Crazy Surface Action on the Snake and South Fork


Snake River

Surface action has picked up big time on the middle and lower reaches from Moose down to Sheep Gulch. Lots of midges from around 11:30pm to 5pm and a good amount of Capnias around as well most days. Most production remains in eddies, slow current back channels, and ledge rock pools, but there is also increasing action occurring in shallower water at the head of riffle and along seams and confuences.

Nymphs have been producing best fished shallow from around 10:30pm until dusk. Dry-dropper rigs are out performing double nymph rigs most of the day except in the early to mid-morning hours. Target the same water you do with your dry flies and adjust your tippet length for the water and current speeds you are fishing.

Streamers have been hit or miss over the past couple weeks. Banks and riffles have been rather devoid of action. They are working best were slower currents meet faster currents at the edge of back water channels and main channels seams and at the edge of current margins. Go with floating lines and sinking tips in the INT to 3ips range and use slow and long retrieves.

Dry flies – Micro Winged Peanuts, Micro Peanuts, Griffith Gnats, Parachute Adams, Parachute Midges, Dun Midges, Smoke Jumpers, CDC Hanging Midges, and Film Critics.

Nymphs – Peach Fuzz Jigs, Lightening Bugs, Matte Deamons, Perdigons, Zebras Midges in red or black, Booty’s Day-2 Midge Pupa, Brassies, Serendipities.

Streamers – Arum’s Lil’ Kim, Booty Call Minnows, Mojo Minnows, Booty’s Tri-Bunny, and Beldar Buggers.


South Fork

Good fishing throughout the system but especially on the upper reaches from the Dam down to Dry Canyon and on the lower reaches from Heise down to Lorenzo. Midges are popping in the early afternoon - approximately 12pm until 4pm – with decent feeding in riffle pools, eddies, and slow current seams.

Nymphs are producing throughout the day but hit their stride from around11am until dusk. When fish are hitting the surface, go with chironomid imitations fished as part of a dry-dropper system with tippet lengths in the two to three foot range. Going deeper with double/triple nymph rigs when fish are not on the surface is the name of the game – four to seven feet depending on current speeds and depths.

Streamer action has been very good on the upper reach in Swan Valley and on the lower reach below Byington. Moderately sized streamers are outperforming larger and smaller counterparts. Fish these on floating lines or sinking tips in the INT to 3ips range and target seam margins, slow current troughs at the head of riffles, and banks and structure with slower currents. Go with moderate retrieves.

Dry flies – Furimsky BDEs, Renegades, Parachute Midges, Chez’s Krystal Wing Midge Emergers, and Klinkhammers.

Nymphs – Brush Hogs, Rubber Leg Flashback Hares Ears, Duracells, Booty’s Day-2 Midge Pupa, Perdigons, Zebra Midges, and Ice Cream Cone Midges.

Streamers – Arum’s Lil’ Kim, Baby Bunnies, Lite Brite Zonkers, Kreelux, Krystal Buggers, Booty Call Minnows, and Rikards’ Seal Bugger.

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