This summer Sturtevants is hosting great fly fishing camps and outings. Practice your cast at our free weekly casting clinics with our fly fishing guides. If you have ever wondered what a Baetis or a Hecuba is or just like talking bugs while drinking good beer then come join our free weekly ‘Bugs and Brews’ entomology class. We are also offering summer kids fly fishing camp and ‘learn to fish’ beginner fly fishing classes. Call or stop by the shop for details.
The Big Wood
Above Ketchum the Big Wood is high, clear, and the fishing is on! While wading across the river is out of the question, most fish have been concentrated into slow water accessible from the shore. Look for fish holding in eddies, side channels, and pushed right up against the bank. Dropping a Green Drake or Rubber Leg Stone nymph with something smaller and flashier off the back will be a good prospecting rig. Dont be afraid to throw a big bushy attractor pattern as an indicator as fish have been coming to the surface for a look. As the water drops, look for the first of the Green Drakes to show up around Stanton Crossing and work their way upstream with time. Not yet, but soon.
While still a bit off-colored, upper Warm Springs Creek is at an easily wadeable level. The farther you head upstream the clearer and less ash-choked the river. Purple Para-Wulffs, leggy Stimulators, and other bushy attractor patterns with a small zebra midge or lightning bug dropper have been producing. In the upper stretches the fish can be few and far between yet surprisingly good sized. Most obvious holding water should have a fish or two, but you may have to cover some ground to locate them.
Not quite yet, even in the upper reaches it is pumping some serious water!
As the Brown Drakes have come and gone, so have the crowds of fisherman. A few scattered drakes remain, and there will be some cars at the Preserve but for now the ‘Creek is relatively quiet. PMD’s and Baetis are coming off in modest numbers as well as Callibaetis on the lower Kilpatrick Pond. Just at dark caddis are around in good numbers. A size 16 tan CDC or Elk Hair Caddis should fit the bill. Keep your eyes out for Green Drakes on the Preserve, they should be showing up in the near future. When in doubt damsel fly nymphs produce aggressive strikes on a regular basis. Fish these on a downward swing and tied with a loop knot.
The Big Lost
The Majority of the Lost River System is pumping high with frigid mountain runoff and fishing has yet to pick up. However, the far headwaters are worth exploring in the near future. Think big bushy attractor patterns with a small dropper- nothing fancy.
Snake River Carp
Carp on the fly? It’s the new thing. Likend to bonefishing, sight fishing for these spooky and powerful fish is unlike any other flyfishing that I know of in Idaho, or anywhere else in freshwater for that matter. If you have never tried it, this is the perfect time of year to land a 15+ pound monster carp on the flats of the Snake River. Come into Sturtevants and we can show you some good carp flies, tactics, and spots to hit. As the summer heats up, so does the Carp fishing.
South Fork of the Boise
For now the SFB is very low and the fishing is hot, really hot. Holding steady around 300 cfs wading is easy and the fish are concentrated. Some Salmon flies are around but the evening caddis hatch is stealing the limelight. A size 16 black or dark olive Elk Hair Caddis is on the menu. In late evening when the hatch just begins is when the hottest action takes place. As the evening drags on the fish quiet down. Small nymphs will produce all day. Soon, as in any day, the water will raise and blow the river out so check the flow before making the drive.
Above the reservoir wading is easy and the fishing is consistent. Drift a Stonefly and small attractor nymph combo into the deep obvious holes and buckets as well as under overhanging trees. Small streamers like the Evenson’s Tunghead Minnow have taken some hefty reservoir fish that have worked their way upstream.
Ice out is happening in many of the stocked high lakes in the region and the fish will be making up for lost time sealed under the ice. Inlet streams flowing into the bigger Sawtooth lakes like Redfish, Stanley, and Alturas have been giving up some nice fish as well. Look for these fish holding right off the drop offs. Sink tip lines and flashy steamers can produce some unexpected surprises.