Snake River Angler Fly Fishing Report for June 16th, 2016
Here is the latest from our neck of the woods in the Rocky Mountain West
We are in full runoff but, just like last year, a warm spring and even warmer early summer means that the river will be in shape earlier than average. We believe that the Snake peaked between June 7th and June 10th at around 15,000 cfs. Their might be a bit of a surge again as warm temps return this coming week, but it is doubtful we will get back up to 15,000 cfs.
Right now, the tail water reach from Jackson Lake Dam down to Pacific Creek remains the one section with crystal clear water and good levels of flow. Flows have dropped to 2,600 cfs and should stay there for a while. PMDs and Callibaetis are the primary bugs on the surface. They are offering good top water action on the entire reach, but the most intense activity is on the mid-stretch from Worm Hole down to the confluence with Oxbow Bend. There is also a fair amount of action on the lower reach of the Dead Sea down to the Pacific Creek access.
Nymphing remains the best way to go on the entire section in eddies, seams, and when fished along banks and structure. Fishing streamers is also productive, but they are working best in the Dead Sea stretch and in the vicinity of the confluence with Pacific Creek.
Dry flies – Film Critics, Booty’s PMD Emerger, Pheasant Tail Emergers, Cole’s Split Wing Cripples, Parachute Extended Body PMDs, Snowshoe Midges, Parasol Midges, and Parachute Midge Emergers.
Nymphs – Pat’s Rubber Leg, Snachez’s Biot Bug, Nymph Formally Known As Prince, Lightening Bugs, Rainbow Warriors, Copper Johns in red, olive, or black, Booty’s Day-2 Midge Pupa, Zebra Midges, and Ice Cream Cone Midges.
Streamers – Galloup’s Sex Dungeon, Galloup’s Zoo Cougar, Booty’s Quad Bunny, Chicklets, Kreelux, Bow River Buggers, and Beldar Buggers.
Flows have been increasing from Palisades Reservoir over the past week. They peaked at just under 18,000cfs on June 8th and are now being ramped down. We currently stand approximately 14,000cfs and fishing is starting to pick up in the usual fashion that we expect in mid-June. The upper reach in Swan Valley continues to fish best with a variety of nymph rigs and streamers (especially the larger articulated variety). Scud and egg patterns continue to produce, but worm and aquatic larva imitations are also getting into more and more fish each day. This is continuing down through the Canyon reaches.
The big change over the past two weeks is the appearance of more PMDs and blue-winged olives. We are also starting to see our first salmon flies of the season on the lower reach below Lorenzo Bridge. Nothing off the charts, but it is a good sign of things to come. Regardless, water temps are warming enough so that stonefly larva are really being focused on by trout. Stonefly larva imitations are producing in riffles, seams, and eddies, as well as along banks and submerged structure.
Dry flies – Parachute Extended Body PMDs, Parachute Extended Body BWOs, Booty’s PMD Emerger, Booty’s BWO Emerger, Film Critics, and Quigley Cripples.
Nymphs – Pat’s Rubber Leg, 20-Inchers, San Juan Worms, Lightening Bugs, Rainbow Warriors, Copper Johns in red, olive, and black, Flashback Pheasant Tails, Booty’s Deep Stinker Nymphs, Nymph Formerly Known as Prince, Foxy Stone Nymphs, Biot Bugs, Dead Scuds, Epoxy Mysis, Clown Eggs, and Otter’s Soft Milking Eggs.
Streamers – Galloup’s Sex Dungeon, Galloup’s Peanut Envy, Booty’s Quad Bunny, Silvey’s Sculpin, Keller’s Nightmare, Cheech’s Leech, Chicklets, and Marabou Muddlers.
Yellowstone National Park
Firehole – Flows are pretty stable at between 100cfs and 150cfs. Still fairly low and still crowded, but fishing is coming on strong over the past week compared to the week after opening day. There is a fair amount of caddis about as well as some PMDs. We are also seeing some yellow sallies about. Action on surface patterns and on nymphs is good in the morning hours but there is a significant slowdown in the afternoon, Primarily after about 1:30 pm.
Lewis Lake – Very good fishing on Lewis Lake at the moment at inlet mouths and on flats and drop-offs. Both lake trout and brown trout are feeding in significantly shallower water than they were after opening day. Mohair Leeches, Clousers, Chicklets, and Kreelux are working well on floating, hover, and intermediate lines, and sinking tips in the intermediate to 3ips range with moderate to fast retrieves. Damsel, drake, and callibaetis imitations are also producing on the same lines with slow and variable retrieves. Dangling Chironomids, especially in inlet mouths, is probably working best of all. But the big news is a jump in surface action on flats, drop-offs, and littoral areas. Some of the feeding is on callibaetis, but there are drakes everywhere and these have been the primary choice of surface feeding browns.
Yellowstone Lake – The big lake is really starting to hit its stride now. Fishing has been really good in the West Thumb and in the vicinity of Plover Point. We have been doing nothing but fishing baitfish imitations on shallow flats with floating and intermediate sinking lines and this is working very well. But don’t be afraid to do slow retrieves with damsel, mayfly, and scud imitations. The reports we are getting from our guides suggest increasing action with these flies when fished properly.
Warm temps over the past two weeks has sent the Green to over 2,500cfs at Warren Bridge. This is probably its peak and we are confident that it should be on the downswing over the next several days. Expect even better fishing then we have in May. Check back for the next report in a couple of weeks. As of right now, there has been quite a bit of clearing with visibility at about two and a half feet. Large streamers is the best way to go at the moment on intermediate sinking lines and 3ips tips. Double nymph rigs are also producing in a variety of water types. The Green is still worth hitting, but it will get really good over the next two weeks.
Streamers – Keller’s Nightmare, Silvey’s Sculpin, Booty’s Quad Bunny, Galloup’s Sex Dungeon, Galloup’s Zoo Cougar, Dali Llamas, and Gonjas.
Nymphs – Pat’s Rubber Leg, Kaufmann’s Black Stone, Flashback Hares Ear Nymphs, San Juan Worms, and Bacon-And-Eggs.