It's September. Fishing is about to get real!
It’s the same-old on the Snake as it was last week. Water temps are warm and getting into the mid-60s, but starting early and ending around 4pm can pay dividends in terms of numbers and size. Claassenia stoneflies are around early in the morning. PMDs are around from around 11am until 3pm. You will also see caddis and grasshoppers around in bits and pieces. But the big change has been the appearance of Hecubas in strength on the upper and middle reaches of the Snake. This is making riffles and side channels prime real estate for those throwing drake emerger and dun patterns. These patterns will also work along banks with moderate currents and on seams and the inside turn of riffles. But most patterns are working in that water.
Streamer fishing is not as good as it has been over the past couple of weeks. However, going deep with T-8 or T-11 at six to 10 feet with moderate retrieves is working along banks and structure with fast to moderate current speeds and depths is working fairly well. Deep bankside troughs and riffle pools are also producing. Don’t expect consistent action, but a few 18-plus inch cutties are in the cards.
Dry flies - Circus Peanuts, Snake River Water Walkers, Mary Kays, Happy Meals, Will’s Winged Chernobyls, Parachute Hoppers, Dave’s Hoppers, Hatchback Hoppers, Stimulators, Galloup’s Ant Acid, Power Ants, Parachute Adams, Parachute Hares Ears, Booty’s Drake Emerger, Parachute Extended Body PMDs, Comparaduns, Booty’s PMD Emerger, Quigley Cripples, and Film Critics.
Nymphs - Lightening Bugs, Rainbow Warriors, Copper Johns in red, Psycho Princes, Flashback Pheasant Tails, and Booty’s Deep Stinker Nymph.
Streamers – Galloup’s Sex Dungeon, Galloup’s Boogeyman, Booty’s Quad Bunny, Sundell’s Sun Fire, Chicklets, Booty Call Minnows, Arum’s Lil’ Kim, J.J. Specials, Kreelux, and Coffey’s Sparkle Minnow.
Flows from Palisades Reservoir are at approximately 10,500 cfs. Fishing is decent throughout the river, but the Canyon is really the place to be. The Swan Valley reach is fishing solid. However, warming water temps has left a heavy amount of vegetation in the water – both on the streambed floor and suspended in the water column – and this stuff is making its way onto fly hooks after at least a dozen casts (so check your rigging frequently). The lower reach is a close second to the Canyon, but the action is squarely from the 9am to 2pm time period, with a significant slowdown after that.
Mutant stones and grasshoppers are present just about everywhere. PMDs are everywhere as well, but a big uptick takes place on days with precipitation and cloud cover.
Target banks, structure, bankside troughs, and bankside eddies with your stonefly and terrestrial patterns. A dropper – sometimes going as deep as five to six feet – will work well in this water. It will also work well in riffles and seams. Riffles and seams are both good places to be with PMD patterns, especially after 12am and on days with cloud cover and precipitation.
Dry flies – Circus Peanuts, Snake River Water Walkers, J-Slams, Chubby Chernobyls, Barrett Stones, Parachute Hoppers, Whitlock Hoppers, Hi-Viz Cricketts, Parachute Adams, Ausable Wulffs, Parachute Extended Body PMDs, Comparaduns, Booty’s PMD Emerger, Pink Sulfur Emergers, and Film Critics.
Nymphs – Lightening Bugs, Rainbow Warriors, Copper Johns in red, black or olive, San Juan Worms, Bruised Mays, Psycho Mays and Jake’s Double Money.