Summer is on its way out already! I can’t believe that it’s the last day of August. The fishing defiantly got tough for a little bit. The combination of smoke and dry hot days slowed things down. The good news is that in my mind it’s on the upswing! The combination of cooler temps and some rain have gotten things moving around!
The Box is still a little tough but think streamers! An early morning run through the box throwing Sculpin patterns is a great idea. Everybody’s got their favorites but you cannot go wrong with Mike Lawson’s Olive Wool Head Sculpin. We have also had success with Copper and Crystal Zonkers and the Articulated Bling. As the day warms up you’re going to have to throw some nymphs. Coffee and Brown #10 Rubber Legs and a #18 red Zebra Midge has worked well. Flows are around 1000cfs out of Island Park Dam so plenty of water. Try fishing a couple of Rubber Legs with some split shot and no bobbers. Concentrate in the deeper runs and troughs.
The Ranch has also picked back up. Tricos in the morning have been good and I have started seeing good numbers of Mahogany Duns and the fish are on them. I had the pleasure of fishing with my good friend Shaun Lawson on Saturday and we found a large fish sipping right in front of a rock in the middle of the river. He was rising steady about every 5 seconds and it was early for the Trico’s. I had been out the night before and saw good numbers of Mahogany’s so we tied on a #18 Tilt wing and Shaun made his first cast, A little to the left of him but I saw him move! Shaun’s next cast was right on the money. We both held our breath as his tilt wing came into the lane and it happened! A big head came up and took Shaun’s bug and we missed him! A swing and a miss! So goes fishing on the Ranch. We had many more great eats that day and got a few to the net so in my mind it was a great day. Still lots of caddis throughout the day and picky fish will eat a #18 Sheralee’s Speckled Sedge. Also Hoppers and Beetles have been working very well midday. Don’t be afraid to un-match the hatch. Renegades and Royal Wulffs are great “old School” Ranch patterns.
Warm River to Ashton continues to fish well with lots of small to medium fish with an occasional big Brown trout. Patterns have not changed much either. Small bead heads like Zebra Midges and Two Bit Hookers will serve you well! Don’t forget and handful of streamers! From Ashton on down things are looking up as well! Although the river reached historically low flows this summer morning fishing has been good. Tricos are still plentiful and the caddis have remained consistent. A #20 Double Wing Trico has been getting them in the Fun Farm. In this stretch land these fish as quickly as possible. Try to keep them in the water and spend time making sure they are fully revived before moving on.
The South Fork has been fishing very well early in the morning. The Nocturnal Stones are in full swing so get on the river early for some great dry fly action. Don’t just fish the banks casting a #10 Eldens Ant and twitching it across flats and riffles can be super effective. Also later in the day Mahoganies and P.M.Ds have been working well. The annual Jacksons Hole One fly is right around the corner. Proceeds from this event have helped pay for many conservation projects around the area and is a fun event for both guides as well as participants so good luck everybody!
The Upper Teton in the basin has been producing good dry fly fishing in the morning hours. Look for tricos early on with Mahogany Duns later. Hoppers have also produced some nice fish. The canyon section from the old dam site down to Wilford has been very productive. Mike’s brother Rick floated his nephews down the river and didn’t get off until well after dark but they reported great action. Streamer fishing has been good in the morning and hopper/dropper rigs have been working well midday on the Lower Teton. Also the caddis fishing in the evenings has been good! Look for the Teton to really turn on in the next couple of weeks as weather cools and irrigation demand drops.
We have had great reports from the Madison this week. Fishing crushing Hoppers on the banks and great caddis action in the evenings.
Yellow Stone Park
The Yellow Stone in the park is a little off color and the fishing has been challenging to say the least. The lake should settle down here shortly and fall fishing should start to get good very soon in the park. Big Browns will start their migration out of Hebgen Lake to spawn before too long. I love the fall! Watching these big fish spawn is really neat.