The South Fork, Snake, and Salt are the Places to Be
Flows from Jackson Lake Dam are at approximately 5,100cfs. A lot of water, and warm water, for this time of year on the Snake. The fishing, however, is beginning to settle down and there is plenty of opportunities as long as you are will to change your program and fish the right water.
The canyon reach from South Park down to Sheep Gulch is fishing well with double nymph rigs and streamers fished with sinking tips in the 3ips to 8ips range or short lengths of T-8 and T-11 (even T-14 will do) when targeting banks, structure, riffle pools and seams. Nymph rigs work in the same water but are really hammering it home at the head of riffle pools and seams and when fished in ledge rock pools and along submerged structure.
Braided sections from Pacific Creek down to South Park are offering some of the best action on the river if you are patient and fish hard. Side channels are a good place to target with dry-dropper rigs throughout the day. After 11am, surface action can come on foam attractors and caddis and PMD imitation at the inside turn of riffles and at the tail of seams with slow currents. Streamers are working on these reaches as well, but not in the same fashion as they are working below South Park. If you target anything with streamers, hit seam current margins, eddy current margins, banks with moderate currents, and riffles pools. Again, go with sinking tips in the 3ips to 8 ips range or T-8 to T-11 and use moderate to fast retrieves. Pausing and mending before the initial line strips can help out a ton.
Dry flies – Circus Peanuts, Purple Bruces, Will’s Winged Chernobyl, Winged Peanuts, Parachute Hoppers, Rainey’s Grand Hopper, Elk Hair Caddis, X-Caddis, Parachute Extended Body PMDs, Parachute Adams, Booty’s DL Cripple, and Film Critics.
Nymphs – Pats Rubber Leg, Peach Fuzz Jigs, Brillion’s Rabid Squirrel, Mercer’s Woven Caddis Pupa, Duracells, Copper Johns in red or olive, Booty’s Deep Stinker Nymph, Lightening Bugs, Rainbow Warriors, and Perdigons.
Streamers - Galloup’s Bottom’s Up, Keller’s Nightmare, Galloup’s Flatliner, Silvey Sculpins, Craven’s Swim Coach, SRA Double Bunnies, Mcknight’s Home Invader, Booty’s Tri-Bunny, Arum’s Lil’ Kim, Mojo Minnows, and Booty Call Minnows.
Flows from Palisades Reservoir are at approximately 16,200cfs. The South Fork is a good place to be at the moment with solid dry fly fishing on the upper reaches from the Dam down to Hiese Bridge. Salmon flies are coming to an end near the reservoir, but there are still a good smorgasbord of golden stones, caddis, yellow sallies, and PMDs. Look for caddis to dominate in the morning hours while yellow sallies are strong after about 12:30pm. Golden stones can be consistent throughout the day. Banks, bankside troughs, and submerged structure are the most productive targets until around 11:30 am when riffles and seams are the waters most worth targeting, although double and triple nymph rigs can bring them into play in the morning.
Streamers are working throughout the system but are producing better than anything else from Byington down to Menan. Fish large and moderately sized baitfish imitations on Sinking tips in the 3ips to 8ips range or short lengths of T-8 to T-11. Target banks, structure, seams, riffle pools, and side channels and go with moderate to fast retrieves.
Dry flies – Snake River Water Walkers, Barrett’s Ant, Chubby Chernobyls, Low Riders, Rogue Henry’s Fork Stones, Bullet Heads, Morningwood Specials, Stimulators, Quigley’s Stacker Sallie, Headlight Sallies, Para Sallies, Parachute Extended Body PMDs, Parachute Adams, Chez’s Hi-Viz PMD, Booty’s DL Cripple, Quigley Cripples, Booty’s PMD Emerger, and Film Critics.
Nymphs – Pat’s Rubber Leg, Deep Cleaner Nymphs, Bitch Creek Nymph, San Juan Worms, Squirmy Wormies, Duracells, Foxy Sallie Stones, Biot Bugs, Panty Droppers, Split Case PMD Nymphs, Bubbleback Pheasant Tails, Poxybacks, Lightening Bugs, Rainbow Warriors, and Perdigons.
Streamers – Galloup’s Sex Dungeon, Schmidt’s Junk Yard Dog, Cheech Leech, Galloup’s Peanut Envy, Stroli’s Masked Avenger, Goldilocks, Rusty Trombones, Craven’s Swim Coach, Galloup’s Mini Dungeon, Arum’s Lil’ Kim, Booty’s Tri-Bunnies, and Kreelux.
Flows are very low but the Salt remains cooler than most streams in the area hovering between 53 degrees and 65 degrees most days. Low gradient reaches offer decent surface action from approximately 11am until 1:30pm while higher gradient reaches can be an hour longer on each end. Caddis can be out for a little bit in the morning as are lots of midges. Carpenter ants feel a bit plentiful from around 8am until noon. PMDs make a brief appearance during the late morning to early afternoon hours. Fishing tandem dries or dry droppers is your best bet. Target bank edges, eddy seams and pools, submerged structure, and the inside turn on riffles.
Streamers are producing in bits and piece. Go with moderate to smaller baitfish imitations fished on floating lines or INT tips and target banks, structure, and eddies and use steady retrieves with one to one and a half feet of line strips.
Dry Flies – Micro Peanuts, Mary Kays, Turck’s Power Ant, Sparkle Ants, Parachute Extended Body PMDs, Parachute Adams, Parachute PMDs, Snowshoe Duns, Parachute Midges, and CDC Midges.
Nymphs – Lightening Bugs, Two Bit Hookers, Halla Back Girls, Zebra Midges, Ice Cream Cone Midges, and Perdigons.
Streamers – Lil’ Kims, Kreelux, Beldar Buggers, Krystal Buggers, Baby Clousers, and Rickard’s Seal Bugger.