In Island Park, Idaho, there is little uncommon about morning frost and snow on the Henry’s Fork, unless it occurs on June twenty first. This was the weather that greeted the first day of summer and continued through most of the following week.
With disruptive wind added to unseasonably cold temperatures, visiting anglers who were unprepared for conditions resembling March or April could not be faulted for grumbling. Shifting from shirtsleeves on the June fifteen Ranch opener to layers of fleece and other winter apparel, determined fly rodders were forced to content themselves with small windows of opportunity during afternoon hours when chilled hatches warmed just enough to make an appearance.
Understandably, there were those with weaker resolve who simply surrendered to the elements and the result was a thinning of competition for productive water. While much of angler attention was transferred to lower elevation and marginally improved comfort, the water from Last Chance to Pinehaven was far from deserted. Fortunately, any accumulation of white stuff was confined to the higher ridges and peaks while periodic rain fell on the caldera floor. With maximum temperature failing to crack fifty degrees, mayflies indicative of early spring brought rescue to those hungering for dry fly action. Baetis and March Browns are seldom a feature of late June but in twenty nineteen they have remained a staple, which was particularly important during the worst of the recent cold spell.