Current Fishing Report:
Saturday October 26, 2013

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Current Fishing Conditions: Lower Shoshone is starting to fish again and is clear enough to fish down to Willwood on the 26th!

Fishing the Lower Shoshone and Newton on the 24th with Ike and Deb!

 Lower Shoshone   The Corbett boat ramp appears to be usable now (at least on the weekend while they aren't working on it).   The river is finally clear enough to fish all the way down to Willwood. Cloud cover is better. The fish are taking swung streamers fairly well now.  Midges and BWO's are the bugs with a few fall caddis but there isn't much of a hatch going on right now. Salad is starting to break loose and will continue until they drop the flows all they way down for the winter.

 

The Shoshone Canyon The water is still a bit green coming out of the dam but very fishable.   There are midges and a few BWO's and fish can be found rising on certain days. The fish are on the midges most days. If the BWO's come off they will switch to the bigger bug.

 

 Corbett    Finally!  Clear enough to fish again but still a bit off color!

 

Willwood  Willwood is  muddy but clearing and should be fishing in a week or so! It should be a lot of fun down here this fall.

 

Newton . The East Newton fished good on the afternoon of the 23th. Scuds and worms are taking cruisers.  Midges on top. Keep moving until you find fish willing to feed and they can be caught. Splake and brookies are up trying to spawn now as are the browns. Many of the fish really aren't in very good shape this fall. They seem in poor health and do not fight much for their size. We did see a bunch of nice big browns coming in on the 24th. They appear to be in the best shape and some are 24" maybe better! West Newton has been picking up as well on the calmer sunny days . Zebra midges, san juans, scuds and small nymphs and streamers fished slowly toward the surface will get bites. A parachute Adams on top. On the windy days rip big streamers with a sow bug trailer and they will hit them on the east end. Lots of dinks but there are still some nice ones in the deeper water.

 

Luce and Hogan  Report is that it has been good with zebra midges out there. Fish are active as they feed for the winter.

 

North Fork Lakers and rainbows are being caught off the dust dike on streamers down deep. A heavily weighted streamer trailed by an unweighted streamer seems to work the best. These are some real nice size fish. Rest of the river is clear but mostly 10" to 12" are being caught from the reports I've gotten lately.

 

Clarks Fork The river is now in good shape. It is possible to get a big brown this time of year. It is fishing well on the cloudy days. Midges and a few BWO's and mahoganies. Sunny days have the fish down deep. Tons of whitefish.

 

Greybull The river is clear and cold but fish are biting.

 

Wind River, Bighorn River, and Canyon The flows are down (500cfs) and with the cooler temps fishing is pretty good.  Use stealth with the low clear flows. BWO's are hatching and the dry fly fishing can be killer on the cool cloudy days and even some sunny days.  Big dries with droppers and streamers are working in the faster riffels. Small dries with a trailing emerger all day. Slow strip or swing streamers through the deeper faster holes.  Town has been very crowded. We floated town on the 20th and the fish were up all day but they really had to be approached with stealth. Very fun and challenging dry fly fishing. Pick out the bigger fish holding tight to the banks and you can have some real fun. You really have to have game on the sunny days but it is dry fly fishing at it's best. Don't plan on catching a bunch but the ones you do get can be a real quality experience. 10 nice fish is a good day. Canyon was good on the 22nd as long as the mayflies were coming off.  North of town was good on the 25th. BWO's came off and had lots of fish up. They require a good presentation but they are eating. Boysen State park is fishing fair when the mayflies are hatching. Cloud cover is a real help up there. Not much sign of fish spawning anywhere yet but when they start please let them be.

 

Bighorn River Fort Smith.  Report is fishing conditions are good. The fishing access is now open. The lake is turning over so water is a bit off color but fishing good. Black caddis are showing up as well as a few BWO's. Streamer fishing is really starting to pick up. Nymphing is good as always.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

September 16th

Fishing has been interesting the last month or so. It's been hot, the water warm and low, and rain has had lots of streams to muddy to fish in many places. We have had to move around quite a bit to stay on good water and keep the fishing interesting. Nothing has been what I'd call outstanding but we have been able to find some really solid fishing most of the time. The smaller creeks and the Lower Shoshone have been fishing consistently well.

 

Now that things are starting to cool off the fish are becoming more active almost everywhere. Streamer fishing is starting to get very fun and will only get better as the fall settles in. The lakes are finally cooling to the point of being fishable. The irrigation water is slowing down and I think we are on the verge of some of the best fishing of the season.

 

I am starting to see the fall hatches starting. BWO's and mahoganies are showing up now. Fall caddis are fluttering around in places. As the water drops on the Lower Shoshone the dry fly action should just get better and better. The river has been looking real good. The vegetation is dropping back and the bio mass very healthy. Right now with the flows at 800cfs the fish don't have to come up to feed and most are feeding sub surface. These flows are in my opinion ideal for floating and throwing streamers. The fish are already starting to chase flies and it should only get better as the water temp drops. Once the flows come down the fish will begin to look up. When Willwood is clear the fish are already taking dries well. This section is not floatable until after the canals are shut down. It has not been fished all summer and promises to be fantastic this fall for nice rainbows, cutts, and a few browns once there is some water in it. Corbett is also looking very good. Lots of nice browns and cutts in this section. It's been just a little to off color most days but already a 24" brown has been seen in there with lots of fish in the 15" to 18" range. It's going to be fun!

 

The lakes are also coming into shape. The fish have been laying low in the heat but are now starting to be able to feed up for the winter. The action has picked up considerably the last week or so. I've been seeing lots of cruisers and the fish in the deeper reservoirs are starting to come up and feed. Sunshine is very low but if you want to see some surface action show up early or just as the sun is dropping and the whole lakes are rising now. It's the best dry fly I've seen out there. Browns, brookies, and splake should start thinking about trying to spawn fairly soon.

