and had great results over the holiday weekend. Bait and flies were equally effective and both will be good bets for the next couple of weeks. Para Adams #16 and Prince Nymphs #14 should well for the "fly" boys.

SOUTH FORK BOISE RIVER—They kicked the river up to 1800 cfs and those are boating-only levels.




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