The Big Wood’s precipitous fall in flows has evened out, and the river is at an amazing level for fishing – enough water to have nice fish-holding seams and riffles, and deep, green pools. There’s a fair number of early morning Trico’s on the ‘Wood, though the fish are as likely to eat a size 14 or 16 Pink Albert as they are to eat a tiny Trico. Mid-day you may need to go down to 6x tippet to fool the more educated fish.
Over in Mackay, on the lower Big Lost River, early mornings have been producing Trico spinner falls that compete in density with those on Silver Creek. You’ll have to get up early to hit Trico’s on the Lost as the hatch is pretty well over by 10 am. Luckily, afternoon Craneflys keep things exciting, try skating and bouncing your fly through the riffles for incredibly savage strikes.
On the upper Lost and Copper Basin hoppers, Chernobyl ants and general attractor patterns will bring fish out. Even though this year isn’t the highest fish population the upper Lost has ever seen, the low flows have the fish concentrated.
Morning’s on Silver Creek have continued to see steady hatches of Tricos, PMD’s, Baetis, and Callibaetis, with where on the river you’re fishing determining which bug gets the most attention. Afternoon hopper, beetle and damsel fishing have been superb, particularly if the wind’s blowing.
Which is all to say, to have a good time right now, you just need to get out and get a line wet!
– Fishing Report by SVMG Guide Paddy McIlvoy