 

October is one of the best times to get into the bigger fish and the Bighorn is the place to do it consistently. The water is still very warm but starting to cool a bit. Once the water temp comes down the fishing will be phenomenal! Midges, BWO's and Pseudos will have the fish looking up and nymphing and streamers will be great in the deeper holes. I always catch the biggest browns of the year over there and this year is looking to be even better than last. Here it comes! I can't wait.

 

August 21st and 22nd!

My good friend Matt Thompson brought his wife Jenn and his friend Kelly to fish for a couple days on the Lower Shoshone! This fishery is really looking good this year. The water quality is very good and the biomass is really the best I've seen in years. The fish are growing fast and very fat. The weather has been very hot and sunny and the fish had been hugging the bottom for a couple days. All these guys are patient and persistent fishermen so this was right up their alley.

Matt and Kelly fished on the 1st day. Kelly had just started fly fishing with us last year but he took to it better than anyone I've seen so far. This was only his second time to fly fish and he looked like he'd been doing it for quite a few years. The super hot temps and sun had moved the fish back into the deeper water so it took us a while to figure out exactly how to fish each spot. We'd get fish on dry droppers in certain holes. Other places a streamer with a sow bug trailer was working. The deepest holes required a nymph rig. We'd all like to avoid the nymph rigs if possible but sometimes you just have to get it down there to catch fish.

The highlight of the day was fishing Jenn's breast cancer awareness rod. We totally support this effort on the part of Ross reels and rods to raise money to cure this disease. This rod is bright fluorescent pink! I mean blinding pink with a matching reel! To see a couple on macho guys fishing this rod was just a lot of fun and honestly the rod cast quite well. I'll have to look for one on ebay!

We caught fish! Every hole produced at least a couple nice ones. Most were 16" to 17" with several bigger but all were fat and healthy. The water temps are the coolest around and the fish are fighters, especially in the current. Most were Cutts, rainbows and cuttbows. With the bright sun most of the browns were down and hiding. You really had to take your time. Sometimes it would take 10 or 15 casts over a spot to get the fishes attention. If you floated by with just one cast it can be a long day.

Both guys caught plenty of nice fish and they are both just a lot of fun to fish with. That's the nice thing about fishing with return clients every year. We all become friends and I really look forward to seeing them every time we fish. We can operate like a well oiled machine as we fish and good things just seem to happen.  A team effort!

Matt's wife Jenn fished with us on the second day. It had been a while since I fished with her. She has a very positive attitude, she pays attention and learns well, and she fishes hard and with passion. It had been a year since she fished but after the first hour or so of warm up she got it back and did great.

Interestingly, the fish were in different spots from the day before. We had to totally adjust where and how we fished for them. The retrieves on the streamers were different and unless you could adjust you didn't get bites. I like to blame it on the weather or a full moon but bottom line is you have to keep thinking and trying new stuff and see what happens.

Matt and Jenn caught some real nice ones. It was just a nice relaxing day fishing with friends. The weather and water cooperated and we had some fun. We are very lucky to have a river of this quality right down town. We saw almost no other fishermen all day and that makes it even better. Thanks to these guys for another great couple days and I look forward to our next adventure. Enjoy the picts!

August 18th

Blue line Fishing

With low water and summer temperatures making mid day fishing very slow and crowds of people hitting the more well know rivers Blue line fishing is a great alternative this time of year. If you get up high and are willing to walk a bit there are some very cool options that are still fishing quite well.

 

As a fishing guide I always assumed that people were after big fish but this year I've discovered that a good day on an smaller more intimate piece of water can be just as satisfying. One of my biggest goals has always been to try to not see other anglers when we fish. This has become almost impossible on the well known waters especially if they are easy access. Small streams offer solitude, beauty, exercise, and some very fun fishing for fish that rarely see a fly. It is also almost always dry fly action.

 

These fish can be naive but when the water comes way down and is super clear you really have to stay back and use stealth. They aren't always push overs. Especially the bigger fish! Most fish are between 6" and 10" but we seem to always get some 14" to 15" and a few up to 17". A 17" fish in a creek that is 4 feet wide is a true trophy! The fish in the faster water will usually come up and smack a big dry but we have to fish stuff like little midges and ants for the bigger fish in the deeper slower pools. It can be quite challenging.

 

I've heard more laughter the last couple weeks when the dry fly action turns on than any other time so far this year. These fish commit! I mean hit your fly with careless abandon! It is a lot of fun. I see people stopping to look around and just admire their surroundings. We see interesting wildlife. It really is a great way to spend the day instead of beating a dead horse mid day on a hot low stream with a big name.

 

The people that are willing to go to these places are special. They don't shun a challenging hike, a few bugs, or maybe even a bear or two. At the end of the day they are fulfilled! They get some exercise see amazing country, and had a great time catching a bunch of truly wild fish. Yesterday, Becka Strong hiked one of the steepest trails anywhere. She fished all day in a pair of flip flops. She never complained once or even broke a nail and every time I looked up she was fishing with focus and passion. The fishing wasn't even close to what it can be that day but she caught the biggest fish of her life and the trip on a little ant with a perfect cast.  She was truly living in the moment. It doesn't get any better than that and I salute her and her husband Greg for being the kind of people that have an appreciation for what Wyoming is really about.

 

If your tired of crowds, the 5 hour lull of mid day heat and have some get up and go, give some small streams a try. Some of the most enjoyable days this year have been about smaller fish in wild places. It has been a very cool way to spend the day and make for some memories that will last a lifetime! Enjoy the pictures!

 

To see the pictures from some of our latest guided trips click here.

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