What a great time of year to come cool your bones in the clear clean waters of the Henry’s Fork. The weather is just fine, the trout are in a feeding frenzy and the caldera is abound with a million kind smells and sights. The trout’s menu continues to offer green and brown drakes, PMD’s, caddis and the newly arrived flavilinea mayfly hatch. Morning and evening spinner falls are becoming more prominent and the small terrestrials continue to turn the trick on picky and tricky trout. Get here quick, because this is one the most active and beautiful times of the year and the party won’t last forever. Here’s what’s bustin’ loose out there.
BOX CANYON: 1,260cfs. Golden stones on warmer sunny days. Look for fish keying on adults through the middle river. Green drakes are around - as are caddis, PMD’s and flavs. Double nymph rigs are always a safe bet and we’ve had great streamer fishing in the mornings, evenings and on stormy days. Look for solid dry fly opportunities on the lower end of the float through Last Chance.
LAST CHANCE & THE RANCH: The Green drake activity continues to offer anglers a shot at alpha rainbow trout. Look for a strong spinner falls mid-morning, then an emergence around 11:00am. We’re also seeing good mid-morning PMD’s, afternoon flavs & evening caddis activity. The brown drakes are still around, but are loosing steam. Look for rusty and drake spinners early and late. During mid-day lulls, present beetle and ant patterns to active trout. It’s been fairly busy out there, so be respectful of your fellow angler and spread out a bit.
LOWER MESA TO ASHTON: We’re still seeing good golden stonefly activity though-out the entire canyon section. Green drakes, PMD’s and caddis are out as well. A bead-head dropper off a dry can be down right deadly and rubber-leg to bead-head combo’s are always effective. Toss streamers early and late to entice predatory big fish. The Warm River to Ashton float is a great option for beginner to novice anglers and a great place to walk-wade, with plenty of access from the road.
LOWER RIVER: The lower river between Ashton Res. and the Chester backwater continues to produce big fish on golden stone patterns. Present those flies tight to the bank and around structure for best results. The green drakes are fading, but we’re seeing strong flav activity late afternoon through dark. Caddis fishing in the evenings can be outstanding as well. There’s also been some strong spinner falls early and late. This stretch also kicks out some robust fish on streamers this time of year, so don’t write off that option.
THE MADISON: The Maddy is fishing strong right now. The Salmonflies are on the upper river around West Fork and we’ve had great caddis fishing through the day this past week. The river is running a tad low, making for great wading, but a bumpy float. The PMD hatches are coming on as well and will only continue to improve. Bead-head droppers off your dry will only increase hook-ups. Streamers early and late or on cloudy days. This next week should prove to be a great time to be on the Madison so give it a shot.
THE LAKES: It’s still pretty much a midge game on the lakes right now, but look for callibaetis and caddis activity to improve as the weather continues to warm. Bugger, leech and chironomid patterns sub-surface are producing fine results. The lakes will only get better and better as we move along through summer.....stay tuned.