Late June Means More Water
Good fishing on the tailwater reach below Jackson Lake Dam where flows stand at 2,400cfs and visibility is at close to 100%. Surface action has been best from the tail of the spillway down to Cattlemens with eddies, riffles, submerged structure, and banks offering consistent production. PMDs are the primary bugs on the water with a smattering of yellow sallies in the mix. Nymph rigs are producing very well in the same water. Expect as much as a five to one ratio in hook ups between nymph rigs and dries or dry droppers. Streamers have been far more inconsistent than dries and nymph rigs. The best action has come in the spillway, followed by eddies in the mid-reach, and then followed by banks, structure, and seams in the Dead Sea reach (but not necessarily in that order). Go with floating or intermediate sinking lines and large to moderately sized baitfish imitations.
The Snake below the tailwater reach and down to the confluence with the Hoback River is starting to clear and is now offering decent hatches of PMDs, callibaetis, caddis, and golden stoneflies. Fishing with dry-dropper rigs is the best approach. Target bankside troughs, seams, and eddies with noticeably slow currents.
Dry flies – Circus Peanuts, Mary Kays, Will’s Winged Chernobyls, Will’s Black Ant, PMDs Comparaduns, Elk Hair Caddis, and X-Caddis.
Nymphs – Pat’s Rubber Leg, Peach Fuzz Jigs in pink or orange, Duracells, Lightening Bugs, Blondies, Dorsey’s Mercury Midges, Perdigons, and Booty’s Day-2 Midge Pupa.
Streamers – Kill Whitey, Booty Call Minnows, Arum’s Lil’ Kim, Coffey’s Sparkle Minnow, and J.J. Specials.
Flows from Palisades Reservoir are just shy of 14,500cfs. Water temps are warming and this is leading to increased hatches – PMD and yellow sallies primarily – which in turn is leading to an uptick in surface feeding by trout, especially on the lower reaches from Wolf Eddy to Lorenzo. Most of this action is occurring in side channels and riffle pools with moderate depth. It is worth fishing dry flies, but do so when there is active feeding in particular waters you are targeting.
Nymphs have been working consistently on all reaches. Stone nymph imitations are taking the lion’s share of fish throughout the day. The afternoon hours, however, can be impressive with yellow sallie nymphs and soft hackle jigs (afternoon has been the time for the best production as of late). Other small mayfly and attractor nymphs are worth considering. Target riffles, seams, and bankside troughs primarily. Banks can have action on the canyon reach but are more inconsistent above and below.
Streamer fishing has been hit-or-miss over the past week and a half on all sections of the South Fork. The most consistent action has been on the lower reach from Wolverine down to Lorenzo. Wetter days with cloud cover can offer decent result on the rest of the river. Target banks, structure, bankside troughs, seams, and eddy current margins. Sunny days might require 3ips to 6ips tips. Floating lines and INT to 3ips tips work well on days with cloud cover. Go with a downstream presentation and vary up your retrieves. Large and moderately sized imitations are working equally well.
Dry flies – Mary Kays, Circus Peanuts, Winged Peanuts, Chubby Chernobyls, Red Butt Sallies, Hackle Stacker Sallies, Parachute Sallies, Parachute Extended Body PMDs and Mahogany Duns, Comparaduns, and Thorax PMDs.
Nymphs – Pat’s Rubber Leg, 20-Inchers, Sexy Lexy Stones, Peach Fuzz Jigs, Duracells, Pink Peach Fuzz, Perdigon Nymphs and Copper Johns in red, and Rainbow Warriors.
Streamers – Galloup’s Peanut Envy, Booty’s Quad Bunny, Silvey Sculpins Goldies, Galloup’s Stacked Blonde, Booty Call Minnows, Marabou Muddlers, and Silli Streamers.
The Green has dropped substantially from its second peak at 1,400cfs a couple of weeks ago. While it has gone up from its recent low of 800cfs, it is still offering decent fishing on streamers below Warren Bridge and dry-dropper rigs on all reaches. Caddis, PMDs, and carpenter ants are the primary bugs on the water.
Streamers are working when fished on floating lines and sinking tips in the INT to 3ips range. Target banks, structure, bankside troughs, and the edge of riffles shelves. Even, moderate retrieves are producing best.
Foam attractors are working when fished along banks and structure, but better results are had with caddis and carpenter ant patterns in slower water types in eddies, riffle pools and the inside turn of riffles. Foam attractors are best fished in combo with a dropper nymph. Tippet in the two to three foot range is the best way to go. Dropper nymphs have been most effective when fished along eddy seams, submerged structure, and confluence seams.
Dry flies – Circus Peanuts, Will’s Winged Chernobyls, Mary Kays, Chubby Chernobyls, Rubber Legged Double Humpies, Turck’s Tarantulas, Turck’s Power Ants, Galloup’s Ant Acid, Bi-Viz Ants, Elk Hair Caddis, Foam Wing Caddis, Cole’s UCon Caddis, and Sparkle Caddis.
Nymphs – San Juan Worms, Squirmy Wormies, Peach Fuzz Jigs, Duracell’s, Brush Hogs, Brillion’s Soft Hackle, Copper Johns in red or olive, Rainbow Warriors, and Flashback Pheasant Tails.
Streamers – Galloup’s Peanut Envy, Keller’s Nightmare, Galloup’s Butt Monkey, Booty’s Quad Bunny, Kill Whitey, Galloup’s Sex Dungeon, Arum’s Lil’ Kim, Kreelux, Booty Call Minnows, McCune Sculpins, Jointed Urchins, Krystal Buggers, and Chicklets.
Yellowstone National Park
Lewis Lake – The most consistent action remains at drop-offs with baitfish, damsel, and dragon fly imitations fished with moderate to fast retrieves on intermediate sinking and hover lines. Flats are starting to produce emergences of callibaetis and gray drakes on wetter days with cloud cover and hatches of carpenter ants in at least an intermittent fashion. This is giving anglers the opportunity to fish surface patterns. Even better action can come on mayfly nymph and nymph attractor patterns with slow retrieves.
Lewis and Snake Rivers – a lot more visibility on the Snake. Both are experiencing decent hatches of caddis, green drakes, PMDs, and, to a lesser degree, golden stones. Surface action has been good as a result in riffles, confluence seams, and along structure and bank edges. Faster currents are producing as good as slow pieces of water. Dropper nymphs will produce just as well in all water types. Streamers fished on floating lines or sinking tips in the INT to 3ips range are also working in slow current eddies and along seams and confluences.